Transmission fluid drain and refill vs. flush on 2000 Toyota Echo

Have not had transmission fluid changed since buying the car. The car now has 90,000 miles on it. Mechanic says the oil is brown (somewhat dirty) but not black. I've heard that a flush could be dangerous to the transmission when the oil is dark, but that a regular drain and refill will still leave a lot of the old tranny fluid in the transmission since the drain and refill does not get all of the old fluid out. What to do? Get flush or just drain and refill?

by in San Diego, CA on March 07, 2012
2 answers 4 comments
ANSWER by on March 07, 2012
The first question would be, do you have any shifting problems with the vehicle? A flush is much better than a traditional filter pan change. If you have any issuses with the trans I would do the filter and pan drop. BUT, I would drop the trans pan in a very clean light colored drain pan and expect to replace the trans. Then I would inspect the fluid for clutch material and metal particles. If you have a lot of debris in the drain pan then return the old fluid back into the trans. Again this is if you have any issues with the way the trans works. If you don't follow this advice you might be driving to the shop and towing it away.
COMMENT by on March 07, 2012
Thanks very much. Not sure I understood everything you said. I think what you meant is that if I have any probs presently with the transmission I should check my trans fluid by dropping the pan and looking for debris that might wreak the transmission if I were to flush it. If there's any kind of detrimental debris I should not flush and I should not even bother to drain and refill-- is that what you mean? (I have an automatic, so no clutch to worry about). I have not noticed any problems with the transmission, so this might be a sign I should go ahead with the flush is what you mean? I would not be the one to drop the pan and check the fluid-- I'd ask my mechanic to do that and I'm not sure he would take the time. I think he'd just recommend either a flush or just a drain and refill. That's what's been recommended in the past. My gut tells me to not to bother to change the transmission fluid at all because it's too late at 90,000 miles: the drain and refill would do virtually nothing at this point and the flush might destroy the transmission. Is this a logical conclusion?
COMMENT by on March 08, 2012
Echome, you say you don't have any issues with the trans. Then do a flush. A flush will not trash the trans. I have done thousands of trans flushes. I would not take to any shop that doesn't use B&G products. If your mechanic doesn't use a B&G trans flush kit go to this website to find a shop that does.
COMMENT by on March 08, 2012
Echome, you say you don't have any issues with the trans. Then do a flush. A flush will not trash the trans. I have done thousands of trans flushes. I would not take to any shop that doesn't use B&G products. If your mechanic doesn't use a B&G trans flush kit go to this website to find a shop that does. www.bgfindashop.com
COMMENT by on March 08, 2012
Roger that, Parts Guy. Thanks again!
ANSWER by on April 30, 2015
I have a 2000 Toyota landcruiser with 167,000.00 miles, manual, v8. I maintain it regularly. I don't have a problem with my car ,just a maintenance question or issue. I was told I need to have the transmission flush service, I called Toyota Coosbay and they say, It does not need flushing but just drain and refill. Is this true? Please let me know what I need done to maintain a good running car, which so far, is in good shaped. Thank you and God bless. Abby