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Aurion Transmission Service - by Mechanic, or Specialist Transmission place


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Hey guys,

Looking for a good place to do the transmission service on my 2014 Aurion, it is about to clock over 148,000kms. I have read varying opinions on here as to whether it is a good idea to service the transmission or not and that it can be a tricky process so I want to make sure I get the job done right. However it seems more people suggest doing it than not.

I am in South West Sydney and it seems my options are to get a local general mechanic workshop with very good reviews to do the service i have two quotes which range from $220-280. They have advised in their quote they would follow the procedure I pasted below, which seems pretty comprehensive.

The other option is taking it to a specialist transmission place. They have quoted $300 over the phone. 

My question is - for something like this, is it better to pay the extra to have it done by specialist transmission place or would a good reputable mechanic be good enough? Which workshop would you use from the two options below assuming both are good reputable workshops? I havent got quote from Toyota yet to do it, but not sure if they would be any better given some of the 'stealership' stories on here

Both the local workshop and specialist transmission place are using aftermarket transmission oil.

Also one workshop is saying they will use Syn-TS Automatic Transmission Fluid which appears to be "Gulf Western" whereas another is saying they would use Castrol Transmax Multivehicle. Any thoughts as to the better transmission fluid type?

GENERAL MECHANIC WORKSHOP  1 - $220

Labour
- Drain Transmission and measure amount of transmission fluid drained.
- Remove level plug.
- Fill transmission with specified amount or until ATF drips from level tube.
- Fit level plug.
- Ensure ATF temperature is as follows: U660E = Below 40°C OR U760E = Below
35°C
- Bridge data link connector (DLC) terminals
- Cycle transmission through gears in Transmission Temperature Monitoring mode
- Ensure selector lever in 'P'. Release brake pedal. Remove bridge wire.
- Run engine at idle until 'D' shift indicator illuminates. (If 'D' shift indicator flashes,
switch ignition OFF. Allow ATF to cool, then repeat above procedure.)
- Remove level plug. Allow stream of oil to reduce to a drip. If no fluid loss apparent:
Top up until ATF drips from level tube.
- Refit level and filler plugs.
- Switch ignition OFF (Transmission Temperature Monitoring deactivated).
- Road test

Syn-TS Automatic Transmission Fluid
Full Synthetic Oil

 

GENERAL MECHANIC WORKSHOP 2 - $280

TF - Transmission Service & Flush
Conduct full automatic transmission service, flush & auto re-fill. Remove impurities
using state of the art Flushing machine. Fill with approved transmission oil. Disconnect
machine when flushing cycle completed. Check & top up transmission oil if
necessary. Testd rive vehicle & check transmission shift operation.

MULTI - Castrol Transmax Multivehicle 
ATFK - Auto Trans Flush Kit

 

SPECIALIST TRANSMISSION PLACE - $300

Edited by Jimz_GSV50R
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21 hours ago, Jimz_GSV50R said:

it is about to clock over 148,000kms. I have read varying opinions on here as to whether it is a good idea to service the transmission or not and that it can be a tricky process so I want to make sure I get the job done right. However it seems more people suggest doing it than not.

Hey Jimi. Yes, you definitely want to service the transmission, despite the stupid "lifetime fluid" rubbish that gets bandied around. 148K is a bit longer than normal if it's the first service but by no means too late.
If the car has had an easy life and not driven hard or towed with, then you could easily get away with a full flush rather than a pan drain.
When people advise against a full flush is when the transmission has high kilometers on it, especially if it's had a hard life and the fluid is burnt bown. The reasoning is that during the course of it's life the friction material from the bands circulate within the transmission fluid and by default help to keep the gears shifting correctly by virtue of the friction material being in the fluid to begin with. If you fully flush it, you essentially remove the friction material the transmission has been relying on to aid shifts and then you introduce a new environment the transmission isn't familiar with. You lose the added material and hence start getting slippage or strange shift patterns. That's the worst case scenario.

148K on a transmission is by far not even close to that. I would still do a full flush if you can find a reputable service centre able to do it correctly and use the correct fluid. After this you can then do a periodic pan drain, say every two years and depending on how many kays you do in a given year.


