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Super Moderator (Actually a SuperSpy)
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Need some opinions on transmission fluid?
See UOAs and opinions, this thread.

Blammo is using Subaru Extra S 75w90 is this ideal weight?
Ideal depends on environment but in general, yes, as this is the works fluid at a viscosity chosen by the works.

And which transmission filter?
None. There is no transmission filter on manual gearbox cars. There IS a transmission filter on automatic cars; it is shaped like an oil filter and is often confused for an oil filter, but isn't. If your car is manual, see this thread as stated. If your car is automatic, DO NOT use manual gearbox lube in your transmission (in other words, IGNORE THIS THREAD). Use the correct automatic transmission fluid and get the correct automatic transmission filter from any dealer.

See whether your drain bolt is a T-70 or a conventional 21mm bolt and have the right socket around. Also see if you have a funnel and tubing that'll prevent you from having to take off the IC (I would not take off the IC for a fluid change and use tubing instead).
 

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The Jedi Ninja
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See UOAs and opinions, this thread.



Ideal depends on environment but in general, yes, as this is the works fluid at a viscosity chosen by the works.



None. There is no transmission filter on manual gearbox cars. There IS a transmission filter on automatic cars; it is shaped like an oil filter and is often confused for an oil filter, but isn't. If your car is manual, see this thread as stated. If your car is automatic, DO NOT use manual gearbox lube in your transmission (in other words, IGNORE THIS THREAD). Use the correct automatic transmission fluid and get the correct automatic transmission filter from any dealer.

See whether your drain bolt is a T-70 or a conventional 21mm bolt and have the right socket around. Also see if you have a funnel and tubing that'll prevent you from having to take off the IC (I would not take off the IC for a fluid change and use tubing instead).

Thanks for the info SD_GR. My 2013 is a 5 speed, my 04 was automatic. I've never changed it in a 5 speed before. (As you can probably tell)
I'm new to manual transmission. I'm the guy who waited till my thirties to buy a tuner car. Pay less insurance, not get hassled by cops. (I went to school with 4 of them in my town) so with a MT do I flush it or just drain and fill?
 

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Thanks for the info SD_GR. My 2013 is a 5 speed, my 04 was automatic. I've never changed it in a 5 speed before. (As you probably tell)
I'm new to manual transmission. I'm the guy who waited till my thirties to buy a tuner car. Pay less insurance, not get hassled by cops. (I went to school with 4 of them in my town) so with a MT do I flush it or just drain and fill?
I just drain and refill. It is nearly impossible to drain the gearbox entirely so either measure what you remove and replace the same volume or carefully add little by little so as to not overfill. The 2013 gearbox may be different to my 2002 but the principle is the same. Since you have a 2013 and the car is under warranty, keep dated receipts for everything and make sure the fluid you end up chosing is the correct spec as per your owner's book.
 

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I'll chime in here.

I bought my 2006 WRX Wagon 1.5 years ago. 2 months after owning it, I drained the trans and rear diff fluid. Neither appeared to ever have been serviced prior (88k miles on the odometer) - it was VERY dark grey with shiny metal bits - no chunks though (thankfully).

I put in AMSOil 75w90 Severe Gear fluid. Initially, I noticed zero difference. After a few miles (15 or so), shifting became a LOT smoother. The gear grind that I used to have (going into 3rd) was completed GONE.

On cold mornings, shifting was a LOT easier than it was previously.

I then tried something that is useful for REALLY tight turns - downshifting from 2nd into 1st. I am able to repeatedly downshift from 2nd into 1st at any speed from 30mph or lower.

It has now been over 18,000 miles. I have never touched the fluid. Shifting is still perfectly smooth, downshifting from 2nd into 1st is still as effortless as it was the first time and still absolutely zero signs of that 3rd gear grind.


My wife has a 1989 AllTrac Camry with a 5-speed manual. She was running Redline Lightweight Shockproof. It was tough to shift on cold mornings, but otherwise it was ok. Sometimes getting out of 1st to go into 2nd was tough.

