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Old 08-05-2019, 08:05 AM #1
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'18 SR5 with intermittent driveline shudder

I've owned my 4R for almost exactly 1 year, bought it new in 2018. My commute is relatively short, so I've only put about 8500 miles on it, 1000 of which was a long road trip.

No lift, only mods have been a pedal commander and swapping out the stock SR5 rims for those from a Trail.

Anyway, I've recently noticed that there's a shudder I can feel in the seat, usually happens right around 40 mph, doesn't seem to be all the time and I don't have any of the steering wheel vibration I've seen described in other threads. Past experience leads me to believe it could be related to the driveshaft, but I'm curious if anyone else is having or has had this issue.

Thanks.
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Old 08-05-2019, 05:55 PM #2
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Only time I've ever had driveline shudder is on an older vehicle (not a 4Runner) when the U-Joint was about to go out and it only occurred during start-up. Get up under and try and manually move around the driveshaft around the 2 U-joints and see if there is any movement. I kinda doubt it though as the vehicle has so few miles on it.
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Old 08-06-2019, 11:35 AM #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mteolus View Post
Only time I've ever had driveline shudder is on an older vehicle (not a 4Runner) when the U-Joint was about to go out and it only occurred during start-up. Get up under and try and manually move around the driveshaft around the 2 U-joints and see if there is any movement. I kinda doubt it though as the vehicle has so few miles on it.
right, that's been my experience as well..
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Old 08-06-2019, 12:10 PM #4
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I know it's a completely different vehicle, but I bought a used Rav4 AWD a few months ago, and after buying, noticed a shudder around 40-45 mph, almost like going over a mild rumble strip on the side of the road. Similar to what you describe. Happened with some irregularity, not all the time. Turned out to be a torque converter issue that was covered by Toyota up to 150k miles - replaced for free. Probably not your problem, but then, even a new torque converter can have a flaw. Just throwing it out there.
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Old 08-06-2019, 01:07 PM #5
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I may suggest having your wheels balanced just as an initial step. Cheap and easy thing to knock off the list before getting too involved.. sounds like maybe you could have thrown a wheel weight out back. Again, just an easy thing to knock off the list.
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Old 08-06-2019, 01:37 PM #6
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I know it's a completely different vehicle, but I bought a used Rav4 AWD a few months ago, and after buying, noticed a shudder around 40-45 mph, almost like going over a mild rumble strip on the side of the road. Similar to what you describe. Happened with some irregularity, not all the time. Turned out to be a torque converter issue that was covered by Toyota up to 150k miles - replaced for free. Probably not your problem, but then, even a new torque converter can have a flaw. Just throwing it out there.
a rumble strip is a great description of the problem..but yeah I seriously doubt its the TC..

something tells me it also might have something to do with the section of road I'm driving on since it doesn't seem to do it all of the time.
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Old 08-06-2019, 01:38 PM #7
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I may suggest having your wheels balanced just as an initial step. Cheap and easy thing to knock off the list before getting too involved.. sounds like maybe you could have thrown a wheel weight out back. Again, just an easy thing to knock off the list.
good call..had my wheels swapped a couple months ago so that's a definite possibility.
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Old 08-06-2019, 07:36 PM #8
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I have something similar on my 2017 SR5. It feels like a slight shudder in the seat from 42 to 50 mph under no or very slight acceleration. It is not always present. I too thought it was the tires and replaced them at 35,000 miles (good riddance AT20's). It still had the shudder and to me felt like the torque converter quickly locking and unlocking. I took it to the dealer and they came up with some story about how it was a "learned behavior" and they disconnected the battery to clear the memory. Needless to say, I felt it on the ride home from the dealer.

