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Old 02-10-2009, 11:31 PM   #1
Ice Racer
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2002 SL2
2007 ION-2 Sedan
Default Why is my transmission fluid black?

I changed the fluid in my 2001 sl 5 speed manual at 125,000 miles. I noticed that the fluid was awfully dark but thought it was because the fluid probably had never been changed. When I checked the fluid level at 140,000 miles, I noticed dark fluid on the dip stick. I drained it again, and sure enough, the fluid had changed in color to look almost like used motor oil.

Does anyone have an idea what is causing my fluid to turn from red to black?

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Old 02-11-2009, 01:54 AM   #2
fishmed
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Default Re: Why is my transmission fluid black?

okay i could be wrong here but i dont believe you are using the right stuff in your trans you say you have an manual... but i believe you dont use the red stuff in a manual trans... i could be wrong but i am not sure... i would ask at your local auto parts store

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Old 02-11-2009, 02:03 AM   #3
tehSaturn
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2001 SW2
Default Re: Why is my transmission fluid black?

I thought both auto and manual Saturn transmissions use Dex III Auto Tranny Fluid...

...
2001 SW2: 60k Miles @ 8/11

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Old 02-11-2009, 02:43 AM   #4
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1996 SW2
Default Re: Why is my transmission fluid black?

Quote:
Originally Posted by fishmed View Post
.. i would ask at your local auto parts store
Oh, yeah, the same folks who try to sell you a crankshaft position sensor when you throw a P0341 code for the (we all know non-existent) CAMshaft position sensor. The same guys who will sell you platinum, iridium, kryptonite, plutonium, etc. spark plugs.

Um, NO! They might know what scent of pimp oil is apropos for impressing neighborhood girls, but even that says maybe.

As stated in EVERY owner's manual placed in EVERY glove box of EVERY S-Series car that rolled out of Spring Hill, the 5-speed transmission takes ATF. 'Course, as long as disinformation persists (as it evidently does) that it takes gear oil, as if it were a 1908 Apperson-Jackrabbit, there's the chance that some MENSA non-candidate indeed put gear dope in it. Iceracer, did you buy the car new?

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Old 02-11-2009, 06:42 AM   #5
Fox Slaughter
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Default Re: Why is my transmission fluid black?

Our transmissions take ATF. End of story. There is a clutch material in there that the gear lube likes to eat. Nom Nom Nom. 80w-90 gear dope, bad ideal in our Transmissions.

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Old 02-11-2009, 08:01 AM   #6
Ice Racer
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Default Re: Why is my transmission fluid black?

I used ATF Dexron III when I replaced it the first time at 125,000. I donít believe anyone had changed it to gear lube prior to this because the dip stick had so much dirt on it and the fluid smelled like ATF but was really dark.

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Old 02-11-2009, 08:10 AM   #7
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Default Re: Why is my transmission fluid black?

If you have a Manual trans, as Madpogue stated; it takes ATF.

Most likely is that the previous owner had put Gear Oil in the box. Not unheard of...

When I bought my 94 SL2 back in Sept/Oct. 2007; it is a 5 speed. When I changed the manual trans fluid out, it was like really heavy dark chocolate milk looking. I drained it all out and put the regular reccomended ATF fluid in there.

You only need to use 2.6 quarts of fluid in a Manual Trans.

The Auto Trans takes, iirc; 6-7 quarts of ATF.

...
Bryan

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02/97-10/08
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Old 02-11-2009, 03:05 PM   #8
tehSaturn
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Default Re: Why is my transmission fluid black?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2NDSOUT View Post
If you have a Manual trans, as Madpogue stated; it takes ATF.The Auto Trans takes, iirc; 6-7 quarts of ATF.
5.2 if you don't drain the torque converter. (Which I have NO idea how to do)

...
2001 SW2: 60k Miles @ 8/11

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