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Thread: Transmission Fluid

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  1. #1

    Transmission Fluid

    I got a 2002 Galant. The car's been producing a bit of a burning smell lately and the seems to shift a bit off lately, so it seems I need to change the tranny fluid. Does anyone know how much fluid usually drains out if you do a pan drop? I'd just want to purchase the right amount before I go stranding myself. I tried looking around and 6 quarts seemed to be about right, but I just wanted to make sure. Also, do I drop off old tranny fluid in the same place as old oil?

  2. #2
    Experienced TGC Member 02redgalant's Avatar
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    8.5 quarts don't need to drop the pan;remove the radiator transmission cooling line (i believe the return end) and then remove the drain plug on drivers side for the remaining fluid use oem SP3 fluid from the dealer should run you about 50 bucks

  3. #3
    Senior TGC Member DTP's Avatar
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    Do a drain and fill... Flush it basically while you're at it. Only do this if you KNOW the car has had a tranny flush, or your miles are below about 100k or so. Correct me if i'm wron guys.

    However many it takes to drain and fill it two or three times...
    -Andrew

  4. #4
    Yeah took me about 8-9Qts for a drain and refill. You can get rid of the fluid at the recycling center wherever you get rid of your old oil.

  5. #5
    NEVER do just a drain and fill. Problems most often arise when not completely removing any old transmission fluid. A full-flush (using a flush machine) is the most complete method of service for your transmission. See if you leave any old fluid it will have some without any friction modifiers to help the transmission gears and internal valve work properly. Combining new and old fluid may also cause 'frothing' which means this will make your problems worse.

    Completely flushing ALL THE OLD FLUID out and replacing it with factory approved Diamond SPIII transmission fluid is the ONLY way to do this service. Anything else and you risk potential transmission problems.

  6. #6
    Senior TGC Member DTP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RedGalant2k1 View Post
    NEVER do just a drain and fill. Problems most often arise when not completely removing any old transmission fluid. A full-flush (using a flush machine) is the most complete method of service for your transmission. See if you leave any old fluid it will have some without any friction modifiers to help the transmission gears and internal valve work properly. Combining new and old fluid may also cause 'frothing' which means this will make your problems worse.

    Completely flushing ALL THE OLD FLUID out and replacing it with factory approved Diamond SPIII transmission fluid is the ONLY way to do this service. Anything else and you risk potential transmission problems.
    Not to start anything, but wouldn't a drain and fill theoretically eventually get all of the "shit" out of the tranny after 2 or 3 DnF? Seems to me that the leftover fluid would eventually get replaced by new fluid when it's rinsed out, per say.

    I had a DnF done on my car 10k ago, with no problems. (Knocks on wood).

    Just going from my experience...
    -Andrew

  7. #7
    Most people do not do a Drain and Refill regularly enough from a brand new Transmission to keep their transmission fluid clean. There are two opinions on the Drain and refill option vs the flush option. Some people on TGC maintain that if you're doing your first flush after 100K on your old fluid, you might end up messing up your interior tranny filter. Others say that they have seen remarkable changes after the flush.

  8. #8
    Senior TGC Member DTP's Avatar
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    I have heard that if the fluid has NEVER been done, that you should just leave it if you're at a certain mileage. I have had 2 shops tell me that one...

    My fluid wasn't that bad when i had it done, so i didn't really worry about it. I had it done the same time i had everything else done.
    -Andrew

  9. #9
    Experienced TGC Member 02redgalant's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RedGalant2k1 View Post
    NEVER do just a drain and fill. Problems most often arise when not completely removing any old transmission fluid. A full-flush (using a flush machine) is the most complete method of service for your transmission. See if you leave any old fluid it will have some without any friction modifiers to help the transmission gears and internal valve work properly. Combining new and old fluid may also cause 'frothing' which means this will make your problems worse.

    Completely flushing ALL THE OLD FLUID out and replacing it with factory approved Diamond SPIII transmission fluid is the ONLY way to do this service. Anything else and you risk potential transmission problems.
    its really preference if you can flush it then great but if not A Drain and Fill is fine the FSM actually explains how to properly drain and fill and by draining first and filling partially and then removing the return line and running the car you can actually see the color and clarity improvement of the oil as it drains;i've done this 3x now i beat my car everyday lol and im at 140k with no issues
    Last edited by 02redgalant; 03-21-2011 at 11:48 PM

  10. #10
    TGC Lifetime Patron oakrdrs187's Avatar
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    From our "How many miles" thread.

    Quote Originally Posted by IVORY_G View Post
    A drain and fill is just that, you drain fluid through the drain plug, re-plug it, then fill it back up. A Flush is done with a machine which physically pushes out any debris or gunk with force. This can cause damage to old seals and such which is why its not recommended on vehicles over 100K. Which Ive heard on more than one occassion from Mitsu mechanics and other mechanics. I mean why play "Russian Roulette"?

