transmission oil change / gasket adventure

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Old 05 Feb 2006, 05:56 pm   #1 (permalink)
onehappymadman@yahoo.com
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Default transmission oil change / gasket adventure

Changed the engine oil today, and this time decided to go ahead and
change the tranny oil and tranny pan gasket. About a year ago I'd
bought a package from Pep Boys that had the tranny pan gasket and also
tranny a strainer, because the last time I went to the dealership they
said I needed a new tranny pan gasket.

Draining the tranny oil, no big deal, just had to use a plumber's
wrench to assist in rotating the 10mm Allen wrench. It was on tight.

Removed the tranny pan, and boy did I make a mess on my driveway, even
with the papers there, I hadn't realized there would be that much oil -
it didn't all neatly drain into my oil collection pan.

Sprayed carburetor cleaner on the inside of the tranny pan to clean it,
and used a baby-wipe to clean the magnets. Then used some Dexron-III
(from Wal-Mart, yay!) to rinse the inside of the tranny pan again.

Removed the old gasket. My Haynes manual said to "carefully" remove
it, wasn't sure what that meant, since I'd also read warnings that even
a stray bit of cloth lint could ruin a transmission. Settled for using
a flathead screwdriver to remove/scrape away old gasket, re-spraying
with more carburetor cleaner, and more Dexron-III for final rinse.
Also picked up with my fingers any stray tiny bits of cloth lint.

Also removed the tranny strainer and put in the Pep Boys strainer.
Probably wasn't the best idea, since the Pep Boys strainer said "Made
in Vietnam", but hey, the old one was 10 years old, plus it was pretty
easy to remove. Kept the old one in a plastic bag, just in case I need
it later.

And now for the major "Oh F$@&" moment. My new tranny gasket was a bit
warped, the result of being stuffed into a box from Pep Boys. Trying
to put the gasket on, and then put it and the tranny pan back onto the
car, was a nightmare. The screws holding the gasket in position kept
falling out. Move one screw, another would fall out. Major panic set
in. How am I going to get the tranny pan back on, with the gasket
correctly in place? Thought, maybe some grease would hold it in place.
No luck - no grease.

Thought, "what would MacGyver do?" (my childhood hero.) Then I had an
idea. I had a box of 4" nails, some duct tape, and scissors. I cut
about 4-5 inches of duct tape, cut it with the scissors to reduce the
width by half, and wrapped the sharp end of each of four nails with the
duct tape. Used the four newly-fattened nails to hold the gasket in
place at strategic screw hole locations, then put the pan back onto the
transmission. It worked. Whew!

The only other major source of excitement was trying to get 2 qts of
Wal-Mart Dexron-III into the fill hole. I found it helps *a lot* to
first pour the Dexron from the gallon jug into a pint-sized water
bottle. (First, to make sure the bottle was clean, I poured some
Dexron-III into the water bottle, shook, and discarded this rinse into
my oil waste container.)

Apart from that, it was just a matter of trial-and-error in measuring
the oil: whoops, too much, drained some out. Whoops, drained too much
out, add some more. More. More. More. Got it. Drove around a bit,
car feels a bit smoother.

Anyway. That's my tranny oil/gasket change adventure, maybe the stuff
I learned can help somebody else out.

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Old 05 Feb 2006, 06:32 pm   #2 (permalink)
qslim
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Default Re: transmission oil change / gasket adventure

Well congrats on getting it done. Two things that may help the next time
around would be a can of GasketTack and a trans funnel. The GasketTack
(don't know where it came from, its been in my toolbox since before I can
remember. I think I inherited it from the guy who worked in my bay before
me) is this red crap that helps gaskets stick to the sealing surface
during installation, and it's made by Wynns, I think. I use it exclusively
on transmission pan gakets because they are a pain even when you have the
car on a lift over your head. You can also get a transmission funnel
specifically made to fit in the dipstick. Makes life real easy.

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Old 05 Feb 2006, 10:51 pm   #3 (permalink)
onehappymadman@yahoo.com
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Default Re: transmission oil change / gasket adventure


qslim wrote:
> Well congrats on getting it done. Two things that may help the next time
> around would be a can of GasketTack and a trans funnel. The GasketTack
> (don't know where it came from, its been in my toolbox since before I can
> remember. I think I inherited it from the guy who worked in my bay before
> me) is this red crap that helps gaskets stick to the sealing surface
> during installation, and it's made by Wynns, I think. I use it exclusively
> on transmission pan gakets because they are a pain even when you have the
> car on a lift over your head. You can also get a transmission funnel
> specifically made to fit in the dipstick. Makes life real easy.



