How to Choose the Oil and Fluids for a Toyota Corolla

The Toyota Corolla, appreciated for its legendary reliability, has maintenance recommendations similar to those of many other passenger cars. Unique fluid recommendations include the specification for automatic transmission fluid, and using automatic transmission fluid in the power steering system. These steps apply to Toyota Corolla models from 2000 onward.

Change your Toyota Corolla's engine oil regularly, making sure to use an API certified SAE 5W30 engine oil if at all possible. If 5W30 isn't available, if you expect to operate your vehicle in extreme high temperatures or if your Corolla has extensive engine wear, 10W30 is a suitable substitute. You must not use 10W30 if temperatures are expected to fall below 0 degrees Fahrenheit.

Mix an ethylene glycol engine coolant with an equal portion of clean distilled or demineralized water to fill your engine's cooling system. Using a non-ethylene glycol coolant may lead to premature engine corrosion. Toyota Long Life coolant is the preferred fluid choice.

Add an SAE J1703 or FMVSS No 116 DOT 3 brake fluid to your brake fluid reservoir as necessary. You can use the same fluid in your Toyota Corolla hydraulic clutch.

Fill your power steering fluid reservoir as necessary with DEXRON II or DEXRON III automatic transmission fluid. Note that the various grades of DEXRON ATF aren't interchangeable, so under no circumstances should you use other grades like DEXRON V for this application.

Maintain your Corolla transmission with SAE 75W90, API GL-4 or GL-5 gear oil for a manual transmission. An automatic transmission requires Toyota Genuine ATF, Type T-IV.

Things You'll Need

  • 5W30 engine oil
  • Ethylene glycol engine coolant
  • Distilled water
  • DOT 3 brake fluid
  • DEXRON II or III automatic transmission fluid
  • SAE 75W90 gear oil or Toyota Genuine ATF Type T-IV
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