Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Have you recently bought/leased a new car online and requested a home delivery due to coronavirus? A reporter would like to speak to you; please reach out to [email protected] by 4/5 for more details.
Did you get a great deal? Let us know in the Values & Prices Paid section!
Meet your fellow owners in our Owners Clubs

Toyota Venza Transmission Problems

wingrwingr Posts: 5
edited February 2018 in Toyota
I have an AWD V6. When cold starting I let the car warm up for at least a minute (after work) and up to 3 or 4 minutes, first thing in the morning. I need to back out of my driveway and my space at work, both are pretty level. Anyway, after shifting into reverse (foot on brake), the Slip Indicator blinks for what seems like 5 seconds or more and the car doesn't do anything. Then I'll hear a noise under the middle of the car and the slight clunk of the transmission engaging. Is this normal or is something wrong with the trans or a sensor? Once warmed up, nothing else has ever occurred that would be out of the ordinary. There is only 250 miles on the car since picking it up on Monday. TIA! Regards, Chris


  • anry555anry555 Posts: 9
    Hi guys,

    Just took Venza V6 and V4 for test drive. I found the same weird behavior in both of them.
    You drive the car in a manual transmission mode (let's say using 3rd shift) and fully stop (not changing the shift). The panel will still show 3 for the shift and it won't change it to 1 as it used to be in other cars. So, you start driving again and keeps showing 3.

    Do you have the same in your Venza? is it by design?
  • toledo73toledo73 Posts: 171
    HUH? If you have the shifter in 3rd it will not move to 1st. You're still in 3rd at a stop. Just like if you're in D, it does NOT change to 1 at a stop.
  • anry555anry555 Posts: 9
    What? How come the transmission doesn't adjust it? It makes no sense to start driving with 3rd (or 4th..etc) gear. Or driving 40km/h after highway in 6th gear.

    I drove audi and hyundai with tiptronic before and they used to adjust it. Yes, It still gives you a feeling of controlling it but it has some protection as well. For example, driving over 6000rpm (in a manual mode) the transmission will give you 1-2 seconds for adjusting and will automatically shift itself up.
  • anry555anry555 Posts: 9
    For example, as used by some cars, their five-speed Tiptronic will automatically make the upshifts from 1 to 2 when moving off from a stop, even when in manual mode; the transmission then waits for the user's upshift command before proceeding from 2 to 3, 3 to 4 and 4 to 5, although the transmission will still upshift if the redline is approached. On deceleration, the transmission will make all downshifts automatically when close to the tick-over or idle speed, to avoid running the engine at too-low an RPM, although the user can accelerate any downshift (that would not violate the redline), thus allowing improved engine braking, or preparation for intended acceleration.
  • md_outbackmd_outback Posts: 185
    I'll have to agree with anry555 on this one. I've owned several cars with shiftable automatic transmissions (i.e. Tiptronic) and they all "automatically" downshifted to 1st gear after coming to a stop and the indicator on the dash reflected this. With my wife's Lexus IS, the indicator does not change when you come to a stop with the shifter in manual mode so it may appear like the car is still in 3rd gear. BUT the transmission has actually downshifted after the stop so you are really starting up in 1st gear even though the dash indicator continues to show 3rd until you are going fast enough to upshift to 4th or you switch to full automatic mode. Seems like a Toyota/Lexus thing.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    A "true" stick shift wouldn't automatically upshift so now that DBW can be used to prevent an over-rev why not? Same with downshifting...if the engine doesn't knock due to lugging what's the harm...??

    And if it does knock due to lugging DBW can be used.....
  • chadxchadx Posts: 153
    "...Just took Venza V6 and V4 for test drive...."

