FLUID LEVEL CHECK
Check the automatic transaxle fluid level at least every 15,000 miles (24,000 km) or 12 months. The dipstick can be found on the left (driver) side of the engine compartment. The fluid level should be checked only when the transaxle is hot (normal operating temperature). The transaxle is considered hot after about 20 miles of highway driving.
- Start the engine, set the parking brake, and put the transaxle selector lever in the PARK position.
- Move the selector lever through all the positions and return to the PARK position. DO NOT TURN OFF THE ENGINE DURING THE FLUID LEVEL CHECK.
- Remove the dipstick, wipe it clean, and then reinsert it firmly. Be sure that it has been pushed all the way in. Remove the dipstick again and check the fluid level while holding it horizontally. With the engine running, the fluid level should be in the cross-hatched area.
- If the fluid level is below the crosshatched area (engine hot), add DEXRON®III automatic transaxle fluid through the dipstick tube. This is easily done with the aid of a funnel. Check the level often as you are filling the transaxle. Be extremely careful not to overfill it. Overfilling will cause slippage, seal damage and overheating. Approximately 1 pint of ATF will raise the fluid level into the cross-hatched area.
The fluid on the dipstick should always be a bright red color. If it is discolored (brown or black), or smells burnt, serious transaxle troubles, probably due to overheating, should be suspected. A qualified technician should inspect the transaxle to determine the cause of the burnt fluid.
DRAIN AND REFILL
In normal service, it should not be necessary or required to drain and refill the automatic transaxle. However, under severe operation or dusty conditions, the fluid should be changed every 36 months or 30,000 miles (48,000 km).
- Raise the car and safely support it on jackstands.
- Place a suitable drain pan underneath the transaxle oil pan. Loosen the oil pan mounting bolts and allow the fluid to drain until it reaches the level of the pan flange. Remove the attaching bolts, leaving one end attached so that the pan will tip and the rest of the fluid will drain.
- Remove the oil pan and thoroughly clean it. Remove the old gasket. Make sure that the gasket mounting surfaces are clean.
- Remove the transaxle filter screen retaining bolt and remove the screen.
- Install a new filter screen and O-ring. Place a new gasket on the pan and install the pan to the transaxle. Tighten the transaxle pan to 15-19 ft. lbs. (20-26 Nm).
- Remove the jackstands and lower the car to the ground. Fill the transaxle to the correct level.