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2005 XLE
For the last few days, the transmission shifter has been a little hard to change from 4 to D. Wife called today while driving and said while putting it in D, it felt like a piece of plastic broke and now the shifter handle is loose. Loose enough to flop around while turning corners and she says she can feel the transmission changing between 4 and D as the shifter flops around. Anyone else had or heard of this? Is the shifter a drive by wire design? Looks like I'll be going into the front dash this weekend, any hints?
Thanks
 

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See the instructions attached.
The document referenced in "shift_lever_assy.pdf" as 71-10 attached as file 71-10.pdf
 

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[Romualds], that second attachment (71-10) is a terrific resource for instrument panel/dashboard dis-assembly. Thanks for digging it up! :)

I'm going to add it to the How-To / DIY section.
 
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Thanks so much for the info. I'll look intothe shifter thsi weekend. There is a TBS # 01004 that seems to describe my problem. Anyone have a copy?
 

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This just happened to me yesterday...and I was able to fix the problem for under $10.

I was driving and I felt some resistance when moving the lever to the right. I gave it a little tap and heard something break. Pulled over and after moving the selector through the gears (while stopped), I heard a piece fall. I no longer had the ability to shift into park.

shifter a.jpg

Did some research and found this thread. I looked at the 2 PDF attachments and decided to remove the shifter. I followed steps 16-32 to remove the center console/dashboard. I didn't completely remove the console...just moved it enough to get to the shifter assembly. I followed the instructions to remove the shifter.

You need to take the shifter apart by removing 3 friction clips. Once these parts have been removed, the pins/shafts can be removed. The modification has to be done to the plastic base of the actual shifter.

shifter b.jpg

There is a metal piece that's shaped like a bullet and it rides inside a spring loaded barrel. The barrel is part of the shifter assembly and is made of plastic. Over time, the plastic weakens and eventually breaks. The only way to fix this is to insert a metal tube inside the barrel...making it much stronger. I tried using glue and tie straps...and it broke right away.

I went to the hardware store and bought a stainless steel tube that was in the K&S rack. This was part 7119 and it’s a 3/8 inch tube that was about 12 inches long. It’s 22 GA...so it’s pretty thick and sells for $8.99. The “bullet” fits with the correct amount of clearance. You’ll only need about 2 inches. Bring the bullet with you so you can test fit the tube to make sure that you're getting the correct one.

INSTRUCTIONS
1. Disassemble the shifter mechanism
2. Remove the Bullet and Spring front the plastic barrel
3. Inset a screw driver in the barrel to determine the depth (ex. 2 inches)
4. Cut the appropriate length (ex. 2 inches) of the stainless steel tube and remove any excess material.
5. Use tape on the drill bit so to indicate the 2 inches (2 inches is used for this example).
6. Drill the plastic barrel using a 3/8 inch drill bit. They to keep it straight because the metal sleeve will be inserted in the new hole. Do not pass the tape!!!
7. Clean away any excess plastic
8. Insert the metal sleeve inside the plastic barrel till it can’t go any further. The metal sleeve should be about as long as the original plastic barrel.

shifter c.jpg

9. Use grease to lube the spring and inset it into the barrel
10. Use grease to lube the bullet and insert it into the barrel so that the round end is sticking out of the top of the barrel.

shifter d.jpg

11. Make sure that the bullet moves freely.
12. Carefully reassemble following the steps in reverse order.
13. Insert the pins but do not press in the clips.
14. Press the bypass button and move the shifter through the gears. If everything was done correctly, it should feel like new :)
15. After verifying that everything is working, the 3 clips can be installed.
16. Install the rebuilt shifter in the van.

Hope this helps. the shifter fells really smooth and it cost $9 vs the possible $600 from the dealership.

Goodluck!!!!

Regards,
05SiennaDriver
 

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Great job and write up!

Regards, JC.
 

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I second the motion... Terrific fix.
 

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Thanks so much for your thorough instructions and handy fix-it-yourself dedication. I am going to try your method out after the holidays. Glad to have the support for this quirky problem. 2005 Sienna LE. Plastic mania! its taking over the world!
 

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Just did this today. Actually, I tried this a year ago, due to the hard selector 4 back to Drive, but when I pulled it all apart, it was fine. Lubed everything and put back together, and it worked (albeit stiffly still) for a year. Recently, when shifting 4 to D, I had to really hit it to get back to D and felt and heard it break. We were an hour into a 6 hour trip, so I was careful with the shifter flopping around and made the trip.
This went quickly today, having experience pulling the shifter. The tube fit perfectly, but the bullet was still moving hard from 4 to D, so I ground 1/16 inch off the spring and that did the trick. Moving the selector is smooth and holds each gear well. I'm convinced this is a permanent repair.
Thanks for the write up!
 

