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Photo DIY: RX300 AWD Transmission Fluid, Pan, Filter Change

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Old 06-04-06, 08:09 PM   #16
Lexmex
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Speaking of tranny flushes, I did a flush once out at the Lexus dealer in Naples, Florida on the way to Miami a little over two years ago.

Delightful experience. I only got to stare back there for about a minute (I insisted since I didn't want a $125 USD car wash) and from what I saw there was a machine behind my vehicle, a hose up near the tranny cooler area that went into the machine and then another hose back into the engine area from the machine, but I couldn't make it out exactly.

The end result was that both my father and I felt that the shift from P to D was smoother than at at any other time during our ownership including now. In addition, my father said the shift points were very smooth, evenly proportioned just like it should be.

Previously, my fluid had the silvery/pinkish look.

This was the only service I had done there since I had done everything else either with my uncle or at the dealership in San Antonio, Texas.
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Old 06-05-06, 11:57 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fern
You sure seam to know what your doing and I was just wondering why this wasn't something you appeared to consider when draining the 30% T-IV which was left behind?
Fern, sorry I miss this question. There is always a portion of ATF trapped inside the torque convertor. There is one thing we can try to get more, when the helper start the car and press on the brake, shift from "1", to "2", to "D", then OD. I believe the route ATF travels is different for each gear. I did not try this because I felt a little uneasy to let my wife shift out of "P" and me in front of the car. Not worth the risk
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Old 06-07-06, 01:48 AM   #18
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Great job!

Some novice questions:

* How do you measure how much ATF has come out? I mean, when adding new ATF don't you just keep checking the dipstick?

* Why does the oil restrainer have to be replaced?

* This may sound silly, but in step 10, couldn't you just hold off on adding the fresh ATF and run the engine until the hose started sputtering fluid at which point you know it's dry? How long did you run the engine before you saw fresh fluid and cut the engine?

Anyway, it's late and I'm probably not thinking straight. Great post.

-Sam
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Old 06-07-06, 07:39 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OKmechanic
Great job!

Some novice questions:

* How do you measure how much ATF has come out? I mean, when adding new ATF don't you just keep checking the dipstick?

* Why does the oil restrainer have to be replaced?

* This may sound silly, but in step 10, couldn't you just hold off on adding the fresh ATF and run the engine until the hose started sputtering fluid at which point you know it's dry? How long did you run the engine before you saw fresh fluid and cut the engine?

Anyway, it's late and I'm probably not thinking straight. Great post.

-Sam
I guess I can answer a few questions.
To measure how much came out, just pour the ATF into a bottle that you know the volume of.
Next time when I do it, it will go into 4L jug(the one you buy for spring water). Any excess could be measured with small bottles such as 500ml ones.
Or you can get a pan that actually lets u know the volume.

As for Step 10. You don't want to starve the tranny. Hence you have to add ATF into it to make sure there's lubrications between the different parts.
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Old 06-07-06, 08:37 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wing0
I guess I can answer a few questions.
As for Step 10. You don't want to starve the tranny. Hence you have to add ATF into it to make sure there's lubrications between the different parts.
I guess I see it as the engine runs pumping out the old ATF fluid. When you see it stop pumping fluid, you cut the engine. Let's say the engine has to run for 60 seconds to empty the remaining ATF.

The engine is cold because is hasn't been running. There's still some residual ATF on the parts so it's not like the transmission is bone dry. And lastly, the transmission is in park thus it's not engaged - what's really moving in there that can't go without ATF for a few seconds?

Can starving the tranny for a few seconds really be catastrophic? I know none of us want to be the test case, and I'm not suggesting I would try this, I'm just curious.

Also, what do you do with the old ATF? Will parts stores take it? Is it ok to be mixed with oil or do you need to get a separate pan for ATF and oil?
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Old 06-07-06, 11:15 AM   #21
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There should be stations that collect used oil or maybe a mechanic shop will take it in for free.

As for letting the tranny go dry for a few sec...
It might not do damage or anything, but what's the point of changing fluid while preserving the life of the tranny if you're gonna let the tranny starve for a few seconds? All I know is we dun have that great of a tranny in our car so I'd try not to mess with it. $20-30 more fluid used up is better than $2000-3000 replacing the tranny.
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Old 06-07-06, 11:43 AM   #22
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Wing0 is right. Tranny pump draws fresh ATF from the pan and use it to push old ATF out, unlike multiple drain and fills in a row, there is little mixing of old and new ATF so you are not going to waste a lot of fresh ATF. Some pumps such as fuel pump rely on fluid to provide cooling. It is just not worth the risk to let tranny run dry.
If you have one quart bottles, just take a Sharpie to mark where "water line" are. Use these empty bottles measure. I just eyeball it.
Used ATF is a house hold waste, our city has a recycle event at a local high school every 6 months. They take ATF, even though it was primary for battery, used engine oil and filter. You can also check your city's Environmental Service Department if you don't want them to sit in your garage for months.
Whatever you do, don't dump in the sink!
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Old 06-07-06, 06:07 PM   #23
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I am not an expert on this issue but I have heard this about trans fluid level...