I was wondering how they do it in the shops... I thought they used a
variation on my nail technique to support the gasket. GastetTack, huh.
That also answers my question about whether one should oil the gasket
too, like you do on the oil filter gasket, before attaching. I went
ahead and oiled my gasket prior to attaching - my fingers were already
soaking in Dexron III, I thought, might as well.

Only 20,000 miles since last (BrakeMasters) tranny flush, but the old
liquid was brown. New stuff was red. ???

Like someone said on this group awhile back, Wal-Mart Dexron III might
not be the best, but it's gotta be better than the old stuff sitting in
the tranny...

Say, regular draining of tranny fluid only gets out 1/3 of the fluid,
right? Would it be better to change tranny fluid say, every other
engine oil change, to "flush"?

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Old 05 Feb 2006, 11:43 pm   #4 (permalink)
Sharx35
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Default Re: transmission oil change / gasket adventure


<onehappymadman@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:1139183805.884031.88960@o13g2000cwo.googlegro ups.com...
> Changed the engine oil today, and this time decided to go ahead and
> change the tranny oil and tranny pan gasket. About a year ago I'd
> bought a package from Pep Boys that had the tranny pan gasket and also
> tranny a strainer, because the last time I went to the dealership they
> said I needed a new tranny pan gasket.
>
> Draining the tranny oil, no big deal, just had to use a plumber's
> wrench to assist in rotating the 10mm Allen wrench. It was on tight.
>
> Removed the tranny pan, and boy did I make a mess on my driveway, even
> with the papers there, I hadn't realized there would be that much oil -
> it didn't all neatly drain into my oil collection pan.
>
> Sprayed carburetor cleaner on the inside of the tranny pan to clean it,
> and used a baby-wipe to clean the magnets. Then used some Dexron-III
> (from Wal-Mart, yay!) to rinse the inside of the tranny pan again.
>
> Removed the old gasket. My Haynes manual said to "carefully" remove
> it, wasn't sure what that meant, since I'd also read warnings that even
> a stray bit of cloth lint could ruin a transmission. Settled for using
> a flathead screwdriver to remove/scrape away old gasket, re-spraying
> with more carburetor cleaner, and more Dexron-III for final rinse.
> Also picked up with my fingers any stray tiny bits of cloth lint.
>
> Also removed the tranny strainer and put in the Pep Boys strainer.
> Probably wasn't the best idea, since the Pep Boys strainer said "Made
> in Vietnam", but hey, the old one was 10 years old, plus it was pretty
> easy to remove. Kept the old one in a plastic bag, just in case I need
> it later.
>
> And now for the major "Oh F$@&" moment. My new tranny gasket was a bit
> warped, the result of being stuffed into a box from Pep Boys. Trying
> to put the gasket on, and then put it and the tranny pan back onto the
> car, was a nightmare. The screws holding the gasket in position kept
> falling out. Move one screw, another would fall out. Major panic set
> in. How am I going to get the tranny pan back on, with the gasket
> correctly in place? Thought, maybe some grease would hold it in place.
> No luck - no grease.
>
> Thought, "what would MacGyver do?" (my childhood hero.) Then I had an
> idea. I had a box of 4" nails, some duct tape, and scissors. I cut
> about 4-5 inches of duct tape, cut it with the scissors to reduce the
> width by half, and wrapped the sharp end of each of four nails with the
> duct tape. Used the four newly-fattened nails to hold the gasket in
> place at strategic screw hole locations, then put the pan back onto the
> transmission. It worked. Whew!
>
> The only other major source of excitement was trying to get 2 qts of
> Wal-Mart Dexron-III into the fill hole. I found it helps *a lot* to
> first pour the Dexron from the gallon jug into a pint-sized water
> bottle. (First, to make sure the bottle was clean, I poured some
> Dexron-III into the water bottle, shook, and discarded this rinse into
> my oil waste container.)
>
> Apart from that, it was just a matter of trial-and-error in measuring
> the oil: whoops, too much, drained some out. Whoops, drained too much
> out, add some more. More. More. More. Got it. Drove around a bit,
> car feels a bit smoother.
>
> Anyway. That's my tranny oil/gasket change adventure, maybe the stuff
> I learned can help somebody else out.


