Toyota Corolla: Automatic transmission / differential fluid level check
Non-VVT-i models - every 15 000 km or 12 months
VVT-i models - every 16 000 km or 12 months
1 The transmission should be at normal operating temperature. Set the selector lever in the Park position, making sure the vehicle is parked on a level surface.
2 Start the engine and allow it to idle. With your foot on the brake pedal, move the selector lever through all the positions, then return it to Park.
3 Pull out the transmission oil level dipstick, and wipe it clean (see illustration).
7.3 Automatic transmission oil level dipstick (arrowed)
4 Fully insert the dipstick, then pull it out again. The level should be within the two notches either side of the HOT mark on the dipstick (see illustration). If not, add fluid and check again.
7.4 HOT max and min marks are the right-hand arrows, the COOL max and min marks are on the left
5 Check the condition of the fluid. If it smells burnt or is blackened, the fluid must be renewed as follows.
6 Stop the engine, jack up the front of the vehicle and support it securely on axle stands (see Jacking and vehicle support). Place a suitable container under the transmission drain plug.
7 Using an Allen (hexagonal) key, unscrew the drain plug and allow the fluid to drain into the container (see illustration). When all the fluid has drained, refit the plug, tightening it to the specified torque.
7.7 Automatic transmission drain plug (arrowed)
8 Fill the transmission through the dipstick aperture with the correct quantity of specified fluid, and check the level as previously described.
9 The three-speed automatic transmission differential has a separate lubricant supply with a check/filler plug which must be removed to check the level.
10 Remove the filler plug from the front of the differential (see illustration).
7.10 Differential filler and drain plug details (three-speed automatic transmission)
11 Use your finger as a dipstick to make sure the lubricant level is even with the bottom of the plug hole. If not, use a syringe or a gear oil pump to add the recommended lubricant until it just starts to run out of the hole. Refit the plug and tighten it securely.
12 To renew the differential fluid, position a container under the differential fluid drain plug, remove the plug and allow the fluid to drain. Tighten the plug securely.
13 Refill the differential as described in paragraphs 9 to 11.
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