If you don't want to do the full flush, a Pan drain is also acceptable and will be cheaper to do, of course. You will just need to do them more often, say annually.
The pan drain is a much simpler process.
Whatever you take out is what you put back in. You don't necessarily need to do a level adjustment at 42 degrees etc.. Assuming the level was correct to start with, you can put back the measured amount back in and your golden. It wouldn't hurt to do the level check just to be sure, but I doubt there'd be any discrepancy.

Those fluids you specified that the service guys mentioned, I'd be sure to make sure they are all Toyota WS compatible. if not, then ask them to get the correct fluid or you can simply supply them the quantity the job requires. It has to be Toyota WS compatible otherwise you run the risk of damaging the transmission.

Don't use a flush kit or silly additives either.  It's not needed and it's too risky for such a fine instrument the U660E transmission is. Flush the fluid or pan drain. Both are acceptable. 

22 hours ago, Jimz_GSV50R said:

GENERAL MECHANIC WORKSHOP  1 - $220

 

22 hours ago, Jimz_GSV50R said:

- Ensure ATF temperature is as follows: U660E = Below 40°C

Incorrect. The temperature range for the U660E is between 40 and 45 degrees C
I did mine at 42.5 degrees.
Not sure why the workshop would want to bridge wires for the temp adjustment. That's something a backyarder would be more inclined to do whilst not owning a scan tool.
A workshop should be equipped with a scan tool that has live data testing that can look at transmission temperature for a  more accurate adjustment.
That there is a deal breaker. Don't let him touch it.

$220 for a pan drain with that procedure he outlined is way too much. No mention of pan gasket either. I would recommend using the original Toyota gasket rather than the cork type. The cork type will eventually break down with heat and start weeping.

 

22 hours ago, Jimz_GSV50R said:

GENERAL MECHANIC WORKSHOP 2 - $280

 

22 hours ago, Jimz_GSV50R said:

TF - Transmission Service & Flush
Conduct full automatic transmission service, flush & auto re-fill. Remove impurities

"Remove Impurities" ??

It's not rocket science. Looks like an overreach. The flushing process is quite simple.

Once pan drained, the flushing process can begin.

You introduce fresh fluid, while the car is running, into the suction side and wait until the clean fluid comes out the discharge side. It will take approximately 8 lt of fluid to do this. Once the fluid coming out the discharge is as clean as the fluid going in, you're done. Then you go ahead and do the level adjustment at approximately 42 degrees C.

No mention of pan gasket or strainer either. The strainer, sometimes referred to as a filter is more for catching any larger particulate, be that metal or otherwise. It's prudent to remove it and closely inspect it inside for glittery stuff. If it's clean, and it should be, you can reinstall it.

The pan will also have two magnets in it. They will need to be pulled and cleaned as they will have ferrous material attached to them collected from residual floating material from when it was new. No big deal and they are there for the purpose to hold the material and not let it circulate with the fluid. Make sure they clean the pan out thoroughly.

22 hours ago, Jimz_GSV50R said:

SPECIALIST TRANSMISSION PLACE - $300

If you are comfortable with the Specialist and they have a good reputation then I'd also consider them too. The ballpark for a full flush service is around $300 anyway.

Materials will be around $140 roughly.. If they use a Genuine Toyota pan gasket. They probably won't and may opt to just use whatever they're supplied with. 
Remember, they are running a business and it's in their best interest to keep their costs down and maximise profit. They don't care how fastidious or concerned you are. It's their ball park, their ball game and ball. Just have a chat with them first and flesh out the finer detail for the bill of materials.

It will have to include everything I've mentioned. You can never be sure if anyone is going to do the right thing, which is why you have to be armed with the knowledge BEFORE you hand over the keys.

Ask them the pertinent questions raised from here and they will quickly assume you're no idiot. They will be more inclined to do the right thing.

I have a whole thread on a service I carried out on my own car some time back. Have a read and hopefully you will have a clearer understanding of how this whole process works. One thing I can say is that, it can be done at home by a DIY type person. You just need to make the time and be prepared with the right parts and tools. If you're not mechanically inclined or a DIY type then by all means seek out a reputable service.

