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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently changed my 2000 Rodeo's automatic transmission fluid. I dropped the OD pan and cleaned it out. Put a little fluid in there and put it back on along with a new gasket. I drained out the fluid in the main pan but did not drop it, it was not obvious how to remove the 2 hard to get to bolts. I looked into removing the structural member that is in the way, but it does not seem to be the only thing in the way. I filled it up, Double checked its level at the end of the next day by letting it idle for 8-10 minutes or so and the fluid that dripped out of the fill hole was dark. Hardly red. I was surprised because I had just added 4.5 - 5 quarts. Should I just change the fluid a little more often to try and remove the gunk thats up in there?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
bradzuzu said:
You should do a good flush on it. Can you undo the rear trany mount and jack up the trany enough to get that pan off ??
Im going to do that and just change the fluid again. I saw one write up on almost completely changing the fluid but the way it was written made it seem like he was suggesting you run the engine and transmission to pump out the fluid through the trans radiator hoses. Which would mean running the trans without fluid for a period of time. That does not seem like a good idea. Do you know of a good way to flush the transmission? I would rather not take it to the shop and fork over all the money they want to do it, and I don't think they even drop the pans and clean them out like I would.
 

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Do not flush the tranny!!!! These transmissions do not like to be flushed! You did the right thing by draining and refilling. Also, the transmission holds about 9 qts I think, so you changed half of it. That is perfectly fine and is a good reason why a lot of people change their fluid every 15k miles. But please, no flushes!!!
 

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When I did mine I pulled the small front pan and the main pan to put a new filter in it and clean the magnet. Take off the cross member after you support the tranny and change the filter and clean the magnet and re-fill it. Mine had the same results you are talking about when I did that, only slightly better so I will be doing a drain and fill when I change my oil to get it cherry again.
 

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One member, who's a transmission specialist, once said that a transmission *flush* was a transmission rebuilders best friend.....in other words, no flushes on these beasts.

If you're not sure of the previous drain/refill interval, other then the one you just performed, wait for 3k miles or so, and THEN do a drain/refill again.

If you put too much NEW fluid in a transmission with a lot of older/brown fluid, you could inadvertently cause the transmission to start slipping by adding TOO much of a good thing all at once, if this makes sense.

I've got 2 rodeo's with this auto, one with 350k, the other with 200k, I've changed both their fluid every 15k miles with castrol import ATF, the fluid always comes out red. However, I am the original owner of both trucks.
 

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Ramblin Fever said:
If you're not sure of the previous drain/refill interval, other then the one you just performed, wait for 3k miles or so, and THEN do a drain/refill again.

If you put too much NEW fluid in a transmission with a lot of older/brown fluid, you could inadvertently cause the transmission to start slipping by adding TOO much of a good thing all at once, if this makes sense.
I have heard this before but still dont understand why wait? I mean I am taking the advice myself and that is why I still havent done another fluid change but why? Too many detergents?
 

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Ian1006 said:
Ramblin Fever said:
If you're not sure of the previous drain/refill interval, other then the one you just performed, wait for 3k miles or so, and THEN do a drain/refill again.

If you put too much NEW fluid in a transmission with a lot of older/brown fluid, you could inadvertently cause the transmission to start slipping by adding TOO much of a good thing all at once, if this makes sense.
I have heard this before but still dont understand why wait? I mean I am taking the advice myself and that is why I still havent done another fluid change but why? Too many detergents?
What happens is the new ATF fluid is pure, clean with NO debris, clutch material, etc....when we think of changing engine oil, this IS exactly what we want - all new clean oil with nothing in it.

However, on a somewhat neglected transmission with clutches, what ends up happening is if you replace TOO much of the old fluid, it becomes like a slippery condition within the transmission which can inadvertently cause slippage to start occuring in an otherwise good transmission....

Reason for this is the older, darkened fluid has debris, clutch material in it that can actually prevent slippage if you will....however, you don't want to leave the transmission running with constant old, worn or wearing out atf cause that's what leads to early failures in the long run.

The object and point of the whole ATF system/ritual, is to never allow the ATF to become darkened in the first place, however those of you who bought your trucks used didn't have that luxury....so now, you have to slowly baby it back to a healthy state.

