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Should I Buy? '00 Rx300 106K


joey1320
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Hello everyone, new to the forum and first time poster with a couple of questions.

I'm a bmw technician by trade and this past saturday a customer decided to trade in a '00 RX300 with 106k, which I'm interested in buying. I testdrove the truck and it felt great. I also put it on one of my lifts and inspected it thoroughly from top to bottom, and the truck is in really good condition.

Looking at the owners manual, I noticed the car had been originally sold from our Lexus sister store and I was able to get all of its maintenace records. The car has had the t-belt done, along with all related parts. It has 3month old tires, fluids were changed on time and everything is up-to-date. I have the complete hard-copy records of every visit to the dealer, dating back to the day it was new.

My only concern is based on the transmission issues I've read about on the forum. On 5/6/11 the previous owner had some engine work done, along with a rear main seal(big job) and a tranny flush. Now at bmw we manually drain the fluid and replace the filter(model dependent), but I'm not sure if Lexus actually flushes the fluid with some kind of machine(I'll have to call and ask) or not. Now if they do flush the fluid with a machine, should I be worried about possible damage to the trans?

Yes, I will be able to fix the transmission problem if it ever happens, but I would rather not deal with it at all if possible. So should I let this one go or should I go for it with fingers crossed, hoping the tranny will be ok?

as a side note, given the fact that I'm an employee, after its all said and done I will drive the truck home for less than $5700. So that right there is a big turn-on for me... thats a steal imho.

Thanks for the time,

Joey

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If I do end up getting it, I was thinking of dropping the tranny pan, cleaning/replacing the filter and maybe even dropping the valve body and inspecting/cleaning it. That way I know there are no metal particles clogging/flowing around in the pan.

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If I do end up getting it, I was thinking of dropping the tranny pan, cleaning/replacing the filter and maybe even dropping the valve body and inspecting/cleaning it. That way I know there are no metal particles clogging/flowing around in the pan.

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If it is only $5700 out the door, I would get it. BUT DO NOT MESS WITH YOUR TRANNY.

Just do Drain and Fill every 15000 miles and you should be good without messing it up.

Dont bother dropping the pan and replacing the filter and all that, you will get more dust in the tranny and you will need a new one soon.

I think it's a steal IMO and i would buy it if i were you but i wouldn't bother dropping the pan and stuff. Drain and fill every 15000 miles will get you going for years :cheers:

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Hello everyone, new to the forum and first time poster with a couple of questions.

I'm a bmw technician by trade and this past saturday a customer decided to trade in a '00 RX300 with 106k, which I'm interested in buying. I testdrove the truck and it felt great. I also put it on one of my lifts and inspected it thoroughly from top to bottom, and the truck is in really good condition.

Looking at the owners manual, I noticed the car had been originally sold from our Lexus sister store and I was able to get all of its maintenace records. The car has had the t-belt done, along with all related parts. It has 3month old tires, fluids were changed on time and everything is up-to-date. I have the complete hard-copy records of every visit to the dealer, dating back to the day it was new.

My only concern is based on the transmission issues I've read about on the forum. On 5/6/11 the previous owner had some engine work done, along with a rear main seal(big job) and a tranny flush. Now at bmw we manually drain the fluid and replace the filter(model dependent), but I'm not sure if Lexus actually flushes the fluid with some kind of machine(I'll have to call and ask) or not. Now if they do flush the fluid with a machine, should I be worried about possible damage to the trans?

Yes, I will be able to fix the transmission problem if it ever happens, but I would rather not deal with it at all if possible. So should I let this one go or should I go for it with fingers crossed, hoping the tranny will be ok?

as a side note, given the fact that I'm an employee, after its all said and done I will drive the truck home for less than $5700. So that right there is a big turn-on for me... thats a steal imho.

Thanks for the time,

Joey

I purchased a 2000 RX300 w/ 29,000 miles. My buddy did the inspection for me as he is a Lexus Tech. These vehicles have an oil sludge problem if not changed every 5K miles. So he pulled off the valve cover to inspect and look for sludge. He also told me, when I was in the market, not to even think about getting an RX300 with a towing package as the earlier model 1999 had tranny problems. I have not had a problem with my transmission, but did develop a main oil seal leak at about 60K, which he fixed as a good will warranty. Now at 120K I think the leak has redeveloped. It has been a good car for us however. I have had to replace both pre-cat A/F sensors and for the first time, replaced the iridium plugs three weeks ago. $5700 sounds like a pretty good deal to me, I'd go for it.

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AZN -- I'm going to call Lexus and see if they use a machine. If they do, I think I'm going to go ahead and drain the fluid in the trans, even though it's only 300miles old. I just don't want metal shavings flowing around in the pan.

Also the truck does have a tow hitch on it. It doesnt look to be oem, so I'm a bit worried about that. I'll have to look through the paperwork and make sure the previous owner stuck to the maintenance intervals -- which seems like he did.

