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Toyota Camry ATF (Transmission Fluid) Flush / Exchange or Replacement (With Video)

Hardlymoving writes about do-it-yourself automobile maintenance on various makes and models.

When to Replace Your Automatic Transmission Fluid

The Toyota Maintenance Guide for the four-cylinder Camry 5SFE engine says to inspect the automatic transmission fluid (ATF) every 30,000 miles. It doesn't say when or whether to replace the fluid, but in general, mechanics recommend a simple "drain-and-fill" every 30,000 miles.

With most automatic transmissions, ATF operating at or below 175 degrees F should last close to 100,000 miles. But for every 20-degree increase in temperature, ATF fluid life is cut in half. Cars can reach temperatures of 210 degrees or more during towing or stop-and-go summer driving. Fully synthetic ATF can withstand approximately 225 degrees before thermal breakdown.

When ATF breaks down, it "cooks," or oxidizes, losing its detergent and lubricating properties. It turns from bright red to brown or black, and has a burnt smell. Oxidized ATF can cause buildup of varnish and sludge.

Draining and Replacing the ATF

An ATF drain-and-fill is similar to a motor oil change, except there is no paper filter element to replace, and not all the fluid is drained. There is an internal metal mesh filter within the transmission drain cover, but it does not have as fine a mesh as an oil filter, and rarely requires replacement. The drain plug is a 10-mm indented hex bolt requiring a hex socket. You add the new transmission fluid by removing the fluid level dipstick, and inserting a narrow-mouthed funnel into the dipstick tube.

Approximately 2.6 quarts of fluid can be drained from the transmission oil pan, and replaced via the dipstick. Considerable fluid will remain in the transmission's torque converter, the transmission oil lines, and the radiator. If the fluid is dark red and has not turned brown, it’s okay to mix old and new fluid without flushing. But if the fluid is brown or black, a complete flush of the system would be in order. This would require about four additional quarts of oil.

How Flushing the ATF Works

The purpose of a "flush" is to pump out as much as possible of the old oxidized ATF fluid out of the transmission and fluid lines. The engine's hydraulic pressure pumps new ATF through the system to push out an additional 4 quarts of trapped ATF.

Before doing a flush, perform a drain-and-fill and drive the car for a few days. The new fluid's detergent additives will dissolve harmful deposits from transmission components. Once these deposits are broken down and suspended in the fluid, a flush will remove them.

Even after doing a complete flush of an old, high-mileage Camry, you can expect the ATF to turn dark again within six months. At that time you can do a simple drain-and-fill or repeat the flush. The fluid should now stay red much longer.

Tools Needed

  • 10 mm Hex socket
  • Containers to catch used ATF, including one or more transparent or translucent containers, like milk jugs or empty ATF jugs
  • Long-tipped needle-nosed pliers
  • (Optional) Hose pliers
  • Funnel
  • New ATF (3 quarts for a drain-and-fill, 7 quarts for a flush)

Which Kind of ATF to Use

Synthetic ATF, such as Mobil or the new General Motors Dexron VI Synthetic Blend ATF, will extend the drain-and-fill interval beyond 30,000 miles and may extend the life of your transmission. 1990 to 2001 Camrys require Dexron III. The Dexron VI is backward compatible to Dexron III and will not harm your transmission.

Even though auto manufacturers want you to buy their own ATF, I have used other brands successfully in Toyotas, Volvos, and VWs. I have had the best success using a Universal Synthetic ATF made by Amalie Oil Corporation, which supplies WalMart under the SuperTech Brand. Also, Valvoline Full Synthetic ATF, compatible with Toyota Type IV ATF and Honda ZF, was selling at Walmart in Oct. 2013 for $16.40 a gallon, or a little over $4 a quart, whereas most auto retailers sell synthetic ATF for $8 - $10 a quart. A colleague who used to work for Valvoline told me they maintain a very high-quality control standard.

