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Tranny Fluid issue...............

Discussion in 'Ford Trucks' started by FisherVMan, Feb 11, 2011.

  1. FisherVMan

    FisherVMan Senior Member
    Messages: 706

    Friend is changing the tranny fluid in his F150; and the filter; and he takes the pan off and changes the filter; and put the pan back on and dumps in 4 qts of "Mercon III" into it and starts it up lets it idle for 2-3 mins; and then when they try to back it out of the garage; it starts slipping some in REV .
    The transmission has 45K miles on it; and has NEVER slipped before; or had ANY issues.
    He sends his wife 50 miles away for 14 quarts of "Mercon V"; which he now finds out it is soposed to have in it. He then trys to drain out the torque converter so he can change all that fluid out....................... it has NO drain plug in it so that is NOT a possibility.
    He calls me and I had no idea that the fluid could INSTANTLY make it slip . He pushes it back into the garage and now wonders if he dumps 5 more in it that is the correct fluid if it will be safe to drive it or will it have to be towed 50 miles one way to a garage that has a transmission pump [couple hundred dollars minimum] or by deluting it that much be safe to drive it to one or WTF ?????? I am assuming he has not hurt anything yet but certainly dont know that for sure .............. Any comments or help greatly appreaciated!
     
  2. Jacobsmovinsnow

    Jacobsmovinsnow Senior Member
    Messages: 315

    Did he only put 4 quarts into it. Is that the correct total
     
  3. FisherVMan

    FisherVMan Senior Member
    Messages: 706

    Well when he took the pan down he lost approximately 4qts of the original fluid so he added 4 new quarts of what he now knows is the incorrect type of Mercon fluid . He added III and it takes V . The 4 qts filled it back up to the top mark on the dipstick. So he nows has approx 9 qts of the original oil in the system and 4qts of the wrong oil................... so he has taken the pan back off and is waiting for the new Mercon V to put back in but he has NO IDEA how much that first 4 qts of the wrong stuff has blended with the original [correct] fluid so I guess it has some percentage of the wrong stuff in there
    10% or 15% 20% we have no way of knowing . I should have mentioned that he also has no idea if it needs to just be run longer ??? If it may have had air in the system ???? If its just the fact he added the incorrect fluid????? He just called me and told me that when he went to put it back into the garage it drove right in and he held the brake and it seamed very positive in DRIVE but when he put it in Rev it again seamed soft????
    The transmission worked perfectly before he changed the filter earlier this afternoon...........wTf
     
  4. Jacobsmovinsnow

    Jacobsmovinsnow Senior Member
    Messages: 315

    this may be bs but I know some oldtimers when they changed the tranny fluid, would clean the crap out of the pan and change the filter and put a half half mixture of old and new in. The reason it was easier on the clutch pack. However I know that this here is not the real issue. But is there that much difference between 3 and 5.
     
  5. White Gardens

    White Gardens 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,665

    I've always heard that you aren't supposed to mix the fluids. It could be the issue, but I'm no expert.

    If it were me, and I had that issue, I would take it to a lube shop and spend the money to flush the system with new, correct, fluid. That would be the cheapest route to start before dropping the tranny and having it inspected.

    What year is the truck and how many miles does it have on it already?
     
  6. RacingZR

    RacingZR Senior Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 398

    Using the wrong Mercon in Fords will lead to big problems but I can't believe it would be noticeable that quick. It's all mixed together anyhow.
    Do a search for "tranny fluid exchange". There are several write-ups on here, mostly for Chevy as I recall but I used the same procedure for my Dodge to get the old fluid out........or most of the old fluid. That might be his best, 14 new quarts.
     
  7. FisherVMan

    FisherVMan Senior Member
    Messages: 706

    tranny fluid

    White Gardens,
    There is no cheap way to do this as from his location he is looking at a $200 plus for towing and they are quoting him $311 for a total flush out and new fluid at the closest garage that has a tranny pump ......................
    It is a 2005 F150 with 44,000 total miles . Totally babied truck and has NEVER had any tranny issues . He just wanted to change the filter........................
    I read on a Ford site this evening that Mercon III is regular oil; and V is a synthetic blend; and has different friction additives in it................ but dont know if that is true or not.
    This truck has only been moved ONE truck lenght since he dumped the III in there by mistake. I am hoping a mechanic will see this post; and jump in here; and give us some ideas; as at this point he really had NO idea if it is even associated with the fluid as another friend claims it could be just air bound ????? I called a part timer mechanic I know and he isnt a tranny expert but claims he read somewhere that if you ever dump in the wrong fluid to just drain it out and dump in 4 qts and run it 50 miles and drain it again and dump in 4 more run it 50 miles and do it again and the percentage of the wrong stuff would then be so small it could not be an issue...............
     
  8. White Gardens

    White Gardens 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,665

    $550 for a tranny flush or $2500 for new transmission.