  11. #11
    I had my a/t a tranny flushed when it was at 77,000 miles. On the same day, as I was crossing a bridge the tranny would not accelerate as normal. Turns out the transmission was stuck in 3rd and would not shift through the gears correctly. Got it rebuilt and eventually went 5spd.

    2001 5 speed 4g64T

  12. #12
    Guys I just went to the dealership to check out Transmission fluid and the guy at services's said that Dexron 3 ATF fluid is the same thing as the Dealer recommended fluid, but just a lot cheaper. I was wondering if any of you guys have had any experience with it.

  13. #13
    Different car companies make different transmissions that require different fluids.
    GM - Dexron
    Ford - Mercon
    Chrysler - ATF +4
    Honda - ATF Z1 or DW1
    Mitsubishi / Hyundai / Kia - ATF SPIII

    and if it is a continuously variable transmission, it's completely different again.

    Using fluid that isn't specced for your car can cause transmission slipping and other problems. I've heard the Chrysler fluid is very grabby and Dexron isn't. Putting Dexron in a Chrysler will cause slippage.

    So I'd say only use fluid that says SPIII on the bottle.

  14. #14
    Rusurrecting an old thread, need advice on high mileage.
    My 01 galant has 150k. I don't know it's history, we bought it used and can't trust the dealer used proper fluid if at all, so no idea what's in it. It has a tranny fluid leak at the radiator that needs to be replaced. I don't notice any burnt smell at the dipstick and it didn't look bad, I didn't drop the pan and look at anything there.

    The original reason I wanted to use the true Mitsu diamond fluid is because it's got a shudder primarily at 50mph and some other speeds. Dealer has no clue. I brought it into a tranny shop and it "didn't do it for them". In doing research here and elsewhere it seemed to be the consensus that using genuine Mits fluid solves it. So I have it scheduled to go into the dealer next week to put genuine fluid in and fix the leaky fitting.

    1) hoping putting genuine fluid in will fix the shudder?
    2) At this point it looks like I should NOT flush, just DnF?

  15. #15
    TGC Lifetime Patron oakrdrs187's Avatar
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    Doubtful that fluid alone will fix it. There is probably internal damage.

    This of course after ruling out suspension, alignment and wheel balance.

  16. #16
    I drain and fill mine, 293k on original and still shifts fine. Diamond sp3 only
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  17. #17
    Experienced TGC Member AVERAGE's Avatar
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    What would cause burnt fluid in a newly swapped tranny? Not enough fluid? I recently swapped a motor/tranny form wrecked 8g which worked perfectly fine in its
    original chassis to another body and had this problem. Thought something happened to my tranny so I swapped them. Drove the car one time and it shifted fine went back to try it again and the same thing from the original tranny. Pulled the stick out and the fluid was burnt. What could cause this?

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by AVERAGE View Post
    What would cause burnt fluid in a newly swapped tranny? Not enough fluid? I recently swapped a motor/tranny form wrecked 8g which worked perfectly fine in its
    original chassis to another body and had this problem. Thought something happened to my tranny so I swapped them. Drove the car one time and it shifted fine went back to try it again and the same thing from the original tranny. Pulled the stick out and the fluid was burnt. What could cause this?
    For future reference, you'll get more attention starting a new thread about your issues. Especially since a lot of these old threads are dead.
    To answer your question, I will quote curtis73 from the grassroots Motorsports forums.

    As the manager of three Cottman transmission locations, I can safely say it does not necessarily mean you need a rebuild. Unless you're in central TX... then I recommend a Platinum rebuild with new axles and wheel bearings*[https://grassrootsmotorsports]

    Burnt fluid means burnt fluid. Auto trannys get hot. They use friction clutches that are held together by hydraulic pressure and are bathed in ATF as well. Once you're in gear and going, theoretically there is no slipping or wear between those clutches, but just like with a manual tranny, during shifts is when those clutches are being applied and released. That's when they slip. They make pretty crazy localized heat. After years of wearing off friction material, the fluid becomes abrasive and accelerates wear... which is why fluid changes are recommended.

    At this point if the transmission is working properly, pull the pan, change the filter, and go about your business. Some people say you shouldn't do a tranny flush, but I don't stress too much about it. Pulling the pan will replace about 4-5 quarts of the total 9 or 10 that is in there. Doing a flush will replace it all which can be a bit of a shock to the clutches (but that is another lecture).

    I do flushes on cars with less than 100k (depending on the transmission and use) but stick with pan only on older or HD vehicles.

    I won't sugar coat this... the 5EAT and 4EAT transmissions in the Subarus are not the greatest. The fact that you are experiencing burnt fluid at 100k is perfectly normal but it should be addressed.

    You might be surprised at how some of these modern automatics suck. Jags are lucky to make 60k. Rovers you're lucky to make 40k. 98-05 Hondas are often good for 100-150k. 02-07 Maximas? Fuhgettaboutit. No parts available. 9 times out of 10 you have to buy a new tranny from Nissan for $3000 and they fail about every 60k.
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