How to check transmission fluid on 2008 dodge nitro
These other posts have nothing to do with anything. One tells you how to change the fluid in an old manual transmission, the other tells you how to change your oil. And what neutral has to do with anything... I just don't know. To check the fluid in your Dodge Nitro (regardless of year) is going to be a tad difficult if the answer doesn't slap you in the face as soon as you open the hood. This vehicle has a "sealed transmission" with the fill tube plugged with a little cap that states "Dealer Use Only" or something to that effect. What does this mean? Nothing. They don't give you a dipstick, just that stupid plug, and call it "sealed" to scare everyone away from trying to service their own vehicle in any capacity. All you need to do is purchase a generic dipstick at the auto store, or do what I did and make your own (I made mine from a CLEAN strip of leftover pvc siding, but any CLEAN, FIRM, and NARROW piece of material will do. Something that doesn't break easily is a big plus, since trying to fish things out of the tube is not fun. All you need to do is insert your dipstick or home-made dipstick until it hits bottom or cant go in anymore. All you need to know is how far down the fluid level is from the top of the tube. By marking the top of the fill tube, and the fluid level (with trans cold) you have made a dipstick. Or, if you bought one at the auto store, just make your own mark for the fluid level.
The transmission fluid drain procedure is the same as most other automatic trans. vehicles: pull the 20 or so bolts out of the trans pan (one will be longer than the others and probably have a thread locker, so pay attention to what hole this one comes out of... you'll be thankful when you put the pan back on). Drop the pan, remove the filter and the drain plug (under the pan) to drain the rest of the fluid. Put the plug back in and tighten it, then put the new filter in. After CAREFULLY scraping off the old gasket (do NOT scratch the surface up, sand it, or do anything like that) put the new gasket on with the pan. Get all the screws started before you tighten any of them up, and make sure you put the long screw back where it belongs, with a LITTLE high-temperature thread locker on it. Tighten everything up then get out from under your Nitro. Oh, and SAVE THE FLUID!! Put it into your new trans. fluid bottles as you put the new fluid in the truck. The amount you have taken out should be very close to the amount you are putting in. If not, you will want to double check the level with the home-made dipstick to verify you have enough fluid once you refill.
Now go on over to the "anti-dipstick" (fill tube) it will be the only long fill tube sticking up near your firewall. If there is any doubt, its the only one without a dipstick and it is located just to the left of the motor a few inches forward of the firewall. At this point, you should add all but 1 or or 2 quarts of the 8.8 quart capacity of the 3.7 L Nitro... if you have the 4.0L or the tow package like I do, you will need more. Do yourself a favor and use a nice short funnel and make sure its clean. Now... Check the level. If you're short, keep adding until you're at the proper level. Then, start the vehicle and shift through each gear (staying in each gear for about 3-4 seconds) then work back to Park the same way and shut the vehicle off before anything heats up. Check the fluid level again... you may have to add more. If you need to add more do so.
Finally, put the stupid plug back in the fill hole and keep your dipstick in your trunk so you can check the level once you get to work (or the mall, or the grocery store). Just make sure you check it again after your first foray into the outside world, and have some fluid on standby in the event the vehicle needs more.
Have fun and good luck. If you manage to mess this up, its not my fault, and if you can't figure out how to do any of these things, or don't know what I was talking about with some of these things, then you probably should just have your vehicle serviced by a professional anyway. ;)
Jan 21, 2012 |
2008 Dodge Nitro