I bought some AMSOil 75w90 Severe Gear fluid - drained her Redline fluid (4000 miles on it) and put in the AMSOil fluid. The next time she drove it (1 day later) - when she came home from work she immediately told me how much smoother the shifting was. There was no hesitation coming out of 1st and going into 2nd. It was not a particularly cold morning, so I cannot comment on that as of yet. But, it has been over 8000 miles since then - and the shifting has remained as smooth as the first time with the AMSOil fluid.

Frankly, I won't touch Redline products anymore - not worth my time or money.

I am using AMSOil products in every aspect of my Subaru (air filter, oil filter, fuel system cleaner, brake and clutch fluid, coolant, engine oil and the above mentioned trans and diff fluid). I am going on nearly 8000 miles on this oil change, but will let it go up to 12,000 miles. i do check the oil and top it off if it is a bit low, but nothing else. My wife's Camry has a similar treatment, but she'll be going around 40,000 miles on her oil change.
 

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Lando Calrissian
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I am using AMSOil products in every aspect of my Subaru (air filter, oil filter, fuel system cleaner, brake and clutch fluid, coolant, engine oil and the above mentioned trans and diff fluid). I am going on nearly 8000 miles on this oil change, but will let it go up to 12,000 miles. i do check the oil and top it off if it is a bit low, but nothing else. My wife's Camry has a similar treatment, but she'll be going around 40,000 miles on her oil change.
AMSOil does make good fluids. HOWEVER,

1) you may want to check on the specs of the oil filter. Subaru turbo engines require a higher bypass pressure (23 psi bypass pressure for EJ engines). Not sure which filter you are running, but you will want to make sure it meets Subaru requirements, not simply that it fits.

2) what is the reason for going 8-12K miles on your changes? Why 40K on the '89 toyota mill? Are you trying to prove something, or simply hate your engines that much? I know that syn oils today are amazing, and I know that some makes (like Porsche, at 20K miles) have uber high OCIs, but an '89 Toyo mill is no a $80K+ german, and with the abuse a turbo EJ takes, 8-12K is just mean.
 

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Pro Manscaper
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Frankly, I won't touch Redline products anymore - not worth my time or money.
Not a fan either. When I did my tranny fluid on my first STI, I put Redline in...made an otherwise perfectly fine tranny, seem sloppier than it should be.
 

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1. the filter i am running is specifically for the WRX ej255 application. i've not checked on the bypass pressure spec though - i will look into that.

2a. (Subaru) the oil is rated for 25,000 miles, the filter for 15,000 miles - this saves me money, hassle and having to find an oil recycling center.

2b. (Camry) my wife's setup is 'unique' - she has an oil bypass kit that is rated for 40,000 miles and filters down to 1 micron. again, cost savings and hassle saving.

to give a bit of background on my wife's setup - previous to the bypass kit, there was around 1200 miles on the oil and it was pitch BLACK (Castrol GTX 10w30). i installed the bypass kit. i checked the oil 90 miles later - it was NEARLY new looking. the acceleration was better, crisper and the MPG went up a bit too (1 or 2 mpg). then switching her camry over to amsoil oil, the response and acceleration got even better - mpg was maybe 1mpg improved.
 

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Mother of god. Read every page and there is some good information in there. Had to join because I'm finding some decent technical stuff on this forum. I came into this thread looking for some specific information concerning Amsoil and almost found it on the last few pages.

Since this is my first post a little background. Have been a Subaru owner since I got my license. Born and raised in Colorado owning a Subaru just feels right. Have been building and racing cars pretty much my whole life, specializing in Forced induction vehicles mainly MKIV supras, RX7's, silvias and skylines. Previously a Nissan master Tech. Been out of the performance "Scene" for a while since starting a family.

