Tranny Service

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193
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SE
I stopped by a local transmission shop today. This shop has been in business over 50 years, They rebuilt the tranny on my Ford 7.3 @ 202,000 mi. So far 140 ,000 trouble free mi. I have a 95 MB with 284,000 mi on it and was going to have them service it. I have the filter, MB fluid (8qts.)& gasket. He quoted me a price of $70 with drainning the torque converter.I thought that was reasonable. Now however he recomened NOT draing the converter. He said its been his experience that with todays tranny fluid especialy MB high detergency level he did not recomend flushes or draining the converter on high mileage vehicles because it creates problems. He advised me to do 2 4qt change intervals. He said I'll drop the pan change the filter for $40 come back in 40,000 mi and we will do it again. What do you think? I thought this would be the best place to post.
 
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26,152
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MA, Mittelfranken.de
With 284,000 mi on it i would be as careful as careful could be, he is being understandably prudent. This sounds like a fair and decent place, let him do as he suggest.
 
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225
Location
Hollywood, CA
Listen to the man. There have been a host of repeated instances of people changing out their ATF on older German cars thinking they were doing a good thing, only to find slippage, hesitation or jerkiness from the tranny, when there was none before. What he is suggesting is probably a good idea, but considering the age of your car, and assuming it works fine, I'd be more inclined to leave it alone.
 

ottomatic

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193
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SE
Originally Posted By: TJPark01
Listen to the man...... I'd be more inclined to leave it alone.
One of the last mercedes I bought I did just that and it went kaput 40,000 mi after I bought it. + a well respected mercedes shop recomended i change it.
 
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225
Location
Hollywood, CA
Originally Posted By: ottomatic
One of the last mercedes I bought I did just that and it went kaput 40,000 mi after I bought it. + a well respected mercedes shop recomended i change it.
If you plan on keeping this car then may be worth a shot. Do you know the service history? Has the fluid been changed before?
 

ottomatic

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193
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SE
CarFax said dealer maintained till 259,000 mi. I bought it after it sat for 5 years and never being started. I put biocide in tank along with supplement (it only had 1/8 of a tank), filled tank . Put new battery & it started right up. Iran it for 500 mi and did 2 short oil and fuel filter changes (2,000mi). Car has been fine for 15,000 mi. BTW I gave $1,800 for it. I have put $1,200 in it to date. Tires, wipers bulb etc. It still has bunch of electrical problems though all from inactivity Ex. sometimes when I hit turn signal the windshield washer sprays LOL However @ 38mi per gal I can live with them
 
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25,985
Location
Upstate NY
Originally Posted By: ottomatic
I stopped by a local transmission shop today. This shop has been in business over 50 years, They rebuilt the tranny on my Ford 7.3 @ 202,000 mi. So far 140 ,000 trouble free mi. I have a 95 MB with 284,000 mi on it and was going to have them service it. I have the filter, MB fluid (8qts.)& gasket. He quoted me a price of $70 with drainning the torque converter.I thought that was reasonable. Now however he recomened NOT draing the converter. He said its been his experience that with todays tranny fluid especialy MB high detergency level he did not recomend flushes or draining the converter on high mileage vehicles because it creates problems. He advised me to do 2 4qt change intervals. He said I'll drop the pan change the filter for $40 come back in 40,000 mi and we will do it again. What do you think? I thought this would be the best place to post.
I would like to know his reasoning. Is it that with 8 QTs of new fluid one has a lot of cleaning additives now in the transmission and that will loosen up stuff too fast? You realize that two 4 QT changes only changes 75% of the ATF? Ask him about a Magnefine. It will catch almost all the crud he is worrying about being loosened up.
 
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6,093
Location
northern Alabama
I would recommend replacing all the fluid as quickly as possible. The Magnefine recommendation (by Donald) is pretty much always a good idea. ATF doesn't have this whole slew of detergency that many tend to think. Engine oil has more detergency than ATF. So, for best transmission performance I should remove new fluid from the factory & replace with fluid which has thousands of miles on it?
 

ottomatic

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Messages
193
Location
SE
[/quote] I would like to know his reasoning. Is it that with 8 QTs of new fluid one has a lot of cleaning additives now in the transmission and that will loosen up stuff too fast? You realize that two 4 QT changes only changes 75% of the ATF? Ask him about a Magnefine. It will catch almost all the crud he is worrying about being loosened up. [/quote] I think that is what is behind his reasoning. I have been on an MB forum and found this http://www.peachparts.com/shopforum/diesel-discussion/223563-transmission-question.html I posted the question here because of the different backgrouds of posters and I have found the best advice here. When I am doubt.
 
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Messages
4,564
Location
NW Ohio
Not sure I buy it. If the fluid is absolutely cruddy and the trans on it's last legs, the lack of lubricity is probably all that's keeping it going. It's dead but just doesn't realize it yet. The Zombie syndrome! ( : < ) If it's been well maintained and in decent shape, despite the mileage, I don't see why new oil would hurt anything, especially if all it uses is Dex III. I've never seen a GOOD transmission fail because of an oil change, only those hanging on the edge.
 
