Transmission Fluid Change on Sprinter Van
Transmission fluid cools and lubricates a transmission's moving parts. This important vehicle fluid plays a big role in keeping your transmission in working shape. Most transmission failure is caused by overheating, a problem that is usually preventable if you regularly monitor the clarity of your transmission fluid.
In our shop you can, absolutely free of charge, check the condition of your transmission fluid.
The more you drive your vehicle, the more gunk and buildup is pushed into your transmission systems. This gunk builds over time and causes your vehicle's transmission to work harder and heat up on the road.
To remove the buildup, auto repair professionals can service your vehicle with either a transmission fluid change or transmission flush.
What is a Transmission Fluid Change?
A fluid change is the most common type of transmission service. In a fluid change, a large amount of the transmission fluid is drained from the machinery, and the transmission filter is then replaced.
This service helps remove a large portion of the buildup, but up to half can linger in your vehicle's transmission. A fluid change will not completely swap out the old fluid for new, clean fluid, but it will help your transmission run better.
Generally, transmission fluid changes are done in increments whereas flushes are done at milestones like 40,000 and 70,000 miles.
What is a Transmission Fluid Flush?
Whereas a transmission fluid change only exchanges some old fluid for new fluid, a flush completely rids your transmission of old fluid. This is especially beneficial if you have contaminated transmission fluid, as the contamination will spread to the new transmission fluid in a fluid change.
To perform a flush, a mechanic will drain the old transmission fluid entirely form transmission + from the torque converter and valve body. Then clean, brand new fluid is added, allowing your transmission to run more efficiently.
Mechanics recommend a transmission fluid flush approximately every 40,000-60,000 miles. However, the frequency transmission service required depends on a variety of factors like how you drive, where you drive, and what type of vehicle you drive.
Changing your transmission fluid and flushing your transmission fluids are two highly effective services for ensuring your transmission runs smoothly.
A transmission fluid change cleans out half of the old fluid but is the cheaper option between the two. Although a fluid change has to be done more often than a fluid flush, it is a relatively easier task than vehicle owners can teach themselves how to do on their own.
A transmission fluid flush costs more but removes all of the old fluid and contaminants that have built up over time. A drawback is that a flush if done incorrectly or on vehicles with excessive mileage, can damage the transmission seals and valves.
Remember to check your vehicle's manual to learn how often and when to service your vehicle's transmission fluid.
How often to change transmission fluid on Sprinter?
If your car is constantly in load: like RV or plumbing. Then you need to do the service more often. If you travel mainly around the city, in urban mode: there are a lot of stops, traffic jams, traffic lights, or you have a lot of cold starts: delivery of packages, etc. then you need to change at least every 40,000 miles.
If you travel 8-12 hours a day between cities and you do not have a full load, then you can change every 50,000-90,000
To know the exact frequency, then check the color of the transmission fluid, this is the best factor.
One of our clients has many Sprinters in the fleet. And on one of the new Sprinters was a young worker who had an aggressive driving style (like a sports car). When the van arrived for service after 22,000 miles, we were shocked because the transmission fluid was burnt - dark brown. Why? The boy pressed the acceleration pedal all the way down at every traffic light and their Sprinter was constantly loaded (plumbing), so there was a huge load on the transmission. The result, huge pressure and wear on the transmission and torque converter. The fluid actually burnt and lost its properties. Do not blame the mechanic if your employee does not protect your Sprinter.
Another customer drove 60,000 miles "OldWoman-driving style" and his fluid in the transmission was still a shade of pink, we recommended that he drive another 10,000 on this fluid. The life span of a fluid depends not so much on miles, but on driving conditions: city mode, races, a lot of cold starts, "the pedal to the metal", then you need to change every 30,000. If you use"OldWoman-driving style" and daily long distances on the highway, without traffic lights and stops (for example 500 miles per day between cities) and without cargo (no load), then you can go up to 80,000. In any case, if you have made more than 80,000 miles, you must immediately change the fluid.
If you have a Sprinter RV then your van is constantly loaded with cargo and the transmission is constantly under load.
If you're due for transmission service, schedule an appointment online with us.
Remember to check the manual to learn your vehicle's transmission service needs.
OPTION 1 (Not good)
Transmission Fluid Adding 40 min
Some shops offer this method. They only draining the old fluid by opening drain plug and adding new fluid (NO opening pan and NO new filter!).
(we do not recommend this method!)
(only 50%-55% Change)
OPTION 2 (Good)
Transmission Fluid Change 1.5 hours
Most shops (95%) use this way, check your mechanic! Open drain plug and drain the old liquid and then unscrew the pan pour out the remnants. (Attention: no drain fluid from torque converter)
New gasket and filter (required!)
(we do not recommend this method!)
(only 56%-69% Change)
OPTION 3 (Better)
Transmission Fluid Deep Flush 2 hours
the same as OPTION 2 + unscrew and flush the oil from the torque converter and unscrew/flush from the valve body.
OPTION 4 (Best)
Transmission Fluid Deep/Double Flush 2.5 hours
The best option is to flush 2 times. Completely flush the old liquid and fill in the new fluid for the first time. Then we drive 2 miles and flush completely for the 2nd time and then clean, brand new fluid is added (see Option 3) (double volume of transmission fluid required!).
We use FUCHS premium german transmission fluid (approved by Mercedes). Please be aware, the transmission is one of the most important parts of your van, do not allow to fill the low-quality chip fluid. It may cause damage.
Blur of transmission fluid from Sprinter service in Vista CA
We check the color of the transmission fluid in each Sprinter pitstop, and each of our clients will receive a photo: a blur of transmission fluid.
We do not recommend everyone to change the transmission fluid, only if the fluid color is darker.