Last post on Sep 05, 2013 at 6:22 AM
You are in the Toyota RAV4
What is this discussion about?
Toyota RAV4, SUV
#4675 of 4696 2006 RAV4 LTD Transmission Issues
Jul 06, 2010 (7:06 am)
I purchased my RAV4 Limited in 2006, brand new. I've had very little issue with it, and have the normal servicing done on it regularly. In the Summer of 2009 my A/T Oil Temp light came on for the first time. I stopped, checked the A/T Fluid level, and all seemed fine. After a few minutes I started on my way again, the light was still on. I was only a few miles from home, so I figured I'd be fine and worry about it later. Since that light didn't come on again until this Summer I never thought about it again, until now that is. After a long drive the light has been popping on regularly. I don't do towing, nor do I off-road. I decided to be proactive and took it in for a transmission fluid drain before hassling the dealer. At this point my mileage was at 66K. Two weeks after that was done the fluid was no longer red, nor pink, it was black and burnt smelling. The dealer has been giving me the run around after I asked them to check into this problem. The light has come on about 6 times in the last 2 months, and yet they keep telling me they find no codes on the computer, and they insist the fluid is "pinkish". After dropping the car off 2 weeks ago the service rep called and told me to pick up the car, as they found no issue. That morning I picked up the car and as I was nearing my office the A/T Oil Temp light came on yet again. I find their conclusions really hard to believe, so after calling the service rep back, I wrote a letter to the dealership manager, but still have received no response. I am still under Toyota extended warranty I purchased, but the way the service rep. has treated my issue makes it seem like they are trying to avoid having to find, and therefore cover my problem. My warranty is up in approx. 7K miles, and I suspect that they are hoping it runs out before really trying to find an issue. It's sad, but I feel that until my car's tranny fails they will do nothing about it.
#4676 of 4696 Re: 2006 RAV4 LTD Transmission Issues [hashedz]
Jul 06, 2010 (5:31 pm)
first off, yes they are trying to get you outside their responsibility. You need to make sure you have all the documentation from the service/work orders that you have indicated a problem DURING the warranty period. Secondly, when is the last time that transmission had a fluid replacement? You know, drain and fill? Because your mileage is way too long to leave it in there, regardless if Toyota says its "ok". Usually every 30-40k miles is when I think A/T fluid should be replaced. Don't fall for the power flush either, not safe for the transmission. draining the 3.5quarts (or so), then drive that, drain that, replace it with 3.5qts, it's the poor man's flush. We have done it before on Toyota vehicles, because power flushing isn't safe.
And make sure that you see the mechanic replace it with Toyota brand fluid, not whatever they have in bulk. They go cheap at the dealer replacing it with whatever is "compatible" should be the branded stuff out of the bottle.
Thats where I'd start first. If they dont want to help you at that dealer, take it somewhere else to get the trans fluid changed. Sounds like it's been in there way too long.
#4677 of 4696 Re: 2006 RAV4 LTD Transmission Issues [mark19]
Jul 07, 2010 (5:34 am)
I probably should have done the drain/fill on the AT fluid before 66K miles, but it's too late to worry about shoulda's and coulda's. It was done a month ago, and not at the dealer. The dealer started pointing fingers at everyone but themselves when I brought it back last week. The Toyota service rep was telling me that I should have done the power purge, even though I know that's not healthy for the tranny?! Then they tried to blame the place I did the drain/fill at by saying they probably used the wrong fluid, then they said why didn't I bring it in to have them service it when the light first came on... I swear it's been a nightmare, and my RAV4 is still in the shop right this minute. Svc Rep called me yesterday and said they drove it and still found nothing, but then the curious thing was he then asked me what light is the one that keeps coming on?! Are these jokers morons or just great at playing dopey? He was telling me that they would keep it another day to check things out and then let me know. I haven't heard back yet, don't know if that's a good thing or not. They made it clear to me that if they wind up taking apart the tranny and find nothing wrong they would have to bill me. Aren't they great at making their customers want to return to buy another Toyota?
