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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys,

Been noticing since the weather has gotten colder here in Vancouver, BC. I normally wait for the car to warm up a bit before going (till the bar goes up at least once) but I have noticed during acceleration right after that (this only happens on the first drive of the day, never any time else) the transmission or something feels like it slips for a second and the car jerks even though I am not accelerating hard (this is going about 15km) and I am already rolling, not from a stop.

Anyone else had this issue?
 

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Oh yeah.... that's how my problems started. Noticed a little jerk, then it accelerated into a hard shift problem within a day or two. Letting it warm up a bit helped, at first. Then not so much. What year of RAV do you have? Humm, I see you are in the category of 2013's or newer? So, I have a 2003 with known ecu/tranny problems that cause a hard shift between 2nd and 3rd gears. I got my ecu repaired and it runs like a champ now. As per another thread, not thinking the 2013+ have any reported ecu problems...... but, have read a few others are having the same problem as you. I'm beginning to wonder if newer owners will experience ecu problems also, but that these problems just might be starting to happen or a larger number of people haven't reported it yet? If I were you, I might keep a problem with the ecu in the back of my mind. There are places that repair them for cheap as compared to a new ecu. I would assume you would be covered by a recall though? Anyway... my tranny place told me my tranny needed to be replaced. That was BS. I sent my ecu to a place called Circuit Board Medics. Awesome company!
Maybe just keep that in the back of your mind.
Hope it's not a for real tranny problem, or someone else can offer another explanation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Oh yeah.... that's how my problems started. Noticed a little jerk, then it accelerated into a hard shift problem within a day or two. Letting it warm up a bit helped, at first. Then not so much. What year of RAV do you have? Humm, I see you are in the category of 2013's or newer? So, I have a 2003 with known ecu/tranny problems that cause a hard shift between 2nd and 3rd gears. I got my ecu repaired and it runs like a champ now. As per another thread, not thinking the 2013+ have any reported ecu problems...... but, have read a few others are having the same problem as you. I'm beginning to wonder if newer owners will experience ecu problems also, but that these problems just might be starting to happen or a larger number of people haven't reported it yet? If I were you, I might keep a problem with the ecu in the back of my mind. There are places that repair them for cheap as compared to a new ecu. I would assume you would be covered by a recall though? Anyway... my tranny place told me my tranny needed to be replaced. That was BS. I sent my ecu to a place called Circuit Board Medics. Awesome company!
Maybe just keep that in the back of your mind.
Hope it's not a for real tranny problem, or someone else can offer another explanation.
I have a 2014 RAV4 LE AWD
 

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Are you sure you're not confusing it with the ABS check that happens at 8 mph (13 km/h) or (if your car is AWD) with the AWD test that happens at 20 mph (32 km/h)?

All cars equipped with ABS do a self-test at exactly 8 mph (13 km/h) when started for the first time after the engine has been turned off. The computer will apply the brakes for a fraction of a second and the wheel speed sensor check if the ABS system works. Depending to the car, it may be barely noticeable or somewhat pronounced.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Are you sure you're not confusing it with the ABS check that happens at 8 mph (13 km/h) or (if your car is AWD) with the AWD test that happens at 20 mph (32 km/h)?

All cars equipped with ABS do a self-test at exactly 8 mph (13 km/h) when started for the first time after the engine has been turned off. The computer will apply the brakes for a fraction of a second and the wheel speed sensor check if the ABS system works. Depending to the car, it may be barely noticeable or somewhat pronounced.
Never happened before, never felt this before. So I am unsure.. Owned it for two years almost, never had this happen till now. Would nay ABS light or something come on to signal the test?
 

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Never happened before, never felt this before. So I am unsure.. Owned it for two years almost, never had this happen till now. Would nay ABS light or something come on to signal the test?
Maybe you never paid attention. Here is how you can check it.
- Stop the car.
- Turn the engine off, remove the key from ignition and wait a couple of minutes.
- Turn the engine on, put the car in Drive and slowly start accelerating (with radio off and windows up so you can hear things clearly).
- Watch the speedo and see if the "click" you hear happens somewhere between 8 and 12 mph.
- Stop the car but keep the engine running and in Drive.
- Start accelerating again. You should NOT hear the "click" again.

If the "click" happens only the first time and does not repeat, it's the ABS check. If you have another car with ABS, you can repeat the test, and you will hear it as well. All cars with ABS do it, it's part of the standard self-test protocol.

