A word of caution regarding Valvoline Maxlife ATF

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I agree Wolf... Just easier that way. In my case being at 283k miles.... I did not mind running the Eneos CVT fluid in it. Especially given reading that Eneos made a number of OEM transmission fluids for Asian car manufacturers. And if my transmission blowd up.... Well I figure it was going to happen anyhow. Now at 293k miles.... And transmission running really good. Quieter too at low speed high load.
 

dnewton3

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i have now submitted a request to their customer service (via their contact form on website) to ask how I can converse with their legal department. Not that I'm trying to sue them; that's not my goal. But I want to understand who wrote these documents and if they are valid or not? http://s7d9.scene7.com/is/content/GenuinePartsCompany/104405764pdf?$PDF$ https://media.napaonline.com/is/content/GenuinePartsCompany/1661827pdf?$PDF$ Clearly these are nearly identical (brand wording differences). Ashland is the parent company of Valvoline and they do the private labeling for Napa, as we all know. Anyone find the actual link to these docs on the official websites? I cannot seem to find the origin of them. I seriously doubt I'll get an answer as to contacting the lawyers, but it's at least fair to give them a chance to explain. Wouldn't surprise me if they get caught off guard and are not aware the CS people are telling us there's no warranty at all. The corporate world is full of folks whom just wing it and state things because they either don't know, or have been told something and embellish. Even where I work I've had to repeatedly correct the same person in a sister organization of ours; he continually misquotes me and makes stuff up (marketing person; big surprise, right?). The total irony here is that the CS folks are saying "Hey - there's no warranty; implied or written, but we'll fix your car if our lubes are bad, but we won't warrant it." That, folks, borders on the dumbest of dumb. You cannot tell someone something and then say it's not true, but it is, but it's not, but it is ... you get the point. Again, I was not only told this, but have it in writing with their CS email address attached. Yet the written limited warranty for both brands not only states they will warrant the product, but they will also fix the equipment (engine, trans, whatever) back to "normal performance" should the fluid be proven at fault. That is actually a very good warranty statement and would restore my faith. But it completely contradicts what I was told by CS. Admittedly my pitiful little $20 purchase means nothing to them. But a large fleet operator whom relies on bulk Vavoline or Napa stuff might really take interest in this! Why use a product that won't give you a straight answer and be willing to back it up, especially when other companies are VERY clear about the written warranty they provide. You can, perhaps, now understand my "word of caution"? I'm not saying the product (Maxlife ATF) is bad; I believe it to be good. I've used it many times before and had no issues whatsoever. I just expect folks to not talk out of both sides of their posterior when giving me warranty info about the product. At this point, it's a quest just to see how deep the stupidity is rooted.
 
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Originally Posted by dnewton3
i have now submitted a request to their customer service (via their contact form on website) to ask how I can converse with their legal department.
Why should they bother their legal group ?
Originally Posted by CharlieBauer
As far as Napa goes, here is an interesting twist: http://s7d9.scene7.com/is/content/GenuinePartsCompany/104405764pdf?$PDF$ Created in 2018 and refers to Valvoline warranting "all private-label NAPA lubricants manufactured by Valvoline"
Valvoline is just playing a numbers game with this. They know that the odds of their fluid causing damage is slim to none and further, proving it did is even harder. That lets them "warranty" their private-labeled fluids and not be too concerned. It is also a selling point to encourage stores to come to Valvoline for private-labeled products. That said, no one can turn around and say that Valvoline-branded fluid now has a warranty.
 

dnewton3

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Well, believe it or not, the legal group at Valvoline has already contacted me this morning via email. I sent a detailed explanation of the facts as I've gathered them, and also of my concerns; I asked for clarification, and now await their response.
 
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Warranties are a tricky thing when it come to stuff like automotive fluids and a lot of companies do not publish a stated warranty. Having a stated warranty boxes things in with basically a statement of "If X happens then Y will happen". Given that many things are in play with automotive service fluids and actual failure of the fluid itself can be murky to determine.
 