The below video provides a step-by-step procedure for performing a ATF flush on a 4-cylinder Toyota Camry:

The video below will show you how I performed a transmission fluid flush (or fluid exchange) assisted with a 12-volt portable electric oil pump powered by the car's battery on a Lexus ES300 (equivalent to the Toyota Camry V6). In my previous transmission fluid flush videos, I would pour the new ATF in the transmission via the transmission dipstick tube. Car manufacturers have decided to eliminate the dipstick with all their new model vehicles, so I had to find another way to get ATF fluid into these transmissions accurately and efficiently. So what I did on the ES300 can be performed on any vehicle that has a transmission fluid service port. On Toyota and Lexus vehicles, it's a 24-mm service bolt accessible through the driver's side fender splash guard.

I bought the 12-volt portable pump on Amazon.

I bought the hard plastic tubing from Home Depot.

I got the waste container from a dumpster behind a restaurant. The container used to hold vegetable oil.

1. Lift Front End to Access Drain Plug

Lift and support the front end safely so you can locate the drain plug for the ATF.

While you are under the car, you can look at a couple of other things:

  • Check for any fluid leaks where the CV axle meets the transmission. Signs of oil from this area may indicate a worn transmission axle shaft seal. If so, the axle will have to be pulled from the transmission, the seal pried out from the transmission, a new seal pressed in, and the axle shaft reinstalled.
  • A leak from the valve cover plug (on the right side of the engine) is likely a leak of engine oil, not a transmission leak.
  • Check the fluid level of the torque converter—although I've never encountered one that leaked.
Camry ATF Drain Plug

Camry ATF Drain Plug

2. Remove Drain Plug and Drain Out ATF; Replace Plug

Locate your 10 mm hex socket to remove the transmission drain plug.

Remove the drain plug and drain out the ATF into a ready container. Screw the drain plug back in when draining is complete.

Hex socket for removing drain plug

Hex socket for removing drain plug

Removing the Camry transmission pan drain plug

Removing the Camry transmission pan drain plug

Just Doing a Drain-and-Fill?

If you are just doing a drain-and-fill, and not a flush, skip to step 8 below, position your funnel as shown there, and add 2.6 quarts of new ATF. Replace the dipstick. You are done. Check your transmission fluid level again after your engine has run for a few minutes and has reached normal operating temperature.

3. To Flush the ATF: Remove the Hose Clamp on the ATF Return Line

If you are doing a flush, using an additional four quarts of ATF, you will want to drain the ATF from the torque converter. To do that, remove the hose clamp on the line that returns the ATF to the transmission from the radiator. Needle-nosed pliers make this easier.

Remove the hose clamp on the ATF return line to the Camry transmission

Remove the hose clamp on the ATF return line to the Camry transmission

Long-tipped needle-nosed pliers get a good grip on the hose clamp.

Long-tipped needle-nosed pliers get a good grip on the hose clamp.

4. Remove Return Hose

If you have hose pliers, you can use them to hold the hose. Twist the hose and push down.

Disconnecting the ATF return line hose with hose pliers

Disconnecting the ATF return line hose with hose pliers


5. Position Return Line Through Splash Pan

Run the ATF return line through the splash pan hole.

Run the ATF return line hose through the splash pan hole

Run the ATF return line hose through the splash pan hole

6. Feed Return Line Into Empty Container

Put the end of the return line hose into an empty 5-quart container, to receive ATF that will be pumped out of the torque converter.

Put the end of the hose into an empty container.

Put the end of the hose into an empty container.

7. Place Funnel in Dipstick Tube

Put an appropriate size funnel into the dipstick tube, and add 3.6 quarts of new ATF (for a flush; just 2.6 quarts for a drain-and-fill).


8. Pump Out Two Quarts of Old ATF

Start the car and observe the ATF being pumped into the container at the end of the disconnected return line. Stop the engine when the 2-quart mark has been reached.

9. Add Another Two Quarts of New ATF

Add another two quarts of ATF through the transmission dipstick tube.

10. Pump Out Another Two Quarts

Start the car again and observe the ATF oil being pumped into the container. Stop the engine when the container is at the 4-quart mark.

11. Add One More Quart

Add one last quart of ATF, to leave 2.6 quarts total in your transmission oil pan. Replace dipstick.

12. Replace Return Line

Reconnect the ATF return line to your transmission and secure the hose clamp.

