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Hey All,

We have an appointment @ the dealership tomorrow for 75K mile service. I made the appt online and also included a complaint about whine noise coming from the trans between 30-50mph which, according to the TSB, requires trans replacement with "H" trans... I have all the paperwork and highlighted all the pertinent parts to provide to the dealership. The vehicle has 72K miles so technically it's out warranty specified in TSB (60K/60mo) but we got the platinum warranty for the next 30K miles/30mo so this *SHOULD* cover the repairs. Any last minute pointers such as what to do or say if they claim the noise is normal or claim the warranty doesn't cover the repairs, etc... would be much appreciated.
 

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I suggest you bring a printed copy of the TSB with you so you can show them it on paper, otherwise they may play lots of games with you ("Oh, that's normal" or "let's keep your car for several hours while we replace the XYZ thing").

Bringing irrefutable proof of it being a known problem from Toyota should minimize the finger-pointing games.

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This will be interesting as a few others have wondered if the extended Platinum warranty would cover the whine. It certainly should! Let us know how it goes.

pointers: if dealer says 'this noise is normal' hopefully there is another V6 on the lot to drive and compare. It sounds like you are on top of your game with the TSB and overall knowledge. Make it clear to them you are looking for the "H" tranny as you mentioned.
 

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Thanks for the quick replies, the car's at the dealership right now. I brought the documents with me as suggested and even highlighted everything. The guy at the counter quickly glanced over at it and said since my vehicle vin was after production Toyota had already corrected the problem but I pointed out this was incorrect and that pre and post production basically pertained to the repair procedures A and B, former being swap mounts and latter being straight trans swap with H trans. I offered to leave the printed out TSB with them for the tech to look over at it and he said it was not necessary and that they would test drive the vehicle to confirm, which is fine... If they approve the repair, I'll make sure to verify this is covered under platinum warranty; I'm not paying $4K for a trans swap before even making the 1st payment on this vehicle and if the platinum warranty doesn't cover this, what the hell does it cover?! Will update when I hear back. :)
 

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The guy at the counter quickly glanced over at it and said since my vehicle vin was after production Toyota had already corrected the problem but I pointed out this was incorrect and that pre and post production basically pertained to the repair procedures A and B, former being swap mounts and latter being straight trans swap with H trans.
Is there some documentation somewhere that says Toyota correctly fixed the problem on the production line at some point?

If so, do you have those details handy to share (e.g. VIN ranges where the problem should have been prevented at the factory)?

Thanks much.

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Discussion Starter #6
Is there some documentation somewhere that says Toyota correctly fixed the problem on the production line at some point?

If so, do you have those details handy to share (e.g. VIN ranges where the problem should have been prevented at the factory)?

Thanks much.

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The only thing I know of is this only affects RAV4 up till 2012, later models are not covered under this TSB which also contains the reman transmission part number (30510-4H202-84) that replaces the defective trans.

Update: We got the car back from the dealership and it's looking promising. Bit the bullet and paid for the 5K mile service just so we can also complain about the trans. Here is the invoice we got:



The part we're interested in is the "INF DIAGNOSED NOISE COMING FROM THE TRANSAXLE, NEEDS TRANSAXLE ASSEMBLY"

We were informed that this repair would have to be approved before it can be performed, something about our contract not being ready for 60 days, I'm not sure since my girlfriend got the phone call from the service manager and when we showed up to pick up the vehicle he was already gone, but I will find out exactly what that means... Oh and since we didn't get a 2nd key with our vehicle, dealership said they would eat the cost of cutting another key, which they did and it was also listed on the invoice... $452.36!!! Unreal!
 
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The only thing I know of is this only affects RAV4 up till 2012, later models are not covered under this TSB which also contains the reman transmission part number (30510-4H202-84) that replaces the defective trans.
Unfortunately that's not what I was hoping to hear. "Later models" in this case means 2013+ which only came with a completely different transmission.

I was *hoping* to hear they had fixed the problem on the assembly line in (let's say) some time in 2011 and all V6 RAV4's made after a certain date had the update transmission, so wouldn't ever have this problem.

Mine, BTW, was made during what I believe was the last month they were putting V6s in (November, 2012).

Still, thank you very much for documenting your situation so thoroughly. Should it start happening on mine you've got all the information about getting it handled stored in just a few posts in one thread, with the proper terminology, TSB number and part number shown in the document.

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Unfortunately that's not what I was hoping to hear. "Later models" in this case means 2013+ which only came with a completely different transmission.

