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Old 05-24-2016, 07:48 PM #46
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Did mine at 78K miles, the old ATF is dark and thick, much worse than looking at the dip stick.
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Old 01-28-2017, 10:34 PM #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike the Wino View Post
As many of you know when the forum software was updated some posts were truncated. This post by "Mike the Wino" is a terrific and informative thread. Thanks to J.B.'s character flaws he had the foresight to save it on his computer and reposted it below. Through the magic of my super powers as a moderator I have copy/pasted Mike's thread via J.B. to restore this thread. Thanks to both Mike and J.B.



Mikes original thread:

DIY: Non-Sealed Transmission Service for 4th Gen T4R's and Prior

Howdy all! After much reading on this forum, and in discussions with other members, it was thought that a DYI on this subject was in order. Our fleet of '03 and '04 4Runners are going to see a lot more fluid changes coming up, and most who read these pages have the DIY genes in their blood anyway. So if this is helpful to you, or helps set your mind at ease as to just how easy it is to do, great! If not, well just ignore this and move on!

How to Change the Transmission Filter and Perform a “Flush and Fill” Procedure on 4th Gen TR4’s (and prior) With “Non-Sealed” Transmissions.


This DIY guide is designed for the 4Runner owner that has at least rudimentary mechanical skills, and who wishes to save at least $300 over what most foreign auto repair shops and Toyota dealers charge for the same service. It is only applicable to those vehicles that don’t have “sealed” transmissions; i.e.: those with dipsticks for checking the transmission fluid. It is written with the fledgling garage mechanic in mind…the one who needs true step-by-step instructions.

The following instructions assume you’ve already been to the parts store and have everything you need to perform the task at hand. You may need more than a case of fluid, depending on how nasty the stuff is in your transmission. Many repair facilities say they use up to 18 quarts for a complete flush and fill.

Note: I bought the transmission filter kit at my local NAPA dealer (approx $35 with tax), and I picked up a case of ATF Type T-IV at the Toyota Stealership for $5.35/qt plus tax (about $70), for a grand total of $105. Make sure you buy the fluid specified in your owner’s manual.

Those of you that don’t imbibe in beverages comprised of C2H6O (otherwise known as ethanol, or “grain alcohol”) may wish to skip steps 1, 3, 9, 13 and 15d. (Or substitute for some other beverage of choice).

1. Grab a six pack (or more) of frosty cold malted beverages from the fridge, throw them into a cooler with some blue ice, and head for the shop, garage, or driveway. Conversely, if you’re one of those lucky bas****s that already has a fridge in the shop, you may bypass this step.

2. Ensure the vehicle is at normal operating temperature, and raise the front end on either jack stands or ramps. Turn the engine off.

3. Grab yourself a frosty, cold malted beverage and enjoy. You’ve gotten this far, you deserve it.

4. If you’re going to “flush” the transmission of all the old fluid, then from under the vehicle remove the front skid plate (between the radiator and front suspension). This will give you access to the transmission cooling return line. Determine which line is the return line by feeling both of them, both at the radiator and where they go into the transmission; the cooler one is most likely the return. In my case, the one that plugged into the aft end of the transmission was the return.

If you’re just doing a filter change, skip this step.

5. Remove the drain plug (14 mm) and drain fluid onto the floor, or into a drain pan if you’d prefer not clean up the mess later. You should get about 4-5 quarts.


This shows the old nasty fluid draining from the sump pan.......

6. Remove the transmission dipstick, and then the upper section of the transmission dipstick tube by removing the bolt that holds it to the right cylinder head (see photo). Once the bolt is removed, rotate the tube back and forth while pulling up on it until it separates from the lower section.


Remove this bolt in order to separate the upper section of tube from the lower...

7. Remove all but two of the bolts (preferably closer to the front of the pan) holding on the transmission sump pan. Loosen the two bolts you left in a couple turns. Due to the type of gasket material the factory used, I had to tap a gasket scraper with a hammer at the seal plane to separate the pan from the case. Once the pan is loose, hold onto the pan and remove the two remaining bolts and “drop” the pan.


The sump pan, sitting forlornly under the car.........

8. Remove the filter. You’re going to get more fluid pouring out as you remove the filter, so make sure the drain pan is positioned accordingly. Note: The aft bolt is the longest, followed by a shorter bolt in the middle, then two shorter yet at the forward end.


