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Synthetic Trans Fluid

grandspan's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 182

01-14-04, 09:49 PM   #1  
Synthetic Trans Fluid

Has anyone had any experience using synthetic trans fluid? I was told that "normal" auto trans fluid is not an oil based product, that all ATF is "synthetic". Thanks.

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car_boy_16's Avatar
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01-15-04, 12:20 AM   #2  
Someone told you normal ATF is not oil based? Wrong, it is oil based. Not all ATF's are Synthetics, Amsoil came out with the first synthetic ATF. It's great for newer cars, old transmissions may or may not slip when using synthetic ATF fluid.

mike from nj's Avatar
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01-15-04, 10:23 PM   #3  
mike from nj
atf is a petroleum based fluid, as is motor oil, gear oil and p/s fluid.

it's roughly a 5 weight oil (5W), and has a ton of additives to make it a hydraulic fluid. you can use (small amounts of) atf in an engine, but never motor oil in a trans

spending the money to use a synthetic---might spark off another debate. what you should use is what the owner's manual calls for. if you tow heavy things, you might want to add an extra trans fluid cooler.

carguyinva's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 1,147

01-16-04, 07:33 PM   #4  
today's automatics...

...are best suited by the fluid recommended by the manufacturer. the only time I put anything different is if the manufacturer has released a newer fluid (dexron, dexronII, dexronIIE, dexronIII) and approved it for use in older models. I know of NO applications requiring synthetic that are retro to older models. Mixing synthetics with oil based is also a big no-no. Today's transmissions are VERY sensitive to the friction characteristics of ATF...you can really destroy one fast by putting the wrong fluid in one.

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