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Old 05-16-2016, 08:27 AM   #1
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Default Is this a bad color for tranny fluid?

This morning on my way to South loop. My cars "AT" light came on and shift down from 5th gear to 3rd... And it wouldn't shift up. After getting off the expressway. I turned my car off and back on. Light was gone! Wtf! And shifted fine.

With flash


And without
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Old 05-16-2016, 08:32 AM   #2
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it would help to know what type of car it is, and how many miles are on the vehicle.
if it's regular atf it doesn't look too great.
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Old 05-16-2016, 08:33 AM   #3
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2008 Mazda 3 2.3 with about 120k :
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Old 05-16-2016, 08:36 AM   #4
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Old 05-16-2016, 08:38 AM   #5
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Looks about right for 120 k
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Old 05-16-2016, 08:42 AM   #6
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2008 Mazda 3 2.3 with about 120k :
judging by the color of fluid, i'm going to guess it was never changed. you could try doing a drain/fill and just hope for the best
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Old 05-16-2016, 08:52 AM   #7
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A friend had the same problem, he was able to drive it for about 2-3 weeks before it was permanently in limp mode. It's likely going to fail soon, trade that shit in to some scummy ass dealership.
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Old 05-16-2016, 09:43 AM   #8
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At this point, you're better off not changing it.
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Old 05-16-2016, 11:30 AM   #9
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I still got 2 years left on the dealer warranty. Engine and transmission.
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Old 05-18-2016, 09:47 AM   #10
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I still got 2 years left on the dealer warranty. Engine and transmission.
I've seen worse. hows the trans drive? Did it give you any cause to check the fluid? Or are you just doing it because you decided to look at it?

Light brown fluid isn't horrible. Black and burnt smelling is when you trade that crap in. Because its on borrowed time.

Its best to get a white paper towel and let the trans fluid drip onto that. That will show the color better.

If its a light brown then I wouldn't feel bad about changing it unless the trans has been acting up. I'd just do a drain an fill though. That won't get all of the fluid out, but it will also avoid dislodging any sludge that may be in the valve-body.

You can follow that up with another drain and fill in a month and eventually most of the gunk will work itself out, as long as the steels and clutch packs haven't been glazed and varnished.

I'd look at the warranty terms and see exactly what they cover. I'd also look at the transmission's fluid service schedule. If its a "fill for life" and the warranty covers replacement due to failure I'd say have the dealer flush it, and if it fails you can put the replacement on them.

I never have understood this fill for life crap. Transmission fluid is one of the most highly additive based oils out there. Its got crazy amounts of detergents in it to keep the valve body clean.
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Old 05-18-2016, 09:58 AM   #11
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I've seen worse. hows the trans drive? Did it give you any cause to check the fluid? Or are you just doing it because you decided to look at it?

Light brown fluid isn't horrible. Black and burnt smelling is when you trade that crap in. Because its on borrowed time.

Its best to get a white paper towel and let the trans fluid drip onto that. That will show the color better.

If its a light brown then I wouldn't feel bad about changing it unless the trans has been acting up. I'd just do a drain an fill though. That won't get all of the fluid out, but it will also avoid dislodging any sludge that may be in the valve-body.

You can follow that up with another drain and fill in a month and eventually most of the gunk will work itself out, as long as the steels and clutch packs haven't been glazed and varnished.

I'd look at the warranty terms and see exactly what they cover. I'd also look at the transmission's fluid service schedule. If its a "fill for life" and the warranty covers replacement due to failure I'd say have the dealer flush it, and if it fails you can put the replacement on them.

I never have understood this fill for life crap. Transmission fluid is one of the most highly additive based oils out there. Its got crazy amounts of detergents in it to keep the valve body clean.
The transmission feels great, shifts perfect. But according to the cars computer, a shift solenoid Is getting stuck. When that happens it won't let me go passed 3rd gear. I'm changing 2 shift solenoids and transmission oil and filter. Hopefully it stops.

The dealer warranty covers engine and transmission problems. But I have to pay for 50% of labor and parts -.-.
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Old 05-18-2016, 09:59 AM   #12
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I was also recommend to add this stuff to the new transmission oil :
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Old 05-18-2016, 11:47 AM   #13
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Oh hells no.

Factory fluid type or nothing
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Old 05-18-2016, 12:48 PM   #14
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I wouldn't put any kind of additive or supplement in a fully functioning transmission. All they do is destroy the additive packs and properties of the oil.
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Old 05-18-2016, 01:04 PM   #15
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Quote:
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The transmission feels great, shifts perfect. But according to the cars computer, a shift solenoid Is getting stuck. When that happens it won't let me go passed 3rd gear. I'm changing 2 shift solenoids and transmission oil and filter. Hopefully it stops.

The dealer warranty covers engine and transmission problems. But I have to pay for 50% of labor and parts -.-.
IMO Bring it to the dealer and have them do the trans flush.

If you think 50% sucks, wait till you replace the fluid and solenoid and then the trans lets go and they won't warranty diddly because you touched it
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Old 05-18-2016, 01:23 PM   #16
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At this point, you're better off not changing it.
This x11ty billion.

After 100k, the trans and fluid have become one. You force them to part ways with each other and the trans is almost certain to protest in short order.
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Old 05-18-2016, 01:24 PM   #17
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Yeah you guys are right, I'm going to take it back to the dealer instead.
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Old 05-18-2016, 02:32 PM   #18
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A drain and fill should be fine. It won't power flush the system, so plenty of old fluid will be left over.

That fluid doesn't seem dark enough that I would worry. But lay out a few drops on a paper towel and look at the color there.

This video has a decent example of bad trans fluid, its a bit cheesy though.

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