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Shaking/vibrating from transaxle?

Discussion in 'Gen II Prius Technical Discussion' started by ZCars, Mar 6, 2012.

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  1. ZCars

    ZCars New Member

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    I have an 08 Prius it has done 190,000 miles last week it suddenly started shaking from what felt like the transaxle. The car still drove and seem to shake a lot worse when it was in park or reverse it definitely felt like it was a bearing or something mechanical broken in the trans unit. After a bit of research I decided to remove the trans, strip it down and have a look convinced that I would find fragments of bearing or something blatantly wrong. Yesterday I removed the unit (nothing to be scared of, dead easy really) and today I have stripped the transaxle down ( after viewing a very helpful you tube vid) much to my disappointment I cannot see anything wrong I am now thinking I was a bit too hasty and maybe it could be something else. Has anyone got any suggestions?
  2. shaneb

    shaneb New Member

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    Were there any warning lights on? or any loud noises from the transaxle area?
    what colour was the oil when you drained the transaxle?
    While the transaxle is apart check the housings for wear at the bearing seats.
    Also check the needle roller bearing below the planetary gear on the mg1 housing.If the bearing is worn it will grind itself into the mg1 housing causing the silent chain to drop and rub in the housing.
  3. Britprius

    Britprius Senior Member

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    Have you checked the torque limiter ( type of clutch ) on rear of ICE. If the plate is braking up it will through it out of balance. If it does it in park it can only be something that is moving while the ICE is running, that limits it to planet gears, sun gear, MG1, torque limiter, or ICE.
  4. ZCars

    ZCars New Member

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    There wasn't any lights come on and the noise/shaking it was making seemed to be coming from the transaxle area. When I drained the trans oil it was just black (but then again it's never been changed in 190,000 miles) but there wasn't any metal in it to be honest I was expecting the oil to be full of metal shards. It was at that point when I thought my diagnosis may be wrong but i carried on anyway when I took the box to bits I was convinced there would be a smashed up bearing or something else but I've checked and double checked everything and it all seems good. I hear what you're saying about the chain dropping but this is not the case neither.
  5. ZCars

    ZCars New Member

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    Hi yes I've had a look at the clutch type thinggy and it all seems good. I'm now starting to look at the engine but I think I'm barking up the wrong tree- well Barking anyway!!

    Do you think it could be top end engine problem? I've had the sump(s) off and looked at crank and big ends they're all good.

    It's nice to know that theres another brit on here I thought everyone was from USA/Canada.
  6. Britprius

    Britprius Senior Member

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    There are a few of us from the UK on hear and that sometimes causes a bit of confusion eg talking of drivers side or rear drum brakes that we do not have.
    Your problem I think could be engine related but do not rule out transmission, but if the vibration shaking is there in park the parking lock mechanism locks the outer ring of the planet gears and MG2 the drive chain and gears and obviously the diff and drive shafts. This only leaves as moving parts with the engine running, the engine, torque damper, planet carrier and gears, sun gear, and MG1. Close inspection of all bearings etc should point to the problem.
    The so called igniters (ignition coils) can give problems especially when water finds its way into the plug wells so check them as well. If I can think of anything else I will post good luck.
  7. Britprius

    Britprius Senior Member

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    Just a thought when you say the car did this in reverse was the engine running when you reversed. If not this ties it to the transmission.
  8. ZCars

    ZCars New Member

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    I will look at the coils tommorow, when I put the diagnostic machine on the car I got a misfire code on cyls 1,3 and 4 I cleared these and ran the car again for 5 mins but they didn't come back. How pissed off am I gonna be If its just coil packs, my garage looks like an explosion in a Prius factory!
  9. ZCars

    ZCars New Member

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    To be fair you could hear the engine ticking away underneath the vibration and it sounded ok.
  10. Britprius

    Britprius Senior Member

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    When you put it all back together you will need 4ltrs of Toyota ATF WS transmission fluid, the only other fluid that we know is ok is Redline D4 or D6. The oil must be safe for use on the motor windings without braking down the electrical insulation (high voltages).
    The coils work together in pairs so you cannot disconnect them one at a time to see witch one is misfiring, you can unbolt them and lift them off the plug to find a faulty one. The normal way however is to unplug each injector in turn to find the cylinder that is not firing.
    Obviously check the plugs first they are iridium tipped and should last 100,000 miles yours may be original.
    Can you remember if the engine was running when you were reversing.
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  11. ZCars

    ZCars New Member

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    I think I put a set of plugs in around 100k. My minds starting to play tricks on me but I reckon the noise was happening when the engine wasn't running which, as you point out, would indicate that it's defiantly something in the trans. What I do know is the engine ticked over perfectly fine when running but anyway I'll have a look at the plugs/coils in the morning it would be nice to find something wrong.
  12. V8Cobrakid

    V8Cobrakid Green Handyman

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    when my car turned into something similar that your car did, it was my coil failure. i had new plugs in.. just 1 coil failed. engine sounded ok.. but it was shuddering (the electric motors help keep it balanced and running)

    as for testing the coils or engine cylinder fires... unclipping any coil will cause a failure of the system that requires reboot. if you keep them clipped and simply pull them strait up.. you'll know if a cylinder is firing or not. if two coils get pulled the system shuts down. so.. keep it to 1 coil. if you pull 1 coil and it does shut off... then you did have a failed coil.. it's just not the one you're holding... hehe..
  13. shaneb

    shaneb New Member

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    Bad fuel injectors will cause the noise and vibration. You would swear blind the transaxle was stuffed but its the gear train chattering when the ice is running. The first time i came across this i thought the trans axle was destroyed but further investigation found number 3 injector faulty. Its a bit like pulling a plug lead to find a big end knock in the cylinder beside it.
    The engine shouldn't be on in reverse and moving.
  14. V8Cobrakid

    V8Cobrakid Green Handyman

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    how can you guys say the engine doesn't turn in reverse... toyota clearly states that if you require more electricity than R is comfortable using, the ICE will kick in to make more energy... at that points it's a little odd because you technically get less R power. if the battery is lower it will kick on... if it's cold.. it may kick on... it kicks on.
  15. Britprius

    Britprius Senior Member

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    Yes your quite correct if the battery is low or you are in the warm up cycle the ICE does run, that is why I asked the if he could remember if the ICE was running when he reversed. He also got vibration in park and that is why I mentioned plugs and coils, he also said he pulled codes for misfire on 1/3&4.
  16. V8Cobrakid

    V8Cobrakid Green Handyman

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    btw.. misfires on 1,3, and 4 tell me something is wrong with 2.... since two gimped out and isn't throwing codes... codes only get thrown when 2 cylinders fail to fire.. so... as it bring down the other cylinders 1 by one due to just too much load... it causes codes... slowly 1 by 1.

    that's just my crazy opinion...
  17. Britprius

    Britprius Senior Member

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    If you remove the plugs look at them carefully and note from witch cylinder they came, this may tell you witch coil is dud "if any" as it could just be the plug or water in one or more of the plug wells. This is usually caused by a leak in the seem in the plastic panel at the bottom of the windscreen.
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