The as yet un-removed filter.........

9. Grab yourself another frosty, cold malted beverage and swill it down, because you’ve reached a milestone. Whew!

10. Clean the gasket material from the sump pan. I had to remove it by using the wire brush wheel on my bench grinder. The residual dust can be seen in this photo. Also make sure there isn’t any gasket material left on the transmission case.


Shown here is the pan with the gasket material remnants, and the old dirty filter....

11. Remove the magnets that the factory left in the sump pan and wipe them clean. If you notice metal shards/shavings on any of them, you’ve got issues requiring further investigation. If not, clean out the sump pan thoroughly, and replace the magnets into the recessed areas of the pan.

12. Install the new filter, and reinstall the sump pan with the new gasket provided. Don’t use gasket cement; it’s unnecessary. I also reinstalled the upper half of the dipstick tube at this point.

13. Time for another beer!

14. Pour (4) quarts of transmission fluid in through the dipstick tube. Hopefully you’ve got a transmission fluid funnel, i.e.: the type with the long gooseneck. If not, you’ll need to improvise one. Go slowly, because for whatever reason the transmission can’t accept the fluid as fast as you can pour it in, so it backs up the tube and can spill out.

15a. If you’re going to do so, now you’re ready to start the “flushing” process. It’s easier than you think! In the case of my ’03, the transmission lines are metal tubes for the first 18” or so aft of the radiator, then have a rubber section that clamps to metal tubing again where the lines cross over the front suspension and motor mount. It is at this connection where the rubber tubing meets the aft metal tubing that you want to disconnect the cooling line that you previously identified in step (4). Once you’ve separated the line, hang a ¾” or so box-end wrench over the rubber line to keep it from flopping around like a runaway fire hose, and point the line downward into your drain pan. It helps to have an assistant at this point, preferably someone who shares your passion for frosty cold malted beverages.

15b. Have said assistant start the car while you watch the disconnected cooling line up front. In a moment or two (after an initial “sputter”), you should get a steady flow of fluid draining into the pan. When the fluid again starts to “sputter” and the flow reduces, have your helper turn off the motor. You should have 3-4 quarts of old fluid now in the drain pan.

15c. Refill the transmission with about 3 more quarts, and repeat the process. You want to continue this “flush and fill” process until you get nice, fresh red fluid coming out of the return line. It may take up four cycles to achieve this state. When that’s the case, re-install the return line and securely clamp in place. Be sure to top off the transmission, and you’re done!

15d. See, that wasn’t so hard! Congratulations are in order, so bore yourself another peer……uh, pour another beer (HIC!). And don’t forget the helper!

This whole procedure took me only two hours, including potty breaks and cleaning up. And I saved enough money to stock my beer fridge for weeks!

OBLIGATORY DISCLAIMER ALERT!!!: The procedure noted above is what worked for me, and should also work for you assuming all things being equal. I assume no responsibility for anything that may go wrong if you attempt this task on your own. If you’re unsure of your mechanical abilities, or are otherwise worried about the ramifications of screwing something up, by all means spend the extra money and have it done professionally. But really, in all honesty, this is a very simple job, with low risks and high rewards.

Cheers!

Mike the Wino

"Life is too short to drink bad wine."--Unknown
planning on draining and flushing soon, think ill just leave filter alone, I'm at 142k miles.
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Old 01-31-2017, 01:56 PM #48
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nevermind, decided to change filter anyhow, was kinda a waste of time, looked good, I didn't use torque wrench to put pan back, just put em on real snug, might be too tight but seems ok.
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Old 10-21-2018, 09:19 PM #49
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Smile To flush and fill???

Quote:
Originally Posted by ranaesx4 View Post
nevermind, decided to change filter anyhow, was kinda a waste of time, looked good, I didn't use torque wrench to put pan back, just put em on real snug, might be too tight but seems ok.
ranaesx4

Read where you did Mike's full flush on you 142K T4R. Has it performed OK since. I have an 03 T4R SR5 with 175K miles. Had several cooler line compromises that I fixed without issue but am thinking about doing Mike's full fluid flush as I have a dipstick. Have seen a lot here and other web links advising against full flush and in some cases against even drain and add.

Changed main inlet and outlet tubes to cooler at tranny, so perhaps unnecessarily I drained the pan.

Fluid was nice and dark red with just a hint of a gray streak. I assume very small metallics in solution.