Eventually you will have all good fresh ATF in that transmission, just be cautious in not doing too much too soon, however you don't want to go any longer then 5-6k miles either before doing it again. If the fluid, at that time, looks 100% better, do a drain/refill anyways, and wait a bit longer the next time, etc.

I change mine every 15k miles, however if I've done a lot of mountain or offroad driving in one summer, I will change it out before winter.

Hope this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Alright, so I will just stick to the drain and refill by dropping both pans. But it is now leaking around the fill and drain bolts just sitting there. It is a very slow leak but its there. I looked it up and it seems that Isuzu changed them to a hex bolt. So I ordered 2 of those. Also now after driving around there is another very slow leak by the adapter/OD pan. I think I over tightened the bolts that hold the pan on. So I will have to try and collect the fluid in there when I replace the drain plug and the adapter/OD pan gasket, and put the fluid back in to not introduce too much new at a time, and I will replace the filter too maybe. Does this seem like the right thing to do?
 

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Let me clarify my flush statement. I mean after changing the oil and replacing the filter you can loosen a cooler line part way. Do the fluid fill put a Pam under the loosened line and start the vehicle,hop out and look at the color of the fluid running out while keeping an eye on the volume that's going into the pan. If it's dribbling good clean fluid shut it off and tighten the line then finish your tran's fill. I do not like additives nor do
I use them. Cracking the line is a good way to push out the last of the nasty fluid.
Say if it was really bad you could pull the line loose and put a hose on it down into a pan and really expell the junk fast. Just shut it off add more and start it back up until you feel that what's coming out is acceptable.
Sometimes if enough sediment or chunks get in there you'll find that your not getting flow through the cooler lines at all. You would want to undo both lines and blow compressed air into them and hope it clears, otherwise it will die very soon there after!!
Good luck guys I hope you have success
Brad
 

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Ok I get what you are saying. We have a lot of 15 passenger vans that like to slip out of overdrive at the beginning stages of the trannys going...we put a bottle of Lucas Tranny stuff in and it helps it last a little longer...dont know if it actually helps that much though.

Edit: our 15 passenger vans slip, not my Passport!
 

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Dirtbike, this is by far the best filter and gasket kit I have used on these transmissions.
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/4L30...r_Truck_Parts_Accessories&hash=item3c8fe362a7

The black rubber ones are easy to deform, especially if you overtorque them. For your original question about the main pan...
All that is in the way is the crossmember, just unbolt the two 14mm nuts from the trans mount to xmember.
Then remove the three 10mm bolts on the drivers side that hold the fuel lines to the xmember. After that place a jack at the rear of the transmission.
The jack is just to support the trans once the xmember is off. To remove the xmember there are three 19mm bolts on each side.
After that, just remove all the 10mm bolts for the main and O/D pans. The reason your fluid was still dark is cause you didnt drop the main pan.
The main pan still holds at least half a quart of fluid if you just drain it only. The OD pan hold about 3/4 quarts.

There is nothing else in the way of removing the pan bolts. I tried it the hard way by using a universal socket adapter to get the rear bolts, HUGE PITA...
Took me almost half an hour to take care of them. Removing the xmember may seem like alot of work, but it should only take about 10 mins or so.

If you can get some copper sealing washers for the drain and fill plugs that should stop the leaking.
The torque spec is pretty high for the fill/drain plugs, they should be at 20ft lbs or a little more.
I believe that is so you can crush the copper sealing washer. Just dont overtorque it or you'll hate yourself.
 

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Like ramblin fever said trying to keep an old trany alive is tricky business. Maybe on the second service you could go through the process I described above.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
That is the gasket set I bought, and it is leaking around it. So I ordered another and this time I am going to use adhesive. I ordered the new and improved drain fill plugs from honda parts east in hopes to fix that leak around the drain and fill plugs. I did scratch up the surface the gasket goes onto on the transmission but I didn't think it was enough to cause a leak. Also, brad, you are suggesting I do the full pan drop, clean, and refill, then remove the cooler lines and start up the truck and add fluid through the fill hole at about the same rate it is coming out the cooler line? Wouldn't that change too much fluid, or should I not let it get to be perfect red? Over time say 6k miles, can I change the fluid again, and this time do a full fluid change? Or should I gradually work it into having a complete fluid change. Changing more and more fluid with each change.
 

