Metal flakes in diff fluid - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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Old 08-10-2011
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Metal flakes in diff fluid

Hey,

I have a 2011 Ranger that I purchased about 8-9 months ago. It's a 5 speed FX4, it's currently got 15,000km's on it and I just did my third oil change. I just went to a quick lube because I was pressed for time and convenience. I am not a mechanic, and I don't claim to be...but these hosers are trying to tell me that my differential fluid is already going black, and that he found flakes of metal in it..

I don't know whether or not this guy is just jerking my chain to sell me **** I don't need, or bringing up legit issues that need to be taken care of. I have not yet hooked my truck up to any sort of trailer(no towing done yet), and I don't see any reason why my differential would be flaking metal at all. I shift gears in the 2500rpm range, I don't bag the **** out of my truck, don't do burnouts. Yes I realize it's still under warranty, but I figured I'd look for other opinions before giving up my truck for a few days for no reason.
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Old 08-10-2011
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a little bit is normal but not a **** ton. Due too your truck being so new everything is spinning for the 1st time there will be some shavings in the bottom. Invest in a magnetic fill plug so the particles stick to it
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Old 08-10-2011
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why is the word **** unblocked ??
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Old 08-10-2011
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Is it normal for my diff fluid to be discolored this early in my trucks life?
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Old 08-10-2011
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you went in for an oil change and they got into the diff? tell em to ef off
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Old 08-10-2011
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They always do it...they grab fluid samples from your tranny/diff and then smear them on a piece of ceramic. Then they take brand new out of the bottle fluids, squirt it next to your dirty fluid and try to convince you to spend more money.

Straight from their website: Fluid changes: engine oil, transmission, coolant, differential and transfer case
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Old 08-10-2011
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you dont need it changed at that low of miles. they were just hoping that you would say yes and they would get an extra few bucks... Kinda like when they tell you your air filter is dirty and it aint or your windshield wipers are bad and they still work fine... Yeah I wouldnt worry do it at the normal intervals specified in the manual. BTW diff fluid is already dark brown when it goes in... Your good
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Old 08-10-2011
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I can almost guarantee you that they didnt even check the fluid
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Old 08-10-2011
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Originally Posted by Leddy420 View Post
They always do it...they grab fluid samples from your tranny/diff and then smear them on a piece of ceramic. Then they take brand new out of the bottle fluids, squirt it next to your dirty fluid and try to convince you to spend more money.

Straight from their website: Fluid changes: engine oil, transmission, coolant, differential and transfer case
im suppose to do that at work to. do i? no .. if it needs to be changed ill suggest it
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Old 08-10-2011
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Yeah...like I said I'm not exactly mechanically inclined but I get the basics of how things work. In order for them to grab a fluid sample from my diff, they would have to have removed the plate from my axle?

And RangerDave...does that mean your supposed to try to convince people to buy fluids they don't need at work, but you don't?

After doing some research online it seems to be quite a regular occurrence that these companies try to scam people into buying things they don't need
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Old 08-10-2011
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I was a tech at the Mr. Lube in Abbotsford for a year (06-07), and the prices are not a scam, because it's convenience you pay for. However, while working there we were told to do very unethical things by our manager. At first we weren't but then our first manager got fired and was replaced by a new guy who was there to bring in more revenue for the store (it is a very slow location). These are some things I can remember:

The bulk 10w30 Castrol Oil that the techs will use the oil gun to fill your car with is not just Castrol 10w30 oil. When we would be overstocked with expired oil in bottles (that were different weight, different brands, different additives, etc.) we were told to dump it in the Castrol 10w30 tank. We would also dump in different brands if we stopped selling a certain one. And any Lube tech will tell you that you shouldn't mix different weights and oil brands together (Mr Lube policy does not recomend this as it will cause the additives to deplete faster and not be as effective in your motor). So if you think you are paying for true Castrol 10w30 oil, your really paying for some knockoff Mr. Lube concoction.

A couple times our manager would be on the floor and we would replace a persons air filter that was due for a change but still appeared in good shape. Our manager would just put the used one in a new box and throw it back on the shelf. He would instruct us to do the same as well.

When doing a transmission flush, were supposed to follow strict recomendations from the manufacturer according to Mr. Lube Poilcy. Our manager would just let enough flow through the machine to empty the transmission and fill it back up. This would not change all of the old transmission oil and we would still charge them for a full flush.

When we wanted to sell a Differential fluid change, we would take the dip stick tool and wipe some old grease on it, or the engine oil and show it to the customer. (If the tech does this, ask to go downstairs and see the fluid for yourself.)

When we would sell a radiator flush, we would dilute the mixture with way more water than recomended.

If we did not meet a certain sales quota we were always in trouble and would not make as much commision, so we were always pressured to sell anything, regardless of it being required or not.

Like I said this only started once we got this new manager (his name was Ryan). He is also Area manager for the Surrey store by King George and Maybe some other one. In any case, I don't think it's the techs fault. You're paid **** there unless you can make some sales, and this manager isn't running all of the stores, mentioned above, so most of them probably don't do this.
Sounds familiar...sigh
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Old 08-10-2011
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Wirelessly posted

I'd ask to smell it. Ik the difference. And what was stated above is true I worked at a place that did the sane exact thing
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Old 08-10-2011
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...thats disturbing
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Old 08-10-2011
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Originally Posted by Leddy420 View Post
...thats disturbing
Sure is, but I don't doubt it.
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Old 08-10-2011
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The sad part is, I remember being a lube tech at Wal-mart when I was 16-17...I'm 25 now. I can speak from personal experience that they actually did proper work there. My work was always verified, double checked etc etc. Filters and oil specs are taken straight from a manual, tire pressure and joint lubrication was always done. Fluid checks were just that, checks. I wouldn't expect this type of shady business practice coming from a well known corporation like Mr.Lube. Scamming under-educated people into buying services and products they don't need?...absolutely ridiculous


On a side note....seriously, why the HELL are they even touching my transfer case/differential? The LAST thing I want is some kid at Mr. Lube going anywhere near those 2 parts. I just got really baked, and sitting here thinking about this is driving me nuts.

Last edited by Leddy420; 08-11-2011 at 12:03 AM.
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Old 08-11-2011
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If your truck is an '11, bring it to the dealer and have them look at it since it's under warranty.
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Old 08-18-2011
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[QUOTE=Leddy420;1881973]Yeah...like I said I'm not exactly mechanically inclined but I get the basics of how things work. In order for them to grab a fluid sample from my diff, they would have to have removed the plate from my axle?

You can check the diff oil by pulling the plug - no need to remove the cover.

Just change the diff oil at the recommended interval as suggested in your manual - BTW, it will have a "grayish" tint long before that - just the metal suspended in the oil - there'll always be fine filings in there - but if you have large visible "flakes", that's another story.

PS: It doesn't take long for any new oil (engine or gear) to start looking "dirty" after being changed into a vehicle - it will certainly look "dirtier" in comparison to "new" fluid after a very short while - what the technicians will do is compare the two, and of course the old oil looks very much dirtier in comparison, and since most people have no idea when it was last changed out, they get scared and give the go-ahead for work that they may not even need.

Last edited by north44; 08-18-2011 at 06:07 PM. Reason: added PS
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