Question about 2002 Toyota RAV4

2 Answers

Shuttering or transmission shifting hard or long between 1st and 2nd gear

My wife has a 2002 toyota rav 4 with about 91,000 miles now on the odometer. We had it since 2003 or 2004. It has always been Toyota dealer ship serviced. She has been having a problem off an on for a couple of years with a shutter while while driving between 5 and 30 mph. Unfortunately while it is at the Toyota Dealership service dept, they cannot duplicate the problem even with me in the car. I had called Toyota Corp about 8 months ago and opened up a case but unfortunately the ECM extended warrantee expired at 86,000 miles I was told. I worked for this Toyota Dealership for 17 years until they were purchased by another company. I was in Sales and Service. I am still loyal to the car and the dealership mechanics. They know their stuff and I understand issues with (PROBLEM CANNOT BE DUPLICATED). I unfortuntaly feel that this problem could be causing further issues to the transmission. I need advice. I know that there are many issues with other customers with the same problem that I have and I know of a few personal friends with the same problem. They paid for ECM's and transmissions and it cost's THOUSANDS!!!. Please advise.

Posted by on


2 Answers

  • Level 1:

    An expert who has achieved level 1.

  • Contributor
  • 1 Answer

After about 6 visits the dealer finally was able to duplicate the issue with the shuttering, lack of acceloration at slow speeds below 30mph and note that the problem is intermittent! The mechanic was able to confirm my belief that it was the ECM to the transmission finally. There is a bullitin that Toyota issued back in 2006 if the Check engine light comes on and draws a code for the ECM, (my CEL never came on "EVER") however Toyota should have made it a Recall because once it gets worse the result is that the damage it causes to your transmission is irreversable. And the dealers will not at that point blame it on the ECM but will say your transmission is out of warrantee. To everyone who experiences this problem, please please please, get the ECM replaced and do not wait for the dealer to tell you they have to experience the problem. Once my ECM was replaced with the updated ECM the car runs like new. I pray that it has not caused any damage to the transmission. At this time and it has been about 2 months now, after replacing the ECM the transmission shifts beautifully. For all dealers that tell you it is the transmission, you may want to have them replace the ECM with the updated ECM and contact Toyota after you have it done. The part is about $1300 and diag and labor is $200. This is better than a $5000 to $6000 transmission! Please note that Toyota may help you with a partial reimbursement only if you have religiously serviced your car at a Authorized Toyota Repair Facility. Please let others know about my results and good luck.

Posted on Jun 14, 2009

  • Level 2:

    An expert who has achieved level 2 by getting 100 points


    An expert that gotĀ 5 achievements.


    An expert whose answer gotĀ voted for 20 times.


    An expert who has answered 20 questions.

  • Expert
  • 35 Answers

If you have had this concerne for quite a while and it has been documented at the dealership, I would get into contact with Toyota customer relations.

If your dealership opend a case file with Toyota and it has never been resolved(no further contact to Toyota) then they(Toyota) are most likely under the impression that the problem is resolved.

I hope this makes sense.

Posted on Jun 03, 2009


1 Suggested Answer

  • 2 Answers

SOURCE: I have freestanding Series 8 dishwasher. Lately during the filling cycle water hammer is occurring. How can this be resolved

a 6ya expert can help you resolve that issue over the phone in a minute or two.
Best thing about this new service is that you are never placed on hold and get to talk to real repairmen in the US.
the service is completely free and covers almost anything you can think of.(from cars to computers, handyman, and even drones)
click here to download the app (for users in the US for now) and get all the help you need.

Posted on Jan 02, 2017

Add Your Answer

Uploading: 0%


Complete. Click "Add" to insert your video. Add



Related Questions:

1 Answer

Transmission not shifting into high gear since abs/4x4 code

answer to any 4l60e trouble ' GMT400 - The Ultimate 88-98 GM Truck ... > Street and Track > Transmissions
Mar 5, 2011 - Before guessing at transmission problems, check the fluid level (car warmed up, ... that do not show up as PCM codes (like shift A&B solenoid failures, for example). ... 1-2 shift is delayed and harsh, may not shift into OD: Check TPS for ...goes into 3rd gear: Reaction planetary is worn out due to high miles or ...

