How to Change Transmission Fluid

red Transmission Fluid being poured out
  • 1-2 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 75-125
What You'll Need
Transmission fluid
2 Car ramps

Any driver should learn how to change transmission fluid in his own vehicle. Accomplishing this task just requires 2 ramps to get the car off the ground and a ratchet to remove the bolt for the transmission fluid drain plug. Once you get access to the drain plug, you can change out the old transmission fluid for new fluid.

Here are the steps, tools and materials that are needed to change the transmission fluid in your car. This process will take you less than an hour to accomplish once you get all the materials in place. Once you understand how to change your car's transmission fluid you will be able to do this task every time and save on costly transmission fluid change bills.

Step 1: Purchase Materials for Changing Transmission Fluid

Go to an auto parts store to purchase transmission fluid in order to replace the fluid that you will drain from the car. You should also acquire a set of ramps to help you in changing the transmission fluid. These ramps can also be used to change oil so they are a worthwhile investment for your do-it-yourself car repair jobs. Also purchase a plastic bucket to use to catch the transmission fluid being drained from the car.

Step 2: Place the Car on the Ramps

Drive the 2 front tires up on the car ramps. The ramps should be positioned parallel to each other so that the car will rest correctly on top. With the car on the ramps you will be able to access the drain plug underneath and drain the transmission.

Step 3: Remove Drain Plug and Drain the Transmission Fluid

Place a piece of cardboard or sheet underneath the car. Get underneath the car and use a ratchet to remove the drain plug from the transmission pan. Have a bucket nearby to place underneath the transmission pan. Fluid will start to come out as you remove the drain plug. If you do not place the bucket underneath you will end up with a shirt full of transmission fluid.

Drain the transmission pan completely before putting the drain plug back in. Use rags to wipe the area where the drain pug was removed to clean up any dirt or debris that has come out. Take some of the oil that you drained and cover the drain plug before placing back on the transmission pan.

Step 4: Refill the Transmission

Open the hood to the car and locate where the transmission fluid goes in. Use a funnel and pour replacement transmission fluid into the car. Replace the amount of transmission fluid up to the recommended refill level for the car. Once you have refilled the transmission with new fluid, close the hood and take the car down from the ramps. This completes the changing of your car's transmission fluid.