    That would be i4 and V6. The four cylinder engine is an inline four, not a v-configurated four.
  • chadxchadx Posts: 153
    Bring it in for diagnosis under the warranty. A pause that long, before reverse engages, isn't normal, even when cold starting.
  • cbrodskycbrodsky Posts: 2
    I have the same car AWD V6 and the same thing happens to me. I just got my car 2.5 weeks ago and the SRS Warning light kept intermittently coming on along with the VSC (Vehicle Stability Control) light (it should only come on when the car is sliding on ice, wet road, etc.). If the VSC light does not stay on, there is no dianosis the car dealer can do! Thankfully the dealer did get the SRS light to go on and they replaced the driver side seat belt mechanism-no problem so far. I still to this day am getting the VSC light indicator when I am at a standstill in my garage and when I initially put the car in reverse (I am not on any hills or inclines when this happens), but once I start to move, the light goes off.
  • qs933qs933 Posts: 302
    I have an AWD V6 and have not noticed a delay or the VSC light when shifting into reverse. I have a slightly sloped driveway.
  • halwickhalwick Posts: 45
    I have a 4-cyl FWD. When I first start up the car, place it in drive and slowly accelerate away, I hear a soft clunk or thud noise approximate in middle of the car when the transmission shifts from 1st to 2nd. When I stop and then accelerate again, there is no noise as it shifts from 1st to 2nd or thereafter. The noise only occurs ONCE after the engine is turned on. Does this have anything with the transmission or VTC? I read in the manual that you can expect some kind of noise but did not specify the kind or occurence. I'm having it checked out at the dealer.
  • wingrwingr Posts: 5
    I had to bring mine in when my bumper protector came in. The service adviser said the Slip Indicator light and delay before engaging the transmission is because the car is doing a diagnostic test when it's a cold start. Some report a similar condition, others do not. Time will tell if it's really a problem or not. I haven't had any other issues.

  • bdymentbdyment Posts: 573
    That is probably the ABS brake self test noise that you are experiencing. It happens just as you state. Once after the car is first started and driven for the first time. If you park the car, turn off the engine and start the whole procedure again, it may do another self test.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    When you first move the vehicle the ABS/TC/VSC is tested so I wonder if this isn't simply an indication of same.
  • verndogverndog Posts: 6
    I posted another thread with the same issue, I didn't see this. Yes, I am having the exact same issue. FWD V6, TCS light comes on backing from driveway, or after releasing ebrake from slight grade. I get the delay and light and not always when cold either. Its inconsistant which tells me its a problem. If it did something the same each time then I'll buy that as possibly normal. I think the service guys have no clue and since there is "no code" then there is no fix. Dont buy that either, there are "no codes" with flat tires, piston slap, or any of 1000's of other issues, but there sure as heck is a problem in need of fixing. This can be dangerous since the car will just "let go" and start moving since your foot is off the brake waiting to go...and you dont know when it will take off. Sometimes 2 seconds...sometimes 5-6 seconds.
  • halwickhalwick Posts: 45
    Yup, you were right. Took it into the dealer and they confirmed your assessment....ABS self test diagnosis. Odd that it makes that kind of noise, yet my 1997 Toyota Camry with ABS brakes didn't make any noise.

    How did they determine it was the ABS self-test diagnosis? Maybe they read your post? ;) In fact, how did you know? Is there a TSB on file?
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Maybe too many owners concerned about the ABS startup noise and so Toyota has added the indication to allay the fears..??
  • bdymentbdyment Posts: 573
    I knew from experience. I have had ABS in most of my cars since 1988. They all made the sound in question. Some of course, a lot louder and more pronounced than others. My two Camrys with ABS certainly made the noise and the most irritating of all was my 2001 Corolla. It was ridiculous. The Fords that we have owned have been the quietest.
  • halwickhalwick Posts: 45
    Now you've got my curiosity. At times it is a soft clunk or slap, other times a definite clunk. How is that diagnostic test generated? Couldn't Toyota have designed it using an indicator light or something? It is irritating, disconcerting and not what I would expect in a $30K car.
  • bdymentbdyment Posts: 573
    It seems that mechanical and electronic parts are moving about during the ABS test. This results in the noise in question.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    During the previous period the vehicle was parked the probability that the "reserve" ABS pumpmotor brake fluid pressure has leaked down to too low a level to be fully functional is fairly high. So, as a minimum the ABS pumpmotor will soon begin running after engine start, and certainly before/as you put the vehicle in motion.

