Transmission Fluid Change Interval - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource

Drivetrain Tech General discussion of drivetrain for the Ford Ranger.

Transmission Fluid Change Interval

Reply

 
 
 
  #1  
Old 05-11-2016
TheArcticWolf1911's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Evansville, Indiana
Posts: 1,667
Transmission Fluid Change Interval

I've looked over my owner's manual a dozen or more times, repeatedly searched google, but cannot find anything about when I should change my transmission fluid.

I've already changed it about a month ago, but I know I'll have to change it again sooner or later. Either I'm blind, or this is a well kept secret. Imagine that, a company not wanting you to know something

Anyway, specs. 1999, 3.0 V6 Flex fuel, automatic, 4x4.
 
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 05-11-2016
EaOutlaw's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Lake Worth
Posts: 647
Here is what is posted on Alldata for my 2002 yet my truck has a manual transmission

150,000 mileage interval

Replace
Change automatic transmission/transaxle fluid and filter.


I always go by the smell of the fluid the color of the fluid and my budget.

It is better to change it well before it is needed, as long as your service procedures do not put the transmission in harms way.
 
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 05-11-2016
TheArcticWolf1911's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Evansville, Indiana
Posts: 1,667
Sheesh, 150 grand. The color and smell is probably what I'll end up going by in the long run. I threw in five quarts of STP mercon V on my change last month, having no history of what was in the transmission or how long it was in there.

Didn't see anything out of the ordinary. Fine metal 'dust' on the magnet, but no large chips. Fluid was dark but not black or burnt.
 
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 05-11-2016
RF Veteran
iTrader: (1)
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 10,175
Automatics should run normally between 180-200degF

At 220degF oil gets thin and pressure drops, that causes slipping
At 250degF valves start to stick
these cut into transmission life

Above 250degF....well trans is screwed, most likely within 1 to 5,000 miles.


2nd trans cooler is simply a must for max trans life, temp gauge is good as well, but cooler is first place to drop $50-$100


ATF lives a "clean" life, no condensation, no Blow-by, or other nastiness that the engine oil has to deal with.
So outside of mechanical issues the ATF can last a long long time, there are anti-corrosion additives that can break down over time, but we are talking years.
So yes, 100+k miles before changing wouldn't be too bad, as long as heat was never a factor.
 
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 05-12-2016
TheArcticWolf1911's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Evansville, Indiana
Posts: 1,667
Thanks for the info RonD. You're like a talking service manual, lol.

When you say 'second trans cooler', I've already got one cooler mounted by the bumper bolts. Is this the factory one you're talking about, or are you saying to purchase another in addition to the factory cooler?
 
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 05-12-2016
RF Veteran
iTrader: (1)
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 10,175
Most factory trans coolers are in the radiator, these help keep trans fluid at an even temp after warm up and do provide cooling since lower rad temp should run about 175degF assuming 190deg Thermostat.

But problem with these on their own is that when you are putting engine AND trans under a load, i.e. climbing a long mountain grade or pulling a loaded truck or trailer, engine temp goes up and so does trans temp..........
That can add another 20degF to lower rad temp(just above 1/2 on dash temp gauge), so 195degF and not much cooling for the transmission any more.

2nd inline cooler keeps the temp down in those situation but also just generally.

If you have the "trailer package" on a Ranger that usually includes the larger trans cooler that sits in front of the rad, so you have the extra cooling already.
You could check the in and out line temps on that cooler with a IR thermometer after driving it for at least 20 min. to see what temps are at.
195degF is really the max temp you what to see for trans fluid, under load if might get to 215degF, after that you are wearing out the trans and fluid life.
 
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 05-12-2016
TheArcticWolf1911's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Evansville, Indiana
Posts: 1,667
Strange. Mine must be a one-off or something. My trans cooler is located on the passenger side, just above the bumper mounting bolt.

With that on my mind, I'm considering a somewhat 'wide' cooler that, when mounted, gets the air coming through the tow hook hole(for want of a better word) passing over it. Wouldn't mind a temp gauge, either. I'll have to look into those things. I do have a reese hitch and it's a 4x4, which I like to use once in a while.
 
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 09-13-2018
Member
Join Date: Sep 2018
Location: Everett
Posts: 1
Pretty detailed service listing for all years
FORD RANGER MAINTENANCE
 

Last edited by 2011 WOODY; 09-13-2018 at 09:12 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 09-13-2018
Tsquare's Avatar
Member
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: Lawrenceville
Posts: 193
The transmission has always been a week link for me. I put an external transmission cooler on every vehicle I own. My current ranger I had the tranny serviced at 90K and it was the first time it was serviced - I am the second owner. I plan on servicing it again at 140K. I do check the level and color of my tranny oil at every service. If it is not bright red I will change out the tranny oil.
 
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 09-14-2018
RF's Exiled Elite
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Kentucky
Posts: 554
You have to remember what most people consider changing the transmission fluid, dropping the pan, changing the filter and filling it back up only changes about 1/3rd of the total fluid. Personally I think 60k is the limit before fluid needs to be changed at least partially.
 
Reply With Quote
 
 
 
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
95Rangerjunkie
SOHC - 2.3L & 2.5L Lima Engines
6
03-05-2008 09:52 AM
JayBell
Drivetrain Tech
7
02-10-2008 12:59 AM
fletch12518
4.0L OHV & SOHC V6 Tech
52
05-07-2007 02:59 PM
fletch12518
4.0L OHV & SOHC V6 Tech
28
06-21-2006 08:38 AM
mkoenig
Drivetrain Tech
2
01-07-2006 11:38 PM


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Quick Reply: Transmission Fluid Change Interval


Contact Us Sitemap Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.