What is Transmission Fluid?

transmission-fluidTransmission fluid is a highly oily liquid that acts as a lubricant for all of the moving parts inside your transmission. In an automatic transmission, this fluid also serves as a coolant and a fluid that assist in transmitting power from the engine to the transmission.

TransmissionTransmission fluid does 3 things:

  1. It Cools the Intense Transmission Heat caused by internal friction.
  2. It Cleans the surfaces reducing damage caused by metal and debris
  3. It Lubricates moving parts that wear together lessening excess wear


Ace Transmissions Grand Rapids recommends every 30,000 Miles of normal driving to have your transmission fluid, filter and gasket changed.  Sooner if you tow or are in hot or snow filled environments.

Depending on the vehicle we even charge more than half the dealership price!!  Our Transmission Maintenance Service includes:

  • A Complete Test Drive & NO CHARGE DIAGNOSTIC of the Transmission before service.
  • Completely removing the transmission pan and thoroughly cleaning it with our Parts Washer, removing any and all contaminants including magnets designed to capture metal particles or debris.
  • Draining of Old Transmission Fluid.
  • The old filter is removed and replaced with a NEW FILTER.
  • Filing with NEW Fluid. Test Drive.

Question:  My Quick Lube told me my transmission fluid is dirty and needs to be flushed.  Is the flush the same as a drain and fill service you just talked about?

Answer: No.  The employees at a quick lube typically are not certified mechanics and therefore shouldn’t remove the pan on your transmission.  They can remove maintenance covers such as oil caps, air filters, oil filters but should not disassemble or replace motor or transmission parts.  This is regulated by your Department of State.  How they get around this is disconnecting a transmission line and connecting a flusher machine to it.  This machine MIXES NEW fluid in with the OLD fluid until the color is brighter.  However the old dirty filter and pan remain. For this reason we recommend removing as much old fluid as possible, cleaning the dirty pan then replacing the filter.  This will help keep your world in motion!!

Call us today for a Transmission Fluid, Filter and Gasket!  and let us help you, “Keep your world in motion.”   616.364.5586

At Ace Transmissions Grand Rapids, we WANT to invite you to our facility, talk to our ASE kCertified Technicians and Mechanics at any time.  You are encouraged to ride with our Technicians during our NO CHARGE DIAGNOSTIC, ask questions and visit us in our shop during the INSPECTION and/or repair of your Transmissions!!


Read Further For More HEAVY TECHNICAL Information


The answer to which service is best can be summed up in 2 questions and a little common sense.

  1. Does the Service Facility or Quick Lube for your engine oil change recommend first mixing 5 quarts of new oil with the 5 quarts of Dirty oil still in your motor and then drain it? No.  They want to DRAIN as much of the old dirty oil out first, then fill it with NEW oil. Why?
  2. Secondly, what do you think the Service Facility or Quick Lube would say if you told them NOT to change the old dirty Oil Filter you came in with?  Not likely.   They will insist that it makes no sense to put NEW oil into a dirty filter, and they should.    Hmm… Why?

A Dirty Transmission Pan

With that in mind lets think about a process to start running and mixing 12 quarts of new transmission fluid into 12 quarts of dirty contaminated fluid (without even draining out any dirty fluid at all).  The exchanger continues mixing (diluting) clean fluid through a dirty debris filled pan, mixed with metal contaminants into an already dirty transmission filter.


A New Transmission Filter vs. A Used Filter

This may cause a reduction of flow of transmission fluid through the filter or even clog.  This may cause the transmission to over heat, not lubricate enough or deteriorate or destroy metal parts.   The only way this would make sense is if you replaced the filter and cleaned the pan, but then your draining the fluid out by removing the pan again.  Its a paradox.

Although it is true that even with a drain and fill there is still dirty fluid left in the torque converter which will be mixed with the new fluid, the actual quality of of the service is higher for the fact that the dirty pan (which is cleaned), dirty filter (which is replaced) and large portion of the dirty fluid is removed BEFORE new fluid is introduced.

If you still wish to have your transmission flushed then we recommend alternating between the pressurized ATF exchangers and a complete service with a Fluid, Filter and Gasket.