Just like changing your engine oil is good for your engine, changing your automatic transmission fluid (ATF) at regularly scheduled intervals is the best thing you can do to keep your automatic transmission running properly. All ATF changes are not equal. The best ATF fluid change will remove all the dirty fluid, change the filter (where possible) and clean the pan gasket.
the Don't just drain and fill. Because a standard transmission service does not include transmission filter change, it can leave from 1/3 to 1/2 of the old transmission fluid behind.
Before draining or flushing, you should pull the dip stick and look at the condition of the fluid. If it is dark, smells burnt, or you see little flakes or specks in the fluid, DO NOT FLUSH IT. Friction material has come off the clutch disks and bands and is suspended in your fluid. Those floating particles provide the only friction, which your transmission needs to operate. Flushing fluid in that condition and replacing it with new, clean fluid may cause your transmission to fail at any moment possibly leaving you stranded on the side of the road.At this point, the transmission is in pressing need of repair. There is no way of telling when the transmission will fail. It might be today, next week, or next year, but it is destined to fail. The goal is to flush the transmission BEFORE the fluid gets bad through regular maintenance. What you are taking out should look like what you are putting in. Do not wait for a color or smell change. The industry standard is two years or 25,000 - 30,000 miles, whichever comes first.
At Best Western Transmission, we use a pump inlet flush machine. This method displaces the old fluid with new fluid. The fluid passes through the transmission using the transmissions own system. The fluid is not forced through with additional pressure the way most other systems are set up, which in some cases can cause transmission failure by damaging the internal seals or gaskets in your transmission.Our patented Powerflush machine uses a inlet design. The Powerflush machine attaches to the pump intake after the pan and filter are removed. This machine supplies only fresh new fluid to the pump intake and uses the transmissions pump to move the fluid through. The fluid passes through the transmission and dumps into a collection tray, and never goes back into the transmission. All of the old fluid is gone and replaced with fresh new fluid. After the Powerflush service, we install a new filter* (where possible), clean and replace the transmission pan, and make sure the fluid is at the proper dipstick level.The Powerflush process takes a total of about 20 quarts of fluid to flush out 15 quarts of old fluid and replace the fluid. It also gives the mechanic the opportunity to look inside the pan for anything unusual that would indicate a pending transmission failure. Most vehicles should have this type of service done every 25,000 - 30,000 miles under normal conditions, more often if you tow or subject your vehicle to other high-risk conditions (see applicable FAQ). This type of flush does take more effort, makes more of a mess, and it costs a little more, but we know it is worth it to protect the most expensive componetn of your vehicle! This Transmission Power Flush service is available at all our Best Western Transmission locations.*Not all vehicles have a replacable transmission filter.
The filter should be changed with the fluid, just like engine oil filters. You wouldn't change your engine oil and leave a dirty, clogged filter in the system. Why would you even consider an automatic transmissions service that didn't change the filter?There are different filters for each type of transmission. There are also different filters used for 4 wheel drive vehicles and 2 wheel drive vehicles. Care must be taken to install the correct filter or transmission damage can occur. Care must also be taken when reinstalling the pan bolts, as they are easy to strip.
Many owner's manuals are recommending the first transmission fluid flush at 60,000 miles. At Best Western Transmission, we recommend service every 25,000 - 30,000 miles.
The typical flush machine connects to the transmission cooler lines. The flush machine carries new fluid to the line going through cooler. On the flush machine is a chamber on the machine with a diaphragm, and the top part of the chamber above the diaphragm is filled with new fluid. The engine is started, which turns the torque converter and the input shaft on the transmission. The input shaft turns the transmission pump creating hydraulic pressure which forces fluid to flow through the cooler line. As fluid leaves the cooler line, it enters the chamber on the flush machine. As the old fluid side of the diaphragm fills, it pushes the diaphragm up and forces new fresh fluid into the transmission. After a while, the old fluid is collected in the machine and it is replaced by new fluid. Now, the transmission has been flushed.Need to address correctness of this section.
As you can see, the machine causes no pressure and all fluid transfer is done by the transmission's own pump. The problem with a typical transmission flush is that it does not remove all of teh old fluid, but continuously dilutes the old fluid with new fluid. It never really removes all of the old fluid, but it is far superior to just a "drain and fill." Because the typical flush leaves some contaminated fluid behind, increasing risk of future transmission failure, Best Western Transmission uses the patented "Powerflush" method.
A typical drain and fill is the method used by many quick oil-change chains. This only drains the fluid and does not remove the filter or pan which leaves between 1/3 and 1/2 of your old transmission fluid behind.If there are any problems with your old fluid, this will continue and accelerate damage to your vehicle's transmission.