It is worse to overfill as compared to underfill. Maybe an expert can explain.

Obviously I am not suggesting to run the trans with fluid below min. ** I reccomend measuring amount you drained }

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Old 06-07-06, 06:12 PM   #24
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Tip:

Wlamart (auto shop) accepts reasonable amount of oil to re-cycle during week-day office hours (M-F 9-5).

I buy oil f(except trans) rom them and recycle with them. Fair enough!

Salim
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Old 06-07-06, 08:08 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TunedRX300
Wing0 is right. Tranny pump draws fresh ATF from the pan and use it to push old ATF out, unlike multiple drain and fills in a row, there is little mixing of old and new ATF so you are not going to waste a lot of fresh ATF. Some pumps such as fuel pump rely on fluid to provide cooling. It is just not worth the risk to let tranny run dry.
If you have one quart bottles, just take a Sharpie to mark where "water line" are. Use these empty bottles measure. I just eyeball it.
Ok I see - the tranny pump needs fresh fluid to get out the old fluid.

Quote:
Used ATF is a house hold waste, our city has a recycle event at a local high school every 6 months. They take ATF, even though it was primary for battery, used engine oil and filter. You can also check your city's Environmental Service Department if you don't want them to sit in your garage for months.
Whatever you do, don't dump in the sink!
From what you guys are saying it seems as if engine oil and ATF are really the same when it comes to recycling. When I was a kid.... I remember my Dad and I used to take used oil to the fire station where they would purify it and use it on their trucks. So my perception has been that ATF is really different from engine oil and mixing the two (for recycling) isn't helpful. Kindof like mixing coolant and oil and giving it to the recyclers and saying "it's oil."

Conclusion: I can use my engine oil pan to collect ATF when I change it which won't be until 90K since I just had it done at 60K. I don't have to go buy a separate pan to collect the ATF.

Great work.

I hope to post my own thread on brake pads, with photos, using Salim's and others instructions. Hopefully later this summer.
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Old 06-07-06, 08:18 PM   #26
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My uncle dumps the synthetic I and my cousin (in his Golf VR6) use back into his own vehicles. I will have to ask him what he does with the other fluids, though I remember someone coming around to collect them.
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Old 06-08-06, 11:16 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OKmechanic
From what you guys are saying it seems as if engine oil and ATF are really the same when it comes to recycling. When I was a kid.... I remember my Dad and I used to take used oil to the fire station where they would purify it and use it on their trucks. So my perception has been that ATF is really different from engine oil and mixing the two (for recycling) isn't helpful. Kindof like mixing coolant and oil and giving it to the recyclers and saying "it's oil."
Actually I gave the volunteer worker ATF telling him it is not engine oil, I don't know he mixed it with engine oil or not. When I was trying to give him a liter of brake fluid, but he told me they don't recycle it. I was surprised because both ATF and brake fluid are hydraulic fluid. But then ATF also is a lubricant and coolant, it could be based on the same base oil as engine oil, just add different additives.
I use the same pan for my oil change, but wipe it clean after I am done. I also don't mix ATF and engine oil, because I don't want the recycled ATF to be in the engine of another RX300.
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Old 06-11-06, 11:17 AM   #28
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Default Filter "strainer oil"

I noticed on your photos that the filter "strainer-oil" does not appear to be the same shape as the part you replaced. The bolt pattern appears to be the same though. Is this an upgraded part?

Also is this filter the same "screen" that I've seen mentioned on other posts about transmission service. This filter looks about the same as the filter assembly used in GM and Ford transmissions. Ford and GM transmission filters use to be changed about every three years or 36,000 miles.
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Old 06-11-06, 02:35 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bozilla
I noticed on your photos that the filter "strainer-oil" does not appear to be the same shape as the part you replaced. The bolt pattern appears to be the same though. Is this an upgraded part?

Also is this filter the same "screen" that I've seen mentioned on other posts about transmission service. This filter looks about the same as the filter assembly used in GM and Ford transmissions. Ford and GM transmission filters use to be changed about every three years or 36,000 miles.
See my earlier post in this thread about supplier choice.
I don't know whether replacement oil restrainer, official name as in the service manual, is an upgrade. It seems the metal screen filter is used to catch large metal particles and leave those 3 magnets to retain finer shavings. My original metal filter looks fine but I can only exam 20% since the rest is enclosed by the metal shell.
With paper filter, maybe more finer particles will be trapped by the filter instead of going through it. It is still a good replacement but I will keep the original oil restrainer until the next time I dropped the pan (about 60K miles).

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Old 06-11-06, 05:55 PM   #30
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TunedRX300,

I was thinking about next time I change it out with the pan/filter method to see with the filter if I could put the old one under some water and see if I can pan for gold literally to see what, if any, fine particles show up on that filter.
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