13. Check Fluid Level

Start your car and let it reach its normal operating temperature. While the engine is running, check the ATF fluid level with the dipstick. Add more oil if not at the high mark.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

Questions & Answers

Question: My car is a 06 Toyota Camry with 2129k miles on it. It’s really sluggish now. Do you think a transmission flush will help, or do I need a new or rebuilt transmission?

Answer: When you said sluggish, do you mean the engine power or transmission shifting? That may affect the solution. It doesn't hurt to do a "drain and fill" Vs a flush of the transmission fluid with synthetic ATF.

Question: I have Toyota Camry 2012 with 138 km and no change with the trans oil. The transmission is now shifting poorly and is shaking. If I change the trans oil, will it help?

Answer: I believe so, yes. The first thing I do with spotty transmission shifts is to change the fluid.

Question: My car is Camry 2009 XLE v6 3.5 and my transmission is slipping on the first or second gear, would you guys recommend to change the transmission fluid because I just bought the car and I don't know when the last time he changed the transmission fluid, and what transmission fluid should I use synthetic or which number, I'm living in a hot country (Dubai)?

Answer: A trans oil change (a drain and fill only) might help with the slippage problem. If it gets better, wait a few thousand miles before doing another drain and fill.

Question: How does the fluid get pumped out of the return line from the radiator? Shouldn't one disconnect the line going TO the radiator? And how can I tell which hose is which?

Answer: A little left over fluid won't matter much. To tell supply from return hose ... trial and error.

Question: What is the transmission fluid should I use, synthetic or which number on my 2009 camry xle v6?

Answer: I like the Valvoline Synthetic ATF. Compatible with most cars.

Question: I have Camry 2016 having 159000 miles on it, mostly highway miles. Now, I feel the transmission shatter at a speed of 30-40 miles, Do I need to change the ATF in my Camry? Will changing the ATF help out to fix the shatter?

Answer: I would think that it would. Do a transmission drain and fill for the next 3 engine oil changes. Each drain and fill will only amount to about 3.5 qtrs of ATF fluid. The new ATF fluid will mix with the old fluid helping to dilute the old fluid. By the 3rd change, the fluid should appear red and little of the clutch sediment would remain suspended in the oil.

Question: I have a 2006 Corolla. Transmission colling lines rusted and I lost fluid. Replaced lines and added 3 quarts of fluid as manual suggests and car did not go at all, engine just revved. I added 2 more quarts and the car would go into gear and drive for a short distance, then would slow down to a stop while the engine still ran. I would turn off the car, start it back up and the car would go but after a short distance, it would do the same thing. Why is my Corolla stopping suddenly?

Answer: If you continued driving the car with low ATF before noticing the oil leak, the transmission internals may have been damaged. Recommend you bring your car to a professional transmission shop to get an assessment.

Question: My car is a 2008 Toyota Camry with 4 cylinders. How many liters of ATF do I need for a Toyota Camry?

Answer: I'm guessing the total capacity is around 8 quarts. If you're doing a simple drain and fill, around 3.5 quarts.

Question: You don't know for sure if the new fluid added via dipstick hole isn't getting pushed through the hoses and out to your bucket before it goes thru the torque convertor, right? Wouldn't it be better to have a bucket of new fluid getting sucked into the place where you disconnected in order to put in the discard bucket? In this way are you sure you are putting/taking in the same part of the 'loop'?

Answer: New fluid introduced via the dip stick goes into the oil pan; than the oil gets sucked up and pushed through the torque converter mixing with the oil fluid getting pushed out. The new fluid will eventually replace the old. This is called a fluid exchange.

Question: I have a 2012 Toyota Sienna with 75k miles. It doesn't have a dipstick, it has drain bolt with ATF fluid level Plastic tube and a fill bolt. As I have 75k miles on it, I drained and filled it with Toyota O.E ws ATF . Its 7.5 qtz capacity of ATF. How do I do the flush it with a pump?

Answer: View the video "Pump-Assisted Transmission Fluid Flush (or Exchange) on a Lexus ES300" within this article. For the Sienna, in lieu inserting the 12v electric pump fill tube into the transmission dip stick tube which you don't have, place the tube into the side service port (fill bolt hole). The remaining procedure for doing the fluid exchange is the same. You'll have to remove the air intake leading to your air filter box to get access to the ATF return line.