In any case it's not a fluid issue at this point, it's a tranny issue. You can't tell me that fresh fluid should be black and burnt smelling only 2 weeks after doing a drain/fill. Something is not right. Maybe the original fluid needed replacing earlier, but for the dealer to blame my cars woes on everybody else and then to tell me that now things are just peachy is beyond belief. Waiting for the next chapter to begin. Will keep ya posted.
#4678 of 4696 Re: 2006 RAV4 LTD Transmission Issues [hashedz]
Jul 07, 2010 (2:53 pm)
i missed that part where you said you had the drain and fill done just two weeks prior. remember also that draining and filling only gets rid of approx 1/3 of the fluid in the transmission. You still have 2/3 that is dirty and needing replacement. I'd suggest draining and filling it again, and a 2nd time after that. That way you can make sure you get rid of all the dirty old fluid. i find it terrible that toyota says this fluid is "for life", not true at all.
Also, speaking honestly, I would take your car away from that dealer you've been going to! They don't know where the indicator lights are on the dash and have to ask you? what's next? they ask where the oil goes for an oil change?! Wow the incompetence you're dealing with is astonishing. But your patience of actually putting up with it, is even more incredible. you don't have to put up with it, take it elsewhere. Please do yourself a favor and DO NOT let these morons take apart your transmission! They DO NOT know what they are doing, it's obvious. Get your car to another dealer while still under warranty. And to blame someone else? That's typical toyota, been there before with them both dealers and the corporation.
If it is not solved then you need to get yourself an attorney, now a lot of people will say that approach is "Extreme" and overused. Well let's see, this corporation has postponed recalls and the government had to force them and fined them to make the recalls for the latest gas pedal situation. My point is, to just say "I wont buy another" is great but look they have your money, they're in breach of their warranty they contracted with you to provide. An attorney could remedy it, I dont think Toyota takes their customers serious until they get an attorney. Ridiculous, I know, but it's an option because you shouldn't have to put out $3000-4000 for a transmission (rough estimate) because of them just trying to breach your warranty!
on a side note about Toyota, they put out these commercials trying to convince the public how good they are. The truth is, the real owners of these vehicles know how they are treated and what the real "quality" of the product is. I dont see it being much better than Ford (yes I know ford has improved lately) or others. There will be people who say "Oh you're just one out of a million cars" or make some other excuse. No it's true, Toyota's quality has been going down the drain for awhile and the tides are turning against them for treating their customers like they are treating you.
but back to your problem, just drain and fill it again, then drive around, next week do it again, you'll get out 80-90% of the bad fluid that way. maybe it's easier for me because i do it myself, but that is how it's done without the power purge they're talking about (bad idea and they should know better, they probably do, just want to make sure they destroy your transmission then blame you for that). im confident that should solve your problems.
#4679 of 4696 Re: 2006 RAV4 LTD Transmission Issues [mark19]
Jul 08, 2010 (4:48 am)
The service rep just called me this morning to say they couldn't replicate the AT Oil Temp light coming on, and that without any computer codes they can't take apart the tranny under warranty. I said I refuse to pay labor on a tranny job when I am under warranty. If the light indicator won't trip a code on the car's computer how is that my problem? I told them I would take the car back, drive it, and take a picture of the dash if they didn't believe me, but he said that wouldn't do. He then told me he would have one of his guys drive it home tonight, as he lives a distance from the dealership to try to get the light to come on. I asked him what the point of that was since the light coming on obviously isn't producing a code, and therefore won't allow me to be covered for labor.
He had no answer to my question, then he said that his shop foreman is getting involved. What that means I have no clue, as I would have assumed that he should have been in on this from almost the moment they realized they had no answers to this issue.
The nightmare continues...