    That's why I say it's cheaper. Yes it's not cheap anyway you slice it, but it sure beats spending the dough on a new tranny.
     
  9. FordFisherman

    FordFisherman PlowSite.com Addict
    from 06611
    Messages: 1,593

    What tranny is it, 4R100? There is a procedure to drain and fill which will also drain the converter. I'll see if I can dig it up. Put the pan back on, you'll need a bucket, I'll be right back,...
     
  10. RacingZR

    RacingZR Senior Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 398

    FisherV, what you are describing by driving 50 miles and draining out 4 qts. at a time is the same idea as an exchange......getting the old fluid out. Any time the vehicle is running and NOT in park, the tranny is pumping fluid. It is on Dodges at least, I am assuming it is the same for Fords. So the fluid may be mixed.
    I can't see how it would be air bound from dropping the pan and replacing the 4 quarts?
     
  11. FordFisherman

    FordFisherman PlowSite.com Addict
    from 06611
    Messages: 1,593

    Here's a version of how to drain and refill







    4R100 Transmission Fluid Change


    \\Figured I would share this with ya'll since I had been asking questions.....I just finished changing the fluid. Was not a hard job at all. I followed the FTE procedure provided by Mark Kovalsky.
    I found that my 2002 did not have a drain plug on the torque converter. I removed the rubber plug to look for one out of curiosity and had a second person bump the engine and Mark was right, there is not one on this model.
    So, I drained the fluid out of the pan, removed the pan, cleaned the pan/gasket surfaces, removed the filter and replaced with a new one from Ford.
    I have to say that the magnet in the pan does a very good job of holding the metal particles. The amount I found was expected and you could not tell it was metal unless looking at it in sunlight. It was like extremely fine glitter.
    I took the filter apart to inspect it out of curiosity. Hit it with a hammer and it split apart easily.
    The filter was dirty enough to warrant a change. Truck has 28,000 miles on it. There was some yellow paint particles (very small) in the filter, likely from parts that were marked by the factory.
    I replaced the pan/gasket and torqued the bolts per the Haynes manual with my Harbor Freight 1/4" torque wrench ($27) and a good investment!

    I measured the fluid that was removed in each scenario.
    Draining the fluid from the pan was 7 quarts exactly.
    I refilled with 7 quarts.
    Disconnected the rear cooler line from the transmission, slid a 3/8" ID clear vinyl hose over the flange. Didn't need to clamp it since it was a good tight fit. Ran the hose to a bucket and used a small woodshop clamp to hold the hose in the bucket.
    Started the engine and the fluid pumped into the bucket. When I saw airbubbles start, turned off the engine.
    Measured the fluid pumped out.....5 quarts exactly.
    Replaced 5 quarts, started engine, pumped out till bubbles.
    Replaced 5 quarts, started engine, pumped out till bubbles.
    Replaced 5 quarts, started engine, pumped out till bubbles.
    Replaced 5 quarts, started engine, moved shifter through gears for a few minutes, checked level, looked like it needed about 1/2 quart, added 1/2 and then drove down the highway, came home checked fluid level again, all is good and on the full mark.
    I bought two cases of fluid, had 1-1/2 quarts left over, so I went through 22-1/2 quarts.
    Not bad and do recommend the filter change since it is not hard to change.
    $30 for filter from ford (didn't need gasket since the original is re-useable.
    2 cases of Shell Fluid from BJ's was $25.
    Total $55 for doing this myself is better than $2-300 depending upon where you take it.
    This did not take in consideration other materials, such as a bucket with graduated marks for measuring quarts from Lowes for $3, 3/8" vinyl hose (20') came in a pre-cut length for I think was about $3, and some rags and mineral spirits to clean up with. I blew out my vinyl hose with a little mineral spirts and compressed air and put in my bucket, ready for the next change at 60,000 miles.
    Double checked for leaks, all is dry after another run down the road at highway speeds.

    One thing to mention is you need a good funnel to hang under the hood with a hose to reach the dipstick tube to make it easier. It takes a while to put in 5-7 quarts at a time.

    I have great confidence now that I did this change on my own. No one was under my truck screwing something up like cross threading the drain plug, not cleaning the gasket surfaces, inspecting anything that doesn't look right, etc.
    Thanks to Mark's article and this site for providing this type of information so we can do such things with confidence and keeps us from doing something wrong!

    __________________
    2002 6.8L V10 4X4 Excursion Limited: Mods:
     
  12. RacingZR

    RacingZR Senior Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 398

    Good post........that's the way to do a fluid exchange. Easier with 2 people.
     
  13. damian

    damian Senior Member
    Messages: 330

    the fluid is not your problem,you either did not fill the trans to the proper level,or you did not install the filter and o-ring correctly,could have the wrong filter as well.that transmission circulates cooler fluid in park,thats why fluid is checked idling in park.incorrect fluid may make clutches chatter,grab,or other adverse coupling characteristics,or more than likely you wont notice a thing.any oil that has sae marking on it is compatible with any other sae oil.this does not mean it is correct,it means it wont make an adverse reaction and damage your trans. good luck.
     