Question: How many quarts of transmission fluid does a Camry transmission need to be full?

Answer: It depends on whether the V6 or I4 engine. Better to drain and measure the amount in a used container. Let the engine get to normal operating temp, then check the dipstick fluid level.

© 2010 hardlymoving


hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on April 03, 2020:


Suggest you bring your car to a professional transmission shop for diagnosis instead of trying to figure what the problem is yourself.

Thomas Joseph Wood on April 02, 2020:

Because my 2006 Corolla ran without any problems before the cooling lines were replaced when I noticed the transmission leak under the car, could it be an electrical problem or a shift solenoid problem. Seems odd that the car will go into gear when it starts up and drives a distance before it begins to slow down and come to a stop with the engine running and then when car is shut off and then restarts it kicks into gear and then goes again.

Shaggy on November 22, 2019:

Thanks bro

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on October 26, 2019:

Can't say off the top of my head. Take a sample piece and see if it fits.

ES on October 25, 2019:


My question is this: exactly what size tubing did you use for changing the transmission fluid? I've seen the following sizes for sale:

3/8" ID 1/2" OD

1/4” ID x 3/8” OD

Giles on October 10, 2019:

Please help, I have 2013 Camry 285k and have done 2nd filter and pan change on sealed gearbox and done a flush. Car does not seem right. Is the system pressurized? any thoughts much appreciated. The oil comes out of the straw so I know it has enough but when I take off in the morning it takes a few minutes for the torque convertor to wake up. High revving then kicks in and we are ok for the day. Thank you from Australia

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on February 24, 2019:

Mazini - here's the article with videos:


hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on February 24, 2019:

Mazini - oil leak from up top on the driver's side would occur with a bad valve cover gasket. Here's the video:


Mazini on February 24, 2019:

Now I understand ... thank you very much the attention ... and just one more question, the leak in this seal is it possible to spill oil up the top of the engine on the driver's side (left)? Would not oil leak just down?

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on February 24, 2019:

Here's a video on what I'm talking about on a different car:


Mazini on February 24, 2019:

I did not understand. Can you indicate which part number of the part needs to be replaced? please...

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on February 24, 2019:

The inner CV axle shaft seal (where it meets the transmission) is probably the source of your leak and needs to be replaced. Replacement requires the axle to first be removed.

Mazini on February 23, 2019:

Hello, I have a Toyota Camry V6 2010, it's been 7 months since I made the ATF replacement at the Toyota dealership ... Now the automatic transmission is showing an oil leak through the sigh of the transmission box ... it sneezes oil everywhere right of the engine ... I thought that they could have put ATF in excess, but it is already the second trip that leaks ... when you walk at higher speeds the transmission presents the leak ... what is the problem that can be this leaking through the sigh of the transmission? How to solve the problem of this leak?

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on January 13, 2019:

That could be the source of your problem.

Andrew Elam on January 13, 2019:

Only code computer is giving is P0500 speed sensor. But that would just prevent my speedometer from functioning not prevent my transmission from operating right?

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on January 12, 2019:

Can't really help without being there to see. I'd recheck all mechanical, electrical and vacuum connections. I'd also go to the salvage yard and compare if any differences. I'd bet it something electrical ... shift solenoid valve SL, solenoid valve 2, park/neutral position switch, speed sensor, clutch speed sensor, ATF temp sensor, throttle position sensor and I'd assume your MIL has no codes.

Andrew Elam on January 12, 2019:

Shifter shifts through all the gears. Safety neutral switch changes throughout all the gears. It is just that the transmission refuses to engage into 1st, 2nd, 3rd, or reverse. It does go into park and into neutral.

Andrew Elam on January 12, 2019:

I did not replace my transmission, just the engine. Linkage works perfect. After putting everything back in the car I did put in two quarts of fluid. Checked and it was way overfilled. Draned out about two quarts then put one in and it says that it is still overfilled.

Is it possible that because it gets filled the same location that it gets checked that the dipstick just looks like it is overfilled when it actually is underfilled?