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It all depends on how bad it is!!! Trying to put fluid in while it's running might be a pain in the buttox lol. Just watch as it's flowing out how much dumps into the pan. If it wasn't shifting poorly you could probly run more through, but if it's got some miles on it give it till your oil change 3k. Definitely pull the pan ... If it's just the normal black dirty build up and not much in the way of fine bits of copper looking grounds than you could most likely crack a front line and push a little more yuck fluid out. Dam those designers for not putting in a dipstick tube!!!! :evil:
I'm surprised your having trouble with a rubber seal???
Maybe take care when you tighten the bolt try to be real easy on them....
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
bradzuzu said:
It all depends on how bad it is!!! Trying to put fluid in while it's running might be a pain in the buttox lol. Just watch as it's flowing out how much dumps into the pan. If it wasn't shifting poorly you could probly run more through, but if it's got some miles on it give it till your oil change 3k. Definitely pull the pan ... If it's just the normal black dirty build up and not much in the way of fine bits of copper looking grounds than you could most likely crack a front line and push a little more yuck fluid out. Dam those designers for not putting in a dipstick tube!!!! :evil:
I'm surprised your having trouble with a rubber seal???
Maybe take care when you tighten the bolt try to be real easy on them....
I have not had many issues with my transmission. Twice I got an error code that said "transmission component slippage" both at highways speeds and i did'nt feel anything so I expect it was VERY minor or a fault in the system, and when ever I leave my house on a cold day and I don't warm up the trans, it shifts relatively hard into second while accelerating down the hill that is my road. Neither of these have really worried me. I would like to maybe slowly work my transmission into an almost full fluid change every time. I assume I will be able to do that over the course of maybe 30k miles maybe even 15k. I think I must have over tightened the bolts on the adapter pan. I feel confient that if I torque them properly and use a proper gasket adhesive/sealant the problem will go away. The trans has never leaked, at least no signs of it other than the bottom of the trans was a little oily suggesting a tiny bit of oil got out. But that seems common place to me.
 

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Pulling the main pan also lets you clean the big magnet in the pan. I almost always put some kind of RTV (The Right Stuff is the best but at 18 bucks a tube its expensive) on those kinds of gaskets even when they say not to...shrugs...works and I havent had any issues, though I dont use a lot and its mainly to hold the gasket in place. I also made the mistake of assuming both pan gaskets came in the filter kit and after dropping both pans the small one had no gasket! Used a huge bead of RTV to seal that pan and it is bone dry to this day. Not saying do what I do but just sharing my experience.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Ian1006 said:
Pulling the main pan also lets you clean the big magnet in the pan. I almost always put some kind of RTV (The Right Stuff is the best but at 18 bucks a tube its expensive) on those kinds of gaskets even when they say not to...shrugs...works and I havent had any issues, though I dont use a lot and its mainly to hold the gasket in place. I also made the mistake of assuming both pan gaskets came in the filter kit and after dropping both pans the small one had no gasket! Used a huge bead of RTV to seal that pan and it is bone dry to this day. Not saying do what I do but just sharing my experience.
Alright I will be sure to get some RTV at advance auto parts or something. The leak is small, and I mean small, maybe 1 drip per day from the adapter pan and that only leaks after driving, and the other leak is from the plugs (which im assuming is bad copper washers so I ordered the new plugs from honda parts east) is dripping at most 6 drips per day. Neither are big. But its a leak and needs to be fixed and I want to take good care of this crappy trans that our trucks have. If it ever blows I don't think another 4l30e is going back in there.
 

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If you have to drop the od pan & replace that gasket, do NOT try to collect that fluid, just put new fluid in. Adding new fluid is *always* better then trying to collect fluid from a pan you're having to drop.
 

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It's funny....so many of you guys are knocking this transmission, but I have 350k on one rodeo, and 202k on the other....I personally have no complaints.

And I do a LOT of mountain driving with the 97 rodeo, just got back again today after doing 10-11,000ft mountain passes which are MUCH higher then most of you have probably ever seen.

All I'm saying, give this transmission some credit, I've pulled a 4,000lb boat up and over these same mountain passes for 75% of my rodeo's lives, and I have no additional transmission cooler in either truck.

Most of you are getting the crap end of the stick because you've bought them used and the original owner probably neglected them, but they're not all bad....just keep changing the fluid and it will become reliable for you, as long as you don't abuse it...i.e. no hot rodding!
 
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