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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know that most Toyota dealerships are equipped with a T-Tech machine that aids in performing an auto tranny flush but if I understand correctly it's nothing more than a large temporary reservoir for the fluid and the tranny itself actually moves the fluid. So my question is, is there a do-it-yourself preferred method for doing this at home. Can I just drain the 2-3 quarts in the pan, run the engine for a few seconds, refill with 2-3 new quarts through the dipstick, then repeat this cycle until the old fluid has been flushed through for the most part? It's also been recommended to me that I can just drain the pan of its 2-3 quarts every 2000-2500 miles (when doing an oil change), and then top it off with new fluid and that this will be nearly as efficient as a full flush every 15K miles.

All feedback is appreciated.
 

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Shawn Davis
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www.amsoil.com has some information on a DIY flush. I'm pretty sure I wrote a decription of the process at one point so search around this site also.

Basically you'll drain and refill the pan. Then you'll pull a hose goign to your tranny cooler and run the engine to drain a quart. Fill a quart and then repeat until the fluid leaving looks new. It takes about 15 quarts total I think....
 

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Good questions, Id like to hear a toyota mechanic's opinion on this...
 

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ScrewDrvr said:
how many quarts does the tranny hold anyway?
It holds about 7-8 quarts total with the convertor. (Not sure how much less the stock one holds than mine.)

The T-Tech actually just hold the fluid, the tranny does the work of moving the fluid, so a do it yourself method will work just fine as long as you keep air from getting into the system.

The T-Tech holds 16qts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Ubermensch, so one can just disconnect the hose going out of the integrated tranny cooler (return line on driver's side) and place it in a fluid reservoir while purging the fluid from the hose going into the radiator on the passenger's side?

Is there anything wrong with the two methods I described in my original post. Namely, draining from the pan, refilling through the dipstick, running the engine, repeat this process until about 12 or so quarts have cycled through. Or secondly, just draining the pan (2-3 quarts) and refillling the same amount at every 2000-2500 mile engine oil change interval.
 

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Shawn Davis
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crossways said:
Ubermensch, so one can just disconnect the hose going out of the integrated tranny cooler (return line on driver's side) and place it in a fluid reservoir while purging the fluid from the hose going into the radiator on the passenger's side?
I'm not quite clear on what you're saying about purging the line. As I said, disconnect one line and capture the used fluid while the engine is running. Reconnect and fill with an equal amount of fluid. Repeat. It sounds like you're suggesting placing one tube in a reservoir of new fluid and the other tube dumps the old. This does not work (as far as I know) since the pump is pumping only and I do not think the suction is sufficient to draw in the new fluid.

crossways said:
Is there anything wrong with the two methods I described in my original post. Namely, draining from the pan, refilling through the dipstick, running the engine, repeat this process until about 12 or so quarts have cycled through. Or secondly, just draining the pan (2-3 quarts) and refillling the same amount at every 2000-2500 mile engine oil change interval.
I don't see anything wrong (in terms of damaging things) it just seems like the first method wouldn't do as good of a job. I may be completely full of it but somehow draining from the pan doesn't seem as effective. Don't ask me to explain the rationale since the logic doesn't make sense to me either. But hell, its just as easy, maybe easier, to pull the line than drain the pan.

The second method would work in the long haul, but again, its more effort for a possibly less sure flushing. When you do what I described its a very clear transition from dirty to clean.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
After talking with 2 Toyota master techs at 2 different dealerships, here is their consensus. One can assume that Supras are under the heavy duty usage maintenance schedule since most Supra owners like to understandably push their vehicles to the limit. Nevertheless, if the Toyota Type-T IV ATF fluid is not contaminated (brown) and/or smells burned, it is not necessary to perform a flush service at the 15,000 mile interval. A drain and clean pan and screen service will suffice. Even more interesting, it was recommended that if the fluid is drained via the plug, and the tranny topped off with the necessary 2 replenishing quarts at engine oil change intervals (~2500 miles) then that is sufficient to introduce enough new detergents and additives so as to not require an eventual full flush. In fact this 2500 mile regularly scheduled simple drain may even be of greater benefit to a longer lasting tranny since the unit does not go extended periods of time between seeing fresh detergents.

A few footnotes though. If you're a new owner and not familiar with the previous owner's vehicle maintenance, then an initial flush is recommended followed by the 2500 mile drain and replenish schedule. If you have to flush the fluid you can easily reproduce the dealer's flushing technique in your home garage. Simply disconnect the upper hose going to the transmission oil cooler at the radiator and allow this hose to drain into a bucket or suitable container. Start the engine and allow it to run until 2 quarts of fluid have drained into the bucket. After 2 quarts have drained, stop the engine to stop the draining. Empty the bucket. Pour two quarts of fresh Toyota Type-T IV ATF fluid into the dipstick via a thin stemmed funnel. Repeat this 2 quart drain and fill cycle until the fluid coming out of the hose is the same as the new fluid. The tranny capacity is approximately 8 quarts but the flush may require 10-12 quarts to thoroughly freshen the tranny's entire capacity. Reinstall the hose and check that the tranny fluid level is up to spec.

I'm sure I've left out a few details. I welcome all feedback.
 

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well i know at my dealership we cant use the t-tech to do flushes on cars that take anything other than dex. 2/3 because we have to use the our atf lines directly to the machine, there is no other way to get fluid in it. and we put 12 qts. in it.
 

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A few footnotes though. If you're a new owner and not familiar with the previous owner's vehicle maintenance, then an initial flush is recommended followed by the 2500 mile drain and replenish schedule.
I disagree with that statement. If the car has higher milage and no tranny service records are available, i would change the fluid in the pan with every oil change. A complete flush on a older tranny often times cause it to slip due to the removal of the wear material that was once circulated by the old fluid.
 