If so then that would totally explain why my transmission is not engaging.

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on January 12, 2019:

So the car shifter engages into forward, reverse and neutral? There's transmission fluid in the trans?

Andrew Elam on January 12, 2019:

Yeah, everything is hooked back up. I just don't understand why it is not working.

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on January 10, 2019:

I assume you replaced the transmission? Did you check all your shift linkage cables?

Andrew Elam on January 10, 2019:

Hi, I have a 97 Camry that I just replaced the engine in. Engine runs but transmission does not engage. I don't know what to do. It worked fine before I removed my old engine.

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on December 07, 2018:


Too general a question to answer without examining the car. Could be tire pressure, bent wheel, out of round tires, out of balance tires, bent CV axle ....etc.

dato on December 07, 2018:

hello , my cars has 50 000 mils and When driving, sometimes it starts vibration, but not every time, , what is reason ? is it oil problem ?

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on October 31, 2018:

Not all ... but very similar.

Steven on October 31, 2018:

Is for all toyota vehicles?

2009 camry on July 31, 2018:


hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on July 05, 2018:


Funny you should mention that. Been using it for the last several years. Works really well and the customers have notice smoother shifting between gears.

Kaijuo on July 05, 2018:

Valvoline Maxlife full synthetic is now Toyota approved and is the right formula for the transmission. FWIW

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on May 03, 2018:

Some Dude,

Yes ... as long as there's fluid in the transmission and the transmission is in park.

Some Dude on May 03, 2018:

So, is it safe to turn on the engine when the front is still on the jack?

Just wondering

frank wood on May 02, 2018:

good instruction

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on January 05, 2018:


Recommend you do a "drain and fill" at each engine oil change until the fluid starts to appear red. That way, you are gradually allowing the residue build up (varnish on the clutch packs) to disappate into the transmission fluid. You should notice a gradual improvement in the gear shifts.

donald on January 05, 2018:

very good explanation, y should be an instructor. thank you very much.

jul on December 29, 2017:

I have 99 camry v6 and I do not know when the ATF was last changed by the previous owner, but it looks black. When I bought it last year, my mechanic said NOT to flush the ATF because it will wear out the transmission faster if it is NO LONGER maintained with ATF changes. He mentioned that the residue build up will be washed away with the new ATF change causing the gears to malfunction. A week ago, I noticed a 2-second delay after I move my gear from Park to Drive.

Question- should I flush my ATF? Or just put Lucas Transmission Fix. Thank you

azaria on December 09, 2017:

you gave me good advices tank you v. m. azaria

rene alavarez on November 02, 2017:

I have a Toyota camry 2001 ,I have a dtc code P0755 would a transmission replacement fix the issue?

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on September 25, 2017:


It's in your owner's manual.

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on August 31, 2017:


Sounds like your leak is from a worn or hardened oil seal or oil pan gasket. Rubber seals and gaskets expand with heat and shrink when chilled. Also, when they harden with age, they lose their sealing properties. Could be the tran. oil pan, cv axle or trans. main seal.

richard on August 30, 2017:

my 03 camry v6 when it's hot there's no problem, don't leak, but when it's cold, it leaks trany fluid splash all over underneath, what's the problem?

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on August 27, 2017:


There is no filter. Just a screen. Never found a need to replace it.

Erik on August 27, 2017:

Thank you for this details info!

What about the filter?

should I change it before or after the flush?

Robert Berlin on August 26, 2017:

Amsoil Synthetic Transmission Fluid is also a great choice for the Toyota Camry, especially those with high miles on them. The cleaning capability of Amsoil is really tops.


hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on August 19, 2017:


Did the problem occur AFTER you did the transmission fluid change? If not, you have a pre-existing condition. Could be the switch on you brake pedal that allows shifting of your transmission stick.

Kwarteng Kwame on August 18, 2017:

I have done all the processes above but my transmission can not move to drive. It reverse alright but can't go forward. Please help me.

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on June 14, 2017:


Its probably a hex bolt on the new models. You can buy a hex bolt sockets at most tool stores.

