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Latest Jeep Repair and Automatic Transmission Fluid Installation Advice

CarJunky AutoAdvice

How to ID Tranny

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Question From bill k on How to ID Tranny

I have a 97 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4 x 4 limited with an auto tranny. I want to change the transmission filter. The manual I have says to adjust the bands while I have the pan off. The problem is the manual lists 5 diff auto tranny models. I looked at the id stamped in the side of my tranny and I do see any numbers close to the ones in the manual. the manual says there is a 42RE, 42RH, 44RE, 46RH and a 46RE and it lists all with the same torque values but different back off turn numbers once you reach that value. How can I determine which one I have?????

Response From Loren Champlain Sr

bill k: Trans. band adjustments should be left for professionals, IMO. And, I'm NOT one. With that said, this is what I found:
According to what I found, it narrows it down to three possiblities; 42RE, 44RE, and 46RE. All three of these use the same spec; Kickdown: (with adapter) 47-50 inch lbs. (w/o adapter) 72 inch lbs.
Low/reverse: 72 inch lbs.
Again, I'd strongly advise having a transmission shop do these adjustments for you, assuming they are even needed. Band adjustment is critical.

Response From bill k

Right out of the HAYNES MANUAL it says to adjust the bands when you change the filter, all adjustments are to 72 inch pounds, the diff is how far to back off the adjustemnt screw after you reach 72 inch pounds, the 42 RE says back off 3 5/8 turns, the 44 RE back off 2 1/4 turns, the 46 RE back off 2 7/8 turns. Sounds simple enough to me, the issue is to determine which tranny I have. The car has over 100K miles and when it sits for a day or two and I put it in gear it takes a few seconds before anything happens, then it moves slower then normal while the engine is reving up for another few seconds and then all is normal. I guess the fluid is crap and the bands must have some wear. and any tranny shop in S Florida is suspect. I took it to a jeep dealer a few years ago to have the fluid changed and they said the tranny needed an overhaul and I would be lucky if it got me home, that was about 30k miles ago.

Response From bill k

My Handy Dandy Haynes Manual says I am to use MOPAR PLUS 4 ATF or equivalant tranny fluid. does any one know what the equivalent is?

Response From Loren Champlain Sr

Depending on which transmission you have, the specs call for DexII or ATF+3. You will be safe, either way, using ATF+4. Not worth taking a chance.

Response From Hammer Time

The equivalent they refer to would be a synthetic that is compatible with virtually all fluids. That's what I use.

You can read about it here


Amalie Universal Synthetic Automatic Transmission Fluid is a full synthetic automatic transmission fluid with universal applications and is the newest and most dynamic member of Amalie's family of high performance automatic transmission fluids. Because it may be used in virtually every automatic transmission on the road today, including the new continuously variable transmissions (CVT) and those transmissions that require slip-lock fluid technology, this high quality product is the ATF inventory optimizer. It is a special blend of synthetic base oils coupled with a multi-functional additive system to provide unsurpassed protection and reliable performance for all types of automatic transmissions, power steering units and hydraulic systems manufactured by virtually all of the automotive and transmission manufacturers from around the world - the one fluid that replaces the confusion about which fluid to use in a multitude of automatic transmissions.Amalie Universal Synthetic Automatic Transmission Fluid is such a superior transmission fluid that it may be used wherever the better known fluids such as the General Motors approved Dexron¨ fluids including Dexron¨ III; the Ford Motor Company's Mercon¨ approved automatic transmission fluids including Mercon¨ V; the Chrysler approved fluids including the new ATF Plus + 4. Included in those transmissions that will operate at maximum performance on the new Amalie Universal Synthetic Automatic Transmission Fluid are those manufactured by BMW, Honda, Mercedes Benz (DaimlerChrysler), Mitsubishi and Toyota. This superior automatic transmission fluid is so good that we feel comfortable recommending it for use in any automatic transmission for any vehicle manufactured by American, European, Japanese, Korean and many other vehicle manufacturers around the world - it is truly universal and truly the one fluid you can use worldwide.Amalie Universal Synthetic Automatic Transmission Fluid is a premium multifunctional fluid that offers excellent year-round protection, superior high-temperature and low-temperature operation, enhanced CVT and slip-lock performance, better anti-shudder protection, long-life with extended-drain capabilities and is compatible with conventional automatic transmission fluids.

