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94 Es300 Transmission Rebuild Quote: 1800+


lexus4mk25
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Hi,

Just got a quote from a local garage for a rebuild of my 94 es300 transmission.

Apparently the clutch is disintegrating and the transmission fliter is getting clogged.

The final charge could range from $1800 to $2100. I will have a final quote tomorrow.

If I decide to back out, the guy will still charge me ~$450 since he would have pulled apart the tranny to figure the exact nature of the problem, and the parts that would need replacement.

The symptoms that led me to the garage: Car just stopped in the middle of the road, as I came to a stop to take a turn. (car was running smooth till the breakdown, ofcouse there was always a slight rattle when starting from a stop).

Stepping on the gas pedal caused the rpms to go up, but the car just didn't move. Reverse didn't work either. I turned the engine off, waited for 5 mins then retried, the car moved and I just made it back to my apt. (200ft. away)

Now I'm just wondering what you guys think of the quote. Is it fair?

BTW, I bought the car at 128K miles in Jan 2004. My guess is this is the original tranny. Just got the tranny fluids changed 3 weeks ago.

I'm in Austin, TX

Thanks!

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Hi,

Just got a quote from a local garage for a rebuild of my 94 es300 transmission.

Apparently the clutch is disintegrating and the transmission fliter is getting clogged.

The final charge could range from $1800 to $2100. I will have a final quote tomorrow.

If I decide to back out, the guy will still charge me ~$450 since he would have pulled apart the tranny to figure the exact nature of the problem, and the parts that would need replacement.

The symptoms that led me to the garage: Car just stopped in the middle of the road, as I came to a stop to take a turn. (car was running smooth till the breakdown, ofcouse there was always a slight rattle when starting from a stop).

Stepping on the gas pedal caused the rpms to go up, but the car just didn't move. Reverse didn't work either. I turned the engine off, waited for 5 mins then retried, the car moved and I just made it back to my apt. (200ft. away)

Now I'm just wondering what you guys think of the quote. Is it fair?

BTW, I bought the car at 128K miles in Jan 2004. My guess is this is the original tranny. Just got the tranny fluids changed 3 weeks ago.

I'm in Austin, TX

Thanks!

Who is the one will be doing your tranny job? I've seen many tranny fail again after the rebuild. These tranny aren't easy ....We've rebuild a couple of them and it's not a walk in the park. Make sure you get a written warranty.

JPI

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Who did the fluid change?

what type of fluid did they use?

flush or drain ?

If you are gettting a $450 charge anyway,

get it done , but make sure you get an iron clad warr and from a good shop

My B-I-L got the tranny fluid changed in his town (not Austin) so the two shops are different.

Thanks for the suggestions, I think I will request that warranty in writing.

It sure is disappointing to have the tranny go out one year after I bought the car, but I guess with old cars like these, it is within the realm of reasonable possibilities.

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Hi,

Just got a quote from a local garage for a rebuild of my 94 es300 transmission.

Apparently the clutch is disintegrating and the transmission fliter is getting clogged.

The final charge could range from $1800 to $2100. I will have a final quote tomorrow.

If I decide to back out, the guy will still charge me ~$450 since he would have pulled apart the tranny to figure the exact nature of the problem, and the parts that would need replacement.

The symptoms that led me to the garage: Car just stopped in the middle of the road, as I came to a stop to take a turn. (car was running smooth till the breakdown, ofcouse there was always a slight rattle when starting from a stop).

Stepping on the gas pedal caused the rpms to go up, but the car just didn't move. Reverse didn't work either. I turned the engine off, waited for 5 mins then retried, the car moved and I just made it back to my apt. (200ft. away)

Now I'm just wondering what you guys think of the quote. Is it fair?

BTW, I bought the car at 128K miles in Jan 2004. My guess is this is the original tranny. Just got the tranny fluids changed 3 weeks ago.

I'm in Austin, TX

Thanks!

The price seems quite reasonable. I paid $1850 to rebuild my 92 Chrysler Town & Country transmission about 6-7 years ago.

Just make sure you trust the people doing the work and that you get a decent warranty.

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Just got the car back from the shop.

Total price for rebuild + replacement of Engine Rear seal ~ $2100.

Additionally it was sugeested that I get the following taken care of ( they dont handle such work apparently):

->Leak in power steering mechanism

->CV boots, all four (estimated cost: $70)

->engine mount (estimated cost: $200)

->air intake mechanism needs to be cleaned out

When I got the car back and started the engine, I realised that the Engine check light remained on.

When I asked them about it, they said that it was an o2 sensor code and I'd need to get the air intake checked out.

The engine check light never came on before.

Could powering off and powering on the computer have caused it to pick this error code up now?

