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Old 08-13-2009, 12:47 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Transmission Flush vs. Drain and Fill

I am planning to change the transmission fluid and axle fluid on my 05' ML500. I spoke to the dealer and was told they usually flush the transmissions. I was under the impression that you cannot flush the trans on the ML's. Also I have avoided flushes like the plague due to a bad experience as well as stories of bad experiences. They are willing to do a drain and fill but are not recommending it due to the fluid in the torque converter and trans cooler not being replaced. I have the extended warranty and want to make sure I am current with the recommended service. What has everyone else done when it comes to transmission fluid replacement? Also what do you recommend as the mileage/age for replacement? (I am not towing or off-roading) Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 08-13-2009, 01:44 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I'm uneasy about flushes. It stirs up trash. I would drop the pan, replace the filter, pan gasket and refill. That will take about 3 1/2 to 4 liters.
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Old 08-13-2009, 02:08 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I don't recommend flushing either - and I don't know a MB dealer that does.

The MB "service" is dropping the pan, and replacing filter, then re-up on the fluid.

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Old 08-13-2009, 02:14 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Agreed, my indy suggested the same thing drop the pan, change filter and gasket and top off.
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Old 08-14-2009, 07:58 AM   #5 (permalink)
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The drain and fill seems to be the general consensus from the information that I have found and the responses so far to my post. This reaffirms my anti-flush stance for transmissions. I'll have the dealer do the drain and fill. I currently have a little over 50,000 miles. Is this too soon for a fluid change?
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Old 08-14-2009, 08:05 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Good question, I'm sure you will get a thousand opinions as well. It all depends on how you drive, where you drive, and your particular transmission. I don't think anyone has the secret formula. I can tell you I did mine at 100K and I've never had any trany issues, knock on wood.
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Old 08-14-2009, 09:41 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I did flush on my E and it work very well, but I had no problems before even the car had 215k on it and I did drop the pan before flush.
I can understand why flush is "recommended" by lot of shops. You just disconnect a transmission cooling lane, hook up the fast connectors and push the button on the machine making big money on 15 quarts of expensive fluid having clean hands.
Sure beats getting fluid into your sleeves while dropping the pan and than only to collect for 3.5 quarts of fluid, even no more than 3 goes there.
Per my conclusion wiping the pan off from heavy residues is the critical part of the service. You can read my conclusions in "My take ..... " in General section.
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Old 08-19-2009, 01:11 PM   #8 (permalink)
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The convenience of flushes makes sense. My concern is that flushes will stir up debris on the bottom of the pan and in the filter. I understand the issue of not being able to drain the torque converter or cooler when doing a drain and fill. I still prefer the drain and fill just from the standpoint of being able to replace the filter and look at the type of debris on the bottom of the pan and overall condition of the fluid. Is there a way to check the condition of the fluid without dropping the pan first? My understanding is the "dipstick tube" is not the same as most other vehicles.
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