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How To Check Atf In 2001 Rx 300?


lexrx3
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Can someone please tell me how to accurately read my ATF in a 2001 RX 300. The manual will not give information on reading the dipstick. I believe the engine hould be warm and idling but I seem to get readings all over the place when checking the ATF. Am I correct in assuming that the dipstick is to be pushed into the locking position? Right now after the engine is fully warmed up after driving for 45 mins+ the fluid is a half inch above the highest "hot" mark. Should I drain some fluid out. Any help is appreciated.

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I have always checked the ATF with:

1. engine at normal temps after driving (and that means through all the gears)

2. engine running and in park

3. pull the dipstick, wipe it off, put it back in all the way, wait 5 seconds, pull out and read.

If you do all that and the ATF is high, I would drain a little bit out. Excess ATF causes foaming and subsequent "bad things" to your transmission. I don't remember what those "bad things" are but they certainly can't be "good things". ;)

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I have always checked the ATF with:

1. engine at normal temps after driving (and that means through all the gears)

2. engine running and in park

3. pull the dipstick, wipe it off, put it back in all the way, wait 5 seconds, pull out and read.

If you do all that and the ATF is high, I would drain a little bit out. Excess ATF causes foaming and subsequent "bad things" to your transmission. I don't remember what those "bad things" are but they certainly can't be "good things".

Grumpa- If you can put that stick back in and wait 5 seconds before you pull it out and read it, my hats off to you, your a better man than I am. I normally have to stab it about 3 or 4 times and look at both sides of the stick to feel that I have an accurate reading. It normally takes that many times because of all the splatter in the pan. Many times when you pull it out all you get is splatter running down the stick. I try to stab and pull as quickly as possibly to limit the splatter as much as possible. How about the rest of you guys that check your own trans. fluid? I'm willing to learn.

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I have always checked the ATF with:

1. engine at normal temps after driving (and that means through all the gears)

2. engine running and in park

3. pull the dipstick, wipe it off, put it back in all the way, wait 5 seconds, pull out and read.

If you do all that and the ATF is high, I would drain a little bit out. Excess ATF causes foaming and subsequent "bad things" to your transmission. I don't remember what those "bad things" are but they certainly can't be "good things".

Grumpa- If you can put that stick back in and wait 5 seconds before you pull it out and read it, my hats off to you, your a better man than I am. I normally have to stab it about 3 or 4 times and look at both sides of the stick to feel that I have an accurate reading. It normally takes that many times because of all the splatter in the pan. Many times when you pull it out all you get is splatter running down the stick. I try to stab and pull as quickly as possibly to limit the splatter as much as possible. How about the rest of you guys that check your own trans. fluid? I'm willing to learn.

I find that I have to read it on the first couple of stabs. After that, the dipstick drags enough ATF up onto the tube walls to make good reads impossible.

As far as being 1/2 inch over full, I wouldn't worry about it. Both my RXs came from the factory that way. Even when I did my first drain and fill at 60K, I put back in exactly what I took out, so it stayed over full. Even had a flush done at one point at a Toyota dealer and they had it a little over full. Never had any problems. Finally on the last drain and fill I put a little less in to get it to the proper level.

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I have always checked the ATF with:

1. engine at normal temps after driving (and that means through all the gears)

2. engine running and in park

3. pull the dipstick, wipe it off, put it back in all the way, wait 5 seconds, pull out and read.

If you do all that and the ATF is high, I would drain a little bit out. Excess ATF causes foaming and subsequent "bad things" to your transmission. I don't remember what those "bad things" are but they certainly can't be "good things".

Grumpa- If you can put that stick back in and wait 5 seconds before you pull it out and read it, my hats off to you, your a better man than I am. I normally have to stab it about 3 or 4 times and look at both sides of the stick to feel that I have an accurate reading. It normally takes that many times because of all the splatter in the pan. Many times when you pull it out all you get is splatter running down the stick. I try to stab and pull as quickly as possibly to limit the splatter as much as possible. How about the rest of you guys that check your own trans. fluid? I'm willing to learn.

I find that I have to read it on the first couple of stabs. After that, the dipstick drags enough ATF up onto the tube walls to make good reads impossible.

As far as being 1/2 inch over full, I wouldn't worry about it. Both my RXs came from the factory that way. Even when I did my first drain and fill at 60K, I put back in exactly what I took out, so it stayed over full. Even had a flush done at one point at a Toyota dealer and they had it a little over full. Never had any problems. Finally on the last drain and fill I put a little less in to get it to the proper level.

I have always heard that the transmission should be at full operating temperatures, driven so that it uses all gears, including reverse, engine idling, and then left in NEUTRAL, not Park. The reason for that is that Park aligns all the spool valves to allow the fluid to drain back into the pan. Leaving it in Neutral keeps all the lines charged.

If you check the level with the trans in Neutral and then again when it is in Park (but wait a few minutes after it has been placed in Park), you should see a noticable difference.

Are there any Toyota/Lexus technicians here who can give the official party line on checking trans fluid?

Cheers,

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I have always heard that the transmission should be at full operating temperatures, driven so that it uses all gears, including reverse, engine idling, and then left in NEUTRAL, not Park. The reason for that is that Park aligns all the spool valves to allow the fluid to drain back into the pan. Leaving it in Neutral keeps all the lines charged.

If you check the level with the trans in Neutral and then again when it is in Park (but wait a few minutes after it has been placed in Park), you should see a noticable difference.

Are there any Toyota/Lexus technicians here who can give the official party line on checking trans fluid?

What does the owner's manual say?

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I have always heard that the transmission should be at full operating temperatures, driven so that it uses all gears, including reverse, engine idling, and then left in NEUTRAL, not Park. The reason for that is that Park aligns all the spool valves to allow the fluid to drain back into the pan. Leaving it in Neutral keeps all the lines charged.

If you check the level with the trans in Neutral and then again when it is in Park (but wait a few minutes after it has been placed in Park), you should see a noticable difference.

Are there any Toyota/Lexus technicians here who can give the official party line on checking trans fluid?

What does the owner's manual say?

The owners manual at least for a 2001 RX 300 evidently assumes it doesn't need to be replaced, checked or if checked must be done at the dealer. There is no mention of how to check the ATF in the manual. Unbelievable!

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The owners manual at least for a 2001 RX 300 evidently assumes it doesn't need to be replaced, checked or if checked must be done at the dealer. There is no mention of how to check the ATF in the manual. Unbelievable!

Funny that a 2001 doesn't require checking/changing of the ATF yet my 2005 does. Does that tell you anything about Toyota and this flip-flop. Fwiw, I have never been a fan of permanent lubricants.

Gary

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