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This post was tremedously helpful for me. I had the same issue described here and was able to fix it with the help of this post.

I had the same issue as jlarr and ended up taking off a couple coils of the spring for a smoother shift between 4 -> D and 3 -> L.

Here are a couple of photos I took during the process.
 

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Thanks all for saving me $600 -or- worse, IMO, a trip to the dealer to fight with them.

They had my van for 3 days while performing the TSB and Recall on the shifter and airbag. Strange, that <1 month later the shifter should go kaput. I'd rather spend 3 hrs of my time and $10 than try to argue with them about this.
 

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I too heard the crack of dismay after having to force the shifter out of 4 into D. Then it was loose after that. Thanks to the disassembly diagrams, pictures and instructions I have it working again. I went to the plumbing area of my hardware store and found the pipe for $7.50, although after I cut it with a pipe cutter I found it was copper inside, not the steel I had hoped for. It took me a couple tries to get the shifter to feel right. Clipping the spring a bit shorter seemed to help. After an afternoon of tearing things apart, I have it shifting from D to 4 and back again. But I seemed to have lost L in the process. It just doesn't want to go there, and I don't want to force it. Not that I ever use that gear anyway. I mainly needed 4 to work for pulling my camper. Although this was a nifty fix to get it working again, after seeing all that broken and cracked plastic in there, I just don't see it lasting for the long haul. I think I'll be saving up for the $260 assembly.
 

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Thanks for posting this fix and for the diagrams - very helpful. I clipped about one twist of the spring off to relieve some off the resistance from going from 4th to Drive, though it still is a little stiff - I might've clipped two or three. The plastic body of the shifter that you sleeve with the stainless steel was pretty well destroyed so I also coated what was left with epoxy to help keep things together. If anyone else is working on fixing this be sure to use stainless steel (K & S 7119). I couldn't find this anywhere around where I lived and tried both copper and aluminum pipe (neither worked - too soft) before ordering the stainless steel. As a last note, I had a difficult time finding the right grease that is used in the shifter assembly (white lithium was considerably lighter than the grease originally used). I ended up using Sil-Glyde (765-1346) from Napa. If felt about right in terms of viscosity and should stay in place. Good luck.
 

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Hi there. I'm a total novice when it comes to vehicle repairs, but also don't want to have to fork over unnecessary $$ to the dealer. I'm taking my 05 Sienna in to the dealer to get that shift-lock solenoid recall cared for and also have the loose shifter now. My hope is I can avoid extra labor charges to get the loose shifter fixed since they'll already be in replacing the solenoid. But I want to be able to describe the issue to the dealer prior to taking it in...what is the name of the actual broken part for the loose shifter? The plastic sleeve...what is it called? Anyone know how much the part runs?
 

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Hi there. I'm a total novice when it comes to vehicle repairs, but also don't want to have to fork over unnecessary $$ to the dealer. I'm taking my 05 Sienna in to the dealer to get that shift-lock solenoid recall cared for and also have the loose shifter now. My hope is I can avoid extra labor charges to get the loose shifter fixed since they'll already be in replacing the solenoid. But I want to be able to describe the issue to the dealer prior to taking it in...what is the name of the actual broken part for the loose shifter? The plastic sleeve...what is it called? Anyone know how much the part runs?
If you don't fix it yourself you have to replace the entire gear shift assembly - you can't replace only the housing for the spring and bullet thing. I forget how much the dealer quoted me, but it was several hundred. When mine broke I also had the open recall on the solenoid, so asked about repairing the broken part at the same time. Most of the expense is the part and not labor, so it didn't really make a difference. Not sure what you would call the piece that broke. I am sure toyota engineers have a name for it, like "the plastic sleeve that will break in seven years and get people to buy a part that is only available through the dealership."

Good luck.
 

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The black plastic that makes the connection tight between the transmission control cable assembly and the shift lever assembly broke on my 2005 Sienna. Anyone have ideas on how to safely secure the cable end to the shift lever assembly. Right now it is so loose it comes off when shifting. Thank you for any ideas.


See attached photos IMG_0377.jpg IMG_0378.jpg IMG_0379.jpg
 
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