    It would also be wise to cycle each of the individual brake release/apply(TC equipped) solenoids so as to "arm" the pressure side with the newly available high brake fluid pressure.

    Not exactly a good idea to perform this test once the vehicle is fully in motion so the diagnostic is typically run just as...

    The level of noise, overall, will be a function of just how much the brake fluid pressure has leaked down, how long the ignition has been off, at the various points.
  • halwickhalwick Posts: 45
    Thanks for the detailed technical description. You would think that diagnostic test is done when the vehicle is stationary after initial start, but I've let the vehicle idle for 5 minutes and no "clunk" sound as I described. Only when the vehicle is in forward motion, then the sound is heard. Odd diagnostic methodology.

    Now, my next question is, if the system does not pass the self test diagnosis, is there a warning light or a different sound?
  • Have my Venza AWD V6 for 2 months/3000 mil. Silky smooth for two weeks. Then Unusual griding/clunk noice with every shifting(P to R or D). Particularly bad in the morning. The noice is getting worse. 3 days ago, the car would not move for more than 2 minute on Reverse when start in the morning. The VSC sign stayed on. Turned off engine/ restarted, the car moved. In the afternoon, the car would not move for more than 15 seconds on Drive, then jumped forward all the sudden. What a let down for this expensive Toyota (traded in a 2000 Avalon).

    The Tech confirmed the unusual noice but not the other problem and said that other new Venza also have similar noice issues I knew other venza owners in this forum reported similar problems with the transmission and start up. Manufacture defect?
    Toyota needs to get to the buttom of this.

    I do not feel safe driving the Venza with an erractic transmission. I will report back with more info as well as the repair results.
  • wingrwingr Posts: 5
    Lightly press the brake pedal when starting and first shifting the trans. The Hill-hold feature is engaging when you press the brake too hard when switching gears. Never happened again when I started using less pressure on the brake.
  • cbrodskycbrodsky Posts: 2
    This is a follow-up to my first post on Apr 16, 09. As stated in prior post, the dealer changed my entire seat belt mechanism, including all wiring related to such, in an effort to get the Single Restraint System lights to go out (or should I say work properly?). They could not diagnose the Vehicle Stability Control light that was coming on because it was intermittent. Well, when both lights came on, I had the time to actually drive it that moment to the dealer. They said the VSC is stemming from stepping on the break too hard (does everybody live on flat land?) and that I have to NOT STEP ON THE BREAK TOO HARD! It's just the way the car is - he's seen it in other Venza's. WHO EVER HEARD OF SUCH A THING? ANYONE? That's totally not acceptable to me after spending over 40K for a NEW car. They diagnosed it as a problem in the WIRING system. They changed the ENTIRE wiring in the vehicle. We had to wait for parts from JAPAN! I owned my vehicle for 2.5 months and the dealer had it for 4.1 WEEKS. Currently, the VSC has come back on intermittently, and I'm just waiting for the ABS light to come on. At that point, I would have taken my new vehicle back for service for the same issue 3 separate times and I believe that legally qualifies the car as a LEMON.
    my gut says there is definitely something wrong with this Venza,

    Vehicle Stability Control and the
  • There is no doubt in my mind that there are design/manufacture defects with the Venza. I wouldn't mind working with Toyota to solve the problems. But I am not happy when they told me that nothing could be done because there was no codes for the problems and that other new Venza in their lot making similar noices. Can they facing up the fact that maybe all Venza have the problems?

    After twenty years of driving, I knew that something has turned wrong with the Venza after few weeks of driving. No body would accept a $40000 car with such a tempermental tranismission. Just lessen your foot pressure? Give me a break!