Coming to the transmission: shifting at lower speeds is VERY jerky, shifting to higher gears at higher speeds is fine, but you can still feel a small jerk.

I was told that the computer will 'learn' my driving style and the jerks will eventtually disappear. hmmmmm :blink:

Now this car really isn't worth that much (probably $3-5K) I have just spent $2k on it and looks like another $500-$1000 could be needed before long.

The current mileage is 147K.

What do you all think I should do?

a. Sell the car off for 4K, if I can get that much

b. keep investing (get the above mentioned stuff fixed) and keep the car running

Thanks!

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Look like theydidn't fix the problem

1. Check engine light shouldn't be on when you get the vehicle back. I've seen a couple times tech ruin the 02 sensor when R&R transmission.

2. Make sure they put the check ball back into the tranny otherwise the tranny will shift or engage harsh in low speed. Also check your throttle cable make sure it's not cut or bend.

3. Like I said in the first post. Rebuilding this tranny is not a walk in the park. There are about 8 hard lines on this tranny and they can switch it around. Good luck.

JPI

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I'm a bit distressed about all of this, but that's neither here nor there....

The car does seem to drive smoother once it has figured out the gear it wants to be in. Once I hit hight speeds > 50mph and there are no more gear changes the care feels much better now than it did before.

But at the lower speeds its like it can't figure out which gear to be in, it could be my imagination but it appears to be shifting up and down before it settles in. This is more prominent at < 25pmh.

another thing, when I accelerate very gradually the severity of the jerk is much less than when I accelerate as I would normally do.

Anyway thanks for the information, will give the mechanic a call next week.

Will keep you guys posted of the results.

Probably a bit late in the game, but it could be useful in future, any good Lexus mechanics in Austin, TX that you may know of?

-M

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sounds liek JPI is on the money with the valve body either being still clogged or a check ball /valve is reinstalled improperly

basically the tranny is a big hyradlic pump it uses pressure from actuators and the engine to change gears depending on load from the driver and speed of the wheels and engine

take it back

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My suggestion...seriously....take it to JPI who posted in this thread if you need work or maintenance done in the future. He is in Garland and absolutely incredible. You will not regret the drive. I will use him from here on out and he is about 3 hours from me. He is the best and the smartest I have seen.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Update....

Due to the lurching and hard shifting, I took the car back to the mechanic.

First he said that he'd have to replace the engine mount to rule it out as a culrpit.

The engine mount was already diagnosed by another mechanic to be in need of replacement, so I went with the change.

The mechanic then agrees with me that the shifting is hard and eventually decides that some aluminium sleeve needs to be replaced. Took 5 days to get a hold of it and finally installed it this morning.

I picked up the car this afternoon and as I was driving out I feel the lurching again, I'm very unhappy.

I drive back to the mechanic and have him sit with me as I drive. He says that I drive the car harder than he'd expected, so he gives it a shot and can easily recreate the symptoms by accelerating hard.

Now he says that the control system is probably faulty and that once he gets a hold on another one he'll call me so that I can bring the car back and he can swap out the control system, to verify if this is indeed the problem.

I've been without a car for a week, so I take the car with and I decide to not accelerate as I usually do. The car shifts much smoother this way.

What is going on?...

For now I've decided to make the adjustment to my driving style, but at the back of mind I know something is not right here.....

And oh the Check Engine Light is on, mechanic says I gotta have it replaced. He said that he swapped it with another one on the car and error codes detected it again from the second location, so it is definitely bad.

I though there were 3 02 sensors on this car, not 2.

-M

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sounds like you need a new mechanic

btw do you use premium of regular gas?

oh btw it has 3 o2 sensors one infront one behind and one after the cat

I got this car second hand and since then I've been using regular. 87 octane gas.

I'm questioning about his ability diagnost the problem. All he does is swapping parts and hope for the best. If he has a scanner he can active test all the shifting solenoids. There are 4 soleniods total. Did he make sure all the connection are plug in? Check power from the ECU? Does this guy have any certification?

On the 02 sensor he all need is looking at the datas from the scanner. People tend to damage the 02 sensor when doing transmission replacement. He should step up and give you another one. Keep us updated.

JPI

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SK and JPI are right, you need a new mechanic and they broke the O2 sensor wires when pulling the cradle. I am a newer member but JPI sounds very informed about our products, and experienced in thier repair. Not many mechanics can O/H tranys. I did it for years and only met a few others who could do anything but R&R work. Seriously, it's like 1 in 20 at best. There are over 1000 (no bs) parts in an A/T and it takes just one missinstalled to gunnysack the whole thing. I don't know JPI and am not on his payroll, but I would stongly concider even a $500 tow to him at this point. Small claims court to recoup the initial $2100. $1800 sounded to good to be true and it was.

Regards, Mike

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