Transmission Service?

Transmission Service?

This is a discussion on Transmission Service? within the RAM 1500 Diesel Transmission forums, part of the RAM 1500 Diesel Garage - RAM 1500 Diesel Mechanics Corner category; My truck is approaching the 100k mile mark. I know RAM says the transmission fluid is a “lifetime fill” that never needs changing. And I’m ...

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    RAM Jr Member jsd43's Avatar
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    Transmission Service?

    My truck is approaching the 100k mile mark. I know RAM says the transmission fluid is a “lifetime fill” that never needs changing. And I’m aware that ZF does not agree with this. My question, therefore, is how many of you are actually changing the transmission fluid, and how many are leaving it alone, per RAM’s recommendation? I myself plan on keeping this truck until the wheels fall off, putting the wheels back on, and running it farther.
    Jinx likes this.

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    RAM Ninja DrivingZiggy's Avatar
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    I'm wildly speculating, but I think that most of us who are over 100,000 miles have changed it.

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    RAM Sr Member RansomT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsd43 View Post
    My truck is approaching the 100k mile mark. I know RAM says the transmission fluid is a “lifetime fill” that never needs changing. And I’m aware that ZF does not agree with this. My question, therefore, is how many of you are actually changing the transmission fluid, and how many are leaving it alone, per RAM’s recommendation? I myself plan on keeping this truck until the wheels fall off, putting the wheels back on, and running it farther.
    My wife's BMW (junk!) has a ZF transmission that is similar to ours and likewise it has a "lifetime" fill, but her transmission has absolutely no way of fully changing it short of drilling out the pan bolts. But anyway, ZF has "lifetime fill" stamped on the bottom of that transmission. I inquired at a BMW service center about the "lifetime" fill and was promptly told that according to the service manual, "lifetime" means lifetime of the transmission which is 120,000 miles.

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    RAM Guru Brokedownbutgood's Avatar
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    If you want your transmission to last a long time then a fluid and filter change is cheap insurance.

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    RAM Bronze Member Bounty Hunter's Avatar
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    Changed mine at 70k, as well as installed the PPE trans pan. The PPE pan has a replaceable filter and is cheaper in the long run if you plan to service your transmission more than once. The extra capacity and added cooling is a plus.
    Why_rick and navyr113 like this.
    2016 Laramie CC 6'4", Delmonico Red, GDE Hot tune and Trans tune, External oil cooler, PPE Trans pan

  7. #6
    MAS
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    RAM Bronze Member MAS's Avatar
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    Almost 64k miles on mine of 40 mile round trip commuting and towing our boat and TT. I can tell the transmission shifts different now than it did when new. When cold it has a lot more flare when shifting from first to second than it did, and now even when it is really cold I have noticed the flare from 2-3 shift creeping in.

    I think im going to drain and fill with Valvoline drive it a week or two then drain, swap filter/pan and fill again to try to get a more complete system volume exchange. Going forward from the first service I don't plan to change the filter again unless I experience some kind of failure or contamination, I will just drain and fill the fluid every 60-70k.

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    RAM Bronze Member Bounty Hunter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MAS View Post
    I think im going to drain and fill with Valvoline drive it a week or two then drain, swap filter/pan and fill again to try to get a more complete system volume exchange. Going forward from the first service I don't plan to change the filter again unless I experience some kind of failure or contamination, I will just drain and fill the fluid every 60-70k.
    Good luck with the joke of a drain plug in the stock plastic trans pan. Even with the proper size tool, the hex bit just spins in the plastic drain plug. Only way to drain that I can tell is removal of the pan.

    I had my factory fluid tested when I changed it at 70k, tested good even though I'm pretty hard on it when towing. Based on the test I'd trust it going 100k in any conditions.
    2016 Laramie CC 6'4", Delmonico Red, GDE Hot tune and Trans tune, External oil cooler, PPE Trans pan

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    RAM Sr Member DavidG's Avatar
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    I'm at 130,000 miles on my 2014 Laramie Longhorn and haven't changed mine yet. I think about it when I see transmission posts, but then forget about it. In my defense, I commute about 100 miles a day (mostly freeway) and tow very little (the occasional golf cart) so my transmission has a fairly easy life.

    Dave

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    RAM Professor shawclan5's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsd43 View Post
    My truck is approaching the 100k mile mark. I know RAM says the transmission fluid is a “lifetime fill” that never needs changing. And I’m aware that ZF does not agree with this. My question, therefore, is how many of you are actually changing the transmission fluid, and how many are leaving it alone, per RAM’s recommendation? I myself plan on keeping this truck until the wheels fall off, putting the wheels back on, and running it farther.
    Changed mine at 148.5k...Mopar pan and ZF fluid. Took parts to trans shop who charged me 1 hr labor. Attached in my UOA...I probably would recommend against going over 150k unless your one of the guys who either will trade soon...or figures WTF I am never changing...


    ZF Lab.pdf
    2002 Excursion Limited 7.3 w/ 277k and counting
    2016 Longhorn ED with GDE 182k / 4.275 hrs and counting


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    Super Moderator VernDiesel's Avatar
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    525k on mine. I’ve changed the fluid 5 times now 3 times with filter.
    Airstream, TT, Boat, transporter. Factory receiver 1,290/12k (w WDH) factory brake controller tow mirrors & hitch camera. No sway WDH, Andersen Rapid adjust hitch, Turnover ball GN hitch w 5er adapter, Axle to frame air bags, GDE tune w turbo brake, SLT Grill, 275/55/20 XL load tires, Max ED tow rating 9,200, Combined axle rating 7,800, Max RAM 1500 CVWR 15,950, truck with me & 3 hitchs axle weights steer 3,340 drive 2,560

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