auto transmission fluid color


Old 03-21-10, 02:29 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: MA, USA
Posts: 88
auto transmission fluid color

My transmission fluid is brownish. some people say this brownish color is normal because red dye break down over time. Some say brownish color is bad because it shows that the fluid is burned. Which is true?
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Old 03-21-10, 02:53 PM
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: U.S.A.
Posts: 248
Transmission fluid is different then motor oil.
In my automotive tech training, we were taught that motor oil gets dirty and does not "wear out". Transmission fluid wears out mainely from overheating. When trans. fluid wears out, it looses a lot of "viscosity" or oiling action.
We were shown wornout fluid and new fluid and was instructed to test the slickness of each type. The new fluid was much slicker then the "brown" fluid.
The problem with changing trans. fluid that is brown is that it has left a thin, varnish like, coating of fluid deposits on all internal parts of the transmission, if it has been left in use for a length of time. When you change the fluid, you stand a chance of developing other problems because the new fluid has a detergent cleaning action and will break away these deposits. That, in turn, develops other problems of possible sticking valves and selenoids.
Please bear in mind that I am 64 years old and oils and fluids have made tremendous changes since I was in the Automatic Transmission repair business.
I personally still go by what I was taught.

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