Bill on June 14, 2017:

There is a tool fro the transmissions with out dip sticks I here.Do you know what it is? for 2012 Camrys

kenneth on April 11, 2017:

hello, I was not able to find the Universal Synthetic ATF at walmart for my 1998 2.2L v4 camry. I did however find synthetic supertech multi-vehicle automatic transmission fluid is the shame thing? and if so is this what you would recommend? I think warren distribution makes it. thanks

W. Brooks on April 10, 2017:

I have used Valvoline Max Life ATF on my 1999 Camry for some 16 years and 420,000 miles with no probs. what- so- ever. I do a drain and fill ever 20,000 miles.

Josh on March 23, 2017:

Thanks. Very helpful.

Mohammad shahid on March 20, 2017:

Wonderfull information thank u so much good man

Bill on March 17, 2017:

Yes, but how much quantity of oil will it need to change a Camry 2009

Joe on March 13, 2017:

I have one more question:

How do you know that the oil is at normal operating temperature before checking the dipstick? Do you recommend using OBDII scan tool?


Joe on March 12, 2017:

Thanks a lot for the detailed info. I have some questions for you:

1-How do you know the return line on Camry 2007 or Highlander 2011?

2-You first drained from the drain plug and put same amount as fresh oil from the funnel?

3-As I understand for flush, you drain 2 qts then add new 2 qts. At the end you drained 2 qts and add 1 qt only? why you did not add the same 2 qts you drain?

Please clarify


a.codfish.from.poland on March 08, 2017:

Thanks for this article. It became very useful for me today. Great job

Ed on January 28, 2017:


Axel Addict.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I’ve heard that Toyota Motor Corp. no longer manufactured the original OEM automatic transmission fluid for use in 2000 Toyota Camrys and that using any aftermarket automatic transmission fluid/filter to replace the used fluid in one will only last approximately 20,000 miles after the transmission fluid/filter change, before the transmission will need to be rebuilt?

Is that actually true or is there an aftermarket atf fluid that will successfully correct leaving any former contaminants that were inside the transmission and remove them permanently? Even Aamco Transmissions agreed that the latter was true and advised not to change the transmission fluid/filter until I had to. Also will adding an aftermarket transmission oil cooler add any significant time/use of the transmission to help lengthen the automatic transmission life?

If you can successfully help me to answer this crucial transmission maintenance question, it will be greatly appreciated. Thank you.


hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on January 16, 2017:


I doubt a fluid change will fix it. Won't hurt to try. Recommend you go to a transmission shop for professional opinion.

XLE95 on January 16, 2017:

Do you know if a fluid change or flush will help cure the blinking O/D light? The transmission shifts into gear hard, but then shifts smooth after underway.

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on January 16, 2017:


It's the other hose.

David on January 15, 2017:

I put new trans in my 93 camry 4cyl and it's not pumping oil out when i remove the right return hose to flush the trans. Do i need to prim torque converter if so how? Thank you

Frank on December 07, 2016:

So I found this article and proceeded to drop the tranny fluid along with oil change. Out the plugs back in and began my search for tranny fluid dipstick...looked and looked... Crap, can't find one! So I discoveredwjats already been mentioned..the new cars have sealed frigging transmissions!! I began my search for the filler plug but couldn't identify one positively. Long story short, I was lucky I drained the tranny fluid into a separatepan so I could measure the exact amount that came out... I removed the air filter housing to get a better viewbof the tranny and noticed some aluminum looking threaded plugs that had allen head fitting. I removed one and was hapoy to see fluid residue in its hole. I inserteda small funnel and very slowly poured in 66oz of new fluid at a rate of about 10 mins per quart. I was working on a 2012 Camry SE 2.5 L. On YouTube I found a video explaining the difficulty of correctly topping off the tranny with fluid. It has to be at a certain temperature, 108 I think, which is below operating temp. So you need to read temperature accurately and you also need special tools to refill through drainplug. What a clusterfuck.... From here on out I'll just have to pay the fuckers, IMHO, very 75K miles or so. I have a few pics I took but can't upload

Oluwatola Kolawole on December 07, 2016:

i am highly impressed with this piece of information, it is timely and instructive, i used Camry 1997 model what appropriate ATF i should use. Thank you.

