Shaking between 25-35mph? - Toyota FJ Cruiser Forum
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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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 04:10 PM Thread Starter
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Shaking between 25-35mph?

Hey so definitely new to the FJ cruiser, just bought a few weeks ago.

Noticed if im accelerating really slow it starts shaking at about 25-35mph. Hard to pinpoint what is causing it or where it is coming from (im not super mechanically inclined lol), just feels like the whole car is slightly shaking.

The weird thing is if i gun it or even just accelerate normally it doesn't happen. Only when i accelerate pretty slowly.

I have 190k miles on it, could this be a bad transmission? I hope not, I had it checked out when I bought it and they said everything was good.

Appreciate the help


***UPDATE - 2 Days Later***

Quick update for those that are interested or have a similar issue. Took it to a local well rated transmission shop here in town. They confirmed it is a transmission shutter, but were pretty optimistic. As it was only happening at slow speeds and no serious slipping going on.

They did a transmission fluid change (not a full flush) and the shutter has gone away. They did note that there were no metal pieces or particles in the fluid which is huge I guess, but the fluid was super dark. They want me to do another one in 6,000 miles and then one more after that to completely replace the trans fluid over the next 6-8 months. If all is good after that I should be good to go.

If this doesn't fix it then a new transmission is in order, but its pretty good right now. I know I will eventually have to get a new trans at some point anyway, but not right now haha. All in all, the trans fluid change was $200, and will do that 2 more times. They quoted me $3200 on a new transmission if / when the time comes.

Last edited by SoCal_FJ; 10-10-2019 at 11:31 AM.
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 04:32 PM
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Re: Shaking between 25-35mph?

Those symptoms sound a lot like the transmission shudder. What year is your FJ? Your fix could be as simple as a transmission fluid exchange (drain and fill) about 12-14 quarts. Can you identify when the fluid was last changed?
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 04:46 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Shaking between 25-35mph?

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Those symptoms sound a lot like the transmission shudder. What year is your FJ? Your fix could be as simple as a transmission fluid exchange (drain and fill) about 12-14 quarts. Can you identify when the fluid was last changed?
Thanks for the reply! It is a 2007. Im not sure when cause I just bought it from a private seller with 188k miles on it (it has 190k now). All the regular maintenance was done on it, but I'll have to find out if/when he did that.

Probably best to just go get this done asap anyway to see if that fixes it?
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 07:47 PM
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Re: Shaking between 25-35mph?

Yes, a fluid swap will definitely help.

"Mean Green" '10 Army green 4x4 AT ATRAC/rear locker. Demello 3 hoop w\BD sqd, Smittybilt M1 Gen2, PURE FJ sliders, EXPO-1 Wash Bottle, Ironman FCP-C's front, Boss 2.5 w/ TOYTEC 2.0 HD rear, SPC DOM LCA. 16" BF 285 KO2 E's on Method NV's.

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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-08-2019, 09:00 PM
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Re: Shaking between 25-35mph?

2WD or 4WD model?

Also check rear driveshaft U-joints, and see if there is any service history showing periodic re-greasing if it is a 4WD.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-09-2019, 06:14 AM
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Re: Shaking between 25-35mph?

Wheel balance / alignment could also be out.
If the tech has trouble balancing the wheel, get them to take the tire off the rim to check for sand/dirt inside - this is common if the tire has popped off the rim when offroading, and causes some pretty bad shaking until the sand redistributes itself under centrifigal force.
If the tires are BFGs, they're probably just square - that's normal for BFGs ;-)
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-09-2019, 06:37 AM
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Re: Shaking between 25-35mph?

My 07 did the same thing. At about 24 mph it would hesitate/shudder then go away. The mechanic at the time said Toyota only recommended changing 3 quarts or so of transmission fluid at a time. My car, my rules. Changed out 12 quarts and knock wood no issues since. Your issue could be different but it did work for me.. That fluid change was at 94,000 miles. Hope it is as simple as that for you.
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-09-2019, 09:32 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Shaking between 25-35mph?

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2WD or 4WD model?

Also check rear driveshaft U-joints, and see if there is any service history showing periodic re-greasing if it is a 4WD.
Its 4WD. Ill have to take a look. I have the car fax, and see a ton of scheduled maintenance but nothing specific about that. I will have him take a look at this. Thanks for the advice!
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-09-2019, 09:36 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Shaking between 25-35mph?

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sfd59 previously said: View Post
My 07 did the same thing. At about 24 mph it would hesitate/shudder then go away. The mechanic at the time said Toyota only recommended changing 3 quarts or so of transmission fluid at a time. My car, my rules. Changed out 12 quarts and knock wood no issues since. Your issue could be different but it did work for me.. That fluid change was at 94,000 miles. Hope it is as simple as that for you.

This is pretty much exactly what is happening to mine! How many miles you have on it now?

Im taking it in today to a transmission place to get some tests done and get a fluid change. Hopefully that fixes it, fingers crossed. I reached out to the last owner who said that when he bought (at 120k miles) the last owner had just done a transmission fluid change.... but who knows haha. God I hope so
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-09-2019, 01:56 PM
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Re: Shaking between 25-35mph?

2007's do that.
Design flaw in transmission that was later fixed by toyota.
Flushed my fluid at 85K the first time and now at 165K its happening again, so going to repeat full flush. I had mine done with a mechanic that has the flusing machine and i believe he used a flush additive to remove varnish deposits.
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