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Toyota Corolla Transmission Fluid Change Guide
How to drain and fill the transmission fluid in a 10th generation 2009-2013 Toyota Corolla with the 2ZR-FE engine.

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2010 Toyota Corolla 2ZR-FE
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Front Jack Point
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Car On Jack Stands

This automotive "how-to" guide was specifically written to assist owners of the 10th generation (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, & 2013) Toyota Corolla equipped with the 2ZR-FE 1.8L I4 engine in draining the U341E transmission fluid and refilling it.

Owners of other Toyota, Lexus or Scion vehicles such as the Yaris, Matrix, Prius, Camry, Celica, RAV4, Sienna, Tacoma, Tundra, FJ Cruiser, Venza, Highlander, Avalon, Sequoia, Land Cruiser, Allion, Premio, Auris, IS 250, ES 350, GS 350, tC, xB, xD, iQ and FR-S may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

The items needed to complete this procedure include a floor jack, two jack stands, a 10mm Allen Key or 10mm hex head socket, a fluid catch basin, 4 U.S. quarts of Toyota WS ATF (World Standard - Automatic Transmission Fluid), a gallon jug marked with half quart measured lines and a small automotive funnel.

Since Toyota claims that the ATF is a "lifetime" fluid, by doing a simple "drain and fill" that replaces about half of the U341E automatic transmission's 6.9 U.S. quart total capacity at least every few years, your vehicle's maintenance will be far ahead of the average Corolla owner.

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Black Metal Transmission Pan
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ATF Drain Bolt - 10mm Hex
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Tranny Fluid Dipstick
This procedure should be done when the engine and transmission have been warmed up to near operating temperature to help suspend any contaminants within the old transmission fluid and to allow the old fluid to drain out more quickly.

If the engine is very hot, I'd recommend allowing it to cool a bit to prevent from burning yourself on the underside of the engine bay or when you drain the ATF fluid.

You may be able to reach the transmission oil pan drain bolt without raising the vehicle. I found it easiest to raise the car with a floor jack at the lifting point under the front bumper at the center of the vehicle.

Then I securely supported the car with two jack stands.

The black metal ATF pan is located on the right (driver) side of the engine bay. The silver metal drain bolt is situated at the left (passenger side) rear corner of the pan.

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Pull Out ATF Dipstick
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Used Oil Catch Container
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Loosen 10mm Allen Drain Bolt
Move to the right front area of the engine bay and pull up the ATF dipstick an inch or two to help prevent a vacuum from forming when you drain out the old fluid.

Slide the used oil catch container to just below the drain bolt.

To keep my hands clean, I chose to wear synthetic oil resistant Nitrile rubber gloves.

Loosen the ATF drain bolt by turning it counterclockwise with a 10mm Allen Key or a 10mm hex head socket.

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Draining Out Old ATF Fluid
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Still Dripping After 5 Minutes
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Inspect Metal Washer
Allow the old automatic transmission fluid to drain out for at least a few minutes or until the flow slows to an occasional drip.

The fluid in my 2010 Corolla was still steadily dripping out in a small stream after five minutes, so I let it continue draining for about 15 minutes total.

Inspect the old metal washer on the drain bolt and replace it if necessary. (Contact your dealership for a replacement washer. I believer that the crush washer gasket part number is Toyota 90430-18008.)

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Line Up Drain Bolt
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Clean ATF Fluid Pan
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Spin In Bolt Clockwise
Clean off the ATF pan with a clean rag and re-insert the drain bolt.

Spin in the drain bolt a few turns by hand in the clockwise direction to prevent it from becoming cross threaded.



 

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Still Dripping More Old Fluid
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Tighten With 10mm Allen Key
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Drain Bolt Replaced
Once I spun in the drain bolt a few turns, more fluid began dripping out. So I allowed it to drain for a few extra minutes.

Tighten the drain bolt in the clockwise direction with the 10mm Allen Key or 10mm hex head socket to just past hand tight or about 36 ft-lbs of torque.

Try to avoid over tightening the drain bolt to prevent from stripping the threads or damaging the aluminum pan.

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Gallon Bottle - Half Quart Lines
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Almost 3 Quarts Drained Out
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Remove Fluid Dipstick
Carefully pour the old transmission fluid from the catch basin in to the gallon jug marked with half quart lines.

(To create a measuring bottle, just pour in 2 cups (1/2 quart) of water in to a gallon jug and mark the levels until you reach 4 quarts.)

You should have about 3.1 U.S. quarts of old ATF in the jug.

I spilled some fluid and had a few ounces slosh out of the catch basin, so I estimated that I drained out about 3.05 U.S. quarts out of the transmission.

Remove the transmission fluid dipstick, wipe it clean and set it aside in a safe place.

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Insert Automotive Funnel
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ATF WS $6.50-$10 Per Quart
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Pour In New Transmission Fluid
Insert a small automotive funnel in to the transmission dipstick hole.

The 2010 Toyota Corolla S automatic transaxle's fluid specification for a drain and refill is 3.1 U.S. quarts (2.93 Liters or 2.58 Imperial Quarts).

Slowly pour in only about 3 U.S. quarts of the new Toyota ATF WS in to the transmission fluid dipstick hole.

It is far better to have slightly less fluid that necessary in the transmission than to overfill it.

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Lower Car From Stands
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Check Fluid Level - Hot Max
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Replace ATF Dipstick
Temporarily replace the transmission dipstick while you perform the following steps to check the transmission fluid level.

1. Turn on the engine.
2. Engage the emergency / parking brake and firmly press down on the brake pedal.
3. Move the shifter knob to cycle the transmission through all the gears while pausing in each gear (e.g. "P" Park, "R" Reverse, "D" Drive) for a few seconds.
4. Place the transmission in "P" Park and leave the engine running.
5. Pull out the transmission fluid dipstick, wipe it clean, re-insert it and pull it out again to check the level.

The ATF fluid level should be somewhere between the two notches that indicate the "HOT" range on the dipstick.

If the fluid level is far below the "HOT" range, turn off the engine and slowly pour in more ATF fluid and repeat the process until the level on the dipstick reaches the correct range.

I poured in just over 3 U.S. quarts of new Toyota ATF WS fluid to replace the amount that I had drained and measured with the gallon jug.

The level on the dipstick was almost at the top of the "HOT" range.

I'd recommend checking the ATF fluid level again after your next trip.

For more, check out my other Corolla DIY tutorials at the links below -

2009-2013 Toyota Corolla Repair & Maintenance Guides

2003-2008 Toyota Corolla Repair & Maintenance Guides
 

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