Transmission Dip Stick for Late Model GM Cars

Page 2 of 2  


As I already mentioned, it would not be safe enough to do in the workplace. I could do it at home, no big deal, but there's no way anybody would be doing a procedure like that on the job. That's nuts, poking your finger in 300 degree F hot oil over your head.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Joe wrote:

You don't "poke" your finger in the hole...it's too small. You add fluid from the top until it runs out the hole. There is no safety issue here.
Ian
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
"shiden_kai" wrote: > Joe wrote: > > You dont "poke" your finger in the hole...its too small. > You > add fluid from the top until it runs out the hole. There is no > safety issue here. > > Ian
So lets picture this, with the motor running and car on a lift you lower the car and add a small amount of fluid in at the red cap. Then you raise the car back up and see if it leaks from the plug hole. All this just to check the tranny fluid level?
--
http://www.AutoForumz.com/ This article was posted by author's request
Articles individually checked for conformance to usenet standards
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
LeBuick wrote:

I guess I'm one of the few that sees the lack of a dipstick as a step forward. As long as there's no leaks, the fluid's not going anywhere. And it's not like anyone changes their tranny fluid on a regular basis anyway, so they may as well make it a sealed system.
Manual gearboxes have not had dipsticks forever... if they ever did.
Although, they could have gone to an "overflow" tank like a radiator setup...
Ray
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

...I had a 1985 Cavalier Type 10 Hatchback, 5-Speed...it had a dipstick, and the transmissiion used 5w30.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Ray wrote:

And therein lies the rub. Quite a few cars are in situations where they're parked in lots, parallel to the street, or in not-so-pristine driveways where leaks can't be promptly detected or distinguished from whatever other fluids from other cars have leaked onto those surfaces. In such cases, the best way to check for leak is to have a disptick to check the level; if fluid is missing, then there's a problem.
By extension of your logic, we could eliminate engine oil dipsticks too and assume that the only reason for a loss of oil is either the engine is burning it and we'd see the smoke, or there would be a leak. DItto for coolant. Yet GM seems to want people to check the dispstick and the surge tank level on every fuel fill. So, why the double standard?

If people were told in frank terms about the need to change tranny fluid every so often, then the people who don't know any better might actually *start* to know better. Unfortunately GM's position seems to be don't worry about it, just drive till the tranny falls out and then ditch the car for a new one.
--
E-mail fudged to thwart spammers.
Transpose the c's and a's in my e-mail address to reply.
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I'm really enjoying this talk about transmission fluid. Well, I have no way of monitoring the level without the dipstick, also, if it wasn't there, how would I add oil? I don't care what anyone says about the unit being maintenance free or whatever. I change mine at least at 30,000 mile intervals, maybe even more often. I don't have an exact schedule for this, but I don't think that every other year is asking too much. I do my engine oil every three months regardless of what anyone says. I remember when I used to drive a '59 Studebaker, and the manufacturer called for engine oil changes EVERY MONTH. On that car, a filter was considered optional equipment, and my car never had one. I used to refill the manual transmission about once a year or two years. Believe it or not, the oil really does pick up dirt. Dale

TeleDale Key Service, http://www.angelfire.com/wizard/teledale 1811 Saratoga Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44109 U.S.A.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
TeleDale wrote:

There is always a provision for adding oil. It just may not be as convenient as adding oil thru the dipstick tube.
Ian
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
LeBuick wrote:

