ECM/Transmission problem for 2001-2003 RAV4 - Page 53 - Toyota RAV4 Forums
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#521 (permalink) Old 03-25-2014, 08:49 PM
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Module Repair Pro

I started having the familiar transmission issue less than 2 weeks ago and my mechanic immediately suggested that it was an ECM problem, not the transmission. He ran some diagnostics and confirmed the issue. His suggestion was to replace the ECM with a remanufactured piece.

While the car was in the shop, I started searching and came across this thread. I'm a few miles from Module Repair Pro in Van Nuys, so I took my car over there this morning.

For $189 he repaired the ECM and did the removal and installation. Just got back from picking up the vehicle and it drives like a champ again! Thanks to Gino and especially to the posters on this thread for pointing me in the right direction.
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#522 (permalink) Old 03-26-2014, 01:01 PM
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Same issue as everyone else

Hi everyone,

Our Rav 4 started having transmission issues. On acceleration from stop, it would shift from 1 to 2, then with the accelerator still depressed, would downshift back into 1. When I lifted up on the pedal, it would shift to 3. We took it to the dealer and they said it "might" be the ECM but they wouldnt guarantee it. They wanted to charge us 1k to fix it. Here's a copy/paste from the estimate:

Task:
Observations: HARSH SHIFTING BETWEEN 2ND AND 3RD
AS PER TSB 0156-10 RECOMMEND REPLACEMENT OF ECM/PCM , AND RECHECK, VEHICLE MAY STILL NEED TRANSMISSION IF HARSH SHIFT IS STILL PRESENT.
Other $1,175.45


I immediately went to googling and found this thread. Last week I sent my ECM to the guys at Module Repair Pro and got it back on Monday. Installed it yesterday and drove it around in a stop-and-go pattern for about half an hour as they suggested.

All fixed! Works great! Thank you MRP!
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#523 (permalink) Old 04-25-2014, 09:51 AM
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Hi everybody,

I just purchased my FIRST ever vehicle this weekend! The 2002 Toyota Rav4
It has an automatic transmission with ~87,000 miles clocked on it. It was a one-owner vehicle that was taken care of and offered for a decent price at a dealership.

So I'm very happy with the look and feel of it, and I haven't noticed any signs at all of the harsh shifting issues mentioned here.

But I am still concerned about this ECM/Transmission issue. My question is: If I haven't noticed any of the signs yet (of harsh shifting), should I still send the ECM in to one of these places (like Module Repair Pros @ Van Nuys) for them to "fix" the ECM even if it doesn't appear to be broken yet?

Like I said, this is my first vehicle and I'm young and I don't have a lot of money, so my greatest fear would be having to drop a 4-digit sum on transmission issues shortly after the largest purchase of my life.

I guess I'm simply asking should I do this ECM repair right now as a preventive measure; or should I stop driving immediately at the first sign of any harsh shifting in the future and then send it in for their repair?

ANY advice/suggestions/comments would be sincerely appreciated.

All the best.
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#524 (permalink) Old 04-25-2014, 10:17 AM
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Congrats on your RAV4. My Mom has the same vehicle with only 63K miles. She had the module reflashed when she bought it from Toyota dealership as a "Certified" vehicle with 35K miles on it in 2007. The vehicle went less than 30 k miles before her module went out. It's such a common problem that it's probably worth just sending it in and having it "fixed" before it's broken and leaves you stranded somewhere.


I was aware of the potential problem years ago but Toyota insisted that the "reflash" would solve the problem and wouldn't do anything for us until it started to act up. They kept shuffling us down the road until it was out of warranty. Two years out of warranty with only 65K miles on it and the transmission started acting up. Toyota wouldn't do squat to help. They wanted $1500 to replace the module and "possibly" another $3500 to fix the transmission if it was damaged due to the bad ECM.


It's very noticeable when it starts to go bad. She was lucky as she just drives locally, no more than a 10-15 mile radius. If it had happened on a long trip it would be a problem. I say fix it now and have some piece of mind. It would also recommend having the transmission serviced (filter and fluid) if you don't know when it was done last. HTH c good


P.S. If possible I would Find out from original owner if ECM/ECU was already repaired/replaced though before sending it in.
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#525 (permalink) Old 04-25-2014, 11:46 AM
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Thank you for the response, c good.

Yeah, I was thinking of sending the ECM in for the "fix" even if nothing is messed up yet (I truly don't want to pay for a new transmission down the road).

I noticed on the Carfax that in 2008 the "Engine/powertrain computer/module [was] checked" I wonder if that was just the "reflash" which sounds like it isn't the silver bullet for this issue. I'll plan to do some investigation into what excatly that service was.

Just curious, has anybody on here sent in the ECM to get it "fixed" by one of these repair services, before it ever started harsh shifting? Would you suggest it?

Oh, and another thing. I think having the transmission servicing suggestion (filter and fluid) is a great idea... Within the next few months I'll be moving about 3,000 miles with all my stuff in the RAV4 so I would hate for the ECU to start screwing up on the trip because I guess I would have to literally stop driving it until the ECU fix because I wouldn't want to keep going and ruin the transmission lol
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#526 (permalink) Old 04-25-2014, 12:26 PM
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just another heads up on this vehicle. The emissions parameters were too strict on the original ecm programming. This can cause an engine light to come on that will suggest bad catalytic converters. If this happens, have the shop/tech look up the TSB on this problem. It is able to be solved by reflashing the ECU/ECM with the new parameters. DO NOT let them hose you by saying you need new catalytic converters unless they can prove it to you! This might be something to follow up on also to see if it was already done. HTH c good
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#527 (permalink) Old 04-28-2014, 07:27 AM
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Can I have a copy still having problems with my 05 rav
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#528 (permalink) Old 04-28-2014, 09:35 AM
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may i have a copy also
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#529 (permalink) Old 09-12-2014, 01:20 PM
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Let's bring this back to the top! Had the same slipping, rpm, high gear, CLUNK issues begin this past Sunday. Only drove around the block to return home, yank out the ECM, and send off to Sergei at Check Engine Etc. on Monday. Despite being on "overnight" delivery, it arrived on Wednesday. On Thursday I got it back and reinstalled it with absolutely no issues in operation. No clunk, high rpm, etc... Best spent $220 on this car ever.
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#530 (permalink) Old 09-13-2014, 07:15 PM
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Hi, update.... installed Sergei's ECM at 108000, now at 122000. no issues. Shifts great, idles like it should. I am a happy camper!

see ya
bill
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