I was *hoping* to hear they had fixed the problem on the assembly line in (let's say) some time in 2011 and all V6 RAV4's made after a certain date had the update transmission, so wouldn't ever have this problem.

Mine, BTW, was made during what I believe was the last month they were putting V6s in (November, 2012).

Still, thank you very much for documenting your situation so thoroughly. Should it start happening on mine you've got all the information about getting it handled stored in just a few posts in one thread, with the proper terminology, TSB number and part number shown in the document.

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DVS, I think we can find some comfort in knowing that not all transmissions are affected by this TSB, otherwise there would have been a recall, I think. If your VIN does not match the ones specified by Toyota on 1st page of the TSB, chances are, you won't encounter this problem. Even if you do, there have been no reports of transmission failures due to this whine noise. I think you're in good shape if you got the vehicle in 2012 and still have not encountered this noise. As for me, the vehicle already had over 70K miles when I bought it and who knows when the noise started, the previous owner could have been driving around thinking it was normal for years.
 

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Any update?

I am in a very similar boat as you were. I just bought a single owner 2011 V6 AWD w/74k. I did my best to look up the known issues with these. I heard the noise at times in the test drive but didn't think much of it till after I bought it. I called the dealership and it looks like I still have till Aug 2020 for my TSB warranty if that is the issue. I hear it the most around 37mph - 60mph and then wind noise helps mask it. Sounds like a quieter version of running a 4x4 in 4Low. Any tips for my Monday's appointment to drop it off for this noise? Think I should go straight in with printed out TSB directing their attention to it from the start? I am sure hoping this will get repaired as I was trying very hard to be thorough. Bad enough it needs a fender and paint detail as a shelf dropped on it but now the tranny noise. Well 1st world problems I guess. Win some lose some, hopefully this TSB tranny noise repair/replace will be a win.
 

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Well...

So I just dropped it off and it appears I might have been confused. There is some sort of extension of warranty on the "growling" rear diff until Aug 2020 but appears the TSB issue is not extended out to 9yrs and is not covered. I have not heard back from them but this is not what I was hoping for. I have owned the Rav4 for 7days now and this was exactly what I was hoping to avoid with buying a used car for the family. The service tech said if it is not covered that I can contact Toyota customer service and explain my frustration to them and see if they are willing to do an out of warranty repair. Somehow I doubt that will come to anything positive but I guess gives hope to a customer so they can leave the dealership with a hopeful attitude.
 

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Where did you buy your 2011 from? If it's from a dealership, there should be some kind of warranty. All used car dealers here must offer a 30 warranty. If you bought it from a private seller, you may be out of luck.
 

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Yes, I be out of luck. So disappointed in my shopping failure. I will see if Toyota will help for at least some of the repairs as it only has 74k on it. I read the common issues with these and read posts that said in Nov 2017 they extended the coverage out again to 9yrs so I thought I would be covered in this. I guess it was simply the rear diff that has an open warranty extension on it. I am a thrifty shopper and try to find good deals on mechanically sound vehicles even if fa little rough on the body. This was a lose / lose on both counts. Que the Louis Armstrong - Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Seen... :)
 

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Yes, I be out of luck. So disappointed in my shopping failure. I will see if Toyota will help for at least some of the repairs as it only has 74k on it. I read the common issues with these and read posts that said in Nov 2017 they extended the coverage out again to 9yrs so I thought I would be covered in this. I guess it was simply the rear diff that has an open warranty extension on it. I am a thrifty shopper and try to find good deals on mechanically sound vehicles even if fa little rough on the body. This was a lose / lose on both counts. Que the Louis Armstrong - Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Seen... :)
Are you aware that the V6 transmission whine is merely an annoyance and will not lead to any type of failure? My 2010 developed it "later in life" and being that it's not a particularly quiet vehicle anyway, I decided to ignore it. I'm very happy with it otherwise.
 

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Are you aware that the V6 transmission whine is merely an annoyance and will not lead to any type of failure? My 2010 developed it "later in life" and being that it's not a particularly quiet vehicle anyway, I decided to ignore it. I'm very happy with it otherwise.

That's what I have been reading on here. I just noticed on another Toyota forum this guy said this

"Catastrophic transmission failure on mine (2007 Highlander v6)
I am following this thread with interest now because my 2007 highlander v6 started having this whine several months ago. On my 3rd trip to the dealer to have the problem diagnosed the whine sounded a little worse but nothing that would have made me worry. Suddenly the drivetrain failed and almost killed me (I went skidding across lanes), and I lost the rear axle out the back."