There will be no other indication (light, etc.). In the past they used to describe the test in the Owner's Manual, but since ABS has been standard equipment in all cars since at least 10 years, manufacturers assume that it's common knowledge.
 

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That is some very nice information katekebo! Hope this is what it is.
It will be interesting to hear what they find out after performing the steps you gave.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Maybe you never paid attention. Here is how you can check it.
- Stop the car.
- Turn the engine off, remove the key from ignition and wait a couple of minutes.
- Turn the engine on, put the car in Drive and slowly start accelerating (with radio off and windows up so you can hear things clearly).
- Watch the speedo and see if the "click" you hear happens somewhere between 8 and 12 mph.
- Stop the car but keep the engine running and in Drive.
- Start accelerating again. You should NOT hear the "click" again.

If the "click" happens only the first time and does not repeat, it's the ABS check. If you have another car with ABS, you can repeat the test, and you will hear it as well. All cars with ABS do it, it's part of the standard self-test protocol.

There will be no other indication (light, etc.). In the past they used to describe the test in the Owner's Manual, but since ABS has been standard equipment in all cars since at least 10 years, manufacturers assume that it's common knowledge.
So I did as you described, but that was way quieter and smoother than what I was experiencing earlier. However, oddly it hasn't done the jerky clunk recently.
 

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hi kehfun:

this what happens, all the time if I forget something. if this is what you experienced, they said this is normal on our RAV4, toyota I may say. hopefully on other car make too.

start cold (depends how cold), lets say -25C, RPM is way up there, it may kick up to 1500 slowly down to 1200, then slowly goes down to 1100, 1000, 900, 850, 800, you know what im talking about, self-revving or computer dictates that it needs to start with high RPM, you can see you
tachometer doing it.

NOW, if you shifted down to R, N then D and let go of you brake on that peak of 1500-1100RPM for example, you may experience a slip/jerk feeling on the transmission, simply because of the high RPM. make sense eh? awesome invention of a tachometer. what they are saying is, we are asking the ENGINE to run at 1500-1100 on first gear. of course, the engine will give you that request, to avoid this, you need to press and hold the brake
pedal and slowly release it, so it will not jerk/slip (feeling).

NOW, another scenario, start cold still, -25C, you have waited to at least RPM goes down to 750 idle and/or acceptable system operating temperature is reached, we should not be experiencing this slip/jerk feeling else something is wrong.

thats what i remember, :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
hi kehfun:

this what happens, all the time if I forget something. if this is what you experienced, they said this is normal on our RAV4, toyota I may say. hopefully on other car make too.

start cold (depends how cold), lets say -25C, RPM is way up there, it may kick up to 1500 slowly down to 1200, then slowly goes down to 1100, 1000, 900, 850, 800, you know what im talking about, self-revving or computer dictates that it needs to start with high RPM, you can see you
tachometer doing it.

NOW, if you shifted down to R, N then D and let go of you brake on that peak of 1500-1100RPM for example, you may experience a slip/jerk feeling on the transmission, simply because of the high RPM. make sense eh? awesome invention of a tachometer. what they are saying is, we are asking the ENGINE to run at 1500-1100 on first gear. of course, the engine will give you that request, to avoid this, you need to press and hold the brake
pedal and slowly release it, so it will not jerk/slip (feeling).

NOW, another scenario, start cold still, -25C, you have waited to at least RPM goes down to 750 idle and/or acceptable system operating temperature is reached, we should not be experiencing this slip/jerk feeling else something is wrong.

thats what i remember, :)
I wait for the engine to go up one bar on the thermometer before I move. The shift from P to D is smooth. The jerk occurs while I am rolling.
 

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Thanks for clearing that up. You need to see the dealer and report it. They may have a TSB for it.
 

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i have a 2014 Rav4 that does the same thing. it started last fall 2015 when the weather was cooling down. i have found it doesn't necessarily have to be cold outside for it to happen (it has happened with 40* F weather). the car has been to the dealer twice for this issue. the first time toyota told them to add more transmission fluid. that was ok for about 2 weeks. the 2nd time toyota told them to reset the car computer. again ok for about 2 weeks. now it is happening again. a couple of times i have had the clunk twice in a day. first when i start out, stop for an errand nearby, and then start the car again. i bought the car new and this issue did not happen last winter when we had one of the coldest winters on record. car will be going in for 3rd time for same issue. we have had over 12 toyota vehicles in our family in the past 10 years (4 - Rav4s, 3- Highlanders, 2- 4Runners, 1- Tundra, 2 -Sequoias) and this is the only one that jerks when shifting from 1st to 2nd.
 
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