Dee on November 16, 2016:

What you think it is, if drain tranny flashed it n I could drive it about a block n it designate gear.

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on November 01, 2016:


Let your engine and transmission warm up before getting heavy on the gas peddle. Everything will last longer.

Jo-Ann R. Jarvis on October 31, 2016:

I have a 2004 CamryLE... and Im at the mercy of mechanics... My Dad was one parttime... This was interesting, I'm hard on my transmission taking off too fast... I'm going to have my mechanic take a look at my car now because lite keeps blinking...

I was thinking for all your great advice...you should get tips$$$

just thinking...


MoreCowbell on October 07, 2016:

Excellent write-up. Thanks!

Eric on October 03, 2016:

Hey so I gave my car its first flush at 303k miles after doing a drain and fill at 294k, 298k, and another one at 302k.

So far so good! Thanks for the great article!

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on September 09, 2016:

Too all,

Sorry for not responding to your transmission fluid inquiries going back for the last 6 months. Just recently got notification from hubpages of pending messages on this article.

dev on September 09, 2016:

thank you so much . I did it myself

Baby Bear on July 24, 2016:

Not trying to purposely sound ignorant but does the Walmart atf function as well in a hybrid or does it call for an entirely different type of oil?

(2007 Camry Hybrid)

Thanks in advance

Don on July 24, 2016:

Not trying to purposely sound ignorant but does the Walmart atf function as well in a hybrid or does it call for an entirely different type of oil?

(2007 Camry Hybrid)

Thanks in advance

khaled on July 20, 2016:

AWESOME INFO....thank u Sir...


Henry on July 17, 2016:

Hi Hardlymoving,

I find your articles very informative and detailed, especially for a Camry or Avalon owner like me. Thank you and keep up the good works.

I own a 1995 Avalon XL and am planning to change the transmission oil pan gasket (seeing some wetness around the seal), transmission oil filter/screen (may as well do it with the oil pan removed), flush the transmission and differential fluid, and change the transmission seals (maybe the wetness is from a seepage leak of a transmission seal) at the same time. Since I need to remove the drive shafts for replacing the transmission seals, I may as well replace the CV boots as there are stress cracks on them but no break/tears yet.

Sorry I digress a little but my questions are:

1. I flushed the transmission fluid with Castro Import Multi-vehicle ATF 2 years ago when I first obtained this vehicle from a friend. I plan to replace the ATF with Valvoline MaxLife High Mileage Mult-vehicle ATF this time as I heard good things about it. Do you know if this ATF is a synthetic oil?

2. Your article recommends doing a drain-and-fill first and driving the car for a few days before flushing. Are these two types of ATF compatible such that I can mix and use the vehicle for a few days before a flush is done?


nicnok on July 10, 2016:

AWESOME INFO....thank you Sir...

Ekpeowo on July 08, 2016:

Hi Hardlymoving.

I bought a 2003 camry with 125000 miles on it,I had the engine oil and transmission oil change,but my mechanic recommended dexron III but after coming across this post I consulted my user manual and discovered its supposed to used toyota TIV atf. what should I do right now,a drain or a flush to get rid of the dexron III.

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on July 02, 2016:


All of you questions can be answered in you owner's manual maintenance section.

Olayinka Oresanya on July 01, 2016:

Hi, I use a camry 2010 and at 140k mileage. I have 4 questions.

1. what transmission fluid type should I be using?

2. When do I need change my brake fluid?

3. Do I need to change my engine oil every 6months or until the 7000miles is reach; bear in mind that I usually dont reach that mileage until 9-11months because I have more than I car.

4. I used oando SAE 5W 40 for my engine oil but resently saw on the engine SAE 0W 20 is recommended. should I change or continue with the oando oil am using?

please reply

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on June 21, 2016:


Your decision. Toyota transmission are tough, even when the fluid changes dark. I prefer to do a flush to keep the color of my fluid bright red.

Eric on June 20, 2016:

Hey so I have a 1998 Camry LE V6 with 300,000 miles now. I did a drain and fill at at 294k and 297k. It still shifts really well so would I be in good shape to do a flush?

