Manual trans drain plug | Ford Escort Owners Association (FEOA)

Manual trans drain plug

Discussion in '2nd Gen 1991-1996 1.9L SOHC' started by Hollywood_Heat, Apr 23, 2008.

  1. Hollywood_Heat

    Hollywood_Heat Guest

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    What size is the drain plug for a manual transmission? Also, about how big is the drain hole? I decided to replace the transmission fluid in my '92 Escort and rather than bust off the VSS, which was where I was headed, I decided to refill it from the drain plug instead, but before I do, I figure I better make sure I've got hose to fit in the hole. Thanks for the help.
  2. marclar

    marclar Moderator Staff Member

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    that sounds way too complicated, soak the vss in penetrating oil and slowly but surely twist it until it comes loose. the drain plug is not tiny and youll never be able to fill it from the bottom, i believe it takes 12-14Qts of ATF before its full.
  3. Hollywood_Heat

    Hollywood_Heat Guest

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    Okay, I'll try giving it a Kroil shower first. What usually causes the VSS to break? It it twisting it, or just trying to pull it out? Is it better to twist it one way or the other? Thanks.
  4. JohnnyBee

    JohnnyBee Guest

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    A jammed VSS will break, try to twist but the last I tried to remove , I was in the obligation to take asaw and make it fit with a screwdriver and buy another one...

    if you can take appart the tranny and refill it by the drain plug, its the best way
  5. nmikmiknmikmik

    nmikmiknmikmik Guest

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    Just was wondering what kind of oil where you going to use? I don't have the owner manual and Haynes does not say either way. Also if you fill it from the bottom, assuming you can get it fit somehow with the hose, how do you know when to stop? i.e. what is the capacity? Thanks!
  6. Hollywood_Heat

    Hollywood_Heat Guest

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    Standard Dexron or Mercon ATF is what Ford calls for. Autozone's Z-Net says that capacity is 2 and 4/5 quarts. I'd probably just put three into it and assume a bit of loss when you try to put the plug back in.
  7. nmikmiknmikmik

    nmikmiknmikmik Guest

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    ahhhh, ATF in the manual transmission? never tried that... or is yours automatic. I am really confused now , sorry came from the "import" side of the house :snob:
  8. sedanman

    sedanman New Member

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    from my understanding, trans. fluid is trans. fluid. read the chilton's manual and compare the type required with the type on the back of the bottle. same diff. as far as i know. if you're not supposed to use ATF then im in big trouble. XD
  9. burley68

    burley68 New Member

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    My '96 1.9 manual takes Mercon/Dexron III ATF. A lot of manuals run on auto trans fluid now. A buddy of mine (old school) changed the trans fluid in his son's 94 Ranger 2.3 manual before his son took it to from Nebraska to NJ. He thought it was 80W90...the owners, Chiltons & Haynes manuals said ATF. His son made it to NJ, drove it for about 1000 miles while there, drove back to Nebraska - half way through Ohio, all he had left was 3rd gear! Replaced the transmission, the truck is as good as new!

    The VSS can be a SOB to pry out, but once you get it, filling it is a snap! BTW, the drain plug (on my 96) is a 23 mm or you can get a 15/16 on it without slipping.
  10. nmikmiknmikmik

    nmikmiknmikmik Guest

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    thanks!

    Thanks a lot guys! i was actually going to by gear oil and put it in, I am guessing draining the ATF out of their would been a giveaway, but still scary. Both of my Hondas had a similar to motor oil lubricant in their. They even said in the owner manual for Honda that you can use 5w30 as a temporary substitute.
    I have a Mercon V and Dexron VI (synthetic) someplace in the garage, assuming it would be ok to use as a substitute, just don't want to cause any leaks.
    Thanks again,
  11. burley68

    burley68 New Member

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    HOLD OFF ON PUTTING MERCON V IN THERE! I'm not sure why, but a lot of vehicles (especially older ones) aren't compatable with that stuff. If it says to use Mercon/Dexron III, USE THAT!!! Can anyone out there back me up?
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  12. Hollywood_Heat

    Hollywood_Heat Guest

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    Well, I fought the good fight with the VSS and won. It only took the better part of the day. It also wound up getting broken so I had to buy another one. I took the drain plug out and only about a quart of ATF fell out of the hole. I guess that's why some shifts were a little crunchy. The VSS from Autozone was also a little big for the hole so we sanded it with an emory cloth so it wouldn't have to be beaten in. It also got a very generous helping of Never Seez before going in so next time, it outta be easy money getting it out to check the level. I think it's definately been worth it to destroy the old one and spend $30 to replace it so I know I'll be able to check the level whenever I want to.
  13. VashSpiegel

