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Transmission Fluid Change procedure?

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Old 01-27-2012, 02:11 PM   #1
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Default Transmission Fluid Change procedure?

I searched tons of threads and decided I should change out my fluid (NOT FLUSH).

I have a 99 5.4 V9 with 94k on it. No records. The fluid is still nice and red and no awkward smells. But I believe it is time.

Dealer wants $155 to put new filter in and replace fluid, no flush. Is this about right? Or is it super easy to do myself?

My biggest questions:

How do I drain it? I know I have to remove the pan, but if I do that, will all the fluid just come pouring out on me? How does that work? Can I reuse the old gasket or recommended to get a new one?

I also read that will not get barely half the fluid out. I have a rubber plug thingy on the bottom of the trans. Is this to access the Torque Converter drain plug? If I drain that, that will get the majority of the fluid out?

How do I REFILL the trans? Through the dipstick in the engine bay?

I think thats about it.

Thanks !!!
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Old 01-27-2012, 02:47 PM   #2
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do not drain the converter, i don't think they have plugs on the converters anymore anyways, draining is messy but can be done with little mess if patient, take the bolts from all 3 sides, leave one end of bolts in, slowly remove bolts about half way, the pan wil drop and the fluid will drain, then when the fluid is low you can remove the pan, take time clean good and reistall is reverse
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Old 01-27-2012, 03:33 PM   #3
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I usually have someone help me when I drop the tranny pan. Get all the bolts loose and and wait til the fluid quits leaking then have someone hold the pan up tight while you pull all the bolts out and then carefully drop the pan. Make sure you have something big to catch the fluid cuz it is messy.
Torque converters do still have drain plugs...at least my 98 does. And it sounds like what your talking about is the access hole to the converter. You just have to turn the engine over until the drain plug lines up with the hole. And yes, refill it through the dipstick tube. But the pan only holds about 5 quarts and the tranny/lines holds 15 total...
Also, if you drop the pan and find a yellow plug in there, that means the fluid has never been changed. Dealers use that to plug the dipstick hole until everything is put together and then just poke it through when they install the dipstick tube.
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Old 01-27-2012, 03:47 PM   #4
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Old 01-27-2012, 03:51 PM   #5
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Thanks a ton everyone!
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Old 01-27-2012, 04:18 PM   #6
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I called the dealer again to see their procedure for how they do it... So the $155 is just to drop the pan, new filter and replace the fluid that was in the pan. He said 5 qts is what it is.

Hardly a fluid change. So if that is all they are doing, is that all I should do? Or SHOULD I drain the converter if I can? Just not sure what the point of putting 5 clean qts of fluid into 10 dirty qts will accomplish? Or is it the filter change that makes the most difference?
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Old 01-27-2012, 04:44 PM   #7
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my 98 has a tc drain plug. It's not hard to check if you have one or not. Drain the tc if you can other wise its a waste of time and money in my opinion.
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