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on June 12, 2016:


Today's auto manufacturers are sealing their transmissions to prevent people from messing with the fluid level. The manufacturers believe the fluid will last forever or the life of the car which I do not agree.

There's suppose to be a side plug on the transmission from which new fluid can be pumped into the transmission.

Unless your car has over 100k miles, I wouldn't mess with changing the fluid.

James on June 11, 2016:


I have 2013 Camry SE. I can't find a dip stick for Transmission oil. There is no mention about transmission oil.

What's your recommendation for transmission engine oil change?


hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on May 22, 2016:


If you didn't use Toyota Type 4 approved ATF, I would change the fluid again. Valvoline synthetic ATF with Type 4 approved and can be purchased by the gallon at Walmart for around $17.

Dropping the pan will expose a screen ... it's really not a filter unless Toyota's design has changed. I never dropped the pan to change the screen.

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on April 29, 2016:


With other cars I've worked on its trial and error. I just place the hoses in separate containers, start the car for a moment and see which container has fluid.

kevin on April 28, 2016:

very help full instruction, thank you, but still I have question: how I can find out which of those two hoses, is the return line? I have 2009 camry.

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on December 29, 2015:


Don't know but it's in your owner's manual

fadal on December 27, 2015:

how many liters of transmission fluid can go in to Toyota Camry 2012 model

R.V. on December 05, 2015:

Thank you for the instructions. I Just finished doing the atf fluid change on my 2003 Camry and it was a snap. I would had never thought it would be so easy. Thanks for that! Smooth ride!


pehoffer on November 21, 2015:

Just did a filter and flush on a 95 camry I bought. Thanks for the pictures. They made it a lot easier.

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on September 29, 2015:


The most convenient available syn ATF for the price is ValvolineSynthetic ATF, 1 gallon at Walmart.

Abohagar on September 29, 2015:

So, what is the best ATF for toyota camry 2007 LE.

Plese ASAP.


hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on September 04, 2015:


There is no dipstick because it is a hidden cap, has to be access through the bottom of the car and the new oil pumped in.

David on September 04, 2015:

I would like to know on where to replace toyota camry 2011 transmission fluid change(put new ATF WS) back in Transmission? Thank you

David on September 04, 2015:

I would like to know on where to replace toyota camry 2011 transmission fluid change(put new ATF WS) back in Transmission? Thank you

xtorro on July 29, 2015:

Thanks the pictures are real helpful. Thought that one was the engine oil drain plug... almost screwed up an oil change ︿( ̄︶ ̄)︿

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on May 21, 2015:


I'd get it from the dealer on the assumption it not that expensive of a part. The "gasket" looks like a big washer.

Ryan on May 20, 2015:


I was curious, is there a gasket to replace on the ATF drain plug? I recently changed my engine oil and I was told by the Toyota dealer that it was a good idea to replace the gasket on the engine oil drain plug. I assume the same holds true for the ATF drain plug? Is there even a gasket on the ATF drain plug?

Also, if there is a gasket on the ATF drain plug, would it be wise to get a replacement from the dealer or any ole' parts store?


hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on March 18, 2015:


Currently recommend a gallon of Valvoline Synthetic ATF sold at Walmart for around $16.50

Aliyu Alkali on March 17, 2015:

Please what type of Automatic transmission fluid can I use for my Toyota Camry 2000 model.

hardlymoving (author) from Memphis, TN on December 30, 2014:

Liam Le

Sorry. Haven't had the opportunity to due a fluid change on a late model 2012 Camry. I believe there's no dipstick because the manufacturer does not want you to change the fluid ... ever. I've seen other cars with the same setup with many European cars. If you ask the dealer, their typical response is 'it's a fill for life'. My question is life of the car or the transmission? Seen a lot of transmission failures with these cars having over 100k miles. Perhaps now the manufacturers are using synthetic transmission fluid.

Liam Le on December 24, 2014:

Thank you, hardlymoving. Can you show me how to replace WS ATF fluid on Camry 2012-2014? It doesn't has a dipstick and the drain, fill plug are located in a different location. So, I hope you can make another topic about changing ATF fluid of 2012.

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