Last post on Aug 22, 2006 at 1:43 PM
You are in the Toyota Camry
What is this discussion about?
Toyota Camry Solara, Toyota Camry, Sedan
#4246 of 5279 Re: 99 Camry Dexron 3 [chevymalibu]
Nov 15, 2005 (7:29 am)
"Now for my '05 camry, like you said, it uses that T4 toyota fluid at $4 a bottle I think. He said it's part synthetic and is better than DEX III. My question, can I use valvoline synthetic???"
Short answer? Don't do it while your car's under warranty. Long answer: there's more to ATF than the base oil blend. In addition to their blend of conventional and synthetic base stocks, the proprietary fluids that are specified in most owners' manuals now have specific "friction modifier" chemistry which affects the progressive take-up characteristics of each manufacturer's proprietary friction facings against the metal friction plates during gear changes and torque converter lockup. (Gone are the days when everyone used asbestos friction facings.) Dexron IIIH and previous iterations are fine for GM and a lot of past trannies, but, to use it in cars calling for a specific ATF, at best you'd have some serious degradation of shift and torque converter lockup feel within several months. At worst, you could be looking at a premature rebuild. Since most proprietary ATFs have neither been licensed for duplication by competitive blenders to be sold through the normal retail channels, nor has the chemistry been disseminated publically, we're stuck. Fair? Perhaps not. Legal? Yep, deal with it. So-called "universal" or "all-makes" fluids that claim compatibility with OEM fluids are only their blenders' best guess. They're not licensed as acceptable substitutes. Don't feel too bad - I only wish I could get away with $4.00/qt for my '03 Sonata's automatic transmission. The Mitsubishi spec. SP-III ATF that Hyundai requires in all their transmissions made from model year 1996 runs $7.58/qt from my dealer's parts department.
#4247 of 5279 Re: 2002 4 Cylinder Advice, Please [sean3]
Nov 15, 2005 (7:39 am)
Just curious. . . what city are you in? (If you don't mind revealing.)
#4248 of 5279 Re: 99 Camry Dexron 3 [chevymalibu]
Nov 15, 2005 (8:02 am)
Read the cans. If they say they are equivalent to the T4 Toyota fluid then they are equivalent. It seems we've gotten back to the magic "have to use our product in our specially designed car" phase of automotives. I recall when people were told they had to have oil changes done at the dealer or their warranty wouldn't be honored!!!
#4249 of 5279 Re: 99 Camry Dexron 3 [imidazol97]
Nov 15, 2005 (9:16 am)
I disagree on the Camry for the T4 tranny fluid. I'm with haefr on this; it's not worth it to take a chance. I'm certainly not going to.
Toyota only specifies proprietary fluids for the tranny and radiator. You can still use generic oil, power steering, and brake fluids (meeting the proper specs of course), unlike Honda. And I think you can use a nonproprietary antifreeze, as long as it meets the Toyota specs exactly.
The old saying applies, "penny wise and pound foolish."
#4250 of 5279 Re: 92 Camry 4cyl:Slow Starting [redleg1one]
Nov 15, 2005 (12:38 pm)
Your cold start system needs to be looked into. 87-91 Camrys have a cold start injector and timer. The timer senses cold engine coolant and tells the cold start injector to squirt more fuel to help in cold starts. Your Camry may have the same system and the timer is common culprit. Or a temperature sensor is out of range and needs replacing.
#4251 of 5279 02 Camry: steering wheel whines when turning
Nov 15, 2005 (2:28 pm)
My Toyota has over 60,000 on it. Recently started making an annoying noise when you turn the steering wheel in any direction. I describe it as a whining sound. Any ideas?
#4252 of 5279 Re: rattle [lwblue]
Nov 15, 2005 (6:46 pm)
If it happens only once after starting, before you get up to about 10 mph, then it's the antilock brake system doing a self-check. If you have one of the 7% of 2005 Camrys with electronic stability control, you may be hearing its self-check.
Nothing to worry about. I don't hear it on my '05 Camry, but it was definitely noticeable on my '90 Mercury Sable.