    I will be meeting with the Tech Manager Monday. I will keep you all posted.
  • soaksoak Posts: 1
    I have been having the same "clunking" noise as everyone else..kinda scary! However, I am having another problem as well. I have a noise coming from the passenger side that sounds like an acorn rolling around up on the roof. However, that is not the case. I had someone else drive and I have estimated that the noise is right near where the windshield attaches to the roof. It only happens when driving back roads-not on the highway. The car only has 300 miles on it and the noise is getting worse each day...any ideas? I have an appt. with Toyota next week as well....
  • bkbybkby Posts: 3
    I have seen many messages regarding the VSC indicator and a delay before going into gear. I noticed this problem the first week I had the car (09 Venza AWD 4 cyl).
    After a half dozen trips to the dealer we found a way to re-produce it at will.
    When starting the car, or going from P to D or R, place a little excess pressure on the brake peddle. This is what is triguring the VSC. Once we discovered the sales manager and myself tried 3 or 4 new Venzas on the lot and could reproduce the problem on all the vehicles. Not only to I consider this dangerous, it gets even worse. As folks have reported, once the VCS clears it will jump into gear. Does not matter if your foot is on the break or not. This is a very poor design and concerns me greatly. If you have anyone drive the car who is not familiar with this issue it could lead to accidents, injuries etc. I am extremely dissapointed being a huge Toyota fan. I am currently in disscussion with Toyota about this since there is nothing the dealer can do.
  • tollastollas Posts: 3
    I have a new 4 cylinder venza front wheel drive. Lately I hear a faint irritating whining noise when the car accelerates. I can't tell if it is the transmission or some other drivetrain assembly. It seems to be loudest on the passenger side. Any input or ideas?
  • halwickhalwick Posts: 45
    Interesting that you mention that whine. I have a Venza 4-cyl and I haven't heard it....yet, but I did hear noticeably loud whine upon acceleration on a 2009 Toyota Corolla that I rented. The noise varied with engine speed. Hard to determine whether it was the engine or transmission.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Maybe it's an effort to eliminate the "snow" button/mode, if you can "command" a start-out in 2nd or 3rd.....

    So what's wrong with a "true" manual mode...??

    Plus there are times you might not wish to inadvertently encounter the level, sometimes hazardous level, of engine compression braking on the front drive wheels that might result from an "automatic" downshift.
  • I wonder if anyone has a similar problem ?When I leave my 2009 Venza parked and not used for more then 3 weeks, the battery goes dead and I have to ''boost'' it to get it started. The dealer says that this is because there are so many electronics on the car that even with everything off the battery will drain out completely. He suggested I use a trickle charger or disconnect the battery if I leave it not used for more then 3-4 weeks; have never had this with any other cars, I am curious if anyone else has run into this, the 6 cylinder Venza has 8000 km on it and has been ''completely'' gone over by the service dept at the dealer
    many thanks
  • now that you've mentioned it, I'll pay more attention to my venza...coincidently, my transmission slips often inbetween 1st , 2nd and 3rd on the lookout! I;m calling the dealer tomorrow.
  • now that you've mentioned it, I'll pay more attention to my venza...coincidently, my transmission slips often inbetween 1st , 2nd and 3rd on the lookout! I;m calling the dealer tomorrow before i get killed when the car revs in between gears.
  • 'hill hold?' mine rolls that you've mentioned it, I'll pay more attention to my venza...coincidently, my transmission slips often inbetween 1st , 2nd and 3rd on the lookout! I;m calling the dealer tomorrow
  • joe281joe281 Posts: 2
    We bought a new Venza a couple of weeks ago. We left the car in a parking lot while we took a week long cruise. The battery was dead when we got back. It took the parking lot attendant quite a while using his bus and his jumper cables to finally charge it enough so we could get it started. We have a V6 with all the bells and whistles. We couldn't even open the back door to get to the jumper cables because there wasn't enough power. And, we couldn't open up the trunk compartment from the inside. We had an 8-hour drive back home and didn't have any further problems. We haven't been to the dealership yet, but we will very soon. Have you learned anything else?
  • nilkitwanilkitwa Posts: 5
    had the same problem with exactly the same kind of Venza, see my previous post, discussed this with my dealer it seems that the car's electrical system drains to nothing if left unattended for more then 10 days; a bit of a problem for a 2 week + canoe trips or a 3 week + plane holidays, anyways for 60 dollars he put a ''kill'' switch on the battery which turns off the entire electrical system to the car, hopefully this resolves the problem - hope this helps, I will be really upset if I'm looking for a ''boost'' at the float plane base in Inuvik at the end of a holiday trip
  • joe281joe281 Posts: 2
    Thanks for the info. That's helpful to know there's a work around. However, it seems to me that Toyota ought to foot the bill and put these switches on the cars with this problem. After spending all that money on the car, I shouldn't have to pay any more to have it work as it should. I'll keep you posted on how it works out.
  • bobbycybobbycy Posts: 1
    Exact same problem happened to my 2009 6-cyl Venza (mileage = 5,500 kilometers) in mid April after leaving it parked in the garage for 10 days. The battery was compeletly discharged. Required boosting through Roadside Assistance. Drove it to the dealership. They did a "battery load test" and gave the battery a clean bill of health. They probably dismissed the incident as another case of "owner incompetence" - I could tell from the service department personnel attitude when they asked insulting questions like: "Are you sure you didn't leave any lights on?" I suspect the incident rate will pick up soon. I'd encourage you to write Toyota so they can start tracking the problem seriously. I will be writing my letter shortly.
  • carync1carync1 Posts: 4
    I may have an advantage on other Venza owners. My 2009 4-cyl. AWD Venza, purchased 6 months ago, has just turned 40,000 miles!