Well, no.....you can "picture" it that way....please don't include the rest of us in this scenario. Look... you think what you want..... I could take the time to explain how it's done, as I "do this for a living" and have to check the level on these transmissions on a regular basis.....but what's the point? Suffice it to say that you do not have to raise and lower the car. Nobody is saying that it is convenient as a dipstick, but as usual, car manufacturers are going out of their way now to "idiot" proof the vehicles....and this is one way.
Ian
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
"shiden_kai" wrote: > LeBuick wrote: > > > So lets picture this, <snip> > > Well, no.....you can "picture" it that way....please dont > include the rest of us in this scenario. > Ian
Not meaning to offend the company for which you work but i should be entitled to an opion. Even though the picture looks rediculous it is true.
My point, this idea may work while a car is new because people can afford to take the car to be serviced. I personally dont think it will be accepted in the used car market. I realize this is good for GM on the surface but eventually it will have to impact the resale value. I mean the hassle to service the tranny will make people stay away when they get some miles on them.
I also think they have created a new market for aftermarket tranny dip sticks. You can expect to see them as these trannys age and leak.
This smells of a tire that wont go flat so it doesnt have a valve stem or not including wipers in areas where it never rains.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
LeBuick wrote:

That was my point....your picture is "not" true. Have you actually had to check the transmission fluid level on a transmission with no dipstick, or are you just making up the scenario in your own mind... kinda how "you think it is"?

There is no "hassle" to service the transmission. This is just like every other innovation, or change that has happened to vehicles over the years. Everybody moans about it, and then they simply come to terms with it, and eventually they won't remember why transmissions ever needed dipsticks.

No doubt..there will always be a bunch of suckers out there spending money on un-necessary retrofits.

I believe Michelin is working on tires that don't need air, not just for short periods of time, but all the time.
I think you are just paranoid.
Ian
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Wed, 13 Oct 2004 05:23:00 GMT, "shiden_kai"

Although it's routine for most folks to check the level on automatic transmissions the likelihood that they will require being topped up between fluid changes is extremely rare. I imagine that the logic behind the removal of the dipstick is one of lowering risk.
If you allow many owners to "fix" the cars themselves they invariable do (much to the benefit of service centers I might add). Removal of the dipstick & fill tube virtually eliminates the possibility of overfilling or contamination by the owner.
For all the die-hard tranny fluid checkers out there: When was the last time that you HAD to add fluid to your transmission during a routine check? On my personal vehicles the only one I ever had to on was a 1973 Monte Carlo that was "well loved" & that's close to 20 years ago now. Back in the day when your choice was Dextron or Type F
There's a joke along these lines that goes something like this:
A man calls a printer supply house enquiring about the cost to refill his ink cartridges on his commercial printer. The person answering the phone says "we charge $300.00 BUT, you can buy the ink & instructions on how to do it yourself from us for only $50.00.
The customer is amazed at the great recommendation and asks if the boss is aware that the service rep is giving out such great advice.
The rep says "of course, it was his idea, If we service it we only get $300.00 but if you try and service it you'll f*ck it up so badly that we're sure to make at least $1,000.00 when you call us to fix your mistake"
In the automotive world it's even "better" because once they've f*cked it up they'll never b*tch about the cost to make it right like they would if they'd just brought it in to get fixed right the first time.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Full_Name wrote:

Yes, that is typical GM-speak for "we'd rather require that an dealer service your car, than a knowledgeable owner or even an independent mechanic." And that's part of the problem.
The likes of Ian may call people like myself paranoid, I just don't see it as being acceptable to assume that the transmission fluid will never, ever need to be looked at, and that the average person is going to be able to park their car in a pristine spot every night so that they may discover leaks in the morning that indicate a problem. I might miss leaks on the ground... I *won't* miss a significant drop in the fluid level on a dipstick telling me there's a problem.
But again, GM would rather we ignore it, wait for the whole system to fail, and then tow it back to a GM dealer so that we can be charged for a whole new transmission (or be goaded into trading in the heap for a shiny new model that's even more "maintenance free" than what we had before) when early detection could have made the remedy cheaper and easier.
I can assume the philosophy here is to make the public embrace the idea that cars are disposable, and not fixable. However some of us intend to keep our cars for a while, and would like very much to be able to monitor things.
Also: why isn't GM so worried about us "contaminating" the oil? Maybe sometime soon, GM will remove engine oil dipsticks too, and just tell us that only a GM dealer can change the oil with some hocus pocus, super-duper GM-specific oil blend. And why not gas gages? Let's require every GM owner to roll into the service department every 75 miles so that a tech can charge you a labor fee while they top off the tank with GM-specific fuel, hmm? :)