I'm 90% positive I'm gonna get it, will let you guys know.

Thanks for the help!

Joey

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I would do as you said and drop pan, change filter, but leave the valve body alone...Do drain and fill only...Toyota Type IV or AMsoil, or Mobil 1 Synthetic fluid for the tranny is just fine...I would also switch to full synthetic for engine oil...The Castrol OIl european synthetic 0-30w is fantastic and really cleans the engine...

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I'm able to get Castrol 5w-30 full synthetic oil for dirt cheap at work, so I always use it. My '94 honda winter beater still goes strong with 170k on the engine.

Once I call Lexus and find out if they use a machine, then I'll decide my next step.

Tnx

Joey

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I have to say you're probably the most educated pre-owned RX300 shopper that's posted on here about a possible purchase. It sounds like you have a good chance of finding the right one if you search well enough!

I would simply check the current condition of the transmission fluid- if it seems dark then avoid a fluid flush. If it's nice and pink then performing a flush probably wont hurt. However if it's really dirty (especially since it's already been changed), i agree with everyone else, only do a drain and fill a couple of times until the fluid remains pink for a while. At that point, check the fluid regularly and you should be OK.

When i had my RX300 i had the transmission fluid flushed at around 60k miles at a nearby Toyota dealer (as they work on the same engine/transmission in the Highlander) and they did use a machine. If i remember correctly it was in the $200 range and took about an hour.

It's the rear planetary gear that fails in the RX300 transmissions. Apparently it's made of a metal that's too soft to take heavy loads. If it's done a lot of towing, you may want to avoid it. And unfortunately there's no way of knowing the condition of the planetary gear without extensive work...

Good luck if you decide to purchase this one! Make sure to keep us updated!

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Sorrry I hit post on my phone by mistake...

So I had one of the Lexus tech from our sister store come over and look the car over -- he gave it the A-OK, so I'm going to go forth with it.

I'll keep you guys posted on the outcome.

Tnx for the info!

Joey

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AZN -- I'm going to call Lexus and see if they use a machine. If they do, I think I'm going to go ahead and drain the fluid in the trans, even though it's only 300miles old. I just don't want metal shavings flowing around in the pan.

Also the truck does have a tow hitch on it. It doesnt look to be oem, so I'm a bit worried about that. I'll have to look through the paperwork and make sure the previous owner stuck to the maintenance intervals -- which seems like he did.

I'm 90% positive I'm gonna get it, will let you guys know.

Thanks for the help!

Joey

They do not use a machine for tranny fluid change. All they do is use a 8mm hex to get the drain plug out and fill it back up through the fluid level checking place.

other people will tell you to drop the pan and change the filter and stuff but DO NOT do it. You will regret it.

Use Redline D4 ATF and you should be good. It is full synthetic ATF. DONT use Mobil 1 Synthetic ATF.

You said you get castrol 5w-30 synthetic motor oil for dirt cheap? Can you hook me up? Im also in ohio

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Azn -- when I talked to the Lexus tech today, he did say they use a machine. He told me the name of it but I cant recall it right now.

As for the oil, by dirt cheap I mean free :)

It's just extra oil that is pumped by the machines and little by little you end up with 5-7 qts of oil...

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The Mobil 1 synthetic is just fine, several on this and the other site have used it. I had it in my tranny for over 50k miles and it worked great...Dropping the pan to see the condition of the tranny filter is a good way to start. If it has the mesh filter, just clean it. If it has the paper filter, replace it. I owned my RX300 (99 AWD) for 186k miles...Have seen it all.

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Thanks everyone for the great info.

I'm applying for a small personal loan to get the truck and consolidate some debt, if all goes as planned I should have the truck sometime next week.(I would rather pay cash but my wife and I have a wedding in July in the caribean and wanna keep the money I our savings).

So if all goes according to plan, I will drop the pan, inspect/clean/replace the filter. Replace all fluids. Buff and wax it and post some pics ;)

Tnx again!

Joey

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Azn -- when I talked to the Lexus tech today, he did say they use a machine. He told me the name of it but I cant recall it right now.

Lexus did used to use a flush pump (there are only a couple that dealers use) on the RX300 until about 2-3 years ago. I don't know of any dealers that still use the flush on an RX300 - maybe they do on other models - kinda co-incidental, huh?

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Well I finally drove the truck home last nite from the dealer, it was a dream!!!

I did the oil change yesterday - 5w.30 full synthetic.

Im buying the ATF fluid on Monday and doing it then and I'll go ahead and service the brakes all around. I also removed the trailer hitch, which I plan on painting due to rust.

Can I post pics from my phone?

Is there a mobile app for the site?

Btw, my wife is already talking about swapping rides lol.

Tnx for the help guys ;)

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