Good luck and I hope it all works out well for you ! 
Cheers :thumbsup:

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Wow thanks Tony for such a comprehensive answer, you really know your cars mate! I did see your  thread when you did yours,  you really did it the right way taking care each step of the way to ensure the best possible outcome. I wish workshops were run in such a way that they prioritise the quality of the work like you do. Is Tony's workshop taking appointments? 😁

Its surprising that these two workshops dont seem to be aware of the intricacies of changing the ATF properly on these vehicles. I half expected this which is why I went to get a quote from a transmission specialist as well. Thanks for arming me with the key items to check before taking it in for this service. I need to check Toyota WS compatible ATF,  full flush vs pan drain only, pan gasket/strainer check, cleaning magnets, cleaning pan. 

Is there a way to check if said fluid is Toyota WS compatible? 

I wonder if it would be better to get this service done by a Toyota service workshop instead. In your experience would that be worthwhile?

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3 hours ago, Jimz_GSV50R said:

Is Tony's workshop taking appointments? 😁

Hahaha, I wish I could, but I have enough on my plate, my car is also overdue for a couple of things too and I'm finding it hard to get to them without the constant distractions and workload elsewhere.. Makes it all the more difficult when you can't get any help. Have to do everything myself.

 

3 hours ago, Jimz_GSV50R said:

Is there a way to check if said fluid is Toyota WS compatible? 

It will be written on the back of the container. I do know for a fact that the Penrite ATF LV is 100% compatible. Not sure which other ones exist as I never searched them out. I was happy enough to stick with Penrite. 

Perhaps others can chime in with their thoughts on product compatibility.

3 hours ago, Jimz_GSV50R said:

I wonder if it would be better to get this service done by a Toyota service workshop instead. In your experience would that be worthwhile?

Certainly worth asking. At least you'll know they will use the original WS fluid. But make sure you ask to be 100% sure. I can't see them using aftermarket fluid to be honest. They have trained techs who know these platforms inside out, so they will be across the proper procedure. 

Just talk to the advisor and ask the same questions you would any other shop.

I'd be interested to know how much they'd charge.

Edited by Tony Prodigy
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4 hours ago, Tony Prodigy said:

I'd be interested to know how much they'd charge.

Got a quote from Toyota and they reckon $250 for transmission flush. I asked if it included full flush, pan gasket/strainer check, cleaning magnets, cleaning pan which they said yes to. Interesting, hope they do a good job as it seems like a pretty competitive price. 

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1 hour ago, Jimz_GSV50R said:

Got a quote from Toyota and they reckon $250 for transmission flush. I asked if it included full flush, pan gasket/strainer check, cleaning magnets, cleaning pan which they said yes to. Interesting, hope they do a good job as it seems like a pretty competitive price. 

Sounds very reasonable Jimi. I'd like to give them the benefit of the doubt and hope they aren't just giving lip service. I sincerely hope they pop the pan off and do what's required. It is necessary, not only to be able to clean the potential sediment, but to be able to visually inspect the valve body and to be able to access the strainer too.

There's always the subsequent service that can pick up the fact if the pan was removed, cleaned along with the magnets, because the micro filings attached to the magnets will give a good indicator if they were recently cleaned or not. They can't accumulate 8 years worth in say 2 or less years. You'll be able to tell.

I'd be more comfortable if Toyota did it as they will use Genuine Parts, including WS fluid. For that price, I say go for it.

They'd hate to have me as a customer. I'm way too pedantic and I'll be questioning every inch of a duck's &ss to make sure they do the right thing 😄😛

 

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Good call mate, definitely thinking I will run with Toyota, even though it seemed they werent 100% certain of all the details over the phone, hopefully their Toyota trained mechanic will be. Another transmission place quoted me for the service $580 using Valvoline ATF. 🙄

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12 minutes ago, Jimz_GSV50R said:

Good call mate, definitely thinking I will run with Toyota, even though it seemed they werent 100% certain of all the details over the phone, hopefully their Toyota trained mechanic will be. Another transmission place quoted me for the service $580 using Valvoline ATF. 🙄

With my 2017 RZ Camry, I ended up choosing to go to a proper auto transmission place.