Hindsight indicates that you'd been better off going to the dealer.


>



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Old 05 Feb 2006, 11:59 pm   #5 (permalink)
onehappymadman@yahoo.com
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Default Re: transmission oil change / gasket adventure

> Hindsight indicates that you'd been better off going to the dealer.
>
>


How so? Learned how to do something new, car drives just fine. Tested
it out on the freeway even.

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Old 06 Feb 2006, 03:23 am   #6 (permalink)
Sharx35
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Default Re: transmission oil change / gasket adventure


<onehappymadman@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:1139205540.594954.264570@o13g2000cwo.googlegr oups.com...
>> Hindsight indicates that you'd been better off going to the dealer.
>>
>>

>
> How so? Learned how to do something new, car drives just fine. Tested
> it out on the freeway even.


How many HOURS did you spend do all that stuff? Those of us with LIVES have
other things to do.


>



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Old 06 Feb 2006, 07:24 am   #7 (permalink)
karinhall
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Default Re: transmission oil change / gasket adventure


"Sharx35" <sharx35@hotmail.com> wrote in message news:5AEFf.181769$AP5.161051@edtnps84...

>
> <onehappymadman@yahoo.com> wrote in message
> news:1139205540.594954.264570@o13g2000cwo.googlegr oups.com...

>>> Hindsight indicates that you'd been better off going to the dealer.
>>>
>>>

>>
>> How so? Learned how to do something new, car drives just fine. Tested
>> it out on the freeway even.

>
> How many HOURS did you spend do all that stuff? Those of us with LIVES have
> other things to do.
>

hahahahaha! Good answer! ROFL
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Old 06 Feb 2006, 09:53 am   #8 (permalink)
onehappymadman@yahoo.com
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Default Re: transmission oil change / gasket adventure


Sharx35 wrote:
> <onehappymadman@yahoo.com> wrote in message
> news:1139205540.594954.264570@o13g2000cwo.googlegr oups.com...
> >> Hindsight indicates that you'd been better off going to the dealer.
> >>
> >>

> >
> > How so? Learned how to do something new, car drives just fine. Tested
> > it out on the freeway even.

>
> How many HOURS did you spend do all that stuff? Those of us with LIVES have
> other things to do.
>


Three hours total, including the main engine oil change. Done on a
Sunday, with nothing else to do.

Maybe when I'm rich like you, I'll take the car to the dealer for
everything from a car wash to oil change.

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Old 06 Feb 2006, 10:09 am   #9 (permalink)
Curtis Newton
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Default Re: transmission oil change / gasket adventure

>
>The only other major source of excitement was trying to get 2 qts of
>Wal-Mart Dexron-III into the fill hole. I found it helps *a lot* to
>first pour the Dexron from the gallon jug into a pint-sized water
>bottle. (First, to make sure the bottle was clean, I poured some
>Dexron-III into the water bottle, shook, and discarded this rinse into
>my oil waste container.)
>



Congrats on your adventure, love the MacGuyer comment. I have to ask,
what year is your Camry? Did it call for Dexron-III or Toyota
Type-IV?
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Old 06 Feb 2006, 10:27 am   #10 (permalink)
onehappymadman@yahoo.com
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Default Re: transmission oil change / gasket adventure

Curtis Newton wrote:
> >
> >The only other major source of excitement was trying to get 2 qts of
> >Wal-Mart Dexron-III into the fill hole. I found it helps *a lot* to
> >first pour the Dexron from the gallon jug into a pint-sized water
> >bottle. (First, to make sure the bottle was clean, I poured some
> >Dexron-III into the water bottle, shook, and discarded this rinse into
> >my oil waste container.)
> >

>
>
> Congrats on your adventure, love the MacGuyer comment. I have to ask,
> what year is your Camry? Did it call for Dexron-III or Toyota
> Type-IV?



I've got a 96 Camry, calls for Dexron-II, but that doesn't exist
anymore. So, Dexron-III.

This Saturday, now that I know how, I'll change my dad's tranny oil
(but I'll stay away from the gasket for now). He's got a 2001 Camry,
30,000 miles, never changed the tranny oil. I had him check his manual
- he needs Dexron also. I'll pick up another jug of it at Wal-Mart.

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