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What flush(es) do I really need?

07 Toyota Highlander with 75K miles-on my last visit they suggested: brake flush pkg ($60), Power steering fluid pkg w/flush ($60), Auto transmission fluid exchange/flush ($90), Might friction modifier ($20) along with a 4 wheel alignment($70)and replacement of 4 struts @$1200! I took the car to another dealer for a 2nd opinion on the struts and they said they didn’t find a problem. Are they messing with me on EVERYTHING? Thanks much

Yes, you must look gullible and prosperous!!! That list is really a wallet flush for you.

The only flush you really need are the toilets in your house.

If I was in your shoes, at 75,000 miles I would have the transmission fluid and filter CHANGED (not flushed), since that should be done every 30,000 miles, and if a brake job was due some time in the future, have them change the brake fluid as well, a small extra expense. I’ll bet most Toyota engineers who designed your vehicle don’t even know what Might Friction Modifier IS!!!

If the tires show uneven wear you MAY need a wheel alignment.

You don’t need to go to any dealer to have these things done, a good independent garage will do any of these things at usually lower cost and with a better diagnosis if anything was wrong.

Start thinking of this dealer as an expensive restaurant that tries to push all the high profit items on the menue!

Best advice…read the manual and follow schedule of service required.

You cant go with the owners manual when it comes to most service interval items. With your list, I would personally wait on the brake flush until I do my brakes then have new fluid put in it and the old flushed out. I wouldnt bother with the Power steering fluid now at all, not now at least. Transmission, DO NOT flush unless the fluid is contaminated but you need to drop the pan, change the filter and refill with new TOYOTA fluid. DO NOT LET THEM USE ANYTHING BUT TOYOTA FLUID. Your auto trans needs this service every 25-30k miles regardless of what your owners manual says. 4 wheel alignment, yes, you are going to need it anyways with 4 new struts.


But what type of trans flush should you do? My manual and dealership says with my transmission not to drop the pan and do it that way, but to just do a drain and refill. Both types cost about the same, so I am unsure which to go with and am not sure why the dealership advises aginst doing a pan drop and filter change on the transmission.

What kind of vehicle is this??


toyota highlander as OP states…

I was refering to indy’s post.


2002 Kia Sedona

That Sedona should have a spin on cartridge filter on top. In your case, you would do a drain and fill and change the spin on filter. There are quite a few transmissions out there that have no pans (Honda’s for instance). They have 3 piece cases. The filters are internal and can not be changed unless you remove and disassemble the transmission. In those cases a drain and refill is in order.


Thanks, I am guessing that given the dealership had two different priced trans fluid cleans that the cheaper one did not include changing the filter. The cheaper price one was 99.00 and the other was $169, so guess I need to ask them for sure what is involved in the two different prices.