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DIY Transmission Fluid Change?

Discussion in 'Gen III 2010+ Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubles' started by dcoyne78, Dec 2, 2009.

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  1. dcoyne78

    dcoyne78 New Member

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    Has anyone tried changing their transmission fluid themselves (rather thand having a mechanic do it) on a 2010 Prius? I haven't been able to find any info on how to do this.
  2. hotbrass

    hotbrass New Member

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    Have you gone 100k miles already.

    The tranny fluid is designed to be changed by the dealer. Not that you cannot do it, they just make it difficult.

    How do you know it needs changing? There isnt even a dip stick to check the level or condition.
    RHFACTOR likes this.
  3. dcoyne78

    dcoyne78 New Member

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    No I have only gone about 12k, but many have suggested that an early change makes sense, my 2004 was changed at 65k and analyzed, it looked very bad. I priced it at my dealer today and it costs $60, I will get a sample and have it analyzed and post the results so people can decide for themselves. It might not be necessary, but I plan to keep the car a long time and transmissions are expensive to replace.
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  4. tumbleweed

    tumbleweed Senior Member

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    I have not done this yet but I will be doing it next summer at about 15K miles. Here are a couple of threads about when others think it should be done:
    http://priuschat.com/forums/gen-iii...shooting/67444-psd-fluid-change-interval.html
    http://priuschat.com/forums/gen-iii...troubleshooting/65702-transmission-fluid.html

    Dcoyne78 I noticed you had already posted on one of these. :)

    You should find a fill and a drain plug on the end of the transaxle. both are 10mm hex.

    Important! be sure to remove the fill plug first. If you drain it first and then can't get the fill plug out you would be out of luck. When you remove the drain plug be sure it is the one for the fluid, the inverter coolant has a drain plug down there somewhere also.

    Torque for the plugs is 29 ft lbs, new plug gaskets are recommended, but probably not needed. Refill with Toyota ATF-WS available at your Toyota dealer for $7.78 per quart, it will take 3.5 U.S. quarts. Fill level is to the bottom of the fill plug hole (not more than 10 mm below that hole).
    Robert Holt, hotbrass and dcoyne78 like this.
  5. dcoyne78

    dcoyne78 New Member

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    Thanks for the info. I have decided to let the dealer do this one. The one concern I have with doing it myself is not knowing which drain plug is for coolant and which is for The Trans fluid. Does it say in that document that the coolant drain plug is also 10 mm hex? On the gen 2 the coolant drain plug was a bolt so that it was less likely to be confused with the trans fluid drain plug. When I do finally try this I will take a picture and post it. I may take a sample at around 30k and get it analyzed, but that won't be until Sept 2010. Maybe I'll see if the dealer will let me in the shop to take a picture, I doubt they'll let me near the shop.
  6. hotbrass

    hotbrass New Member

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    $60? I didnt know you could get them to write your name down on the service form for $60. Now you have me curious. I gotta call my dealer and get a price.

    Thanks!
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  7. tumbleweed

    tumbleweed Senior Member

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    Inverter coolant drain plug is on the bottom of the transaxle, the fluid drain and fill plugs are on the right side of the transaxle end, accessible through the ICE oil change door.
  8. FireEngineer

    FireEngineer Active Member

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    Lets see, transaxle fill.
    Transaxle Fill.jpg

    And I believe transaxle drain.
    Transaxle Drain.jpg

    Wayne
  9. tumbleweed

    tumbleweed Senior Member

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    Thanks Wayne, they look like socket head plugs (Allen) rather than bolt heads but should be fairly easy to identify.
  10. dcoyne78

    dcoyne78 New Member

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    No Problem. Others have been quoted higher prices on the Gen 2 trans fluid change. The procedure is very simple once you know which bolts to remove, it is just like an oil change, no pan to drop or fancy flush procedure needed, it is just a drain and fill, takes maybe 20 minutes of labor plus the cost of the fluid, if they charge any more than $75, call a different dealer or bring pictures to your mechanic to show which bolts need to be removed and have a mechanic you trust do the work. Good luck!
  11. dcoyne78

    dcoyne78 New Member

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    Thanks Wayne. I will try to photoshop your photos to add arrows pointing to the fill and drain bolts, with your permission. It is the allen bolts, correct?

    Dennis
  12. FireEngineer

    FireEngineer Active Member

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    Photoshop away. I'll have to check my printed documents since my TIS subscribtion lapsed, but the hex allen bolts should be the one.

    Wayne
  13. dcoyne78

    dcoyne78 New Member

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    Ok it ended up being 68 dollars and the fill and drain bolts are as pictured in Wayne's photos. Note that the fill plug is pictured from above, but in reality you will be looking at it from below so it may look a little different. Also note that the coolant drain plug looks the same (it is an allen bolt of similar size), but it is on the bottom of the unit rather than on the side. The correct drain bolt is on the far left of Wayne's picture towards the bottom of the tranaxle.
  14. tumbleweed

    tumbleweed Senior Member

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    I assume you had it done at the dealer? Did you notice if the plugs had washers and were they re-usable? Also could you tell how they got the new fluid in, hand pump? funnel?
  15. FireEngineer

    FireEngineer Active Member

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    Dennis if you get a chance could you photoshop the pics and post them.

    Wayne
  16. dcoyne78

    dcoyne78 New Member

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    It was done at the dealer. The bolts have washers and they are reusable. I didn't stay to see how the fluid was added, my guess is they used a hand pump, but a funnel with a 3 foot tail would work as well. If you are familiar with the transmission fluid change on the Gen 2 Prius, the procedure would be the same, my initial problem was finding the correct bolts.

    Wayne,

    Am I correct that the picture of the fill bolt was taken from above and the drain bolt picture was taken from below? I will try to photoshop the pictures, but it doesn't seem necessary as long as one knows to look for the allen bolts in your pictures. Each picture includes only one allen bolt and in each case the correct bolt is pictured.
  17. FireEngineer

    FireEngineer Active Member

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    The shots were taken from a chassis, less body panels, at the North American International Auto Show last January. But yes, the camera was held above and below the model. Considering the confusion we've had with the Gen II plugs, a nice photo shop job couldn't hurt for the future.

    Wayne
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  18. eric1234

    eric1234 Member

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    Has anyone Done this yet? Any tips/guidance/advice?

    Anything in the way that needs to be removed/displaced? Best done from beneath the car? I see the pics above, but wonder if anyone has any advice?

    Thanks,
    Eric
  19. jayman

    jayman Senior Member

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    And they should be fairly difficult to budge loose, too. My FJ uses hex head for drain and fill on the front axle, and I had one mother of a time cracking them loose the first time
  20. eric1234

    eric1234 Member

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    Thanks. I note from the posts above that they were based on photos of pre-production models, with some body panels removed. There was also discussion regarding similarity of the transaxle and inverter coolant drain plugs.

    Thus, my inquiry for any advice/tips/suggestions from 2010 GEN III owners who had actually performed the change. ;)

    Thanks,
    Eric
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