GMC Jimmy Transmission Problems - Edmunds > GMC > GMC Jimmy
Dec 20, 2013 - 1998 Jimmy After truck warms up shifts hard between 1st and 2nd gears. any ideas ... The ABS light stays on,the engine light stay on, the speedo doesn't work, .... I have a 1990 S15 4x4 Jimmy with a manual 5 speed transmission that went out. .... While driving it will only shift into 2nd gear and 3rd no overdrive. and usually ... Ford F-Series Transmission Problems - Edmunds
Dec 18, 2013
Buick Rendezvous Transmission and AWD Problems - Edmunds
Dec 18, 2013
Dodge Dakota Transmission Problems - Car Forums at
Dec 18, 2013
Ford Transmission Problems - Edmunds
May 14, 1998
More results from

Automatic Transmission May Not Shift Correctly at High ... > Problems > Toyota > 4Runner

Feb 03, 2016 | Cars & Trucks

1 Answer

The Pacifica will not shift past 4th gear. It shifts normally through 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th gear. Their is no high reeving RPS, no clunking, no lurching. It will just not shift past 4th gear.

is there an OD button that might have been pressed .if it has lots of miles on it it could be needing a flush job . last one I got done was around 100.00 at jiffy lube.

Nov 12, 2015 | 2005 Chrysler Pacifica

1 Answer

Automatic transmission

-Why need light come on. Not suppose to.


Nov 11, 2013 | 2002 Toyota Camry

1 Answer

2007 toyota camery has a po793 code and transmission shifts hard into 2 gear

that is your speed sensor,but that would cause the hard shift into 2nd. sounds like your 1st and 2 nd shift control sensor in the transmission is dead

Nov 05, 2012 | 2004 Toyota Camry

2 Answers


Is your code reader capable of reading U, C, and B codes? The speedometer doesn't get it's speed reading from the wheel sensors. It gets it from the transmission. Not shifting past 2nd gear means your transmission is in "limp in" mode. It prevents shifting to avoid further damage. I see a transmission repair shop in your future.

Oct 28, 2017 | 2002 Chevrolet TrailBlazer

1 Answer

My 2001 GMC Jimmy 4x4 Automatic with 84K miles. It winds when I put it in reverse and I think I only have 1st and 2nd gear. Additionally it revs high, like over 3000 rpm, delays and then eventually...

It winds up in 1st and then shifts right from 1st into 3rd. Then never shifts into 4th. Plus rev is gone. You broke the sun shell. The transmission will need to rebuilt or replaced.

Oct 30, 2010 | 2001 GMC Jimmy

5 Answers

I have a 2004 Impala that transmission jerks into gears periodically when doing a bit of stopping and starting off. Have talked to other Impala owners,and some have had tranny problems also. It just...

This is common problems to the transmission when the fluid is getting to dirty and the transmission fluid and filter needs to be replaced. The transmission fluid and filter should be replaced every 45,000 miles to ensure there is no dirt causing the shift servos from binding. The other thing to is that when the transmission fluid get's to dirty, the fluid gets thicker. It retains fluid retention which can cause conflicts in the transmission sensors. What your experiencing is, your transmission is not shifting back to first gear and sticking in to 2nd gear. When you get on the gas peddle, the transmission sensors realize that it needs to be in 1st gear, so as the engine's RPM goes up and the transmission drops back to 1st, you get the jerking condition which will in turn cause you a $2,300.00 transmission replacement. For now when starting off from a stop, let the engine creep forward on it's own first to ensure that the transmission has shifted in to 1st gear. Then get on the gas peddle lightly till you have the transmission serviced. $100.00 transmission service is better then $2,300.00 transmission replacement. Good luck and do not have a transmission fluid flush, just filter and fluid replacement.

Nov 21, 2009 | 2004 Chevrolet Impala

2 Answers

1997 Mazda protege LX 1.5 automatic transmission

You are going to need a transmission shop. Mazdas do not always throw codes. You have an early OBD transmission, which do not send out many codes.

Aug 02, 2009 | 1997 Mazda Protege

1 Answer

Lincoln Navigator transmission problem

check and replace filter and fluids just like oil it tends to burn up and blacking and needs to be changed and flushed checking your tranny fluid it should be a red color not a dark red or with a black tint

Jun 25, 2009 | 2003 Lincoln Navigator

1 Answer

When driving (auto) in 2nd gear car jurks

If the transmission fluid was VERY low, the damage may already be done. I know on alot of Rav-4's, there is a computer problem, that causes transmission problems. basically, it wants to shift into 2 gears at once, and will eventually make the transmission come apart. BUT, it has to be replaced WITH the ECU because it will just break the new transmission. I would take it to your local Toyota dealer and have them check the ECM and transmission.

Feb 14, 2009 | 2002 Toyota RAV4

Not finding what you are looking for?
2002 Toyota RAV4 Logo

544 people viewed this question

Ask a Question

Usually answered in minutes!

Top Toyota Experts


Level 3 Expert

76673 Answers

Colin Stickland
Colin Stickland

Level 3 Expert

22219 Answers

Jeff Turcotte
Jeff Turcotte

Level 3 Expert

8531 Answers

Are you a Toyota Expert? Answer questions, earn points and help others

Answer questions

Manuals & User Guides