  14. FisherVMan

    FisherVMan Senior Member
    Messages: 706

    Hummmmmmmmm that is an interesting idea! I will call him in the morning and suggest that as I think he usually turns in around 9pm .............. he ordered 14 qts thinking he could just drain the torque converter ....................... so we will have 14 qts to play with seams like if we kept pumping the other junk out that what was left that wasnt 100% Mercon V would be so small a percentage it really wouldnt matter too much at that point ????? He has already drained out the 1st 4 qts of the contaminated stuff and was still waiting for his wife to arrive with the new Mercon V so I wonder if before he ever puts ANY of it in if we should try to pump out all we can till we get air bubles and then add what we can on this first go around?????
    Thanks a million for the help and posts as it all helps! I will check this later if anyone thinks of any more good ideas !
     
  15. damian

    damian Senior Member
    Messages: 330

    if you are stuck on draining all or most of your oil,drop the pan,remove the filter and get a blow gun and make it fit the inlet where the filter fit,blow into it and have someone go r n d 3 21 a few times.with a bit of patience you will get all but a quart or so out of it in about 10 mins.
     
  16. FisherVMan

    FisherVMan Senior Member
    Messages: 706

    Ford Fisherman,
    I believe he thinks it is a 4R70 tranny ................... and he only got a little more than 4 quarts ever time he drops the pan ?????? So since it is now sitting with the pan empty he can add 4 qts for sure but this idea of pumping out 3-4 more quarts thru the cooler lines may have some merit as that would get rid of 7 quarts of contaminate fluid so when he dumps in 7 new quarts and mixs it with 7 quarts that have some percentage of Mercon 3 in it lets guess that contaminated stuff is 50/50 then right then it should only have a couple of quarts max of contaminated fluid. So maybe if he pumps out another 3-4 qts and adds that of Mercon V what little bit that would be left in there that isnt 100% V would be such a small amount it really couldnt be much at that point.........................
    Thanks very much for trying to help
    Damian, I asked him if there was any chance the he didnt get the filter on correctly and he thinks it is on right....................... I am NOT sure the tranny was up to temperture when he checked it; as it was only 10 above Zero here today and he says he only ran it a few minutes and checked it in PARK [someone since told him it has to be checked in NEUTRAL ??????? So maybe it was just LOW?????
     
  17. FisherVMan

    FisherVMan Senior Member
    Messages: 706

    Gosh there is another great idea Damian .................. at this point we can do anything to try to get it all outta there............... but I too am thinking that this small amount of wrong type of fluid wouldnt cause it to slip imeadiately ????? And why did it then after he put it in Drive go perfectly back into the garage without slipping at all???? I am wondering if it may have been just tooooo low .................
     
  18. JerseySnow

    JerseySnow Junior Member
    from 908
    Messages: 14

    I have gotten the wrong filter from napa autozone etc and they swear is the right one .now i go to the dealer for trans filters
     
  19. Rc2505

    Rc2505 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,245

    I will never have a tranny flushed again. I had one done on an S-10 that never had a problem, and within 500 miles, the tranny was laying in pieces. Talked to a couple of mechanics, and they say when a tranny is back flushed, it loosens up all the clutch dust, and is almost a sure thing to plug the new filter up within 1000 miles. As soon as the filter is plugged, thats when all the fun happens inside the tranny, which in turn causes all the little pieces to be laying in your pan. The only right way to do it is drain the entire system including the torque converter, change the filter, install a new pan gasket, and fill with new fluid.
     
  20. FisherVMan

    FisherVMan Senior Member
    Messages: 706

    Well hopefully that is exactly what we will accomplish this morning as I am going up to help him with this and we will do an exchange with the 14 qts that he has there . I am hoping that at that point the amount of Mercon 3 that would still be in the mixture is so small it would not be an issue . The tranny fluid that I saw coming out of it when he droped the pan was by no way dark or nasty in any way .
    It was about a light maroon in color and smelled great with NO burned smell at all. The original filter that you can look right into the back side had a white felt like material they use to pass the fluid thru it and it appeared to be very free of anything................ looked like it was fine for another 45K but who knows???? The magnet showed about a 1/2 teaspoon of sludgy dust and was made of of particles so small they would go right thru a paint filter but probably not thru a coffee filter so more like a very very fine metal "dust" and I am assuming that a 1/2 teaspoon would probably be normal for a 45K tranny that has never had the fluid changed??
    Thanks to everyone for trying to help as it was great to hear all the ideas when you live so far back in the woods and its a Friday nite and everything is closed !!! Its neat how the internet; can bring you so much information so fast!
    Special Thanks to "Ford Fisherman" for posting the exchange procedure for us ! .
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2011