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Discussion Starter #1
So.. I took my car to Longo Toyota this Saturday for my 60k service (oil change, tire rotation) and asked for a transmission fluid drain/refill. They looked at me funny. My SA proceeded to look through a bunch of recommended services and found transmission fluid replacement to be nowhere on there, only gaskets at 100K.

They called the Service Manager over to inquire about it. They said there's regular transmission fluid, then there's T-type transmission fluid, and then the step above it, World Class Standard fluid, which is apparently what the Toyota Prius and Toyota Tundra and a few others have in it. They said it was not recommended by Toyota to do the transmission oil change, and that I could if I really wanted to, but they didn't suggest it. They said you can note that there isn't a dipstick to check transmission fluid for a reason.

Any suggestions/feedback? I wanted to do a 60K transmission fluid replacement, because others said it was starting to get murky, etc.
 

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This is a real gray area. You will see on this board that several people say you should change the fluid. I have faith in the Toyota engineers and will follow their recommendations. I don't plan to change the fluid while I own the car. The first reference I see to change the transmission fluid is at 120,000 miles if you use the car for towing.
 

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There is almost never a recommendation to change transmission fluid on -any- car. I would have it changed. We don't know what will happen with the current model if we don't, but we -do- know some of the classics would grenade the transmission, and those who had the fluid checked (non-grenaded transmissions ;) ) found it was "used up". Of course, if you want to "do it right", have a sample drained and checked. Then you can make an "informed" decision. At any rate, it's an easy job, so shouldn't be avoided because of difficulty, like brake fluid changing.
 

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Contrary to the posters above there is a growing and convincing body of evidence to suggest that changing the transaxle fluid at 60k miles is a very good idea and inexpensive preventative maintenence on a Prius.

Current manufacturer's rec is 100k miles but many of us have looked at the evidence out there and chosen to be safe and go with 60k.

Another Priuschat reference, but I want to point you to the objective evidence that we have out there.
http://priuschat.com/DRAFT-Transaxle-Oi ... 39753.html
http://priuschat.com/Transaxle-Oil-Analysis-t39665.html
 

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The thing I think is interesting about those results is that they just specify arbitrary numbers about what "failed" fluid is. For example, 15% reduction in viscosity is a failure. It certainly is a sign of wear, but don't you really need to know how low the viscosity can go before it causes the part to wear out faster than its expected lifespan. It could possibly be the case that the wear that occurs is still minimal, even with "degraded" fluid. Imagine if we claimed brakes were "failed" because they had lost 50% of their thickness. It really seems like the data about failed transaxles is what really matters here.

That being said, it is a small expense and I wouldn't try to talk anyone out of changing the fluid if that was their inclination.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Well, that works. That being said, I have a coupon for $39.95 for a transmission fluid replacement, but I know I have to pay extra for T fluid or above. Does anyone know what this will cost me? I will have it done at my 65K interval.. I hate going to the service department, just because I'm practically there every 6-8 weeks.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
To add, the link you sent me follows the line of what the dealership said. They started using the World Class Standard with the new body style (2004+ for the Prius), which is why they seemed boggled that I wanted the change on my 2006 Prius. I pay for synthetic, because I think its better for the car (and it really hasn't said if it is or isn't). I would buy Premium gas if it would actually help. This is just a small price to pay to make sure it makes it a bit longer (60K miles and car is 1y 9m old).
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I just called the dealership, $6 a quart, need 3 quarts.. $99 for the drain/replace (though I have a coupon for $39.95). This is dumb, are they serious when they told me that it would cost A LOT for WCS fluid?
 

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Phish Phood said:
I just called the dealership, $6 a quart, need 3 quarts.. $99 for the drain/replace (though I have a coupon for $39.95). This is dumb, are they serious when they told me that it would cost A LOT for WCS fluid?
My dealer (CT) charged $85 for a WS drain and replace so $99 isn't severe. I also collected samples of both virgin WS and some used WS in clean poly jars and sent both in for lab analysis (via PdMa labs) which added about $25 per analysis report. This was one of the early reports that led to several of us suggesting the 60,000 mile interval for this maintenance in 2004+ Prii.

JeffD
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Sounds like a plan, at 65K I'll get a sample to send in for analysis too, perhaps contribute to this ongoing investigation :)
 

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As an experienced 1 owner of a 2005 Prius with 276,000 miles on it, I would recommend changing the Transmission Fluid. I did my first fluid change at 100K miles and boy was it ever disgusting. I did it myself took only 30 to 40 minutes. I used the OEM recommended Toyota WS (World Standard) 4 quarts. Did the same change every 60K miles afer that. No issues....until I decided to be cheap and try a cheaper transmission oil that said it was SUITABLE for Toyota WS. Key word suitable is a weasel legal word and if you ever went to court Suitable protects the manufacture not the car owner. That fluid was also Synthetic and my car did not perform as well, I could feel slipping. I ran it for 30K miles anyway and then dumped it and went back to Toyota WS. I noticed massive improvement right away on the first drive. Stay with WS and don't try to game the system. Its a system and I know we all feel like we are being ripped off when we think we can get alternative oils at half the price. Its not worth the risk or hassle. Stay with WS. Going to 300K miles and beyond.
 
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