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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was changing the transmission fluid on my girlfriends car over the weekend (a Subaru with 100,000 miles on it). On this particular car, the transmission pan has a drain bolt and a spin on filter that's essentially a small oil filter. This makes it easy to do. Anyway, it still had the original transmission fluid in it, which was dark and smelled funny. I wouldn't say that it necessarily smelled burnt, but I can say I've never smelled anything like it. Anyone here ever come across burnt transmission fluid and can say exactly what it smelled like? Having said that, the only useful thing I have found so far on the internet was a suggestion to take some new transmission fluid to a torch for a while and see what that smells like.
 

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Your right about the difficulty of using words to describing a smell. I have drained DexronIII out of a 727 motorhome tranny that had been run low on ATF & 'slipped-to-death'. The stuff was very dark brown, and had a noticeable 'acrid' smell. It wasnt strong, but it was noticeable, since DexIII normally has very little smell to it. If it had been stronger I might have described it as the smell when a plastic coffee cup gets burnt when someone set it on a hot electric range burner.
 

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I remember smelling the ATF of an old Crown Vic with a bad trans. As has been said, it's very difficult to describe. BUT - if you know what fresh/good fluid smells like, bad fluid definitely has a markedly different (and unpleasant) odor. It was even noticeable on the dipstick.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Cymmantix said:
bad fluid definitely has a markedly different (and unpleasant) odor
I probably should have mentioned that in my original post, but yes it was definately an unpleaseant odor!
 

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"Something smells like a turd wrapped in burnt hair!"
 

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Escorgo: I like to add drain plugs to the oil pan, when I first change the fluid/filter on an old car I buy. I braze in a fitting that takes a 1/8" p.t. plug. Not only does it make it 'cleaner' when changing the fluid/filter the next time, but I can put in a temperature sender for an oil temp gauge, and keep track of how hot the ATF gets.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
denisond3 said:
Escorgo: I like to add drain plugs to the oil pan, when I first change the fluid/filter on an old car I buy. I braze in a fitting that takes a 1/8" p.t. plug. Not only does it make it 'cleaner' when changing the fluid/filter the next time, but I can put in a temperature sender for an oil temp gauge, and keep track of how hot the ATF gets.
When I did my Escort, I used a siphon to get out what I could forst, and when I did drop the pan, it wasn't messay at all. Made a huge difference.

With respect to your temp gauge, couldn't you have used one of the testing ports instead of brazing a fitting into the pan?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
denisond3 said:
I probably could have, but wanted the drain feature as much as I wanted a place for the oil temp gauge.
You really don't need a drain if you have one of these:

Siphon Pump Kit



Quickly and safely transfer gasoline, water and other liquids.

4 ft. of both intake and discharge hose
Inlet and outlet nozzles
31" x 1/4" dipstick tube
Solid brass piston rod
16" air pressure hose with 90° snap-shut valve
ITEM 3878-5VGA
$5.99

I recommend visiting the aquarium supply section of WalMart and getting a longer, clear tube to use as the dipstick tube. 31" isn't long enough, plus I like to be able to see into the tube.

Cheaper and easier than what you have been doing. I just pump it directly into empty 2 liter soda bottles. It does take longer to do that than use your drain plug though, but at least I don't have to install anything and worry about it leaking.

I used it once before doing a transmission filter change and it kept the mess to a minimum.
 
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