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hauntedbygearboxes

Yaris 2001 automatic possible transmission problem?

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My 2001 Yaris has developed an occasional problem that my usual trusted garage can't diagnose - hoping for some guidance please!

Sometimes, when I first leave the house, the car starts without problem, manoeuvres in the driveway without problem and pulls out onto the road without problem.... and then the engine just sort of "hangs" for some seconds, before kicking into life and pulling away.  It only happens when first leaving the house, it drives beautifully thereafter, even if I have to stop and start again just 10m down the road.  But it's a problem because I live on a busy road and if something comes round the corner too fast, I'm "hanging" in the middle of the road for a few vital seconds, unable to move... 

On my garage's advice, I called a transmission specialist today and they suggested that it's a semi-automatic gearbox and may have a faulty actuator, which would cost between £600-£1500 + VAT to repair.  Given the age and value of the car, although it's a great car otherwise, I'd have to question whether to spend that much on it.  I'm happy to book it in for the diagnostic tests in a week or so but giving some thought to possible ways forward thereafter in meantime

I have 2 questions:

- how can I tell if my car has an automatic or a semi automatic gearbox?  I don't think the garage is correct - I think it's an automatic rather than a semi-automatic but is there a database where I can check that?

- does anyone know if that would make any difference either way to what the possible problem could be?  

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The easiest way to tell is the shifter if it has N E M it has the MMT (semi auto) but i think they were 2005 onwards (Mk2)

If it P (park) it has a Auto

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40 minutes ago, flash22 said:

The easiest way to tell is the shifter if it has N E M it has the MMT (semi auto) but i think they were 2005 onwards (Mk2)

If it P (park) it has a Auto

Thank you.  It has P for Park and D for Drive and that's what made me think it's an automatic, not a semi.  Any thoughts re the possible fault??

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What is the Mileage ? Has it ever had a fluid flush/change ? What colour is the fluid ?

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As Bob suggests...check the level and state of the ATF....if the ATF is dark ( a deep cherry red is good) and has a burnt odour then it's ready for a change.

Check it on level ground with the engine running and in N or P.

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If you start the car and leave to run 5-10 mins before driving does the issue still happen ?

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9 hours ago, flash22 said:

What is the Mileage ? Has it ever had a fluid flush/change ? What colour is the fluid ?

It's done 80,000 miles and no I have no record of the ATF being changed so I'd assume not.  The level is good though and the colour is a nice cherry red and smells fine.  

 

I haven't tried leaving it for as long as 5-10 mins before moving off but I have tried going up and down through R, N, and D a few times before moving off to see if that helped the ATF fluid moving around a bit better before moving onto the road.  I'd say that maybe helped a bit but not completely.  

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8 hours ago, RUToyota said:

As Bob suggests...check the level and state of the ATF....if the ATF is dark ( a deep cherry red is good) and has a burnt odour then it's ready for a change.

Check it on level ground with the engine running and in N or P.

Just done this afternoon thanks Neil it looked fine - right colour and no unpleasant odour

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What's the level like ? I take its fine once it's warmed up

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14 hours ago, flash22 said:

What's the level like ? I take its fine once it's warmed up

Level looked fine Bob.  And yes the car runs perfectly as soon as it's got over that initial "pause".  It doesn't even happen every time I use the car but I do need to resolve it.

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I would get an auto box specialist to look at it, see if there are any codes in the TCM, a flush and filter maybe an option - just looked up the auto box it's either a C153 or C154

There is always the fall back, disconnect the Battery for 15-20 mins and let the ecu, etc clear

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6 minutes ago, flash22 said:

I would get an auto box specialist to look at it, see if there are any codes in the TCM, a flush and filter maybe an option - just looked up the auto box it's either a C153 or C154

There is always the fall back, disconnect the battery for 15-20 mins and let the ecu, etc clear

Thank you - that's very helpful Bob

 

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8 minutes ago, flash22 said:

I would get an auto box specialist to look at it, see if there are any codes in the TCM, a flush and filter maybe an option - just looked up the auto box it's either a C153 or C154

There is always the fall back, disconnect the battery for 15-20 mins and let the ecu, etc clear

Just looked up C153 and 154 and Wikipedia says these are manual gearboxes - is that right?

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On 7/17/2020 at 8:35 PM, hauntedbygearboxes said:

My 2001 Yaris has developed an occasional problem that my usual trusted garage can't diagnose - hoping for some guidance please!

Sometimes, when I first leave the house, the car starts without problem, manoeuvres in the driveway without problem and pulls out onto the road without problem.... and then the engine just sort of "hangs" for some seconds, before kicking into life and pulling away.  It only happens when first leaving the house, it drives beautifully thereafter, even if I have to stop and start again just 10m down the road.  But it's a problem because I live on a busy road and if something comes round the corner too fast, I'm "hanging" in the middle of the road for a few vital seconds, unable to move... 

