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How hard is it to change the transmission fluid ?? by 86 Vintage Fiero
Started on: 07-12-2013 09:38 AM
Replies: 11 (723 views)
Last post by: James Bond 007 on 07-15-2013 09:31 AM
86 Vintage Fiero
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Report this Post07-12-2013 09:38 AM Click Here to See the Profile for 86 Vintage FieroClick Here to Email 86 Vintage FieroSend a Private Message to 86 Vintage FieroEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
My 86 GT has had a major overhaul by me over the last few months but I would still like to do the transmission fluid and the filter. My question is how hard it is to do myself ??? Keep in mind I am not the best and I will be asking for help if I get stuck. I read the service manual, basically it said -- take off the pan, drain the fluid, replace the filter, rebolt the pan back and fill. Is it that simple or am I missing something ???
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Arns85GT
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Report this Post07-12-2013 10:22 AM Click Here to See the Profile for Arns85GTClick Here to Email Arns85GTSend a Private Message to Arns85GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I don't have the automatic, but from what I know of automatics, yes it is that simple. It is also potentially messy.

Arn
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rogergarrison
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Report this Post07-12-2013 10:38 AM Click Here to See the Profile for rogergarrisonClick Here to Email rogergarrisonSend a Private Message to rogergarrisonEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
It is that simple.

Just be prepared for potential problems. It may be working fine now, even though theres some wear. Putting in all new fluid may be asking for disaster. I actually know people who drain the fluid and save it, put in a new filter and reinstall the old fluid just to avoid problems. A clogged filter will reduce the oil flow. A new filter can remedy that without putting new fluid in that will flush out all the residue that is what is keeping it working. I normally dont ever touch an auto trans till it quits. I normally get 200k on my cars before I trade them without ever touching the trans. I had problems in the old days with every trans I ever changed fluid in.
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masospaghetti
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Report this Post07-12-2013 10:50 AM Click Here to See the Profile for masospaghettiClick Here to Email masospaghettiSend a Private Message to masospaghettiEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
It's that simple conceptually. Getting the pan down is kind of a pain, and quite messy, because its full of fluid as you pull it down.

I 'd recommend new fluid, old fluid oxidizes and breaks down over time and with heat. I've never had a problem with new fluid causing problems in old transmissions (including a 89 Beretta with the same TH-125C transmission).
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kikinz24
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Report this Post07-13-2013 09:22 AM Click Here to See the Profile for kikinz24Click Here to Email kikinz24Send a Private Message to kikinz24Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
A friend of mine works for a transmission shop. And swears by a backflush cleanout compared to a filter fluid changes esp if it has high miles and hasn't been changes before... as he stated the trans is worn in to the reduced fluid pressure. And fluid consitency already inside . When changing a filter and putting new fluid in it. It can blow worn internal seals bc of the higher flow rate. And the new fluid can seep in places the old wouldnt due to the new additives.... who knows if this is true? If someone else can chime in it would be great... but I honestly believe him.. bc reguardless which route I chose it would cost me about the same. And I don't think he would steer me wrong
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masospaghetti
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Report this Post07-13-2013 10:05 AM Click Here to See the Profile for masospaghettiClick Here to Email masospaghettiSend a Private Message to masospaghettiEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Wouldn't a flush cause the problem he's stating, but even worse? A regular fluid/filter replacement only changes about 50% of the fluid out, while a flush gets virtually all of it.

If there's deposits that are holding the transmission together than new fluid may clean out the deposits, causing leaks, similar to how synthetic oil can "cause" leaks in older engines.
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Fiero.1984
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Report this Post07-13-2013 11:05 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Fiero.1984Send a Private Message to Fiero.1984Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Lots of people never change fluid and drive their cars without problems. Smell the fluid and if it smells burnt, then you should change it. If it is reddish and clear, you probably do not have to change it. A lot depends upon how the car was driven.

I decided that it is better to change it because dirty fluids has bits of metal in it and those bits of metal are not doing anything good for the transmission. Changing it yourself is a mess because you have to drop the pan and the fluid comes gushing out. I have done it a few times but now I take it to a shop and let them do it. The local transmission shop changes fluid and filter for about $80. If you change it yourself, you will need between 4 to 6 quarts of Dextron fluid (about $6/quart) plus a new fliter (about $10 to $15) or at least $40 for fluid and filter. So you will not save much money doing it yourself.

Before changing the fluid read a Haynes Manual on page 53 which describes the procedure and you might change your mind about doing it yourself.

My 2 cents worth.
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lateFormula
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Report this Post07-14-2013 12:02 AM Click Here to See the Profile for lateFormulaSend a Private Message to lateFormulaEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
If you think you want to try to replace the trans fluid yourself, here's a tip. Buy a pump like this:


These things cost $10-$15 depending on where you buy it. Use the small diameter tube on the inlet side of the pump and stick that small tube down the trans dipstick tube. you should be able to get that small tube all the way down to the pan in the trans. Pump until there is no more fluid coming out. Then you can pull the pan without having fluid come gushing out. But even with pumping the majority of fluid out of the pan, you should still just loosen all the trans pan perimeter bolts (don't take them out) and then use a pry tool to pull the pan away from the gasket/trans. Once you have done this, you can put a floorjack up to the pan (put a short 2x4 on the jack to spread the load and keep the pan balanced). Then remove all the bolts, lower the jack and you will have the trans pan with a small amount of fluid in it. No big mess.

[This message has been edited by lateFormula (edited 07-14-2013).]

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Lou6t4gto
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Report this Post07-14-2013 07:14 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Lou6t4gtoClick Here to Email Lou6t4gtoSend a Private Message to Lou6t4gtoEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
couldn't you just disconnect the cooling lines and put the output line into a 5 gallon bucket and the inlet line into a gallon of New fluid. start the car , changing out when the new fluid runs out. ( think they hold about 3 gallons w/ converter) do it until it's clean ? that way you get All of it. just a theory. (then change the filter).
I have changed the fluid in about 15 cars in my lifetime, never had a problem stemming from a fluid change.
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86 Vintage Fiero
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Report this Post07-15-2013 09:25 AM Click Here to See the Profile for 86 Vintage FieroClick Here to Email 86 Vintage FieroSend a Private Message to 86 Vintage FieroEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Thanks for all your input. The main problem is it doesn't shift into third, so I figured maybe the transmission oil needed changed even though the mileage is less than 41 K miles.
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86 Vintage Fiero
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Report this Post07-15-2013 09:30 AM Click Here to See the Profile for 86 Vintage FieroClick Here to Email 86 Vintage FieroSend a Private Message to 86 Vintage FieroEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post

86 Vintage Fiero

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Thanks for all your input. The main problem is it doesn't shift into third, so I figured maybe the transmission oil needed changed even though the mileage is less than 41 K miles.
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James Bond 007
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Report this Post07-15-2013 09:31 AM Click Here to See the Profile for James Bond 007Send a Private Message to James Bond 007Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Be sure to wear rubber gloves and the tranny filter is pressed on, so wiggle it off. Don't forget to clean the crud out of the bottom of the pan. I usually let one side drop down slightly lower than the other, to get as much fluid out as possible.
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