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Also, hot/cold lines on dipsticks are where it's at! My old Chevy 350/TH400 has both marks, which makes it a piece of cake to check the fluid. I guess 2 marks is also too complicated for modern engineers? Because it's impossible to figure out where the fluid settles when cold, or hot, whatever... So dumb.
The 4th Generation has a "cold" crosshatched area and a "hot" crosshatched area on the dipstick, plus a crook (bent section) in the dip stick. The "cold" mode is much easier to check. The dipstick has information on it as well, like "DO NOT OVERFILL". Well ......... who reads a dipstick or the Owner Manual, for that matter.

The crook in the dipstick, what's that for?

Is the transmission fluid level supposed to be at the top of the crosshatched area?

As to no drain plugs, that's common. The differentials on my Jeep have no drain plugs, just fill plugs. After removing the cover plates, draining the fluids, and RTVing things back together, I now just pump the fluid out to change it, a lot less work. I usually add a bit of fresh fluid and pump that out as well, to help clean things up (peace of mind). The Jeep has a lot of miles on it and no major drive train work to date, just front axle outer U-joints.
 

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The crook in the dipstick, what's that for?

Is the transmission fluid level supposed to be at the top of the crosshatched area?
The crook is to keep the stick from rubbing the sides of the tube and picking up fluid that would cause a false reading.

If you seriously need to know what the crosshatch is for... step away from the toolbox!
 

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The crook is to keep the stick from rubbing the sides of the tube and picking up fluid that would cause a false reading.

If you seriously need to know what the crosshatch is for... step away from the toolbox!

He knows what's is for, he's a trivia guy.
 

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The 4th Generation has a "cold" crosshatched area and a "hot" crosshatched area on the dipstick, plus a crook (bent section) in the dip stick. The "cold" mode is much easier to check. The dipstick has information on it as well, like "DO NOT OVERFILL". Well ......... who reads a dipstick or the Owner Manual, for that matter.

The crook in the dipstick, what's that for?

Is the transmission fluid level supposed to be at the top of the crosshatched area?

As to no drain plugs, that's common. The differentials on my Jeep have no drain plugs, just fill plugs. After removing the cover plates, draining the fluids, and RTVing things back together, I now just pump the fluid out to change it, a lot less work. I usually add a bit of fresh fluid and pump that out as well, to help clean things up (peace of mind). The Jeep has a lot of miles on it and no major drive train work to date, just front axle outer U-joints.
Simple, straight forward, easy, and cost them nothing. Which is why it irritates me that the new ones don't have a proper dipstick. What if you have an ultra slow leak? Like maybe it needs to be topped off every year or something with a quart, but you're supposed to go to the dealer every time to check the level??? It's all just silly. It's bad customer service IMO. A good company anticipates minor irritants their customers may have with their products, and if it's a cheap thing to avoid, they avoid it.

It's all part of this weird trend of treating customers like stupid children who can't be trusted, and shouldn't be allowed to make even minor decisions about stuff. Computer programs have become waaay more dumbed down and limited in their options in a lot of ways vs even 5-10 years ago. Features that were adjustable in previous versions have had options removed. The defaults in many programs have been designed as if the primary user will be a 3 year old!

Blargh. I guess I'm just going into the crotchety old man stage of my life a few decades earlier than most people!
 

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The 4th Generation has a "cold" crosshatched area and a "hot" crosshatched area on the dipstick, plus a crook (bent section) in the dip stick. The "cold" mode is much easier to check. The dipstick has information on it as well, like "DO NOT OVERFILL". Well ......... who reads a dipstick or the Owner Manual, for that matter.

The crook in the dipstick, what's that for?

Is the transmission fluid level supposed to be at the top of the crosshatched area?

The crook is the full mark for the transmission fluid, stone cold, engine not running. Just happens that way. :)
It helps with reading a proper level on the dipstick although it doesn't seem to work that well for a "hot" reading. Keeps the dipstick somewhat centered in the tube to avoid swiping the side with fluid.

At the bottom of the crosshatched area is fine as well. The intent is that the level be within the crosshatched area. The length of the crosshatch doesn't represent a liter or quart of fluid, actually much less.
 

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Discussion Starter #66
I've decided to have the transmission service done.

I cleaned off the oil dipstick and put it in the transmission tube.

The transmission fluid, to me at least, does NOT smell burned.

The fluid is light brown in color based on what was on the paper towel after wiping off the dipstick.

I'm waiting for a Dorman transmission pan with plug to arrive and then will do the service.
 

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I've decided to have the transmission service done.

I cleaned off the oil dipstick and put it in the transmission tube.

The transmission fluid, to me at least, does NOT smell burned.

The fluid is light brown in color based on what was on the paper towel after wiping off the dipstick.

I'm waiting for a Dorman transmission pan with plug to arrive and then will do the service.
That is good. Are you going to do it yourself?

Remember, you should replace the ATF at lease three times. Replace filter the first time, then just the ATF the other two times.

It should be real easy the second and third times because you already have the drain plug.

Stay away from any witch brew or weird recipes.

Only use ATF+4, nothing else.
 

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That is good. Are you going to do it yourself?

Remember, you should replace the ATF at lease three times. Replace filter the first time, then just the ATF the other two times.

It should be real easy the second and third times because you already have the drain plug.

Stay away from any witch brew or weird recipes.

Only use ATF+4, nothing else.
The full meal deal?