    VashSpiegel FEOA Member

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    Wouldn't draining the tranny and tap a bolt hole in the secondary housing solve the hideous fill problem? The transmission doesn't have to be out, it helps though. It can be done quick and simple and there's enough space that there's no worry of the bolt obstructing gears.
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  14. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    hollywood-heat: You are a truly heroic person. Getting the VSS out I rate as one of the worst 2 or 3 jobs on an Escort! You owe yourself a pat on the back.
  15. HyBrad

    HyBrad New Member

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    [​IMG]
  16. juggalo

    juggalo New Member

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    2 years and 9 months later
  17. hpmax

    hpmax FEOA Member

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    My VSS split in half when I tried to remove it. For the life of me, I can't understand why Ford had to be so cheap as not to put a dab of antiseize on it. My car is a 95, they should have known better by then. Fortunately, they did, sort of know better. There is a bolt that goes into the front of the trans that you can remove and fill through (although its a pain in the butt to do so). The trans does not take 12-14 quarts, that's a ludicrous amount. I seem to remember it being on the order of 3 quarts.

    Unfortunately, I have no idea how to get the bottom half out. The best advice I could get from a Ford dealership mechanic was "buy a junkyard transmission" (or more specifically, you can take the transmission off, and attempt to hammer the VSS out from the inside. Then replace it and hope the hole doesn't leak (which doesn't seem like a huge issue to me since the hole is at the top of the trans and you can always seal it with RTV or something.

    So I'm left with no speedometer/odomoter.
  18. Intuit

    Intuit FEOA Member

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    Anti-seize wouldn't be good for the rubber seal. Transmission fluid might contaminate and reduce or eliminate it's effectiveness. Don't know about others, but my VSS and transmission housing were clean, yet it was difficult to remove. Both appear to be aluminum and these alloys corrode as a white powder. (none present) I assumed it was the rubber seal and/or air pressure that was the culprit. Has anyone tried modifying or removing this seal ?

    It would be tough to keep the shavings out of the transmission unless it's first removed and disassembled. If the shavings are aluminum-alloy, they won't end up attached to the magnet. The speedometer gear on the sensor is also used as a dipstick. You'd be better off, simply modifying the VSS so that it doesn't fit and seal so snuggly.

    Are they any easier to remove when the trans is frigid/hot ?
  19. DangerRanger

    DangerRanger FEOA Member

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    VSS Removal

    I had to take my VSS off of my 94 trans. I tried to put penetrating lube for a while in advance but it didn't seem to do much. I made a special wrench to fit the flats on the sides but still couldn't twist it off. So I had to break down and use the old hammer and chisel method, but I did it real careful cause I absolutely did not want to break it. I took an old screwdriver and ground it real sharp and then tapped it in lightly all the way around till it finally started to move. The corrotion that holds it is mostly at the very top and once I got it to move at all it was as good as out. Be very careful with taking it in and out still as if any of the parts or any foreign matter goes down the hole it will go to the bottom and mess with your shift linkage. The other big thing with VSS is breaking the little bolt that holds it in place. Ford used only the cheapest most inferior fasteners on these cars so be careful.
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  20. Patao

    Patao FEOA Member

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    Way late to this party but since I did use this forum to get my VSS off I thought I would add my 2 cents for any others that may come even later. First I removed the electrical connection. As warned, it was brittle and one of the plastic clips did break. I reinstalled connector with a zip tie wrapped around it, so no real problem. I had some issues trying to pull out the retaining clip for the speedometer cable. So after considering the potential for breaking something, I left it in and moved on. The 10mm bolt came out effortlessly. I was able to remove the metal clip with a flat screwdriver.
    As for actually removing the VSS, I started by applying penetrating fluid. Then I got a pair of vise grips attached to the metal part just below the plastic. I couldn’t get good leverage from above, so I jacked up the drivers side and supported the car on a jackstand. With better leverage from underneath the car, I was able the bump the vise grip with the palm of my hand until I felt the VSS move. Once I saw it move, I slowly wiggled it back and forth. As I did this it began to move easier and I was able to work it up and out from underneath the car. Freeing the VSS without any damage.
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2019
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