Transmission Fluid Change

sfdaytona

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So over the weekend I was about to tackle the trans service/pan change but decided to go another route (I've read about everything on here related to this but think I have a slightly different issue here). A good friend was kind enough to loan his shop/lift for me to use. We start assessing the removal of everything (He's a master BMW tech and is familiar with the ZF's in our LR4s) and he advised the time to do everything would take more than we had available. Many of you have stated these things require two drain and fills to get the majority of the old fluid out. So, in the interest of time and knowing I'm going to do the bridge seals and metal pan later, I opted to just do a drain/fill (using the recommended ZF lifeguard 6 Fluid). Caveat: My LR4 is a 2011, 117k miles and I have no known history of a trans service ever being performed. Also, the mechatronics sleeve and OE plastic pan are bone dry.

Prior to my fluid change I noticed two things with this thing:

1) Under any type of load or on flat/level roads, a downshift would cause a very obvious driveline shuddering that would kind of fade out if you reduced throttle input. Not easy to replicate but it would do it often enough to be annoying.

2) Steady speed cruise, the rpms would fluctuate by about 100 rpm (and it would be a constant up/down fluctuation).

There are no stored faults in the trans.

Post Trans fluid change: Shuddering is gone and now the rpm fluctuation is about 50rpms. (Shifting is significantly smoother...you almost don't feel it shift at all). Also I didn't reset trans adaptations.

This is probably a case of needing the bridge seals and one more fluid change (again, once I do the pan swap), but I'm wondering if I am at the beginnings of needing a torque converter.

Just wanted to post up an experience incase anyone has had similar issues and was curious what a basic fluid change would do.



Nick
 

Shredahead

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Were you experiencing any slipping when the trans was hot or just the shuddering.
 

sfdaytona

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Zero slipping, zero faults. Shuddering was not consistent but you could replicate if you just got the trans to kick down one gear to accelerate. I tried having my Indy shop do a fluid change but he wouldn't, citing "it could ruin the trans". So I opted to do it myself.

I've read on here an other forums about using the Dr ****** stuff to fix the rpm fluctuation, but I think I want to give the bridge seals a shot and one more fluid change before using any additives.

I intend on towing with this rig, but not until this trans operating as it should be.
 

mm3846

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I had a couple weird shifts and the truck stalled on me twice at below 5mph in parking lots. No shuddering/slamming.. seemed more like the computers found a fault with line pressures and didn't know what to do. I never read any codes, but my first drain/refill the trans fluid looked was smelly (not burnt) and yellow. I've done one drain and refill and the pan swap and its been MUCH better, barely anything on the magnets. Going to do another drain and refill in a week or two, I drive 250-300 miles a week. My truck was a vacation vehicle in a ski town, so it probably did a lot of city driving and up/down the mountain so it "used" the fluid more than the average one would. Just rolled 57k this week.
 

Shredahead

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Which pan/filter kit did you use?
 
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sfdaytona

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Yeah, if you don't have any faults, and you're just slipping, fresh fluid might help things...it certainly can't hurt anything!
 

gleung

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it usually the case that oil aged / overheat then degraded over times (especially towing) then ruin the rubber within mechatronic on zf6hp26.
if the fluid change doesnt do the tricks you may want to look at the sonnax zip kit
also good to check if solenoid for each gear need replacing
 

Jon_M

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Nick - i've got similar symptoms on a 2010 rr hse with 120k miles. Vibration accelerating uphill between 1800 and 2000 rpms. Changing my transmission fluid reduced the vibration but didn't eliminate it so I swapped to a metal pan, dropped the mechatronic, replaced seals, solenoids and used a zip kit with new separator plate. I also "flushed" through the oil cooler hose when it was back together.

I'm going to try a dose of dr ****** but I'll may eventually need to pull the transmission, use an overhaul kit and replace the torque converter.

Regards,
Jon
 

D Morgan

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I sat down with th BG fluid rep, and he showed me the BG fluid exchange is the same fluid as used by the local JLR dealer, and they do those flushes there with no known issues reported. Those of you who are familiar with BG products know they are high quality, especially the 44k fuel additive. Mine(12 LR4) has 113k, no leaks, shudders, nothing. Just doing it as prevention. Will see how it goes.
 

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