Monday, September 28, 2015

Transmission oil leak...

Transmission Oil Leak

Leak around bolt on top
 It took me awhile to realize exactly how bad it was, i.e. 1,000 miles or so, though knew I was leaking transmission oil.  Now, much to my chagrin, and looks to be no long lasting damage, but was running super low on transmission fluid due to the leak.  When looking under this is what I saw.

Bolt location prior to checking
From what I could see, and from what I now know, there is a bolt head on top, and a washer below, where the leak originates.  Upon talking with some mechanics I know on the island (Vashon Island), they informed me that this is an alternate fill tube location for the transmission.  There's indications that a similar thing is on other side, but instead of a bolt and washer, fill tube, with dipstick, is there.  I didn't look on other side as that wasn't leaking, right here is leaking.

Now, what it turned out to be, and no idea how long it was like this, is this bolt was loose, very very very loose..  Did I say very?  Turned it quite a few turns by my fingers alone, which isn't a really good sign.

Tight, clean, leak free!
With this revelation it was time to tighten it and add oil.  Prior to this had picked up a gallon of ATF (Automatic Transmission Fluid), as it was cheaper to buy by the gallon.  Turns out I added the whole gallon (four quarts) and that made it go to the tippy top.

Final note on this.  I knew before hand, but somehow didn't remember (surprising, right?), that automatic transmissions need to be checked while engine is idling and transmission is NOT in gear (neutral).  Turns out I was checking fluid level while engine was off, just like we do engine oil.  Bad move, real bad move.  Had thought it was overfull, and prior to Vashon had thought it was in the normal range, until I kept seeing fluid showing up under transmission, especially when parked on odd angles.  Word to the wise, check transmission fluid dipstick on level ground, with engine running, in idle mode, for couple minutes.  Clean stick off, insert, check, and done.

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