Auto transmission oil change. High mileage. Never changed before

Omar LC5 120

New Member
So I have my 2003 d4d lc120. 160k on clock. I'm not sure if the transmission oil has ever been changed. Is it still a good idea to change it. As many places say it's not good and some people say it's still worth changing.
 

AdventureWagon

Well-Known Member
Supporter
Even if you just drain/refill you'll never get all of it out - 30-50% at best. Have you tried any transmission specialists and see what they think rather than just mechanics? What kind of driving have you done over those 160k, mainly country or mainly about town?

Maybe it's worth taking it for a transmission service that will include an overall inspection inside the pan and filter, and you'll then know the state of things? At the end of the day if it's on its last legs so much that changing a little of the fluid will break it then it's best to know now.

But I stress that's my opinion and outside my own 95 series's A343F I have no experience with transmissions!
 

Omar LC5 120

New Member
Even if you just drain/refill you'll never get all of it out - 30-50% at best. Have you tried any transmission specialists and see what they think rather than just mechanics? What kind of driving have you done over those 160k, mainly country or mainly about town?

Maybe it's worth taking it for a transmission service that will include an overall inspection inside the pan and filter, and you'll then know the state of things? At the end of the day if it's on its last legs so much that changing a little of the fluid will break it then it's best to know now.

But I stress that's my opinion and outside my own 95 series's A343F I have no experience with transmissions!



I only just bought it a few weeks ago. So would know what kind of driving it's had or done. It's been used as a farmer's car once in its life. Lol

But it's probably a good idea like you suggested to have a look at it first and then go from there.
Hmmm
 

AdventureWagon

Well-Known Member
Supporter
I only just bought it a few weeks ago. So would know what kind of driving it's had or done. It's been used as a farmer's car once in its life. Lol

But it's probably a good idea like you suggested to have a look at it first and then go from there.
Hmmm
Does the 120 have a tranny dipstick? You might be able to gauge how things are going using a sample from that?
 

Omar LC5 120

New Member
Does the 120 have a tranny dipstick? You might be able to gauge how things are going using a sample from that?

Never thought of that. I'll look for that first and go from there. Gear changes don't feel rough, but you do feel a change obviously. I've heard of people who've never changed them. Some have changed it after 200k miles and never made a difference. Just depends on your actual car.
 
D

Deleted member 13129

Guest
So I have my 2003 d4d lc120. 160k on clock. I'm not sure if the transmission oil has ever been changed. Is it still a good idea to change it. As many places say it's not good and some people say it's still worth changing.
I would change it , on yours the 4 speed is very easy to do as it has a dip stick , use the right ATF I think its toyota Type IV fluid on the 4 speed . you can drain it once , or do it every week for three weeks to get most of the atf changed as you get 3 to 4 lt out every time you drain it .
 
D

Deleted member 13129

Guest
Never thought of that. I'll look for that first and go from there. Gear changes don't feel rough, but you do feel a change obviously. I've heard of people who've never changed them. Some have changed it after 200k miles and never made a difference. Just depends on your actual car.
pull out the dipstick and look to see if the fluid on it is still pink and smells sweet if so its in good nick and just one drain of the sump (3 to 4 litres depending if you jack up the truck to drain more out) is ok to do, if its or dark brown or brown and smells burnt it is in bad nick ,
 

Omar LC5 120

New Member

Juddian

Well-Known Member
Supporter
5 Speed requires Toyota WS, which is basically synthetic Dexron 6, most good makes of D6 will cover World Standard.

I too would change it, several times as TONYCY11 says , if you have the 5 speed you will need some form of oil pump or syringe to get the new oil in because they removed the dipstick and there is no way you'll get normal oil bottles near the filler plug.

Not sure what the standard fluid is for 4 speed, early 120's i believe do have the 4 speed and nothing wrong with that at all, no more difficult to check levels and change the oil than an engine oil change.

That Aisin fluid linked, if i read correctly states it's not WS spec.

Gearboxes that require WS will find WS stamped on the filler plug, which itself takes some finding being half way up the side of the box, offside of box if i remember right.
 