 

I know everyone thinks it is a transmission problem but maybe it's an engine problem. It runs OK when warm so I suggest before spending any money you:

check the air filter is clean

Check the spark plugs: gap and colour.

Ensure all the coils and electrical connections are OK.

Clean the MAF and throttle body.

Check all engine earths are clean and not corroded.

 

 

None of those cost much - if anything...

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On 7/17/2020 at 8:35 PM, hauntedbygearboxes said:

My 2001 Yaris has developed an occasional problem that my usual trusted garage can't diagnose - hoping for some guidance please!

Sometimes, when I first leave the house, the car starts without problem, manoeuvres in the driveway without problem and pulls out onto the road without problem.... and then the engine just sort of "hangs" for some seconds, before kicking into life and pulling away.  It only happens when first leaving the house, it drives beautifully thereafter, even if I have to stop and start again just 10m down the road.  But it's a problem because I live on a busy road and if something comes round the corner too fast, I'm "hanging" in the middle of the road for a few vital seconds, unable to move... 

On my garage's advice, I called a transmission specialist today and they suggested that it's a semi-automatic gearbox and may have a faulty actuator, which would cost between £600-£1500 + VAT to repair.  Given the age and value of the car, although it's a great car otherwise, I'd have to question whether to spend that much on it.  I'm happy to book it in for the diagnostic tests in a week or so but giving some thought to possible ways forward thereafter in meantime

I have 2 questions:

- how can I tell if my car has an automatic or a semi automatic gearbox?  I don't think the garage is correct - I think it's an automatic rather than a semi-automatic but is there a database where I can check that?

- does anyone know if that would make any difference either way to what the possible problem could be?  

I'm not totally clear what the symptoms are.

If you are engaging D and the engine is revving but the car is not moving for a short time, and then drive eventually engages, then you have delayed engagement. Assuming the fluid level is correct then the problem is likely to be wear within the gearbox. At this age the internal rubber seals tend to have hardened and you get internal leaks which drops the fluid pressure leading to slow gear engagement. The seals soften up as the gearbox warms up, and things improve.

The ideal solution is a transmission rebuild.

I believe your transmission is a conventional automatic, the AisinWarner  AW81-40le whi่ch was used on a wide variety of small cars. Toyota designate it as the U441E. Its a good unit and relatively cheap aftermarket spares are available, but cost of labour for a rebuild probably makes it non viable.

A possible cheap short-medium term  fix is to put in some seal conditioner such as Lucas 10009 Transmission Fix. This softens the rubber seals and helps improve shifting.

Check the fluid level before you do anything though - and do not overfill.

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On 7/19/2020 at 10:42 PM, mrfixer said:

I'm not totally clear what the symptoms are.

If you are engaging D and the engine is revving but the car is not moving for a short time, and then drive eventually engages, then you have delayed engagement. Assuming the fluid level is correct then the problem is likely to be wear within the gearbox. At this age the internal rubber seals tend to have hardened and you get internal leaks which drops the fluid pressure leading to slow gear engagement. The seals soften up as the gearbox warms up, and things improve.

The ideal solution is a transmission rebuild.

I believe your transmission is a conventional automatic, the AisinWarner  AW81-40le whi่ch was used on a wide variety of small cars. Toyota designate it as the U441E. Its a good unit and relatively cheap aftermarket spares are available, but cost of labour for a rebuild probably makes it non viable.

A possible cheap short-medium term  fix is to put in some seal conditioner such as Lucas 10009 Transmission Fix. This softens the rubber seals and helps improve shifting.

Check the fluid level before you do anything though - and do not overfill.

sorry but I've only just seen this post!  Your understanding of the symptoms are correct.  I've now taken the car to anther garage but they couldn't find any fault and confirmed that the fluid level is correct and looks clean.   Garage agreed that it was likely to be solved only via a transmission rebuild, but advised not to bother due to cost.  

I think I've decided that it's time for a new car as this one has probably hit it's tipping point of being beyond economic repair.  

Many thanks for your reply

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On 7/19/2020 at 7:06 PM, Madasafish said:

 

I know everyone thinks it is a transmission problem but maybe it's an engine problem. It runs OK when warm so I suggest before spending any money you:

check the air filter is clean

Check the spark plugs: gap and colour.

Ensure all the coils and electrical connections are OK.

Clean the MAF and throttle body.

Check all engine earths are clean and not corroded.

 

 

None of those cost much - if anything...

Thank you - and all done

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49 minutes ago, hauntedbygearboxes said:

Thank you - and all done

Working OK now? Or still faulty?

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1 minute ago, Madasafish said:

Working OK now? Or still faulty?

still the same - garage couldn't find any problem and suggested that it wouldn't be worth spending the money on trying to fix it via a transmission rebuild.  It's fine to drive most of the time but I've decided to see this as time to change it for a newer model.  I've started a new thread asking for any advice to help me chose - open to suggestions!

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