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tundra-lover

97' Tranny's Ready To Die?

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:o I've seen a lot of information about tranny problems on this site, and started having some of my own the last couple of weeks! I didn't think anything of it, until one day on the freeway: It felt as if my foot slipped off the gas pedal, and quickly went back- the only problem is that I didn't take my foot off the pedal! So far, this has happened four different times- all at highway speeds (50-75mph). Then today as I came to work, I heard a loud noise resembling a semi-truck downshifting! I thought a semi was behind me, as I looked around- NO TRUCK! I soon realized it was comming from my car, and it quickly went away as I tuned down another street about 15ft later???? (kind of thought the manifold came loose, then realized it was sounding like it was beneath me). I called my service rep, and he said it doesn't sound good!

My car has 110,000 miles on it now, and I had a tranny service about 2 months ago (about 4qts new fluid). Engine sounds great, fresh synthetic oil, no modifications, complete services! I thought back, and remembered my 4Runner had problems- ending up being a sensor, and shifted fine ever since? I hope thats all it is! I don't want to put big dollars into this car! Any help would be great guys!

Got off the phone and found out that these tranny's have had problems with the overdrive giving out (as some of you may have experienced). This may be the initial signs of the car not wanting to stay in overdrive?? The mechanic at Lelis Transmission suggested a check that involves dropping the pan, and inspecting for metal. No check engine lights have come on, so no codes would be present. He also told me it could be anywhere from $2300-3100 to go through it (having not looked at it, it's merely a ballpark). Side note: all you synthetic guys out there- "Running synthetic in the tranny is a good idea, and won't cause any problems" as stated from Toyota's mechanic's and the highly recommended tranny shop. Any input?

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My 01' needs the Toyota T IV tranny fluid, since you & I have the same generation, just double check the owners manual for the fluid type. It has been stressed by many to NOT go with using synthetic (Mobil 1 ATF in my case) and to use only the Toyota T IV because using anything else can mess up the way the transmission will shift & could contribute to the tranny failing. Varify with your local Lexus dealer as well.

:cheers:

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My 98 takes Dexron III. So I switched to Redline D4 Synthetic in the tranny and differential and performed a double drain and fill. It shifts fine, actually a little better. The prior change was performed 15k miles prior and I was suprised that shifting was starting to change only after such a short interval.

Since mines is a 98 and yours is a 97, I would think you would use Dexron III. Check the dipstick. If you do, for a non-synthetic, I probably would use Valvoline maxlife and for synthetic, the choices for me were Mobil1, Amsoil universal, or the Redline D4.

Can you tell us what synthetic brand and what spec the synthetic meets?

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:( Yep, final verdict is in today: It's toast! My Lexus is not a good investment after all! It will end up costing between $2700-3100. The overdrive is about gone, and the rest I'll know when, and if they tear it down. Sad day today guys!

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$2700 to rebuild the tranny?

that sounds a bit high...

maybe you should just scare up a used tranny.

i have an expedition that went into tranny meltdown last year, locked up the wheels and everything. and even my 4x4 expedition was way cheaper to fix than that. found a tranny with 10k miles on it for like 900 bucks. it shifts like brand new now...

people get antsy about using used tranny's, but i think in some cases they are actually more reliable. at least you know that the manufacturer built it. as opposed to some third party rebuild shop.

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Thats rediculous to rebuild the 4 speed on the ES300, you should shop that, get a second opinion. Is that from Lexus?

I agree with dropspace if you can find a good low mileage tranny on a totalled ES somewhere snap it up...

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Here's the deal: The dealership told me that they only use remanufactured units, which kind of scares me (for the amount of money). They also gave me the option of a used tranny, if they can find one? They are looking today, and should call me back soon.

So, my boss happens to married to the guy who owns a local (highly reputable) shop. The son kind of runs the show down at this shop, and he went on to explain how they have to use a factory overdrive piece. Then they completely go throught the whole thing, and replace any seals, or hoses etc. Apparently, the tranny fix isn't too bad, but the labor is what kills ya. They will have to drop the sub-frame, exhaust, strut mounts, lower the motor etc.... It's not as bad as they make it out to be, but I'm sure it's more complicated than you average Ford Explorer/ Dodge Caravan special. Even with my "good-buddy" discount, the very least could be around $2500? I'll let you guys know what the cost of the used one would be with install. Thanks for the input@!

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