Trans Filter and Fluid Change - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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Old 12-29-2005
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Trans Filter and Fluid Change

I'm coming up on 30,000 miles on my 2003 XLT. Ford recommends a filter and fluid change on most of their transmissions. Here's my questions...

A. Is this necessary for a truck that hasn't seen much off road and is a daily driver with mostly highway miles?

B. I've never done a transmission job before, what do I need to look at and is their any tips you all can give me?

C. Has anyone done this job on this year truck with a 4.0L, and can they tell me what I'm going to need?

Thanks for your help.
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Old 12-29-2005
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your transmission has still taken a beating just driving normal over those 30,000 miles so i would recomend changing it..

as far as your tips, im taking mine to ford to get it done so that i can get the whole thing flushed and then get 10 new quarts... better then just replacing the 4 thats in your pan...
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Old 12-29-2005
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It seems as though everyone is doing this soon or has recently done it, myself included. So I can't say for sure if its truly necessary but I did mine with 30k on the clock. I used Royal Purple full synthetic tranny fluid and got a tranny filter/gasket from NAPA. In addition to fluid and filter/gasket you also need a good flexible funnel with a small output end, a few rags, a large drainpan to catch all the fluid from the tranny/fluid pan, some oil-dri or kitty litter (unless your aim is super precise!!!) and of course some basic hand tools too. Thats all you need. IF you want to do a complete system FLUSH however, then you'll need a 5 gallon bucket, a friend or two and 12 quarts of tranny fluid just to be sure. The procedure is outlined ALL over the web and on this site, just search tranny flush or similar and you'll find it. Its also listed on AMSOIL's website which is also an alternative to Royal Purple for FULL synthetic tranny fluid.

You don't have to replace the fluid with full synthetic either, most of us are car/truck nerds so to speak so we see the benefit in spending the extra $$$ on full syn tranny fluid. Of course Motorcraft or Valvoline or whomever will be just fine, you need Mercon V is all.

Since I'm the first person to reply about doing if yourself, there will certainly be many more chiming in with a tidbit of advice here and there. I recommend 3 people if you're doing the flush and fill cuz its just easier to handle with 3 people but you could even do it alone if you had too, just more running around and the inevitable fluid spilled here and there!

Good luck and your truck thanks you!
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Old 12-29-2005
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i thought it said 30k under extreme conditions and 60k normally.

if you dont tow anything and you are mainly high miles i would think you would fall under the 60k normally section. i changed mine at 23k and last week at 56k. both times fluid was still in decent shape, just shift points werent clean.

if it still shifts good and firm id leave it. otherwise have the fluid changed/flushed
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Old 12-29-2005
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Ok, right now let's just skip question "A", I am doing a filter and oil change simply because I can't stand not doing preventative maintenance. So now I'm down to just changing the fluid and filter, or goind a full flush....I need to find the procedure on a flush.
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Old 12-29-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shuteja
.I need to find the procedure on a flush.
Dump a couple of quarts through before re-installing the filter and pan and let the clean fluid run out. Then re-install the filter, gasket and pan. Refill.


Where can you get the screen kit for the change, anyhow? I can't find one at Advance Auto here.

Last edited by DownSouthTAS; 12-29-2005 at 10:34 AM.
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Old 12-29-2005
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on www.amsoil.com there is a generic write up on how to do it. ive heard it works good on the ranger.
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Old 12-29-2005
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Thanks Zach, that was exactly what is was looking for....
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Old 12-29-2005
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After doing this maintainence just a few hours ago, I have a couple tips for those who have never done it before.

Start with a 3/8" Drive ratchet along with a 3-4" extension and your 13mm socket. Like the directions say, loosen some of the bolts more than the others, so the pan can tilt and drain a decent amount of fluid out of the pan. After it has stopped dripping, put a floor jack under the pan, so you can remove the remaining bolts without having to hold the pan with your hand. Slowly lower the jack and pour the fluid from the pan into your collection device. Then clean the transmission pan (I used brake fluid also).

Once you replace the filter with the NEW O-rings, line the gasket up to make sure it will fit properly. I threaded about 6 bolts onto the pan to hold the gasket in place so it wouldn't pinch or become misaligned. Once you get a few of the bolts threaded, its easy to get the others started.

Once you snug the bolts, you are ready to fill.
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Old 01-05-2006
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Thanks everyone for the great tips. I did the job this afternoon and I found it easier than I though it would be. All I can say is take your time and give yourself at least an hour to do it. I used a Fram trans filter and 4 quarts of Motorcraft Mercon V. I bought six quarts just in case, and the bill came to $45.00 at my trusted parts store. I know it may be a little higher than Advance/Pep Boys, but these guys have actually delivered parts to my house when I was in a jam, so I don't mind the little extra.
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