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AZMongoose said:
I disagree with that statement. If the car has higher milage and no tranny service records are available, i would change the fluid in the pan with every oil change. A complete flush on a older tranny often times cause it to slip due to the removal of the wear material that was once circulated by the old fluid.
That is exactly what my tranny/converter builder told me. I would tend to agree.
 

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AZMongoose said:
I disagree with that statement. If the car has higher milage and no tranny service records are available, i would change the fluid in the pan with every oil change. A complete flush on a older tranny often times cause it to slip due to the removal of the wear material that was once circulated by the old fluid.
I have about 97K miles on my 1997 Auto. So you would not recommend getting a transmission flush? Also what type of oil do we use and does it matter?
 

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crossways said:
Nevertheless, if the Toyota Type-T IV ATF fluid is not contaminated (brown) and/or smells burned, it is not necessary to perform a flush service at the 15,000 mile interval.
If your ATF fluid looks brown or smells burnt, you have tranny problems! The ATF fluid I've drained looks exactly the same as what I've put back in on a few of my Supras with mileage ranging 30k - 50k.

Originally posted by crossways
A drain and clean pan and screen service will suffice. Even more interesting, it was recommended that if the fluid is drained via the plug, and the tranny topped off with the necessary 2 replenishing
Just draining the fluid from the plug is just as easy as draining your engine oil. On the other hand, I've taken the pan off a few times throughout the years and I've found it to be a COMPLETE pain in the ass! First, you have to literally pry the pan off trying not to bend it because of the red goop gasket that Toyota uses. Then about 2 quarts of ATF you thought you drained falls on your face. The worst part is putting it back on and trying not to get the replacement goop gasket everywhere especially on the valve body. :0 You can potentially do more harm than good here. And FYI the hundred pan bolts only require a couple pounds of torque or they snap.

The only reason to drop the pan is to clean the bottom of the pan and magnets of the worn clutch/gear dust. Then REPLACE the screen which will collect metal shavings. You can try to clean it, but it's better to replace after all that work.

John H
 

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aren't you supposed to change the filter when you service the tranny? I hear so many people say just get the system pumped but jiffey lube and such never change the filter. What's up with that?
 

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Shawn Davis
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Our tranny filters are metal screens that in theory do not require replacement. I've pulled my and taken a look after ~165k miles and didn't see anything on the screen. I cleaned it and reinstalled it.

I've heard the same advice as AZ posted regarding old transmissions and flushing. I did a full flush of my tranny at 165k miles. I've put another 30k miles on it since then at BPU and the fluid looks red and brand new. If your fluid is brown and smells burnt you clearly have issues.

92 gmc typhoon said:
aren't you supposed to change the filter when you service the tranny? I hear so many people say just get the system pumped but jiffey lube and such never change the filter. What's up with that?
 

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crossways said:
After talking with 2 Toyota master techs at 2 different dealerships, here is their consensus. One can assume that Supras are under the heavy duty usage maintenance schedule since most Supra owners like to understandably push their vehicles to the limit. Nevertheless, if the Toyota Type-T IV ATF fluid is not contaminated (brown) and/or smells burned, it is not necessary to perform a flush service at the 15,000 mile interval. A drain and clean pan and screen service will suffice. Even more interesting, it was recommended that if the fluid is drained via the plug, and the tranny topped off with the necessary 2 replenishing quarts at engine oil change intervals (~2500 miles) then that is sufficient to introduce enough new detergents and additives so as to not require an eventual full flush. In fact this 2500 mile regularly scheduled simple drain may even be of greater benefit to a longer lasting tranny since the unit does not go extended periods of time between seeing fresh detergents.
I'm sure I've left out a few details. I welcome all feedback.
This is strange. Tranny holds 8 quarts which most people recommend flushing at 15,000 miles. They said drain the pan every 2500 miles basically changing the fluid every 10k miles because it was not as frequent? Draining the pan every oil change would be changing the trans fluid much faster than flushing every 15k miles is what im trying to say so whoever you talked to basically contradicted themselves.

Next. The T-Tech machine is much more than a temporary reservoir. First it figures out the direction of flow of the fluid so you do not have to make sure one line is going to the trans or coming away from the trans which is helpful if you are the one doing it. It also calculates exactly how much fluid comes out the put the same amount of new fluid in. Very simple process to do and i would like to pay to see a person do the entire flush without the machine.

The trans filter replacement varies by who you ask but most say to do it...i however do not. If you are going to do it make sure to put the new filter in before doing the trans flush...that way is something is struck in the filter screen the flush will not dislodge it. I have never had a problem though.

Most people charge 70-90$ + tranny fluid to do the flush.

-SJ

P.S. Your tranny fluid should be pink. When it turns dark red that is when it should be changed...when it turns brown it is already too late.
 

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I am on my second auto TT. While my first auto never had problems following the Toyota maintaince schedule, the car never saw over 15 psi of boost. The car was high mileage and never any issues.
On my 98 I have been simply draining the pan ever 2500-3000 miles with the oil change. I am now on the 7-8 cycle of doing this and finally the fluid is looking pretty nice and clean. The trans had a nice gradual introduction of fluid and I have to report that even after every change you could feel the trans was much smoother for the first couple of days. Now its super smooth and I've had no issues with the trans. Now I will probably only do it every other oil change.
Its also very easy: pull the plug, let it drain, replace the plug, refill the fluid through the dipstick with a funnel (1.5-1.75qts)
ONLY USE TOYOTA FLUID Type 4
Hope this helps.
 
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