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Cadillac STS Forum - 2005 through 2012 Discussion, Anybody change AT fluid ? in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; Is there a filter to change? Do we drop the pan like the old days?...
  1. #31
    Greg00coupe is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: Anybody change AT fluid ?

    Is there a filter to change? Do we drop the pan like the old days?

  2. #32
    M.A.C's Avatar
    M.A.C is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Anybody change AT fluid ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg00coupe View Post
    Is there a filter to change? Do we drop the pan like the old days?
    Yes. There is a filter and of course the pan must be dropped to replace it. I also believe Dex III fluid can be replaced with the latest Dex VI (6), which gives longer service life. However, if your car is a Dex VI car, you cannot revert back to Dex III, etc., rather, you must only use at least Dex VI.

  3. #33
    TobyJohnson11 is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Anybody change AT fluid ?

    I did a trans flush at 50k and will do another at 100k. Trans flush is the way to go, they never drop the pan and all the fluid gets pulled out of the torque converter. With just simply dropping the pan you are only getting about 1/2 of the fluid out because of what is left in the converter. Doing a flush gets it all the fluid out and all new back in, Also cleans the filter pretty well also. I only do flushes now in all my vehicles, the old way doesn’t seem the best to me anymore. JMO.

  4. #34
    BaTu is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: Anybody change AT fluid ?

    A flush is an, absolutely, terrible idea and here's why...

    Typically, someone who's having trans trouble (because their old cars frictions & seals are badly worn and it's not worth the cost of a new trans), take it for the "Flush Cure" (which, of course, doesn't work - just makes $ for the "flusher" )

    So what you have is all these crud filled flush machines and hoses - just waiting to infect your, perfectly good, transmission

    Yea, I know, there are screens & filters in them to protect cross contamination, but, that depends on the vigilance of the operator and his willingness to buy new filters. It's a crap-shoot.... And whoever sells the concept that it does a pretty good job of cleaning the filter is TOTALLY full of BS!

    BIG Mistake to Ever allow one of these clowns to connect your, expensive, tranny to his overused "miracle cure" flush machine.

    The REAL way to flush (and I only WISH I could do this to my STS) is to NOT recirculate any fluid at all. Simply let the disconnected cooling line discharge the old fluid as you are pouring brand-new back in. I've always done this on all my cars but, with the "sealed" (no dipstick tube) in my current car I'll just have to trust the long-life fluid for the 100K (it's only got 35K on it now, so I'm good for awhile...)

  5. #35
    M.A.C's Avatar
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    Re: Anybody change AT fluid ?

    I previously owned a '94 Eldorado and would disconnect the upper trans cooler line from the radiator and connect an adapter and vinyl tub to it, then start the engine and watch it pump out into a bucket. I could drain about 2 gallons by this method. As long as the transaxle was in park it would not be damaged or overheat due to lack of fluid. Once the fluid was drained I would reconnect the fluid cooler line and refill.

    I'm not aware if this method can be done with the 2005 STS transmission--I haven't come across anyone who has change fluid this way. I believe there is a trans cooler which is separate from the radiator? The problem is refilling. There is a refill plug on the transmission and it may be possible to use a manual pump to insert a tube into and refill right up to the plug.

  6. #36
    EChas3's Avatar
    EChas3 is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: Anybody change AT fluid ?

    I'm with BaTu. I might be persuaded if I knew and trusted the shop owner & mechanic.

  7. #37
    farmerfox is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: Anybody change AT fluid ?

    For what it's worth, my STS4 was just out of warranty and I got a transmission over heating error code on the DIC (don't remember what the exact wording was). The code came up just as we were pulling into a restaurant after about a 45 minute highway drive. Error code was gone and did not come back after we'd eaten.

    However, not being too keen on finding out how much it cost to replace a transmission in a STS4, I went to my trusty Cadillac dealer to have them check the tranny fluid/filter. They told me the transmission is sealed and you "never" need to check/replace the fluid.

    But, being a farmer and realizing you can learn a lot from the condition of the fluids you take out of something, I wanted them to serivice the transmission and have a good look at the fluid they took out.

