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About CentralMA

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    Massachusetts (MA)
  1. Thought I'd toss in the factory owners manual for a 2002 Echo. 2002ToyotaEcho.pdf
  2. Greetings, Brand new here, seeing if I can get some friendly advice. We have a 2002 Echo with an automatic transmission that has been in the family since new. Bought by my parents, then eventually passed to my daughter during her latter college years (after my parents passed). My daughter has been driving it for the past 7 or 8 years. Currently has 98,000 miles. Has had it's share of minor fender benders but has has good care and maintenance otherwise. Bodywork always handled through insurance, repaired professionally. Recently (4 months ago?) had a botched repair job done by a quick lube / repair facility associated with a "respected" Ford dealer in town, replacement of a power steering line. Cost of over $800, then still issues with the installation and leaks. Had my usual mechanic look it over for my daughter, he found multiple issues with the repair but was able to take care of the problems. Last month left control arm replaced, full exhaust system replaced. Last week I had the car for the day, did an oil change (OEM filter, good quality oil, drain plug washer, air filter, cabin filter). Checked all fluids, car was running well. Full clean and vacuum. The Echo seemed to be in good shape. Ran like it usually does, noisy in the cabin, skittery like a tin can. Again, seemed fine. Got a call Friday from my daughter. "Car is making funny noises, maybe brakes?". I tried to get access to it over the weekend, finally was able to late this afternoon (Sunday). Car was in use the entire weekend. It's not the brakes. Placed in reverse or a drive selection the engine surges.Much more cabin noise than usual. Taken on the road there is noticeable noise from the transmission. Stopped on a hill, placed in neutral and left to coast up to about 30mph no noticeable grinding noises (rules out wheel bearings?). Checked fluids. Engine oil was at the level I left it last week, just a hair under top mark. Checked transmission, it was well below the bottom mark. As it was Sunday night and auto shops closed up I made a trip to Walmart and picked up a couple quarts of Castrol 06814 Transmax Import Multi-Vehicle Automatic Transmission Fluid. The selection was poor otherwise. The transmission took a full quart, and still under the top fill mark. I hesitated to bring it up fully thinking that running the additional fluid would creep up to the mark after running it for a couple of miles (getting it to temp). Ran the car up and down the street a few times, still noisy, but not as noisy as it was before the addition. A little less surging, but still noticeable. I won't be able to get back to the car until Tuesday (2 days from now), hopefully it will sit in her driveway until then. I'll be able to get under the car then and see the issue in daylight, try to find out why the transmission lost a quart so suddenly. So, my questions: What is the best ATF fluid to use if I decide to drain and replace? Any favorite brands besides the OEM Toyota? Should I replace transmission filters also? :EDIT: Found the manual in PDF on the Toyota site. It specs out "Toyota Genuine ATF Type T−IV (ATF JWS3309 or NWS6500)". 3.1 quarts. I'll call the parts dept tomorrow, get pricing. Also for the filter and gasket set. And do you think by the description of the problem we're looking at a transmission replacement? Again, it's under 100,000 miles, but I'm not sure if it would be worth sinking in that much money into the car ourselves. Might be better to pass it along to a new owner, with full disclosures of the needs of course. Sorry for the long post....I've been Googling the issue for a few hours now, haven't come up with what I'm looking for. Thanks for any and all help.