Well let's see. My '87 and '89 Buicks back in the day would miss shifts once in a while back in '93. Turned out somehow I had low fluid. Where the fluid went, I'll never know as they were both one-time only occurrences, but I did have to top both off with tranny fluid. They ran great for years afterwards, with no leaks near as I can tell.
My '92 Mitsubishi Montero, piece of junk as it was, leaked tranny shortly after I got it, and the shop couldn't figure it out for a while. It took a few visits and a lot of monitoring the level to get it right. Thankfully, it had a dipstick.
I drove a Ford Ranger for a while. Let's not get into how many quality problems I had with that thing. But the dipstick helped, when the transmission was an issue.
Now? I have newer cars... an '02 Grand Am, and an '04 Cavalier. Tranny problems on either? I certainly hope not; I'd be mighty angry if my transmission were falling out on the Cavalier at 3200 miles, through my Grand Am at 35,000 is starting to get up there.
But then, I'm not really *sure* how the transmissions are doing on each. I can't check the levels. I have to assume, since they continue to shift reasonably well, that all is good. Haven't found any leaks, but y'know, being human, a lot of times I kinda forget to get on my hands and knees and check under the body of the cars for fresh drops of DEXRON III glistening on the concrete/pavement/whateer I parked the car on today.
I guess we'll find out when the Pontiac reaches 50k and I opt to get the fluid flushed.
--
E-mail fudged to thwart spammers.
Transpose the c's and a's in my e-mail address to reply.
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Larry Winkler wrote:

No, this can't be done. There is a fill plug at the top of your transmission (big red cap). And once you figure out where the level checking plug is....this system actually works quite well, and you are guaranteed "not" to overfill the trans.
Ian
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Ian,
Thanks for the info. Found red cap on both cars. Not easiest location to get at (under exhaust manifold and heat shield on Grand Am) but doable.
Thanks,
Larry
shiden_kai wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
"shiden_kai" wrote: > > No, this cant be done. There is a fill plug at the top of your > transmission (big red cap). And once you figure out where the > level checking plug is....this system actually works quite well, and > you are guaranteed "not" to overfill the trans. > > Ian
Yes, but to have to put the car on a lift while the motor is running makes it tough to perform a routine check during an underhood inspection or even a driveway oil change. If they made the plug where it could be reached from the top would have made more since. But then we wouldnt take our cars to the dealership to have the fluid checked then...
--
http://www.AutoForumz.com/ This article was posted by author's request
Articles individually checked for conformance to usenet standards
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Well, you all sure amazed me with this discussion. I had no idea. It seems to me pulling that plug using the normal procedure (with the fluid at 250 or 300 degrees F) would constitute a serious workplace hazard to the mechanics. But then, I've never seen the plug.

http://www.AutoForumz.com/GM-Transmission-Dip-Stick-Late-Model-Cars-ftopict71427.html
http://www.AutoForumz.com/eform.php?p18680
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Joe wrote:

The fluid is not under any pressure at the plug. So even if it is slightly overfull....you just let it drain out until is stops flowing out rapidly. It's located about 6 inches away from the oil drain plug on most vehicles...so it's not much more effort to unscrew it and check the fluid level.
Ian
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Well ... I have a POS BMW that my stepson defaulted on & blessed me with. No tranny dipstick. Had to change out the radiator, and of course lost a little tranny fluid in the process. How to top it off? Well - according to the krauts, you have to have the car on a lift, perfectly level, at exactly a certain temperature, and it is soooo critical. (Oh, and of course, the plug on the bottom is frozen.)
Leave the darned dipstick in. If they don't have sense enough to fill it to the proper level, then I say that's job security for service techs. Always have liked GM, but I hate this big-brother attitude.
On Sat, 25 Sep 2004 11:35:14 -0400, Larry Winkler

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

    Motorsforum.com is a website by car enthusiasts for car enthusiasts. It is not affiliated with any of the car or spare part manufacturers or car dealers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.