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Old 03-14-2002, 10:49 PM
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Auto Tran Fluid Overfill???

Took my car to Jiffy Lube for oil/filter (normally go to a Euro shop, was in a hurry). They mentioned the usual oil and tranny leaks and sent me on my way. I haven't checked the tranny fluid level since I acquired the car last fall. I searched this site and my owners manual, both of which confirm that I should be reading a fluid level of 10mm below the min line (I assume it's the lines at the very end of the stick) when engine is cold. I go to check the fluid on my cold engine (not driven in the last 3.5 hours), and discover a tranny flud level 20mm OVER the max line. Now from what I have read on this site, overfilling is a very bad thing. I don't think the Jiffy gang did this (heck, I think this was there first Mercedes to change the oil, much less know where the tranny check is), and therefore I am assuming I've been driving around like this for some time. Am I missing something? Fluid is a medium red, doesn't appear dirty. My shifts are abrupt under normal acceleration, made less abrupt if I slightly lift off the gas right before the auto's next gear shift.

I plan to do the more accurate check in the morning with the engine idling after a few minutes. But how quickly do I need to drain off the potential excess, if this is truly an overfill condition? I'll be pretty unhappy if the Euro shop from my previous fluid service is to blame

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Old 03-14-2002, 10:58 PM
Mike Murrell's Avatar
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Join Date: Feb 2000
Posts: 2,141
Let the car sit overnight on a flat surface. The dipstick has a low and high mark near the botton end that slides down the tube.

Start the car in the morning. Pull the stick out and wipe clean with a very clean lint free cloth. Stick back in. Hold for a few secs. and remove. The fluid level should be about 10mm below the lowest mark on the stick - the low level line.

To test the hot fluid level, drive car at least 15 miles. I prefer 20.
Do the same thing and while idling on a level surface. This time the fluid level should be no higher than the highest mark on the stick.
Mike Murrell
1991 300-SEL - Model 126
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Old 03-15-2002, 12:08 AM
renok7's Avatar
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Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Montréal
Posts: 95
As the FRAM commercial goes: you can pay me now ($) or you can pay me later ($$$$$$$$$$).

When I bought my '93 300E two years ago the first thing I did was to have all the fluids changed including the tranny. I wasn't all that expensive and I was assured that my newly acquired vehicle's innards were clean.

'93 300E 4Matic
'98 Nissan Altima
'00 Yamaha Road Star Silverado
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Old 03-15-2002, 09:57 PM
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Granted on the fluid change. It was done recent enough that I'm still showing good red color on the dipstick. The previous owner was an extended family member, so I am comfortable with the service history.

I rechecked this afternoon after a short drive. Got an accurate, between the marks reading this time. I'm not sure what happened on the cold reading. Got the same +20mm after several readings when cold. Anyway, note to self to do checks with idling, warm engine.
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Old 03-16-2002, 12:20 AM
David C Klasse's Avatar
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FOr the time being... I'd atleast try and siphon some out!
2006 E350 w/ 155k miles (Daily Driver)

1993 300E 3.2L Sedan w/ close to about 300k miles
2003 E500 Brilliant Silver (Had 217k miles when totalled!)
1989 300E with 289,000 miles (had for <1 yr while in HI)
03 CLK 500 cabrio (Mom's)
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1999 S420 (Mom's/Dad's)
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1995 C280 My First Mercedes-Benz... (155k miles. EXCEPTIONAL AUTOMOBILE. Was Very hard to let go of!)
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