    Note: I have had a lot more experience with this dealer since this time, and it would be difficult for my current opinion of them to get much lower, but at the time, I thought they were competent. The next closest dealer is over an hour drive away

    So, after $200 or so, don't recall, I went to pick up the car and asked the service rep what they found with the fluid. This is the same guy I talked to for half an hour about wanting to check the fluid just a couple days before, and who I reminded the morning I dropped the car off. After the question, an even blanker look than normal crossed his face, before responding "nothing." I could tell he had no idea what was in the fluid, for all he knew they could've drained pink play-doh from my transmission, so I asked him if I could see the fluid myself. "Oh, it's gone."

    So, I spent a bunch of money, broke open a sealed transmission to diagnose the fluid only to have it dumped out without so much as a second glance. This was the second in a string of inept work done by this dealer (the first I passed off as a bad day, but each proceeding instance further tempered my optomistic assessment of their abilities).

    Now, having said all that, I have not had another problem with the tranny (about 10-15K on it since), and I still think it wasn't a terrible idea to service the tranny early, considering the over heating code.

    My suggestion (for what it's worth): If you have some concerns about your tranny, go nuts, service it early. But if you have a moron for a service advisor and a bunch of Oompah Loompas in the shop, don't expect to learn much from the experience.

  8. #38
    porkfarm is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: Anybody change AT fluid ?

    Well I am still dropping about 5qts and pumping back about 5 qts every other oil change. At 70K and running better than ever. Fluid looks a heck of a lot better than the first dump. That was nasty.

  9. #39
    AllGoNShow is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: Anybody change AT fluid ?

    Wow, got to love how people recommend not touching "lifetime" transmission fluid from a 2 paragraph, non-technical internet FAQ! I can't believe you would base your opinions on that!

    Search BMW lifetime fluid, MB lifetime fluid, Cadillac lifetime fluid, see what the rest of the automotive world thinks about lifetime fluid, do some research before you recommend not touching anything because it is a HIGHLY recommend fluid change at the 75k+ mark in most of these vehicles.

    If you owned a BMW M3/M5, would you follow the 25,000mile oil change interval because BMW recommended it? Sure you would! And you would also have to be replaicng your top end due to sludge build up and ruining your VANOS as soon as your car came off warranty, exactly what they want so they get the money from the parts you had to buy to build you a new M3 2 years down the road when the rest of your motor lets loose. Yet the enthusiasts who changed their oil at the smart, researched, proven 5k-8k intervals will never have that issue, MHMHMMHMHMHM I wonder why???????????????????????????????/

  10. #40
    KRSTS is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: Anybody change AT fluid ?

    Do the same thing with my brake fluid every few months. Suck out the old from the reservoir with a turkey baster and fill back up with fresh fluid. Exchanges about a pint each time. I figure over time it keeps the fluid fresh.

  11. #41
    EChas3's Avatar
    EChas3 is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: Anybody change AT fluid ?

    Quote Originally Posted by KRSTS View Post
    Do the same thing with my brake fluid every few months. Suck out the old from the reservoir with a turkey baster and fill back up with fresh fluid. Exchanges about a pint each time. I figure over time it keeps the fluid fresh.
    The problem with that is that your enemy is moisture and is more likely to cause trouble at the calipers.

    As far as 25,000 miles on an oil change, is this on cars where oil changes are considered warranty service? I like the STS OLM. It works out to roughly 15,000 or once a year, barring extreme use.

  12. #42
    KRSTS is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: Anybody change AT fluid ?

    Are you saying that I am introducing moisture into my braking system?

  13. #43
    C&C's Avatar
    C&C
    C&C is offline Cadillac Owners Connoisseur
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    Re: Anybody change AT fluid ?

    Quote Originally Posted by KRSTS View Post
    Are you saying that I am introducing moisture into my braking system?
    No, what he's probably saying is that you aren't doing the actual working brake parts any good; you need to actually bleed the system to get that fresh brake fluid through the lines and out to the calipers.

  14. #44
    KRSTS is offline Cadillac Owners Enthusiast
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    Re: Anybody change AT fluid ?

    Every time you apply the brakes there will be some minimal fluid exchange throughout the system. May not help much, but can't hurt either.

  15. #45
    EChas3's Avatar
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    Re: Anybody change AT fluid ?

    Quote Originally Posted by C&C View Post
    No, what he's probably saying is that you aren't doing the actual working brake parts any good; you need to actually bleed the system to get that fresh brake fluid through the lines and out to the calipers.
    Yes, this is my point. You're not doing any harm but likely aren't doing any good, either. If you're adding from an already open container of brake fluid, chances swing back. Brake fluid is incredibly hygroscopic.

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