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Old 04-21-2015, 05:32 PM   #1
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Hi guys,

There's a story I want to share with you and see what you think. My sister's Lexus is a 2006 GS300. According to the owner's manual, the transmission is sealed and needs no servicing or fluid replacement. I've been replacing the trans fluid on all my Honda's, but I decided to go with the manufacturer's recommendation/suggestion. Last month, at around 110,000 miles, the transmission took a dump. There were 2 codes saying some valves got stuck. We took it to the dealer, and they won't repair it, only replace it. We took it to our indy friend mechanic. After a week, he said he fixed it, and said the fluid hadn't been changed, which lead to this failure. He replaced the valves and sensors.

We took it home, codes came back, took it back to him, and now he's still trying to figure out what is wrong.

I know many newer cars are going to lifetime or extended life fluids. I don't know if the mechanic is right about the fluid not being change causing the failure. But Lexus doesn't require or recommend the fluid to be changed. What do you guys think?

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Old 04-21-2015, 05:34 PM   #2
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The "lifetime fluid" is a selling point to make the car appear to need less maintenance. Every fluid will need to be changed at some timeframe in a car's life. No such thing as a lifetime fluid in machinery.
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Old 04-21-2015, 05:56 PM   #3
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I think that the "Lifetime" that most auto manufacturers refer to is a matter of "to the end of warranty service period." They would prefer that we all buy new cars by the time our old ones reach 100k miles.

ZF makes the Tiptronics that are in the 986s and many other cars. Here is what they have to say:


clipped from their web document:
http://www.zf.com/media/media/document/brands_3/service_information/sitematrix~1/transmission/cars_4/englisch_3/modelluebergreifend_1/ZP_SI_Oelwechselkit_EN.pdf

...and I came across this letter while working on another car brand:
http://blog.********************************************* ***/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/ZF-oil-service-letter1.pdf

Many auto companies have revised their original lifetime service and brought it in line with the ZF recommendation.

Last edited by 78F350; 04-21-2015 at 05:58 PM.
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Old 04-21-2015, 07:00 PM   #4
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Old 04-22-2015, 05:07 PM   #5
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So then shouldn't it be illegal for them to recommend something that could cause a premature failure (I'm sure this "premature failure" has already passed the warranty period)? However, currently, there's no way to prove that not changing the fluid according to their recommendation would cause a failure.

P.S. Just got an update from the mechanic. He can't fix it. He's willing to refund all the money, or we could pay him a little more to have a rebuilt transmission installed with a 1 year warranty.

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