#4680 of 4696 Re: 2006 RAV4 LTD Transmission Issues [hashedz]
Jul 12, 2010 (7:46 am)
Cont. from above posts: Call from the service shop foreman on 7/9 confirmed that they were able to recreate the AT Oil temp light condition, but in doing so must have killed the tranny. Was told that they wanted no responsibility, and to have my RAV4 towed, since it was now hemorrhaging AT fluid, to the shop that did the drain/fill! The guy was almost screaming at me, and I simply asked to speak to the Svc or Dealer manager, but of course they weren't available. I said I drove my non-leaking vehicle in, and now I need to tow it away, and you want to offer me no help even though I own a Platinum warranty, nice.
I opened up a case file with Toyota at 1-800-331-4331, and also did get in touch with the Gen. Mgr. of the dealership. He was very courteous and told me he would get back to me when he has the details, and gets the case file. He also did tell me that he was in a difficult position between me and the warranty company, since they don't necessarily do what the dealer asks, but only what they deem acceptable. We shall see what happens. Things are moving forward, but the outcome is still very much in the air.
#4681 of 4696 Re: 2006 RAV4 LTD Transmission Issues [hashedz]
Jul 12, 2010 (7:58 am)
wow.. well i warned you to take your car out of there, but you didn't listen. Now you have a transmission destroyed by them. You were already warned what would happen since you're dealing with morons. Oh sure I have more advice, but i doubt you'd actually listen to it. GET YOURSELF AN ATTORNEY! simple! you're going to need one! But you probably will go on and on about your problems with this dealership and how they still can't fix your car without realizing they're morons. Or actually listening to how Toyota will string you along but eventually try and get you to pay 1/3 of the repair, etc.. But guess some people just like to complain and dont really want to fix things.
so good luck to you and your saga. oh and if you missed it.. GET YOURSELF AN ATTORNEY!
#4682 of 4696 Re: 2006 RAV4 LTD Transmission Issues [mark19]
Jul 12, 2010 (12:57 pm)
Sounds like you work for that dealership. Thanks for sounding like a nasty auto service tech. I was basically posting for the sake of others in my situation who may be facing the same sad reality.
I do have a question for ya though: What makes you so sure any other Toyota dealership would actually want to help me when the one that sold me my car is trying very hard not to?
#4683 of 4696 Re: 2006 RAV4 LTD Transmission Issues [hashedz]
Jul 12, 2010 (3:03 pm)
auto tech? so let me get this straight.. you're attacking me now calling me names when you're the person who refused to take it out of the hands of someone who didn't even know your vehicle? And now you're defending a place that destroyed your transmission? that is insane. wow.. i dont think you get to attack me at all. Im sorry I even tried to help you.. with your kind of apathy no wonder your car is in the shape it is. Dont worry I wont try and help someone like yourself again. you attack others when the dealership is the one that DESTROYED your car.
have fun with your car, if this story is even true.. you won't get another response out of me, you don't deserve one.
#4684 of 4696 Re: 2006 RAV4 LTD Transmission Issues [mark19]
Jul 13, 2010 (5:52 am)
Get it straight, the dealer helped ruin my car by refusing to listen to their customer, me. I realize that lots of folks that take their cars in for service know very little about such things, but with a bit of internet research you can find out quite a bit about your cars inner workings and problems that arise.
The dealer mechanics are supposed to be trained to deal specifically with the cars they sell, so telling me they don't know how to service my vehicle is a ridiculous notion. My particular problem is due to the dealer not wanting to fix my vehicle on their dime due to it being covered under warranty. They did make the problem worse after I dropped it off by trying to recreate the AT Oil lamp condition, and you would think they would start to believe what I was telling them all along, but no, that isn't their stance. I have a case open, and have spoken to the dealer mgr, and we will see how this plays out. Maybe I should have towed it to another dealer if only due to the way my dealer has treated me, but I have faith that the open case file with Toyota of America will help.