    For the past several weeks, the automatic transmission has been "shuddering", and even the occasional "clunk" when shifting between gears.

    I drive quite conservatively in order to maintain about 27.5 mpg., since I drive so much.

    I took the car into Fred Anderson Toyota in Raleigh at 36,000 miles ... and they told me that the car was "within factory specs"!

    Are you kidding me? Factory specs ??? Sounds more like an Insurance Adjuster trying to save Toyota money rather than stand behind the product!

    The noise is so bad now that it sounds like I'm going over bumps in the road (when I'm on perfectly smooth asphalt, and passengers comment about the noise.

    This is all too reminiscent of the Sienna Transmission debacle.
  • I am considering a 2011 VEnza. Have the dead battery and transmission issues been resolved. I would like to hear from 2011 owners. Thanks. RR70
  • Not resolved-had a switch installed to disconnect battery to car but this messed up the electronics causing the car to blow fuses and entailed towing the car 350 km to the closest Toyota dealer from Alaska all resolved and dealt with very properly but ''a bit of a hassle factor!'' Now I have a dedicated wrench and I just disconnect battery from engine when parking it for more then 3 weeks not a big deal takes about 3 minutes. Otherwise have been driving to work on the Alaska border all this winter and the car has handled exceptionally well in snow to the ''gunales'' ice and ice ''ridged '' high speed hwy driving ,car goes like a ''bomb'' when needed, tracks well and am very happy with it. Deep snow slush ice all has been good have little comment on city driving since this is not in my lexicon. The Toyota dealership here in northern B.C. has treated me exceptionally well and I guess that's what it's all about, hope this helps.This battery drainage with any prolonged parking seems to be a problem in most new ''electronically dependant'' vehicles.
  • thanks for your reply. the easiest way to solve the battery drain problem is to purchase a screw style battery disconnect switch. this is what I used on my show car. it should not cause a problem with fuses etc, since its just the same as disconnecting the battery cable.

    it sure sounds to me like there is a parasitic drain in this car. toyota needs to fix it.

