Auto Transmission Oil Spec, changes, 2000 Sonata

The original transmission fluid spec for my 2000 Sonata is "Genuine Diamond ATF SP-II M."
I'd like to know if, during the intervening 14 years, any acceptable
aftermarket fluid exists. I was once told that Castrol put out a fluid intended for this car. Does anyone know?
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The fluid spec has been upgraded to SP-III now. You may be able to find this at your local parts store now.
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On 05/05/14 13:06, hyundaitech wrote:

Castrol does have a SP-3 compatible ATF, but the price difference was only 50 cents per quart, not worth it, unless you have to travel a long distance to your dealer.
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On Monday, May 5, 2014 3:09:37 AM UTC-5, Richard Steinfeld wrote:

MAX LIFE trans fluid is rated SP 3 and on the back it even says that it m eets Hyundai specs. You can get it at Walmart . Ive added it to my 2002 Hy undai SantaFe without any problems at all. The trans still shifts as smo oth as the day I bought it and ive got close to 170,000 pampered miles on i t.
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On Monday, July 14, 2014 6:35:28 PM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

meets Hyundai specs. You can get it at Walmart . Ive added it to my 2002 Hyundai SantaFe without any problems at all. The trans still shifts as s mooth as the day I bought it and ive got close to 170,000 pampered miles on it.
I believe this is the product to which you're referring:
http://www.valvoline.com/products/consumer-products/automatic-transmission- products/automatic-transmission-fluid/137
According to the spec sheet (http://www.valvoline.com/pdf/multi_vehicle_atf .pdf), it can be used in place of the following: -- Dexron II/Mercon -- Dexron III -- BMW LT71141 -- BMW ETL7045E -- Nissan ATF -- Nissan Matic D -- Nissan Matic J -- Nissan Matic K -- SPII -- SPIII -- Type T -- Type TIII -- Type TIV -- Subaru ATF HP -- Honda Z1 (except CVT) -- Mercedes Benz NAG1 -- All Volvo except AW-1 -- Volkswagen TL52162.
I refuse to believe that all these fluids have the same specs. For example , Hyundai uses Type TIV in one vehicle and SPIII in others. We're not allo wed to substitute in either direction.
There's such a thing as "meets or exceeds," but in some cases there is no s uch thing as "exceeds." Take the fluid's viscosity for example. Either to o little or too much could present a problem.
For me, the most telling thing is that this fluid is an acceptable substitu te for Honda Z1 fluid unless that fluid is in a CVT. If this fluid really met all those specs, it wouldn't matter which transmission it was used in, as long as the transmission was designed for that fluid.
More likely, this is some Valvoline or other petroleum engineer's assessmen t of "I think this fluid will work in place of these." Considering the ava ilability and cost of SPIII, I have trouble justifying a $30 to $60 savings at the risk of a $3000 transmission replacement.
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On Monday, May 5, 2014 3:09:37 AM UTC-5, Richard Steinfeld wrote:

Ive had my auto trans fluid changed out about 6 times now (every 30 k miles ) and Valvoline Max Life with SP3 spec has always been used. IVe not ha d any problems with the Trans or its shifting. Still shifts very smooth at 180 k. miles on the odometer . My 2002 Hyundai SantaFe says to use SP3 type and Max Life is that.
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On Wednesday, July 16, 2014 11:02:38 AM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

es) and Valvoline Max Life with SP3 spec has always been used. IVe not had any problems with the Trans or its shifting. Still shifts very smooth at 180 k. miles on the odometer . My 2002 Hyundai SantaFe says to use SP3 type and Max Life is that.
Are we indeed talking about the product in my link? http://www.valvoline.com/products/consumer-products/automatic-transmission- products/automatic-transmission-fluid/137
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On Monday, May 5, 2014 3:09:37 AM UTC-5, Richard Steinfeld wrote:

Well, more like this : http://www.valvoline.com/products/brands/maxlife/automatic-transmission-fluid/37
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On Wednesday, July 16, 2014 4:59:32 PM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

