Out of the millions of people who do their own car repairs, nearly 50% of them turn to the internet to find solutions. Thanks to the depth of information now available at the swipe of an app, people feel more empowered than ever to do DIY auto repair.
If you’re in need of a transmission oil change, it’s the perfect place to start your DIY auto repair career.
Fluids in your car’s engine need to be changed on a regular basis. Over time, they can gather impurities, dirt, and sludge and run that through your most important engine parts. Changing your fluids will allow your car’s most essential components to last a long time.
If you’re thinking about doing your own transmission oil change, here are the 5 most important steps to success.
1. Prepare the Vehicle
It’s hard to change your car’s transmission fluid without being able to see or to move around underneath. Park your car on a flat surface and prop it up with support stands or jacks.
Use strong bracing to ensure your car doesn’t slide or fall while you’re working on it.
2. Collect Tools
You need to make sure you have the proper tools for the job. You’ll need new fluid, a receptacle to drain the old fluid into, and a set of socket wrenches to loosen the drain plug.
The type of bolts and size may vary so make sure you have your whole set of sockets at hand.
Wear some gloves as well.
3. Drain The Fluid
You’re going to have to place your collection pan or your bucket underneath the drain hole. Auto shops should be able to suggest the right size for you. In the absence of a plug hole, you’ll have to loosen the entire transmission pan and have a receptacle wide enough for that.
Once the fluid starts to drain, examine it for metal shavings. Collect them with a magnet. Look for large chunks, which are abnormal. If you find any, have your mechanic look at them.
You’ll still have a half-full transmission, which is unavoidable unless you’re doing comprehensive maintenance.
4. Replace The Fluid
Check out the filter and gaskets. Make sure nothing looks cracked or leaky. Replacements can be bought at your local auto part store if need be.
Once the pan is cleaned out, put the old fluid aside. Replace the pan or plug and reseal the bottom of the transmission.
Set the car back down on the ground and replace the transmission fluid with what your manufacturer recommends. Add transmission fluid with a funnel from the top of the engine. Seal the cap and close the hood.
Run the engine for a few minutes and let it idle. Turn it off then check the fluid level. If it’s still low, add more and repeat this until it’s full.
Avoid overfilling if possible.
5. Dispose Of Fluid
You could be fined if you illegally dump old fluid. Make sure that you’re kind to the environment and your neighborhood. Contact an auto shop and see if they will recycle your fluids for you.
Keep practicing and soon enough you might be ready to open up your own auto shop.
Transmission Oil Change Is The Perfect DIY Job
This is a great project for a Sunday afternoon in the spring. Give yourself enough time in the day so you don’t rush the job and make sure you’ve got someplace to dispose of your fluid at in advance.
If you’re looking for other fluid projects to work on, why not check out our guide to investigating oil leaks.