Toyota Avalon Transmission trouble


I have a Toyota Avalon 2000, couple of weeks back check engine light came up. The dealer said its the transmission solenoids, $900 to replace. I agreed to get the repairs done but then later he said the whole transmission needs to be changed, which I refused to get done.

After I came back from the dealer the gear shifter gets stuck in the Park position, I have to ues the override switch to move it. This happens about 3 times out of 5.

What do you guys suggest, should I replace the whole transmission or is there something that I can do about it. I just don’t want to spend 3.5 K on a 8 year old car i fI can avoid it.

If the override switch works, check your brake lights. The shift interlock is usually tied to the brake light switch, and will cause problems when a brake light or two is not working.

As far as the transmission, get a second opinion from a non-dealer shop. If it is not having a problem shifting, I’d bank on a simple bus connection problem rather than a need for a re-build. Besides, a good non-dealer shop will give you the same quality of work without the dealer mark-up.

Some folks have reported a complete rebuild by a quality transmission shop costing $2000 when Toyota wanted $3500 for the Sienna. I agree. Shop around.

Also, note that at times, Toyota dealers will drive your car to a regular shop, one example is to replace a windshield, then add on quite a bit for that trip. So, you pay a lot of money to them and they may or may not do the work, but you will pay as if they had.

Source: the shop which replaced my damaged Sienna windshield last week. He says he gets cars from the local Toyota dealer to replace.