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Unread 11-27-2013, 02:14 PM   #1
bobinbville
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Wk 2014 with 8 Speed ZF tranny

This is a great vehicle and I love the tranny. I noticed that there is no dip stick to check the tranny fluid level nor can I find info on when/how to change it. Since I'm not familiar with this circumstance I was just wondering about this.
Thanks.

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Unread 11-27-2013, 03:00 PM   #2
2014RedHemiGC
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Like most of today's auto transmissions, they're "sealed for life" according to the manufacturers. My CTS-V is like this also. The fluid can be changed of course, it's just no longer a "customer maintained" item with a dipstick to check the level. I still prefer the old fashioned dipsticks, etc.
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Unread 11-27-2013, 03:36 PM   #3
Gunny7
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Gotta be a way.
Thing isn't magic surly.
Germany design
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Unread 11-27-2013, 03:59 PM   #4
ColdCase
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The dealer likely has equipment and the procedure to check oil level. Its common today to not have a dip stick, as folks don't check it right anyway. On our 2009, the dealer inserts a probe down the dip stick tube and the level is checked at a specified oil temperature and functional mode. If your transmission pan is dry, no oil leaks don't worry about it.

Dunno specifically about the 8 speed but for other transmissions you drop the pan, drain the oil, bolt the pan back up and refill with a prescribed amount of oil.

Someone that has a 2014 service manual should be along any time now.
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Unread 11-27-2013, 08:13 PM   #5
fun2drive
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If you are speaking of the ZF 8spd transmission they all basically use the same method to service the transmission.
Procedure (we need to verify with the service manual but all ZF transmissions I have serviced operate this way)
Open the fill plug (by the way the fill plug is usually so tight that you need to tap it hard with a hammer on either a torx (typical) or Allen fastener
Open drain plug and drain old Lifeguard 8 out of the pan.
If you wish to change the filter typically (again we need to see the service manual) the pan and filter are an integral part and you take the 20 some bolts out after draining and expect another liter to be in there too. Some ZF transmission use a separate filter and pan, it all depends on what Jeep spec'ed.

Now to refill this is where ZF departs from almost all other transmission manufacturers. Fill transmission engine off to weeping out of fill hole obviously drain plug in. Then start car shift through all the gears until the transmission temp reaches 80-120 F. Now with the transmission RUNNING refill until weeping out the fill hole, put the plug in once done and that is it.

I am looking forward to seeing what the service manual says but I am guessing this is pretty close.
Here is where I get my ZF fluids and filters. Only the LG 8 is listed but it is listed for the 8HP70
http://www.thectsc.com/index.php?p=home

Hope this helps some. I am sure we will all learn more once more service information is available...
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Unread 11-27-2013, 08:26 PM   #6
bobinbville
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Thanks for that. Mine is the 845RE ZF 8 speed on the 2014 with the 3.6L engine. Is there supposed to be a service light that comes on?
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Unread 11-28-2013, 06:18 PM   #7
fun2drive
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We will have to see what the interval is but typically the manufacturer recommends a service at 100K miles and ZF at 50K miles. I will be changing mine at around 35-40K miles and every 40-50K miles there after.
No light I am aware of on any ZF transmission. Some transfer case cars do get a light to change their fluid.
I defer to the manual which I have not read in detail yet but ZF is very consistent with what they recommend...

This is from ZF responding to an Audi owner with the 8spd transmission. 2013
Your ZF automatic transmission is filled maintenance-free with specially developed partially synthetic ATF oil. Maintenance-free fills are intended for normal operating conditions.

However, especially driving at very high operating temperatures can result in accelerated aging or increased wear of ATF oils. It is recommended, in the event of severe operating
conditions, such as:

- frequent highway driving in top speed range,
- offensive, sporty driving style,
- frequent trailer operation,

being above average, oil purification (oil change) on automatic transmissions is recommended between 80,000 km and 120,000 km, or 8 years, depending on the load.

In each case, only released ATF oil may be used for oil changes. And oil changes must be performed in accordance with the relevant specifications.

This means that there isn't such a thing as lifetime fill and that virtually any kind of driving we do we should change the fluid at 50K miles or is you wish 75K miles...

