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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Is it safe to flush my transmission fluid? The fluid is dark brown.

1999 Taurus w/75,000 sohc Vulcan v6, it's not AX4S transmission. It's AX4N.
Transmission seems generally okay, though when cold, it engages reverse slowly.

I bought the car in 2003 w/35,000 miles and have never changed the fluid.

Some mechanics have said changing the fluid now isn't a good idea.

Does anyone have knowledge on this?

Thanks.
 

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do not power flush. drop the pan and change the fluid in the pan and filter. after the change start the car and let it idle for a little while. move the shift selector through all gears. accelerate very slowly while driving for a little while.
you should be ok.
 

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^This, but once the pan is back up, take loose one of the transmission cooler lines and drop it into a bucket. Turn engine on for 30 to 60 seconds and shut off, add one quart of fluid, and repeat these two steps until fluid comes out a nice cherry red. Then run the engine up to normal operating temperature and check/add fluid until completely full.

Dropping the pan only removes 1/3rd of the total fluid, so 2/3rds will still be burnt/dirty, which doesn't lubricate or transfer heat that well anymore.
 

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^This, but once the pan is back up, take loose one of the transmission cooler lines and drop it into a bucket. Turn engine on for 30 to 60 seconds and shut off, add one quart of fluid, and repeat these two steps until fluid comes out a nice cherry red. Then run the engine up to normal operating temperature and check/add fluid until completely full.

Dropping the pan only removes 1/3rd of the total fluid, so 2/3rds will still be burnt/dirty, which doesn't lubricate or transfer heat that well anymore.
good catch. i am sorry i forgot to add the cooler step. also doing another change in the spring would be a good idea. the trans hold somewhere around 15 qts. adding a trans cooler will help prolong the life of the trans, stop and go traffic is a killer for this trans.
 

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sure they dealer wants you to flush it. that way when the seals blow they can charge you 2300 to fix it.
the pan drop is the safer way for the taurus trans.
 

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Skip the flush. Not all Stealerships are trustworthy. Don't flush. Do the partial change with a full synthetic and then do it again in 10,000 miles before going the recommended 30,000 interval. Let the full synthetic transmission oil do its' job and slowly dissolve any wax and varnish buildup.
 

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Welcome to TCCA.

The home tranny flush proceedure in the sticky atop this forum, is a good way for us to safely service our tranny at home & here is a link to page 11 on how I've tweaked the proceedure a little when I use it to flush my 94 Taurus AXODE & 99 Ranger 5R55E tranny. This proceedure was used by the Dealers before they got their Routunda flush machines & can save us about $100 over a shop flush.
http://www.taurusclub.com/forum/1440892-post104.html

I would do the full fluid exchange, as has been said just replacing the pan fluid only gets about 1/3 of the old fluid out of the system, so the reaminder will quickly contaminate the new fluid & weeken it's ad pack.

Old tranny fluid in a tranny isn't going to do it any good, but if your fluid is in really bad shape & you think you may have a sizeable deposit load, keep an eye on the new fluids condition after the flush, to determine if the new fluids detergents are stirring up an excess of debris.

As has been said, some folks with really bad looking tranny fluid prefer to do a partial flush/pan drop, cleaning & refill with an inexpensive fluid like Super Tech, then later after it's detergents slowly tidy things up, they'll do a pan drop, filter change & the full fluid pump out, with a quality licensed product that meets or exceeds Fords Mercon V spec.
The goal is to slowly dissolve & tidy up any sludge, gum or varnish deposits like they were formed, so we don't break loose chunks & clog up something important.

Another reason folks don't like to do a machine flush is that they don't usually drop the pan to clean it & change the filter (we have to ask for it & this costs extra) & they use a flush solvent to loosen deposits, but don't change the filter, so any pan deposits the solvent stirrs up must first be strained through the tranny filter, further clogging it up.

So to get a proper machine flush, we have to pay extra to have the pan dropped & cleaned & the filter changed & have them omit the solvent flush part of the service, just refill the pan & do the pumpout with new fluid via the disconnected tranny return line until the full tranny capacity has been pumped out. This way we're less likely to have problems later from the solvent softened deposits being removed by the new fluids detergents & clogging something important up.

More thoughts for consideration, let us know how it goes.
 
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