Now, I understand you. You don't change your transmission fluid means you don't change it once, you change it 3 times. Sounds excessive to me but I have done that before. :cautious:
 

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When you get your new Pacifica, here's what you will be faced with:
  • a transmission filter that is buried within the transmission. Forget about DIYing that.
  • a very expensive transmission fluid with the letters "ZF" in its description.
  • Fluid And Filter Changes: Under normal operating conditions, the fluid installed at the factory will provide satisfactory lubrication for the life of the vehicle. Routine fluid and filter changes are not required. However, change the fluid and filter if the fluid becomes contaminated (with water, etc.), or if the transmission is disassembled for any reason.
Lifetime fluid seems to be the trend. The same ZF transmission is used by other Manufactures as well.
 

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When you get your new Pacifica, here's what you will be faced with:
Lifetime fluid seems to be the trend. The same ZF transmission is used by other Manufactures as well.
Been telling you guys for a long time, but you don't listen!

Next trend: Mirrorless cars.

Then: Fuseless cars, you'll see!
 

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Wh
Been telling you guys for a long time, but you don't listen!

Next trend: Mirrorless cars.

Then: Fuseless cars, you'll see!
What about the vanity mirror? :)

I think you meant fussless. :)
 
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Jeepman - is lifetime fill on the ZF 9-speed based on what Chrysler is saying or ZF?

I have a ZF transmission (5HP19) in my VW Passat. Same transmission is in a bunch of Audis also. VW-Audi Group says it's a lifetime fill. ZF recommends transmission service every 60k miles. I go with what ZF says. Although VAG is technically right.... if you never change your ATF it will last the life of the transmission. Just a much shorter life, IMO.

Just saying that if it's Chryco that is saying the ZF is a lifetime fill, then I would double-check what ZF recommends for that same transmission.

ZF is a very reputable OE part manufacturer, but their transmissions are also very spendy to replace. That was first thing I thought of when I heard the Pacificas are getting the ZF 9-speed.


When you get your new Pacifica, here's what you will be faced with:
  • a transmission filter that is buried within the transmission. Forget about DIYing that.
  • a very expensive transmission fluid with the letters "ZF" in its description.
Lifetime fluid seems to be the trend. The same ZF transmission is used by other Manufactures as well.
 

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An interesting talk about the ZF 9 speed and how it works:

Vehicle Manufacturers seem to be saying lifetime fluid for the 8 and 9 speed transmissions. ZF not so much. A member on a Jeep Wrangler JL Forum has done some searching on this: ZF contradicts FCA on ZF8 "Lifetime" transmission fluid
 
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Vehicle Manufacturers seem to be saying lifetime fluid for the 8 and 9 speed transmissions. ZF not so much. A member on a Jeep Wrangler JL Forum has done some searching on this: ZF contradicts FCA on ZF8 "Lifetime" transmission fluid
Very interesting thread. So ZF is saying 60k miles (100k km) interval for ATF fluid change. This is what makes me not trust Chrysler (or VW and others) who say lifetime when the trans manufacturer says 60k, and also why I don't trust Chrysler on their in-house 6-speed saying fluid is good for 120k miles. I think 60k makes more sense. But of course I have no data or real basis to say that.
 

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This is what makes me not trust Chrysler (or VW and others) who say lifetime when the trans manufacturer says 60k, and also why I don't trust Chrysler on their in-house 6-speed saying fluid is good for 120k miles. I think 60k makes more sense. But of course I have no data or real basis to say that.

You should go by what vehicle manufacturer tells you not by what transmission manufacturer tells you, unless you receive a separate warranty direct from the transmission manufacturer, which you won't.

In case of a warranty claim, the transmission manufacturer will not help but vehicle manufacturer will.

If you don't trust Chrysler, buy something else instead.
 

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Clearly, the life of the vehicle to the manufacturer is the warranty period. After the usual 5 years on the drivetrain or 100,000 miles, they really don't have further responsibility.

Transmissions are designed for fluids with certain characteristics and they have additives which help maintain those characteristics. Those additives deteriorate over time. It can't hurt and it could well help to change out the fluid (following the manufacturer's procedure) more often than every 100,000 miles. One problem, of course, is people doing it wrong, and one can't necessarily count on the dealers to do it correctly, either..many.of them want to sell you a full flush, even when the owner's manual and the repair and maintenance manuals just say drop the pan and change the filter. Sadly, wrong levels can't be detected by owners now because there are no dip sticks, and how will we know the correct fluid was used? So, not doing changes avoids such problems.

Best thing is to promote public transportation and drive less. Heresy, I know. But that'll take the strain off the old tranny.
 

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That's about it, in a nutshell. Idea is good, but process may erase any benefits. A risk. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. If the transmission needs a fluid change, it will let you know with poor shifting, hopefully sooner than too late.

At least, that's one way of looking at it.
 

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That's about it, in a nutshell. Idea is good, but process may erase any benefits. A risk. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. If the transmission needs a fluid change, it will let you know with poor shifting, hopefully sooner than too late.

At least, that's one way of looking at it.
Did I tell you that I never change ATF?
 

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Did I tell you that I never change ATF?
I think I heard you say something like that once or twice. :)

When your transmission was taken out by a rock, how did you gather up the old fluid? Ha,ha.
 
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I think I heard you say something like that once or twice. :)

When your transmission was taken out by a rock, how did you gather up the old fluid? Ha,ha.
I never change ATF but, I never recommend or ask others to do the same (soon you will be the one recommending others not to change ATF) ?

Transmission was replaced by a new one remember?, so it was not needed to "gather" old fluid.
 
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