Last edited by fun2drive; 11-28-2013 at 06:34 PM..
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Unread 11-28-2013, 06:49 PM   #8
bobinbville
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I do all my work on my bikes but am reluctant to tackle these complicated four-wheelers so will probably depend on my dealer to do this. Owners manual says that engine oil light could come on as late as 10,000 miles in which case I'll stick to my normal 6,000 miles between changes and will probably do the tranny at 50,000 miles unless advised otherwise. Thanks for this discussion.
Bob
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Unread 11-28-2013, 08:18 PM   #9
Gunny7
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Prepare for oil change sticker shock.
I checked Red Line, which I figure is just about the best available, in the world, and they have some ATF that meets ZF8.
As pure and good a synthetic grade 4 type. Nothing better.
I could see if there was some special metal that requires some exotic additive in the oil.
Now I'm just getting here but I cannot begin to see myself using what these dealers and even ZF claims.
If it meets spect they cannot deny the use.
Against the law.
There is a law against this behavior.

Magnusson-Moss Warranty Act.
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Unread 11-28-2013, 08:43 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunny7 View Post
Prepare for oil change sticker shock.
I checked Red Line, which I figure is just about the best available, in the world, and they have some ATF that meets ZF8.
As pure and good a synthetic grade 4 type. Nothing better.
I could see if there was some special metal that requires some exotic additive in the oil.
Now I'm just getting here but I cannot begin to see myself using what these dealers and even ZF claims.
If it meets spect they cannot deny the use.
Against the law.
There is a law against this behavior.

Magnusson-Moss Warranty Act.
They have written around that years ago and unless the manufacturer actually tests to ATF they can reject it's claim(and any warranty on that system) that it meets the spec.

Chrysler has been doing that for over 10 years with ATF+4.
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Unread 11-29-2013, 08:22 AM   #11
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I say 30-50k if you tow and 50-75k if you don't. I remember my old XJ which had a drain plug for the transmission. Every third oil change I'd drain the transmission pan and top off with fresh ATF. The stuff that came out I'd run through a filter then use that when I drained the power steering reservoir. Simple times.
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Unread 11-30-2013, 01:55 PM   #12
Gunny7
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One example
Red Line D6 ATF meets or exceeds
ZF-LG6,6+ & 8 Fluid
ZF- Lifeguard 8
Shell-L12108
This ZF Fluid is made here in America in the Shell Plant in Houston or used to be.
Castroil makes the stuff for Ford, Audi, and Volkswagon here.
Check the prices then check the ZF prices from Europe.
Makes you wonder.
Now I know that ZF really just wants the right Fluid in their machines.
Helps with Warranties.
I haven't heard of this Law being circumvented.
Meets or Exceeds is the thing.
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Unread 12-01-2013, 03:31 PM   #13
Gunny7
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Something new
I, apparently, though I knew something about ATF.
This whole ZF thing has forced me to upgrade my whole knowledge base.
Lifeguard 6 and Lifeguard 8 have to deal with conditions I have never seen or imagined before.
Some searching finds interesting.
Some internal hot spots in these things pushing 275 degrees C.
VW, Audi, BMW, some Fords and some Gm anybody with the ZF, which now includes all (almost) Chrysler.
Whole new World.
Not Business as Usual.
Not your usual WalMart AutoZone, favorite even Mobil One, will have to step up.
Couple of years from now, come service time for many, I hope there is some good choices.
50-60 $ a quart is shocking.
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Unread 12-02-2013, 09:02 AM   #14
David1
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Leave this trans alone. I have 500k miles on ZF transmissions in BMW and Mercedes in recent years. Never had a trans problem except for a leak at the mechatronic sleave which our cars will also develop over time. Even the BMW dealers will refuse to service the trans unless there is a leak. When the BMW dealer serviced my ZF 6hp, they collect the used fluid and stick it back in after the repair. Fluid and filter change on a ZF trans with the correct fluid will run you $650 to $900. These trannies are not like the old minivan/LH trannies.
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Unread 12-02-2013, 01:31 PM   #15
Gunny7
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What I see.
Filter includes the Pan. All one piece.
LG8 is Blue.
I figure if I keep this as usual I'll just let the Dealer change as needed.
Too old to fight the Warranty issues if my Transmission showed up with Red colored, no matter how good.

What no Bands to adjust?
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