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Transmissions / Transfer Cases / Traction Aids This area is for discussion, questions and problems with the FJ Cruiser's gear train, including topics on A-TRAC, VSC, locking diffs, gear ratios, manual vs. AT, etc.

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Old 05-28-2006, 11:42 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Synthetic gear oil for transmission, transfer case and differentials

Has anyone used synthetic gear oil in there drivetrain before?

What brand did you use and how would you rate it?

What do you think the pro's and cons of using synthetic gear oils in offroad conditions?

Was thinking with the manual, constant 4-wheel drive, synthetics could increase fuel economy, make the vehicle a touch faster and increase the life of the drivetrain.

What do you think????

Last edited by Stuck'n Muck; 05-28-2006 at 11:44 PM.
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Old 05-29-2006, 12:02 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Synthetic gear oil for transmission, transfer case and differentials

I've been using and selling Redline Synthetic lubricants for over 15 years. They work excellent in transmissions, t-cases, diffs, etc... Many advantages, but basic summary: Less friction 3%+ than petro lubes (translates to 3%+ better mileage); Runs cooler and dissapates heat better than petro; Holds more suspended particulates (dirt) than petro (which keeps it off the machinery); Stays liquid to 60 below zero, which allows quicker shifts, starting, and less diff wear in colder climates; reduces auto trans operating temp by approx 25 degrees = better shifting/ less stress; lasts longer than petro; helps keep seals / gaskets from getting brittle (unlike petro lubes). The only downside is cost - Redline and other high grade synths are expensive - but given the major wear / tear advantages, the cold / hot temp advantages, I think its a no brainer - USE SYNTHETIC LUBRICANTS.
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Old 05-29-2006, 12:43 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Synthetic gear oil for transmission, transfer case and differentials

Agree with cruiserlarry. At 1000 miles, I switched to Redline 75w90NS in the manual transmission, and Redline 75w90 in the Torsen/transfer case, and both differentials. Redline 75w90 and 75w90NS are both GL-5 gear oils.

The transmission does shift noticeably smoother, though the transmission actually was very smooth with the OEM gear oil. It may be my imagination, but there now seems to be much less buzz/vibration in the transfer case lever. I haven't had a good test of gas mileage yet ... After the oil change, I inadvertently filled the tank with gasohol, which hurts mpg. I need to take a highway trip for a good test.

Unfortunately, Toyota is still in the dark ages. My invoice for the oil change states,

"Customer has been advised Toyota does not recommend synthetic oils.
Customer has been advised the warranty may be voided.
Case # TA061370169
"
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Old 05-29-2006, 01:05 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Synthetic gear oil for transmission, transfer case and differentials

Got a call from my salesperson today who said his boss told im to call all his fj customers and let them know that the fj will use 1qt of oil per 600-1200 miles(depending on hwy or city miles).Does this seem at all normal?
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Old 05-29-2006, 07:13 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Synthetic gear oil for transmission, transfer case and differentials

That's a lot of oil use...doesn't seem at all normal to me.

I just did my 750 mile oil change and I measured the removed oil.....it was about 5.3 qts....which seemed just about right to me.

Added EXACTLY 5.5 quarts and the dipstick was right in the middle....

...so I doubt VERY much that an FJ would use that much oil.
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Old 05-29-2006, 07:15 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Synthetic gear oil for transmission, transfer case and differentials

I've been using Amsoil for the last three trucks for transfer , rearend, and transmission.Works fantastic and comes to your front door.Also its super important that you change the transfer case and rearend at 5 or 6000 miles, and most owners forget about this.I've got my synthetics ready to go as soon as I hit 5000 miles.There are tons of independent test and info on the amsoil web page.
ed
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Old 05-29-2006, 07:26 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Synthetic gear oil for transmission, transfer case and differentials

"Customer has been advised Toyota does not recommend synthetic oils.
Customer has been advised the warranty may be voided.
Case # TA061370169"

Seeing that Toyota builds very good cars/trucks, what is their reasoning behind this statement?
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Old 05-29-2006, 09:06 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Synthetic gear oil for transmission, transfer case and differentials

Thanks for the input guys!

I am leaning towards changing out my gear train oils at about 5000 miles like Mellowyellow mentioned.

Is there any special flushing procedures involved to clean out remaining gear oil, or is it a straight drain and refill when warm?

I see greatly reduced drag benifits when starting out with cold truck. I remember up in northern Alberta at 30 degrees below in my '72 340 Duster starting out in the morning with the trans in low and the 4 bbl carb floored to get up the hill at 20 mph! Oil very thick in these situations.

Any further information on the warranty info as to why Toyota does not recomend Synthetics?
I wonder if they are talking about the drivetrain or the engine?
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Old 05-29-2006, 09:15 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Synthetic gear oil for transmission, transfer case and differentials

Quote:
ryoung previously said:
Agree with cruiserlarry. At 1000 miles, I switched to Redline 75w90NS in the manual transmission, and Redline 75w90 in the Torsen/transfer case, and both differentials. Redline 75w90 and 75w90NS are both GL-5 gear oils.[/I]"
What is the capacity of the rear diff? BTW, I have an auto.

Thanks,
Khoi
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Old 05-29-2006, 09:26 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Synthetic gear oil for transmission, transfer case and differentials

Owners manual says on page #318 ;

without rear diff lock- 3.0 liters / 3.2 qt. / 2.6 Imperial qt.

with rear diff lock - 2.9 liters / 3.1 qt. / 2.6 Imperial qt.

Got Muck??????????
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