Common Problems Found In The Toyota A340E Transmission

Posted by on Wednesday, March 20th, 2013

The A340E is an automatic transmission made by Toyota. It was used extensively throughout their lineup, from 1986 all the way through the 2007 model years. It was used behind both gas and diesel applications. While this is a fairly decent transmission, it does have its fair share of issues. Let’s take a closer look at a few common problems with the Toyota A340E transmission.

Toyota A340 Transmission



Whining noises: Many time whining noises originate in the front pump. The noise is usually the result of clutch material being drawn into the front pump assembly, causing damage to the pump and sticking to the gears. The first thing to do is to drop the transmission pan. Take a close look at the filter and bottom of the pan. You are looking for fine grit that was once part of a band or clutch. Have you ever had an aquarium? You know that if you don’t make water changes and clear out the gunk, your aquarium pump will stop working. It’s the same thing with a transmission. If you do find excessive material in your transmission, it is time to replace the transmission.

The vehicle will not move in any forward gear:  The first place you should take a look, is the flex plate connected to the torque converter. Make sure the bolts are still tight and there are no cracks in the plate. You will also want to inspect the torque converter mounting lugs for damage. Another place to look at is the oil pump intake screen.  Check to see if it’s clogged with debris. If it is you have a serious problem someplace else in the transmission and in almost all cases the transmission will need to be replaced.

A340E hydraulic system


You experience a harsh engagement when the transmission is put into any drive position:  Check the adjustment of the throttle cable. It may simply be out of adjustment. Refer to the shop manual for details on how to correctly make the adjustment.  You might also want to take a look at the primary regulator. If it’s faulty, it may be contributing to this problem.  Also take a look at the accumulator pistons. Make sure the piston is not broke. Check the cylinder that the piston rides in for damage. Is the cylinder is damaged or does it have deep scratches in it? This may be causing the piston to stick in the bore.

The transmission slips on the 1–2 or 2–3 shift: Check to make sure the manual linkage is adjusted correctly. Also check the throttle cable to see if it’s out of adjustment. Refer to the shop manual for the proper instructions to make both adjustments.  You should also check your solenoids. Using an ohm meter, check the resistance of the solenoid. It should be between 20 to 30 ohms. Anything outside of this range might indicate a problem with one of the solenoids.

internal view of the Toytoa A340E transmission


Like I mentioned earlier, the A340E is a fine transmission. That said, it will not last forever. When the time comes to replace your transmission you should make the choice of going with a re-manufactured transmission instead of a rebuilt one. A re-manufactured transmission will include upgrades and modifications designed to extend its life. A rebuilt transmission will usually not include either.

2 Responses to “Common Problems Found In The Toyota A340E Transmission”

  1. adrian says:

    I appreciate the information found on this page. I do have a question. My a340f in my 2001 4runner suffers from a 1-2 second delay in reverse engagement. It has 350k miles on it, so I decided a transmission with less miles on it would be a good idea. I purchased a transmission from a 2000 4runner. I come to find, my transmission does not have a kick down cable, & the 2000 transmission does. Is it possible to swap out the valve body from the 2001 unit and install into the 2000 unit? Any insight will be appreciated!!

  2. Ted K. says:

    I have a `89 A340E I transmission. I’ve been having trouble with the kick down; it will not kick down. I’ve replaced valve body and all 3 solenoids. I’ve adjusted both cables and still having the same problem. Any suggestions?
    Thank you,

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