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25,985
Location
Upstate NY
If someone is changing the factory fill at 150K miles you got to wonder why so. Has he nothing better to do on a Sat afternoon? Just bought the vehicle? He is hearing some odd sounds or erratic shifting in the transmission. I suspect its the last reason. He may not admit it however. Who wants to be told what a jerk they are for waiting so long and now you have a transmission thats down for the count. Or trying to get the guy who changed the ATF to fix it for free as he must have broken it. As Jim just posted few if any transmissions in good shape fail because someone changed half or all the ATF.
 
Messages
26,152
Location
MA, Mittelfranken.de
AFAIK these old MB units have a drain plug on the converter. I think he is probably afraid of dry starting the empty converter which is something i wouldn't want to do with a almost 300k unit. I have heard some old timers begin whining after doing it. A line off exchange is an option but don't let it run until bubbles appear with this old unit, converter or pump damage could be a possibility. You know the man just ask him why he doesn't want to do it. The guy has done work for you before and you are apparently satisfied, he knows the unit. Personally i think i would let him do the job as he sees it. IMHO leave the Magnefine alone, the thing has gone almost 300K without one, again IMO they are just another spot for leaks but get his take on it. He obviously knows what he's doing if he rebuilt a unit that is still going strong after 140K.
 

ottomatic

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193
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SE
Originally Posted By: Trav
AFAIK these old MB units have a drain plug on the converter. I think he is probably afraid of dry starting the empty converter which is something i wouldn't want to do with a almost 300k unit. I have heard some old timers begin whining after doing it. A line off exchange is an option but don't let it run until bubbles appear with this old unit, converter or pump damage could be a possibility. You know the man just ask him why he doesn't want to do it. The guy has done work for you before and you are apparently satisfied, he knows the unit. Personally i think i would let him do the job as he sees it. IMHO leave the Magnefine alone, the thing has gone almost 300K without one, again IMO they are just another spot for leaks but get his take on it. He obviously knows what he's doing if he rebuilt a unit that is still going strong after 140K.
Thanks I believe I will go with your sound advice. The dry starting of the coverter makes alot of sense. A manual I have states pour 4 qts in , Start check fluid and then add remaing, Which can't be good for converter.
 
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19,479
Location
Chicago Area
There can be problems with flushing, but it is usually due to lousy technique or a filter that wasn't also changed. A horribly gunky trans can have problems, also. There is no reason to NOT change the converter fluid. A simply plug removal is all. It is a GOOD thing, no doubt.
 
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6,930
Location
NH
Originally Posted By: Trav
With 284,000 mi on it i would be as careful as careful could be, he is being understandably prudent. This sounds like a fair and decent place, let him do as he suggest.
approved
 
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Messages
6,093
Location
northern Alabama
Originally Posted By: Trav
He obviously knows what he's doing if he rebuilt a unit that is still going strong after 140K.
This is faulty logic as it only shows that he knows how to rebuild a unit that will last at least 140k miles, nothing more nothing less.
 
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5,707
Location
WatUpDoc
I agree with Trav's assessment as well. Very reasonable pricing and it's a moderate attempt at servicing, not enough to severely shock the system in of itself, but even that method 'could'.
 
Messages
26,152
Location
MA, Mittelfranken.de
Originally Posted By: benjamming
Originally Posted By: Trav
He obviously knows what he's doing if he rebuilt a unit that is still going strong after 140K.
This is faulty logic as it only shows that he knows how to rebuild a unit that will last at least 140k miles, nothing more nothing less.
So lets see, the guy can take a blown unit, find the defective parts and rebuild the whole unit so it holds up over a 100K but he doesn't know what procedure is best to change the fluid? You are right probably not, its better to search internet forums for that pearl of wisdom.
 
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4,564
Location
NW Ohio
I've probably rebuilt fifty automatics in my time. Had professional training on ZFs from Land Rover and on RWD units from Ford in the '80s. Even went thru a couple of those old MB units of the '60s and '70s known for hysteresis. At the time I couldn't tell you squat about oil but I knew that draining the TC was not inherently dangerous. If it was/is, they why did the drain exist? They were eliminated in newer cars as a cost saving measure. I did many tranny services back in the day that included a converter drains. Some with high miles rigs. Haven't killed on yet. Did ruin an automatic once by towing it too far in neutral with the wheels on the ground but that's a different story. Anyway, whatever the owner wants to do is fine by me.
 
Messages
26,152
Location
MA, Mittelfranken.de
You don't need to "know about oil" to know how to change it properly. BITOG is really the place for finding out what the best fluid is for the unit no doubt. IMHO anyone who can competently rebuild an engine, diff or transmission has more than enough skill to change the fluid and do it right. I started rebuilding automatics when some older 488's with iron cases and rear pumps were still running around but that's not doing anyone any good because i am not there to share my talent on loan from God (thanks elrushbo). Unless i can see and hear what i am working on there is no way i will give anything but prudent advice concerning a unit of this vintage, i don't care if i have done it a thousand times. 2cents Take the last word. LOL
 
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