    i will still consider the car, but less so, and with more healthy distrust. rr70
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    Every time you disconnect the battery all of the engine/transaxle control parameters, LEARNED parameters, will revert to the factory default parameters. Now, until the "REAL" operational parameters can be relearned (200-1000 miles) the engine control parameters and transaxle shifting patterns will be less than optimal. In the meantime the shift pattern will often be enough different to be quite noticeable.
  • ABS are simply brakes that apply and disengage and are controlled by the ECU ( a computer ) to make stopping safer. You have a Camry, are you still alive ? The ABS brakes are not a new thing not unlike air bags, both of them killed a lot of people when they first came out. They should not really make any sound but the disc brakes could if they were not installed right or are out of OEM specs. Don't waist your money on the organic pads just get the higher priced kind. ABS brakes can't lock up as you will feel the pedal move when applied. I've had cars with out ABS and once had to make a fast short stop,
    the Dodge Charger (1968) made it happen for me as the car locked up and if I had ABS I would have hit the car in front of me. It was a multiple car accident
    and my Charger was the only one to drive away untouched. Air bags and ABS are things that engineers thought up and tech's have to deal with their issues at the dealerships every day. My Master Tech. Instructor said that he removed an air bag that had the imprint of the woman drivers face on it ( even the color of her lipstick ), yes she had a broken nose. The seat belts would have been good enough. Notice that you now can't put an infant in the front seat, too many deaths with that. We have all learned how to drive with ABS and air bags and yes they sometimes save lives, but sometimes not.
  • For small money you can buy a device that has a small battery in it. Just plug it
    into what was called a cigarette lighter and that will supply the computer with the small voltage to keep the memory alive. As todays computers in our cars can total over 100 don't take all day to change the battery. There is voltage lost on top of a dirty battery that can be measured with a multimeter, just ground one side of the meter and drag the other meter wire over the top of the battery, there is an OEM spec for that. Turning on the head lights with the car off can get rid of that, but spray some battery cleaner on a rag and wipe
    it down get rid of the grounding effect of the dirty battery top ( don't forget to remove and clean the connections ). Check the wiring for an unwanted ground
    and if you spry down a battery with cleaner, NEVER use high pressure air to blow it off as the acid will do all kinds of damage to your car or truck. There is a whole lot more but that is enough for now. Try your multimeter to test the voltage from the clamp to the top of the battery terminal on each side, ( don't disconnect thing )
    see what you get. There is an OEM spec for that to.
  • mailformailfor Posts: 1
    Hi, my 2010 Toyota Venza has just 11,000 km on it. I've recently started feeling the transmission slip on the change from 1st into 2nd. Since I drive pretty conservatively to maximize fuel effeciency it cannot be attributed to driver abuse etc. i am really worried about this. I've driven older cars with transmission issues which is probably why i noticed it immediately a day or two ago and have since confirmed it several times again. This is a brand new vehicle, i'm really worried and dissappointed as its not what I expect from Toyota. I love my Venza. what should i do? Obviously i'm taking it to the dealer asap, however, I am skeptical about that entire excersize after reading some other owners experiences with dealers over various issues. Can anyone confirm similar issues and/or suggest what my next steps should be?
  • gowron67gowron67 Posts: 4
    edited April 2011
    I have a 2009 V6 AWD Venza and just had to have the transmission replaced at just 16,000 km. The engine check light and AWD lights came on and it seemed to slip out of 3rd and 5th periodically.

    My dealer told me that when they called Toyota they were told that this was a known problem caused by some inferior parts used in the transaxle (from an ouside supplier) and it would need to be replaced. No issues getting this done but makes you wonder that if was a `known issue`, how many other people have had this problem.
  • I have a 09 Venza Glass top. V6 at about 20.000 miles a noise from the tranny started, it sounds like a nasal wine in reverse and first gear. It got louder so I took it to Toyota of Orange, in CA, they said nothing was wrong, I took it back a second time, same story, third time back I insisted they look at it while I was there, they kept it for two days, called me said it was done. The service writer told me they flashed the computer and the sound has gone.
    With in a day it was back, I am going to try one more time, then I will look into having Toyota buy it back.

    I rented one in Sedona, and in Vegas, both V6 auto, no noise, the guy up the street from me has one he has no noise.

    I am asking for advice please. :cry:
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    The type of coupling used in the Venza was totally new to Toyota with the introduction of the Venza. Ford had been using, Escape, Mariner, this technique, but not without an inordinate level of PTO and transaxle failures due to overuse, overuse by Ford design, of the F/awd technique on perfectly dry, HIGHLY tractive, surfaces.

    I have no doubt that a firmware revision, lessening the level of coupling to the front, will soon be forthcoming for your Venza. Were I to ever own a F/awd with a coupling of this type I would use a switch to open the rear drive control circuit except in known times of need.

    Porsche now uses the same coupling technique in the 911/997 & Cayenne, R/awd in that case though.
Sign In or Register to comment.