Minute 5:50 to 6:50 in this video is what has me thinking

https://youtu.be/o690DovjDAc

John
03 4runner SR% 4WD 175K miles
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Old 10-23-2018, 09:23 AM #50
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MTW. thanks for the pictures. I'd like to see a picture of the tranny fluid you drained? How many miles on tranny? 4runner?

I did my 2005 at the dealer for $600 when I gots to 100,000 miles. There's no interval for tranny change - so should last 300,000.
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Old 12-01-2018, 11:52 AM #51
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What is the right temperature range and gearshift position (parking / neutral) to check transmission fluid level? I have a 2004 Toyota 4Runner V6 with dipstick. The transmission is not sealed. Recently I've had a transmission fluid changed and want to make sure the transmission is not over-or under-filled.

The dipstick has a “cold” and “Hot” levels with min – max notches each, but there is also a gap between “cold” and “hot” levels.

I can measure a temperature of the transmission fluid. But, I do not know what temperature ranges correspond to the transmission fluid's "cold" and "hot"levels on a dipstick, to adjust the fluid level properly.

Also, could anybody explain why there is a gap between the "cold" and "hot" levels on a dipstick? What is the purpose of it?

Any advise would be much appreciated!
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Old 12-12-2018, 03:56 PM #52
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Correct procedure for an '04 V8 4Runner Limited

My in-laws own an '04 V8 4Runner Limited.

I was hoping to perform a transmission fluid & filter service (not a full flush).

Seems to be a lot of different ATF fluids depending on years & options.

Is the procedure outlined here correct for an '04 V8 4Runner Limited?

Do I need Toyota ATF Type T-IV, or ATF-WS.

Thanks!

sod
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Old 03-27-2019, 09:51 PM #53
Silver4RunnerV8 Silver4RunnerV8 is offline
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Thanks OP- this was very helpful!
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Old 04-02-2019, 06:16 PM #54
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I was wondering can I flush by using drain hole of the pan instead of the return line of cooler?


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Old 04-06-2019, 10:07 AM #55
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Excellent post with huge information! Thanks for sharing.
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Old 03-11-2020, 08:42 PM #56
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Hey, I just dropped in to post on another subject and thought I'd check out my old DIY. How come the pictures suck now?

Mike (the wino)
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Old 06-19-2020, 05:26 PM #57
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I have an '04 4Runner SR5 V6 w/ ~201,xxx miles. I'm interested in doing the flush you outlined myself. I called a dealer and they said I can't do it by myself, it's "technical". They quoted me $289 to do the flush. Looks like I'll pay about $130 for fluid and filter if I do it myself. Tempted to spend the extra $$ to not deal with it all, but that's $160 in bear... Is the Toyota ATF fluid the way to go or is Valvoline Maxlife ok?
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Old 06-23-2020, 12:08 AM #58
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaltyTan View Post
I have an '04 4Runner SR5 V6 w/ ~201,xxx miles. I'm interested in doing the flush you outlined myself. I called a dealer and they said I can't do it by myself, it's "technical". They quoted me $289 to do the flush. Looks like I'll pay about $130 for fluid and filter if I do it myself. Tempted to spend the extra $$ to not deal with it all, but that's $160 in bear... Is the Toyota ATF fluid the way to go or is Valvoline Maxlife ok?
I have a 2003 SR5 V6 with non sealed trans (340E). Following what learned here did flush a week ago. If yours is also non sealed (has deepstick for level) the procedure is very simple.
Remove from radiator ATF lower hose (driver's side) and hook up a 3/8" plastic hose to the nipple in the radiator from where the lower hose was removed. Other end of 3/8 plastic hose to an empty container. Turn car on (aprox 30 seconds) and off , removing 2 or 3 liters at a time and replace it with funnel thru deepstick same amount each time. After aprox 3 1/2 gallons of ATF, outflow became similar to I was putting in. Hook up ATF hose back in radiator. You are done.
I used Valvoline Maxlife. Gearbox was working beautiful pre-fluid change (original OEM) and still is
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Last edited by CarlosV; 06-23-2020 at 01:13 AM.
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Old 02-15-2021, 01:16 AM #59
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I followed your instructions to a T, and everything went perfectly. Thanks a bunch for this.
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Old 06-02-2021, 11:35 AM #60
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Great article! Is there any differences wen dealing with the 4.7L V8?
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