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Bhutan

Active Member
Changed mine at 108,000 miles, along with all other oils that were changeable just so I have a base mileage from where to work in the future. Engine oil had obviously been changed regularly in the past, it looked like all other oils were original.

Following the oil change, the automatic gearbox is noticeably smoother when moving through the gears whilst driving, and now has no judder at all when sitting in drive not moving, for example at traffic lights - not that there are any here at all in the whole country!
 

Beau

Well-Known Member
Just do a drain and refill and repeat after 30,000 miles or so. If the fluid comes out very bad, then repeat at a quicker interval instead. These boxes alongside fluids are pretty long lasting and robust, especially if they haven't seen extreme temps.
 

Shayne

Well-Known Member
Guru
I know nothing about auto transmissions but the amount of problems i've seen mentioned on here from people who decided to change the oil convinces me that if i were to do it i'd just run a pipe through the filler hole to the bottom of the box and pour new oil in while letting the old over spill out of the filler hole .
 

David

Well-Known Member
Supporter
Read here AISIN Premium ATF 6, suitable for all Automatic transmissions that take Dextron 11, Dextron 111 and Toyota T-1V (Type 4) grades, basically all except those that take the new WS (World Standard) fluid. so it is not compatible with WS spec.
And a 2003 won't be WS spec as it was not available until after that
this is interesting if you have a bit of time
 
D

Deleted member 13129

Guest
I know nothing about auto transmissions but the amount of problems i've seen mentioned on here from people who decided to change the oil convinces me that if i were to do it i'd just run a pipe through the filler hole to the bottom of the box and pour new oil in while letting the old over spill out of the filler hole .
That would not work with a auto transmission like it would with a diff or manual gearbox Shayne . an Auto transmission is a lot more intricate , I have changed fluid in auto trans since the early 90s and the changing method vary from types and makes , I have found its best change fluid when the fluid is the same temp as the fluid that is going back in as ATF rises a fair bit at warmer temps compared to room temp the that the new fluid is stored , too much fluid is as bad as too low fluid , I remember changing the auto trans box in a 1996 Lexus LS400 20 years ago and it had the same box as the 2003 lc 120 its a simple job , mine had 165k without a change but the fluid was still sweet , I removed the sump to change the filter and the filter was spotless , so after that I just drained the sump and put back in the same amount that I took out with the fluids measuring the same at the same temps , if the the car or truck has been towing heavy weights it takes it out of the trans and the fluid so the fluid could be brown and burnt .
 
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Omar LC5 120

New Member
All really good points.
I didn't have a clue there was so much to know about. I thought there'd be one ATF, you drain and fill, and bobs your uncle lol

I haven't a clue with regards to WS etc.

So ,good to know there's peeps out there that know there stuff.
 
D

Deleted member 13129

Guest
All really good points.
I didn't have a clue there was so much to know about. I thought there'd be one ATF, you drain and fill, and bobs your uncle lol

I haven't a clue with regards to WS etc.

So ,good to know there's peeps out there that know there stuff.
Dont worry Omar yours is the easy one to change the ATF , and it takes the Type IV, WS will also be OK to use but it costs a bit more , although I used Mannol toyota lifetime WS synthetic (no such thing as lifetime) on my 5 speed 120 and got it direct from Germany for about £70 including delivery for 10 litres from ebay , I also put in 600 mils of platinum lube guard to help the transmission fluid temps stay lower and help the seals stay fresh ,
 

t1pper

Well-Known Member
I have 240k miles on my 100 and swap out a few litres every year by draining the sump and refill my oil looks fresh and clean.
At 150k miles I dropped the gearbox sump and changed the filters cleaned the magnets etc.
Still really smooth and no problems
Hope that helps
 

Omar LC5 120

New Member
I've seen a few vids where people have dropped the sump and cleaned magnets etc. Seems like a easy job to do and for best results too.

Thanks guys. Glad I joined this club/group.

I keep getting told, it's a old car. 17 years. And it'll be problematic.
But I love it and wish I had bought it alot sooner. I kept putting it off and ended up picking up a Santa Fe. Which I regret. Hopefully this will do me good.
 
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