This isn't the same fluid I referenced, but its spec sheet (http://www.valvoline.com/pdf/maxlife_atf.pdf ) is similar and has all the concerns previously expressed.
You obviously know my arguments by now, so there really isn't much more for me to say if you think this is a good choice for your vehicle. We all must make our own risk assessments.
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On 7/16/2014 1:59 PM, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Just my own lore: my experience with a Castrol full synthetic motor oil in my Hyundai has been incredible. Hard to believe, in fact. No engine problems and the car is simply not burning it that I can discern. It seems to last almost forever. I understand that the Germans are making cars now with virtually sealed engines, in which oil is "installed" to be left in for very long periods. I'm suspecting that this Castrol stuff may be a product that's used for these vehicles. Or, on the other hand, I'm all wet.
I'll change it, of course. In this regard, it's blowing away all my experiences over the years since 1975 with synthetics from Mobil and from Valvoline (with which I was not impressed).
I agree with HT, having done some thinking about the desired properties of transmission fluid and transmissions designed with specific properties in mind. What we want this stuff to do is very exacting, and could almost be seen as contradictory. It has to have precisely the right lubricating qualities while simultaneously providing enough friction to drag the parts around just the right way. I'm imagining that the internal clearances after Dexron II are mighty fine. My Ford Aerostar was known to be extremely fussy about its newer fluid: these were famous for transmission failures suspected to be caused by fluid issues. In my own field of expertise, I know, emphatically, that there's no such thing as a decent one-size-fits-all product: it simply cannot exist.
Therefore, from experience with motor oils, I'm inclined toward Castrol and not toward Valvoline. However, I confess that on the day in question, I felt under pressure and simply bought the fluid in an industrial brand in a "real" auto parts store that sells mostly to mechanics. I hope that I did the right thing. I can drag out a spare bottle and quote the statements if anyone is interested. (I'm at the other end of the country from you, HT, and this product may not be available where you are.)
Richard
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On 7/16/2014 7:48 PM, Richard Steinfeld wrote:
Forgot to mention that forward performance has been fine, with a couple of those occasional "hiccups" for which this car was famous (at least, mentioned in _Consumer Reports_). Reverse has been a little juddery.
Don't know if these characteristics have been common among us cognoscenti or not.
Richard
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On Wednesday, July 16, 2014 10:51:47 PM UTC-4, Richard Steinfeld wrote:


The reverse issue makes me wonder if there are some wear issues present. O f course, how long it takes for this to be fatal is anyone's guess. I've h ad cars go 50,000 another miles with minor transmission idiosyncrasies only to have some unrelated issue end the life of the car.
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On Wed, 16 Jul 2014 19:48:25 -0700, Richard Steinfeld

What makes it hard to believe? Most engines today can go 200,000 miles with just normal oil and changes according to the book. Do you have more miles than that?
Only had internal engine problems with a couple of the 1983 GM 3.8 liter dogs they made. That engine was crap.
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On 7/17/2014 3:04 AM, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

I don't think that we're communicating, Ed. I'm not going to say that all the cars that I've had previously have had good or bad engines, but I've almost never had to do any engine repairs. Ever.
However, every car I've ever had consumed oil, even in small amounts.
My 2000 Hyundai Sonata has not consumed, measureably, any of this Castrol in more than three years of almost daily driving.
Richard
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On 7/18/2014 8:18 PM, Richard Steinfeld wrote:

I've had engines like that. I agree that synthetic is superior, but for most cars, regular oil give all the lubrication needed. High performance engines will benefit.
Can't remember the last time I had to add oil between changes at 7500 miles.
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On 7/18/2014 8:19 PM, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

I still don't think you're getting it, Ed.
It's not going down on the dipstick. It's not the engine. It's not a matter of not having to add oil between changes. Not a matter of "doen a quart" at any time. This oil is simply not being consumed at any rate that I can discern.
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On 7/19/2014 5:28 PM, Richard Steinfeld wrote:

Not getting what? A well designed and and built engine will use little oil. It has to do with the rings wiping the cylinders. Too much clearance (or wear) and the oil gets by. Worn valve stems, leaks and a dozen other reasons can contribute oil consumption.
In the past 20 years, there have been some very good engines and you have one. Put your oil in my old Corvair or Mercury flathead and you will see it is more the engine than the oil.
That said. synthetic will forestall engine wear better than dino oil
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