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Originally Posted by SLO_Town
Originally Posted by dnewton3
Again - for those not paying attention, or wanting to think I'm product bashing ... I AM NOT SAYING THIS PRODUCT IS BAD OR UNSUITABLE FOR USE. What I'm saying is that if your vehicle is under OEM warranty, Valvoline is going to push you to deal with the OEM and not warrant their product. If your vehicle is no longer under OEM warranty, Valvoline will "stand behind" their product by offering no warranty, implied or written. Those are the facts we can glean from their PI sheet and their reply to my question about warranty. I offer nothing more or less than facts. I do believe Valvoline is on the cusp of a violation of the M/M Act because they do not make it conspicuously known that the Maxlife ATF product has no warranty. I find it perplexing that many people here would argue about filter warranties, and then ignore this topic as if it has no consequences. What an odd bunch of hypocrites some BITOGers are ...
Two comments: 1) If your transmission fails while under the OEM warranty, why would you expect Valvoline to warrant the transmission? If you changed the ATF within the OEM warranty period, and you used Valvoline and the Valvoline product you used met the required OEM specifications, any failure of the transmission would most certainly be because the transmission itself was faulty. 2) If your vehicle is out of OEM warranty, why would you expect Vavloine to extend the transmission warranty beyond what the OEM offered? For example, my wife's 2011 BMW E90. It's got a 6 speed GM auto. I change the ATF every 20k miles, using Kendall D6 ATF. The vehicle has 90k miles on it now. The vehicle is long out of factory OEM warranty. Suppose the transmission failed. Would you expect Kendall to warrant it because I used their oil? Not! Scott
This guy nailed it.
 

4WD

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Think his statements work better with Valvoline DEXRON-VI than with the ATF in the OP's title.
 
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Originally Posted by PimTac
Ashland has nothing to do with it. It's a separate company.
Ashland and Valvoline split about 2-3 years ago.
 
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Originally Posted by nthach
Originally Posted by PimTac
Ashland has nothing to do with it. It's a separate company.
Ashland and Valvoline split about 2-3 years ago.
Perhaps that's why there is no longer a written warranty.
 
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Originally Posted by AC1DD
Perhaps that's why there is no longer a written warranty.
It was more of a business decision - Valvoline was Ashland's only consumer-facing division. Ashland wanted to focus on the specialty chemical market and Valvoline wasn't a compliment to their lines of business. Eagle One was spun off and eventually sold to Energizer Holdings. I feel while ML is a good product, Valvoline is being a bit overly confident in their product. Valvoline doesn't make their own add packs or base oils, they have to get them from one of the major suppliers; Afton, Lubrizol, Infineium for add packs and additives and XOM, Shell, Chevron, Croda and SK/GS for base oils.
 
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There is no one size fits all transmission fluid. Using the wrong fluid with the wrong or incorrect mixture of friction modifiers will in time ruin the transmission, I know of many older Lexus transmissions ruined by Maxlife. In the 50's and 60's that is the type F and Type A days you for sure would not want to use Type A in the Type F application. Start at 2:33 to at least 3:33 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aV-ri4rOHRI
 
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Valvoline knows what it has and what it needs in the lubrication business. It is a highly respected company with its own R&D and testing. Combine this with Afton who blends the additive package for Maxlife ATF and Afton's own resources and the product sold will be second to none as far as quality. ATF is does the same functions and despite the bragging from many manufacturers on how their automatic transmissions are great and different in reality automatic transmissions are a lot more similar than different.
 