He believes it's the same tranny as the RAV4. So far he is the only person I have read that has had major issues. But I also failed to realize before I bought this the noise was not covered under extended 9yr warranty which I thought it was, only the rear diff.

Has anyone started a thread asking the longevity of users that have just drove it with the whine over a longer term? I know the main thread is many years old just curious if there was any 2017/2018 thread asking how people have done with theirs and if the noise got louder or shifts got rough. I am debating cleaning it up and putting it back on Craigslist and of course passing on all the info I have found on it. I likely will lose 2-3k in doing so would be my guess. I really enjoy driving a RAV4 again but that radio will need to come on between 30-60mph. 38-55 is the worst of it.

ALso I thought I read someone saying they have had the noise for some 150k miles now, trying to find that thread.
 

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That's what I have been reading on here. I just noticed on another Toyota forum this guy said this

"Catastrophic transmission failure on mine (2007 Highlander v6)
I am following this thread with interest now because my 2007 highlander v6 started having this whine several months ago. On my 3rd trip to the dealer to have the problem diagnosed the whine sounded a little worse but nothing that would have made me worry. Suddenly the drivetrain failed and almost killed me (I went skidding across lanes), and I lost the rear axle out the back."

He believes it's the same tranny as the RAV4. So far he is the only person I have read that has had major issues. But I also failed to realize before I bought this the noise was not covered under extended 9yr warranty which I thought it was, only the rear diff.

Has anyone started a thread asking the longevity of users that have just drove it with the whine over a longer term? I know the main thread is many years old just curious if there was any 2017/2018 thread asking how people have done with theirs and if the noise got louder or shifts got rough. I am debating cleaning it up and putting it back on Craigslist and of course passing on all the info I have found on it. I likely will lose 2-3k in doing so would be my guess. I really enjoy driving a RAV4 again but that radio will need to come on between 30-60mph. 38-55 is the worst of it.

ALso I thought I read someone saying they have had the noise for some 150k miles now, trying to find that thread.

Take that case with a grain of salt. We don't really know what the real cause of that person transmission failure. Since there has not been any known failure with the whine issue then that should tell you a lot.
 

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That's what I have been reading on here. I just noticed on another Toyota forum this guy said this

"Catastrophic transmission failure on mine (2007 Highlander v6)
I am following this thread with interest now because my 2007 highlander v6 started having this whine several months ago. On my 3rd trip to the dealer to have the problem diagnosed the whine sounded a little worse but nothing that would have made me worry. Suddenly the drivetrain failed and almost killed me (I went skidding across lanes), and I lost the rear axle out the back."
...

Sounds like he had rear diff problem, not the transmission. It is also 12 yo car, may be it was time for it to go? If I drive the car long enough (> 6 month) and then it develops some noise and that noise starts to increase it is clear indicator to me something requires my attention ASAP. OTOH if I'm driving a car with the same noise for years and it doesn't change then it might fall under category 'live with it'. It sounds like that highlander owner was driving it for 10+ years but somehow didn't realize seriousness of the problem when the new noise appeared. 3 trips to dealership must have taken him at least couple weeks in time so IMO this is far from 'sudden' failure.
 

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I have a 2007 V6 Limited with ~192,000 miles, which includes about ~20,000 miles towing a ~2700 lb boat back and forth between Wisconsin and Minnesota. The car has always had subtle transmission whine but the rear differential growl/whine became noticeable 2-3 years ago and gets a little noisier each year. I'm used to it of course and don't really mind it.

The repair estimate is about $2300, which includes the ridiculous $1300 charge for the entire viscous coupling assembly, when its simply a bearing that is faulty. Because of the cost, I have kicked this repair down the road for a couple years but have the same concerns as you do about the potential for catastrophic failure of the differential on the highway. I am trying to find a local mechanic who would attempt bearing replacement and replace axle seals at the same time.

As most will attest, the V6 Rav4 is an enthusiasts car and frankly I'm not ready to give it up. At the same time, it either needs to be repaired or retired, and this is my dilemma. I think it could go another 50,000 miles, until the cam pin rattle (which I've also had for 4 years) kills it.
 

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From what I've seen and read, cam pin rattle won't kill it. Worst case vvt gear will get stuck and lock your car with suboptimal valve timing, which may or may not lead to reduced mpg an/or horsepower. And only time I heard it happened was on Levin.
 
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