Transmission Problems - picked up vehicle

Old 09-11-04, 07:51 AM
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Transmission Problems - picked up vehicle

Today I retrieved my vehicle from the local (chain) service station. I was told it would not shift out of first - and that they'd done a proper installation so it must be a problem with the part I supplied them.

To my surprise - the vehicle runs properly - shifting through all gears when it should. Either the transmission 'got better' in the day it sat - or what they were telling me simply wasn't true.

There are problems however - the type of problems that I or anyone would notice immediately. I'm not surprised by this - but now I'm pretty certain there was nothing wrong with the part, just with the installation:

1st - the shift indicator no longer lines up properly. I had to think when I shifted into 'D' because the indicator lines up between D and N. Perhaps during the road test the mechanic actually had the vehicle's shift indicator in 1 when he thought he had it in 2 (or something like that).

2nd - I examined the transmission fluid. There have now been 7 miles on the car since I dropped it off - so I would expect even if the part was faulty the fluid would still be cherry - but instead its a brownish yellow. Did the new fluid really change color so quickly? Is it the wrong fluid? I use ATF+3 which is always a nice cherry red (I thought all ATF was red) - did he use some cheap generic that isn't red? How do I know if its ATF+3?

The car seems to drive fine - but by the sight of the fluid, I'd be taking my vehicle for a transmission fluid change ASAP. I'll avoid driving it for now (obviously I need my vehicle).

Thanks as always,

Old 09-11-04, 09:02 AM
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Continuing Saga

I called the service station to find out what type of fluid was put into the vehicle and they admitted using Mercon/Dexron. They claim this is a 'Universal Fluid' that they use on all their vehicles.

I checked the company national website and on their Frequenty Asked Questions it even says:

Q: What type of transmission fluid should I use?
A: Different transmissions require different types of transmission fluid. -NAME REMOVED- brand transmission fluid is available at -NAME REMOVED- centers or at many fine automotive product retailers. The experts at -NAME REMOVED- recommend that you change your fluid every 25,000 to 35,000 miles as a part of our regular suggested maintenance --Safeguard Service. This service also includes replacing the filter or cleaning the screen, replacing the pan gasket, performing a final leak-check, and performing a road test. This service is warranted for 90 days against any leaks from your pan gasket.

I called back the manager to inform him of this (hey, your website even says you can't just use any transmission fluid) and he claimed they know what they are doing and they put additives in the fluid to make it compatible.

Last edited by irintel; 09-11-04 at 09:18 AM.

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