The reason is that when I called my local Toyota dealer they seemed confused.

In that my transmission is suppose to be "filled for life"........ 

And so I asked if they do a proper transmission flush or just remove pan etc and refill, they said that that is all that they do.

Whereas a transmission shop will actually flush the transmission.

Because even if you take off the pan, you still leave circa 1L of old oil in the transmission.

The reason is that this is in the "Torque converter", and this won't drain when you "drop the oil"

I can't remember what the cost was, but I supplied my own Toyota WS transmission fluid.

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4 hours ago, Novicebutnice said:

Whereas a transmission shop will actually flush the transmission.

I was half thinking about this too. I see you are in NSW. Can you recommend a good transmission place in Sydney? What did it cost you? Care to PM me their details if they were good, cheers 

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Toyota giving me the run around now, sent me a booking confirmation for a different car at a different service centre. Rang to correct the details, and now they are saying its only flush and transmission fluid change. I asked about the gasket and they said they would could transfer me to spare parts to get a price. I said I want to get a supply and install price to get it all done together, and you told me it was included in the last phone call. What a head ache it is just to get a decent service done these days. Guy on the phone comes back now and says it will be $350. I dont know why its so difficult to get decent information from the manufacturer's own service centre. Doesnt instill much confidence at all that they will get it done right..

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On 9/23/2022 at 11:36 AM, Jimz_GSV50R said:

Toyota giving me the run around now, sent me a booking confirmation for a different car at a different service centre. Rang to correct the details, and now they are saying its only flush and transmission fluid change. I asked about the gasket and they said they would could transfer me to spare parts to get a price. I said I want to get a supply and install price to get it all done together, and you told me it was included in the last phone call. What a head ache it is just to get a decent service done these days. Guy on the phone comes back now and says it will be $350. I dont know why its so difficult to get decent information from the manufacturer's own service centre. Doesnt instill much confidence at all that they will get it done right..

Hey Jimi, I suspect you got a Lackey answer the phone that day. I'd ring around a few other dealerships and see which one gives you the best vibe.

As they are all franchised, one bad egg doesn't mean they're all bad. Have your questions ready in point form if you feel you may forget to ask something and make it clear to whoever you speak to what you will get for the transmission service. If they're not forthcoming with the scope of works, you then tell them what you expect and if Genuine parts will be used, ie, pan gasket and WS Fluid. 

The pan gasket could be reusable perhaps if it doesn't break ?? Not 100% sure about it. I do recall though that the original pan gasket is pretty robust in quality and if you had to reuse it, I don't really see a problem with it, but for the money, and whilst it's apart, you should replace it, given the kays it's got on it anyway.

 

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On 9/23/2022 at 11:36 AM, Jimz_GSV50R said:

Toyota giving me the run around now, sent me a booking confirmation for a different car at a different service centre. Rang to correct the details, and now they are saying its only flush and transmission fluid change. I asked about the gasket and they said they would could transfer me to spare parts to get a price. I said I want to get a supply and install price to get it all done together, and you told me it was included in the last phone call. What a head ache it is just to get a decent service done these days. Guy on the phone comes back now and says it will be $350. I dont know why its so difficult to get decent information from the manufacturer's own service centre. Doesnt instill much confidence at all that they will get it done right..


Hi Jimi,

Sorry for the late reply, I was sick last week.

I live in Newcastle, so I'm not sure of any good auto shops in Sydney.

The last bit with what you wrote is why I decided not to go to Toyota, since they seem to have lost that skill (due to transmissions being "filled for life" a.k.a ticking time bombs).

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I rang the same Toyota again and tried to get some more clarity about the procedure as car was booked in tomorrow. Now what they tell me that there is no gasket for the transmission, that it is a "liquid silastic" gasket for my transmission. I asked him to double check that, he came back and said yes that is what it is. Went online and had a look, it appears that there are proper Duraprene gaskets for the transmission. Is this right or are they incompetent? Maybe I am not speaking to the right person there, will be cancelling my appointment there

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