So I have 2 questions:
1. Where do the dealer service people come up with these stories? Do you suppose they go back to the break room to regale the others with the outlandish explanation the just pawned of on some unknowing customer? Maybe it is a contest.
2. Could it be suspension related? Is there some sort of low frequency vibration? Maybe an engineer can educate us on harmonics and frame modulus.
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Old 08-07-2019, 08:26 AM #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Double Dubya View Post
I have something similar on my 2017 SR5. It feels like a slight shudder in the seat from 42 to 50 mph under no or very slight acceleration. It is not always present. I too thought it was the tires and replaced them at 35,000 miles (good riddance AT20's). It still had the shudder and to me felt like the torque converter quickly locking and unlocking. I took it to the dealer and they came up with some story about how it was a "learned behavior" and they disconnected the battery to clear the memory. Needless to say, I felt it on the ride home from the dealer.

So I have 2 questions:
1. Where do the dealer service people come up with these stories? Do you suppose they go back to the break room to regale the others with the outlandish explanation the just pawned of on some unknowing customer? Maybe it is a contest.
2. Could it be suspension related? Is there some sort of low frequency vibration? Maybe an engineer can educate us on harmonics and frame modulus.
That describes it to a T.. it's the intermittent nature that's puzzling. Possible you're on to something about the torque converter..maybe it's got an issue with the fluid and it's not properly locking up until it gets warm..

I've been paying close attention to when it happens and noticed it again this morning leaving my house to go to work. Feel like I notice it after the trucks been sitting for a while.

That's just plain stupid that they called it learned behavior..So the drivertrain needs to learn how to not shudder??

I think the service people are full of s**t they say something to get you down the road and expect you'll be too busy to follow up on it...Trying to gather up as much info as I can before I take it in to the dealer. If they try to tell me it's normal behavior I'll probably lose it..
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Old 08-07-2019, 08:42 AM #10
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Found this other thread with folks having the exact same problem..several newer 4R's with less than 10K on the clock..

5th Gen T4R transmission shudder
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Old 08-08-2019, 10:30 AM #11
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Observations this morning. The shudder seems most evident between 40 and 44MPH and it's just ever so slight..I'd be curious to drive another 4R SR5 from the same year to see whether it does it too.

A post in the other thread suggested that dropping into 4S would eliminate the shudder..I tried it on my commute and felt a little different but it didn't go away.
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Old 08-09-2019, 08:04 AM #12
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Drove to the airport last night which is a 70-mile round trip, a good portion of which is highway where I can do 80+..

There is absolutely zero shudder or vibration at that speed..

Get off the highway, on an off the gas shudder is there..it's most noticeable between 40 and 50 under very light throttle and seems more pronounced when decelerating and then getting back on the gas.

That fact alone makes me lean more towards a mechanical/drivetrain issue as opposed to tires..

At the risk of my sanity, I'm going to make an appointment with the dealership next week to have them look at it. Stay tuned.
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Old 08-09-2019, 09:23 AM #13
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Again, it sure sounds like my 2013 RAV4 torque converter problem. I’m curious to see what they find. At least drive train issues are covered. Best wishes!
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Old 08-09-2019, 09:52 AM #14
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Quote:
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Observations this morning. The shudder seems most evident between 40 and 44MPH and it's just ever so slight..I'd be curious to drive another 4R SR5 from the same year to see whether it does it too.

A post in the other thread suggested that dropping into 4S would eliminate the shudder..I tried it on my commute and felt a little different but it didn't go away.
I also tried the 4S test and the shudder was still there. This leads me to believe that it is not the torque converter as I think that in 4S it is not in lockup.
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Old 08-09-2019, 09:53 AM #15
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Drove to the airport last night which is a 70-mile round trip, a good portion of which is highway where I can do 80+..

There is absolutely zero shudder or vibration at that speed..

Get off the highway, on an off the gas shudder is there..it's most noticeable between 40 and 50 under very light throttle and seems more pronounced when decelerating and then getting back on the gas.

That fact alone makes me lean more towards a mechanical/drivetrain issue as opposed to tires..

At the risk of my sanity, I'm going to make an appointment with the dealership next week to have them look at it. Stay tuned.
I am looking forward to see what your dealer finds. Mine was no help. I mostly wanted to get something on the record in case something comes up later.
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