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Originally Posted by Exhaustgases
I know of many older Lexus transmissions ruined by Maxlife.
I wouldn't say ruined, but I tried MaxLife in a Lexus-spec A341E that called for T-II fluid, a high-viscosity FM ATF. The shifts were different in a subtle way. I used Castrol IMV instead and it was better. IME, if I use a "universal" ATF in a Toyota calling for T-IV, I'll use Castrol instead. Even though MaxLife is close to used, sheared down mineral T-IV viscomatically, it just feels slightly different to me. I can't put my finger on it. Which is weird, I've used MaxLife in a few Nissans and a Subaru calling for Dex/Merc or Matic-J/Subaru HP and they shifted as well as they've always been. GM backspeced DexVI for older applications, and Honda did the same with DW-1 replacing Z-1. Nissan also backspeced Matic-S in place of Matic-J. All of those new OEM fluids are LV fluids, what does Toyota know that we don't?
 
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Originally Posted by nthach
I wouldn't say ruined, but I tried MaxLife in a Lexus-spec A341E that called for T-II fluid, a high-viscosity FM ATF. The shifts were different in a subtle way. I used Castrol IMV instead and it was better. IME, if I use a "universal" ATF in a Toyota calling for T-IV, I'll use Castrol instead. Even though MaxLife is close to used, sheared down mineral T-IV viscomatically, it just feels slightly different to me. I can't put my finger on it. Which is weird, I've used MaxLife in a few Nissans and a Subaru calling for Dex/Merc or Matic-J/Subaru HP and they shifted as well as they've always been. GM backspeced DexVI for older applications, and Honda did the same with DW-1 replacing Z-1. Nissan also backspeced Matic-S in place of Matic-J. All of those new OEM fluids are LV fluids, what does Toyota know that we don't?
Yes I would agree that those statements are quite a bit different than "ruined."
 
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Originally Posted by Exhaustgases
There is no one size fits all transmission fluid. Using the wrong fluid with the wrong or incorrect mixture of friction modifiers will in time ruin the transmission, I know of many older Lexus transmissions ruined by Maxlife. In the 50's and 60's that is the type F and Type A days you for sure would not want to use Type A in the Type F application. Start at 2:33 to at least 3:33 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aV-ri4rOHRI
Just watch the video and learn some good stuff. He is a college professor.
 

dnewton3

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The legal claims reviewer has contacted me and I'm awaiting info regarding the discrepancy between what I was told and the documents. It's been a week so far and no information past that.
 
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Originally Posted by dnewton3
The legal claims reviewer has contacted me and I'm awaiting info regarding the discrepancy between what I was told and the documents. It's been a week so far and no information past that.
If you receive no further information that clarifies the issue, and I believe you will NOT (just some carefully worded drivel that thanks you for your inquiry) we all know that Valvoline doesn't stand behind it's product.
 

dnewton3

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ALL - I have had several emails go back and forth between me and their legal counsel in regard to this topic. Here is her reply ...
Quote
Mr. Newton, In doing my research, the two documents you provided do not appear to be current documents used by Valvoline. The information provided to you by Customer Service is correct. Kristie Spencer Senior Claims Specialist Law Department I Valvoline 100 Valvoline Way I Lexington, KY 40509
Bottom line: The former and previous written warranty statements are null and void. The "customer service" agents told me correctly. They do NOT offer any written warranty whatsoever. I find it a bit disingenuous that the CS agents say "Hey - we'll make it right, but we don't warrant our products." That is misleading and IMO illegal in that they are promising something they are purposely discrediting. The only warranty which would apply is that of "implied" merchant-ability per the M/M Act. https://www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/business-center/guidance/businesspersons-guide-federal-warranty-law The "merchantability" aspect would only cover things implied by State laws, etc. Though my query was specific to MaxLife ATF, I believe this would apply to any of their products, excepting the specific written statements they have about their engine warranty program you must sign up for to propel a claim.
 
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Originally Posted by AC1DD
Originally Posted by dnewton3
The legal claims reviewer has contacted me and I'm awaiting info regarding the discrepancy between what I was told and the documents. It's been a week so far and no information past that.
If you receive no further information that clarifies the issue, and I believe you will NOT (just some carefully worded drivel that thanks you for your inquiry) we all know that Valvoline doesn't stand behind it's product.
Can't say I didn't tell you. Valvoline does NOT back it's products.
 
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