94 Camry: we have had everything checked including tires, rotation, motor
mount, brakes, etc. When you hit the accelerator at 50-60 mph it shakes
terribly. This has been going on for years. 217,000 miles on car.
Everything else is fine. Motor doesn't use any oil. Husband wants to put
new shocks on car. How important is it to put new shocks on a very old car
that could blow up at any time? I say put the money in the transmission,
if that's the shaking problem. Transmission has never been serviced. I
don't notice any shock problem when I drive. Someone told us it may cause
more problems to flush the transmission because it hasn't been done before.
Just an uneducated guess, but I'd guess the shocks have nothing to do with
the shaking....sounds more like motor mounts....
But it would be very wise to flush the transmission completely (an
automatic?) if it's never been done in over 200,000 miles. ouch. It
still has little or nothing to do with the shaking though, IMO.
I can because it's similar to our '91 before I adjusted the kickdown cable
properly and replaced distributor leads. Used to jerk, but now it only has a
flat spot at ~80kph when the torque converter clamps solid and O/D cuts in.
You can get past it by accelerating more heavily or switching OD off... or
by waiting. I have also heard it might be better to leave an old auto gbox
alone if it has never been serviced, and of others (old autos) which never
played up until the fluid was changed.
And it's hardly ever shock absorbers.
er, because the OD makes it rev too low at that speed, highlighting a
problem which doesn't happen at higher revs? Like when you try to accelerate
or even drive steadily, in top gear at very slow speed. At least that's why
mine did the same thing.
===================================================You have several questions here:
- transmission service
Check the ball joints and CV joints in the axles.
According to Toyota, checking the ball joints are part of the
Lift the car, set blocks of wood under the tires, lower half way, place
a rag to protect the inside of the wheel and use a pry bar on the
underside of the ball joint. Maximum acceptable wear is zero. So if you
feel any movement, the ball joints need to be replaced. Since they hold
the lower part of the suspension together, this could be a safety issue
Also, the outer CV (constant velocity) joints in the axles can develop
slight looseness which can combine with clearances in the ball joints
to create the shaking.
"Had the same problem at 120,000 miles. It was present on acceleration
but absent on coast. It was a combination of worn lower ball joints
and a bad CV joint on the passenger side. Under power the drive shaft
would move off center and cause a vibration. The loose ball joints
would let the entire suspension vibrate. Felt like the entire engine
was coming out. I at first thought that it was bad motor mounts. Take
it to a good mechanic and tell him my story."
Toyota sells remanufactured axles for your Camry with quality to match
FWIW, I did find one ball joint needing replacement at 150,000 miles on
my '94 Camry and also noticed an improvement after replacing the axles.
On mine, I also discovered that the rear rubber bushing in the control
arms was cracked through on the inside where it couldn't be seen until
removed from the car. I had replaced them for the surface cracking I
had observed from the outside.
The vibration I had experienced was only at high speed under full
"shocks" on the Toyota are called "struts" - same function, but they
also form an integral part of the suspension.
If the car stays under control on a bumpy road at high speed, the
struts are OK, if they "wash out" then they are worn.
You wrote: "Transmission has never been serviced. I
There is a difference between "transmission service" and "flush the
Much of the servicing on the Camry consists of keeping the fluids
clean. Areas to consider are brake fluid, radiator coolant, engine oil,
transmission and power steering fluid.
The transmission fluid performs two functions. First, it is a
lubricating oil. There are bearings and planetary gears that drive the
car forward. Second, it operates between the multiple friction plates
and discs of the clutches in the automatic transmission that allow
controlled slippage for smooth shifting.
Toyota servicing recommendation is only to periodically drain and
refill the transmission fluid. The idea of the "flush" is to remove all
the fluid at once because draining the fluid only removes a portion.
(the rest is held in the torque converter and does not drain)
The shifting action of the transmission is accomplished through the
"valve body" which contains tiny passageways and check valves to route
the hydraulic fluid to different clutch packs.
The argument for changing the fluid is that transmissions are expensive
to replace and the most common source of failure is "burned" fluid.
Once the fluid overheats, its effectiveness is greatly reduced.
The argument against changing the fluid I don't understand as well,
because I've always kept fluid conditions like new. Since automatic
transmission fluid has highly detergent properties to keep everything
clean, the concern is that new fluid could loosen old wear particles
from the clutches which could subsequently stick in small valve body
Since the idea of old worn out fluid bothers me, if I were acquiring a
car in this condition, I would try just draining out fluid and
replacing with new gradually.
The alternative would be to simply wait until the transmission stops
working which would probably mean the end of the car due to repair
If the engine runs well, the car can keep going for quite some time.
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