Response From Loren Champlain Sr Top Rated Answer

>>This superior automatic transmission fluid is so good that we feel comfortable recommending it for use in any automatic transmission for any vehicle manufactured by American, European, Japanese, Korean and many other vehicle manufacturers around the world - it is truly universal and truly the one fluid you can use worldwide.<<
The 'we feel comfortable' part is what bothers me. Valvoline makes a trans. fluid called "MaxLife" that is 'supposed' to cover most all applications and they guarantee it, but I wouldn't put it in my vehicles. We don't do that many trans. flushes, but when it calls for special fluids, other than Mercon/Dexron III, to limit liability, we use what the manufacturer recommends. Can you spell paranoid? LOL. Personally, I've never had an automatic trans. fail. Shouldn't have said that. Darn. Regular maintenance is the key.

Response From Hammer Time

Amalie has a spec sheet and specific substitution list on their site.

Response From Double J

See if this helps you!

Click Here

Response From Loren Champlain Sr

Bill; I know that CarQuest now carries ATF+4 now. Both my Dodges require it, too. It's cheaper than Mopar brand.

CJ-7 On bLocks 7 yrs, Time to start it up

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Question From radp on CJ-7 On bLocks 7 yrs, Time to start it up

I've been overseas for 7 years. My 81 jeep CJ-7 was runnig fine before I left. All I did was lift it off the tires and have it resting on some concrete blocks all this time. I did not drain anyhting but the fuel system, but not at the stock carb. Now I want to make sure before I start it up, I correctly check/replace things so I don't damage anyhting. Recommendations before I turn the key?

Response From zmame

take spark plugs out put little ATF in each cylinder let it sit overnight incase the rings are seized, change oil, make sure tank dosen't have bunch of water from condinsation, change fuel filter. check air filter make sure mice didn't get at it. cranks slowly by hand make sure the rings are free (after letting sit in W/ATF) use a break bar and socket. you should be fine.

Response From radp Top Rated Answer

Thanks for responding so quickly. I'm not to bad at figuring a few of your comments out, but I do need a bit of hand holding on this.
1. is ATF, automatic transmission fluid.
1. Is a breaker-bar a metal rod I slide over my socket wrench to give me more torque, I assume?
2. Crank it by hand? Would I attach a socket to the pull wheel at the bottom of the engine, then using the breaker-bar, I'd be able to turn the crank so the pistons pump?
3. Should the jeep be in neutral. Seems like it should be to rotate the crank easier.
4. Do you think I need to change any of the fluids out .
5. Lets say, I follow execute all this, and the next day the engine start fine. Do you think I can just assume it's pretty drive-able at this point or should I start looking for any signs of something that it is simply deteriorated over time .
6. I've not seen any oil dripping from underneath the jeep anywhere. I have heard that seals and gaskets easily rip open when a car sit for a long time due to a lack of lubrication. Any comments on this?
Thanks again.

Response From zmame

1.ATF = auto trans fluid
2. yes, 1/2" breaker bar with the appropriate sized socket to fit on the crank bold so you can turn the engine by hand.
3. should be in nutral and wheels blocked so vechical dont roll (if wheels are back on the ground)
4.yes I would change to oil, filter and check axles for signs of water (milky color)
5.well let it run keep eye on oil pressure, temp and all your gauges make sure its running good. Your break rotors and or pads could be rotton may not stop the greatest if it was stored out side. Check break lines make sure they are not rotton/leaking. I would be very carful and slow lots of things could go wrong with a vechical that has been setting for a long period of time. dont take risks if you feel it's unsafe to drive dont.
6.Gaskets can dry out from engine not running in a long time you'll have to get it running first and see if anything leaks.

Best of luck .. p.s. crank the engine while the plugs are out so you are not fighting compression.