#4253 of 5279 Re: 99 Camry Dexron 3 [210delray]
Nov 16, 2005 (4:33 am)
I've used prestone in my two 1994 camrys for years. the only time it had the toyota red stuff was when new and when I took it for a timing belt. Otherwise it was mainly the two year prestone stuff (not the extended life but I did use that once and still drained it a few years later). one radiator did go but it was the damn plastic top not the core (why they topped an aluminum core with a plastic top is beyond me). Also, one water pump went at 165K but the other didn't (it was changed as a preventative maint when the belt was done at 170K or so). Once my warranty goes out, I'm using prestone long life which doesn't have the borates and silicates to ruin the water pump seals. I paid $12 a gallon for premixed honda antifreeze. Once it goes past warranty, I'm going with prestone there too. As for the powersteering, the honda uses a special fluid but there is an equiv in auto zone. the PS fluid on a camry is Dex III. The brakes I use a valvoline synthetic I think. For the trans, I'll probably go and use the toyota and honda mixes just cause it will cost 4K to fix a trans. What gets me is they recommend 4 flushes in the honda to remove the excess holdup fluid but the camry says just drop and replace. Not sure how much it contains or drops as my manual isn't in hand as I type but I'll do just a drop and refill with the camry. Heck, for the PS and brakes, my 1994's never had either changed or anything and I got lucky nothing wrong happened. Now I might siphon off the top and refill with fresh every two years. I really don't like when a car uses the "brand" fluids or else mentality. Like the honda oil at my dealer uses quaker state. I'd rather use and do use castrol but also like valvoline and the major brands before QS. (sorry but it has a bad rap although i've used Super tech oil near the end of my camry's life and that's supposed to be QS oil. Anyway, thanks for the discussion.
#4254 of 5279 Re: 99 Camry Dexron 3 [chevymalibu]
Nov 16, 2005 (8:17 am)
In the U.S. SuperTech (WalMart) motor oil is not made by SOPUS (Pennzoil, Quaker State, and Formula Shell). WalMart uses two suppliers regionally for the east coast/midwest, and the west respectively: ExxonMobil for the east coast and midwest, and Warren Performance Products* in the west. (though this division may be temporarily disrupted pending the hiccup in base oil and additive supplies brought about by Katrina's and Rita's double whammy) For SuperTech synthetic blend and full synthetic motor oils, WalMart sources exclusively from Warren Performance Products nationally. SuperTech extended life antifreeze/coolant concentrate is made by Prestone division of Honeywell, but dyed blue-tinged green vs. the branded "Prestone"'s green-tinged yellow. The working chemistry of both is identical. They're both unofficially classed as a "dexcool clones" - no silicates or phosphates, and 2-ETA as the OAT corrosion inhibitor.** Take with a grain of salt the notion of not changing out any brand or type coolant for a full five years, though. But 3-4 years is probably realistic.
*Warren Performance Products blends a number of "house brand" motor oils including Sears Spectrum Motor Oil. The company also markets its own "MAG1" brand of motor oils nationwide. Confusingly WPP shares the name "Warren" with another, completely unrelated company: Warren Coastal-Unilube. WCU blends Advance Auto's and Auto Zone's house brand motor oils.
**The Japanese "Big Three" (HNT) automakers are unanimous in their insistence of OAT corrosion inhibitor, a generaous dose of phosphates, and NO silicates in their respective antifreeze/coolant formulae. Phosphates in the right concentration bring to the table three disirable qualities:
1) immediate corrosion protection on aluminum parts since it may take several thousand miles before the OAT chemistry is adequately established,
2) immediate "healing" of the corrosion resistant layer in the event the random "Mad-Max" particulate scuffs off a bit of the OAT layer, and
3) better longterm protection against cavitation damage to the waterpump impeller.
Lest anyone come away with the impression I'm condemning the use Dexcool and its unlicensed clones in Japanese engines calling for phosphate-charged OAT antifreeze/coolants, NO WAY. Personally I used GM-licensed Texaco Dexcool in my '96 Honda Accord aluminum I4 for four years with NO problems whatsoever. GM installs Honda V6 engines in the Saturn View, and uses Dexcool as the factory-fill antifreeze/coolant despite Honda's objections. I haven't heard of ANY coolant-related failures in this application. I've had the SuperTech "dexcool clone" in my Sonata aluminum V6 for over a year, likewise, with NO problems. As always, but rarely practiced, keep close tabs on the coolant level year 'round at the radiator cap, not merely the overflow bottle.
#4255 of 5279 Re: 99 Camry Dexron 3 [haefr]
Nov 16, 2005 (8:38 am)
Very interesting stuff, thanks for the info. Just wondering though, how do you know all of this?
I was always curious why Toyota, for one, permitted phosphates in their coolants, but VW on the other hand was so adamantly against them. Your explanation makes a lot of sense.
So on my Camrys (2004 and 05), it says you can go 5 years or 105K miles before changing the coolant. You said you'd change in 3 or 4 years. What about mileage, if you accumulate a lot of miles per year?