I have Always played with subarus for daily drivers and bashers but never built them for high horsepower applications. I've dealt with my fair share of different fluids for different purposes over the years, redline products being popular with customer cars. I don't know if they have changed formulas in the last 8 or 10 years but due to my experience with redline in the past, I would not run it in my personal car just due to the seal swellers in their products. I would say 9 times out of 10 if there was a transmission seal leak on a customer car, a redline product was installed. Output shaft seals were fairly common especially in the Nissan transmissions but after installing redline, the swellers would soften the seals and cause leaks. If a customer would want to install a redline product I would always recommend installing fresh seals at the same time as a precaution. Output shaft seal is no biggy to replace but when the front mainshaft seal goes you might as well replace the clutch while you are in there if the fluid leak hasn't ruined it in the first place.

As for the cocktail, I've never been one to mix fluids aside from adding a additive that is meant to be added to a type of fluid. I have always been loyal to Castrol Fluids for the most part and BG additives as I have real world personal experience with these on my own personal cars and customer cars from daily drivers to 10 second drag racers.

Now to the reason why I read every page of this thread. I have a 2001 2.5rs that I swapped a version 2 STI drivetrain into. As far as I know the 5 speed in my car is very similar to the USDM wrx 5 speeds so I've hoping that the feedback I am reading on here will be similar to my own situation. When I did the swap I installed Castrol 75-90 mainly because I had it on hand and it's what I've been using in most of my manual transmissions for years. Right off the bat I noticed when cold that going into 2nd was not the easiest thing. When it warmed up no problem. Now I would expect this in a colder climate, I now live in Florida so when I say cold sometimes it's 90 degrees outside. Only after the fluid has circulated and heated up from driving would it shift well. Now the strange thing is it has gotten better with mileage but still not great. I have about 6000 miles on the fluid but they are hard miles. The wife and I rallycross and autocross the car at least once a month. Shifting could be better in those situations but I must say the last rallycross it felt better than when the fluid was new. Downshifts into 1st were fairly easily made and high rpm shifts were a lot more solid than previous events.

Amsoil is one brand I have always had good luck with in customer cars but never really used it in my own vehicles. I didn't find my information in this thread about it until the last few pages. I know 06wrx4me used SVG in his cocktail and that there had been poor experience with straight sever gear. My main question is why hasn't anyone tried straight MTG? After all from what I can find it is severe gear with additives for synchros to help with shifting like what we are experiencing. After reading through this thread I searched high and low in the Tampa area and couldn't find an Amsoil dealer that had the actual MTG, everyone just stocks the Severe Gear and uses that. I had to head out to Orlando to pick up the Z32 transmission conversion parts for th Wifes S14 and Luckily I found a place in Orlando that stocked it and picked up 7 quarts of the MTG and one of the Severe Gear for my diff. I will be installing this in my car this weekend and also installed it in the Z32 transmission. The Z32 transmission is brand new out of the box from Nissan so I don't have anything compare with that but we do have an autocross session on the 25th so I will be able to put the MTG to the test. I may grab a sample from the Castrol and have it tested just for giggles but I have no idea what was in it from Japan. What I drained out when I got the clip looked to be in very good shape which made me feel better about the person that owned the car before as the rest of the car showed maintenance work as well.

I will let you guys know how the MTG compares and if it helps or hurts my situation. I'm hoping the thinner visc. when cold will help. Again Awesome thread with some really great information. I always like to see hard evidence and personal experience over hear say. There are too many people with opinions on something they have no personal experience with.
 

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Hi OK great let us know. Be aware of how it ages too as done have reported great initial feel with some oils but they won't hold up over time. Good luck hope it works for you.
 

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Mother of god. Read every page and there is some good information in there. Had to join because I'm finding some decent technical stuff on this forum. I came into this thread looking for some specific information concerning Amsoil and almost found it on the last few pages.

Since this is my first post a little background. Have been a Subaru owner since I got my license. Born and raised in Colorado owning a Subaru just feels right. Have been building and racing cars pretty much my whole life, specializing in Forced induction vehicles mainly MKIV supras, RX7's, silvias and skylines. Previously a Nissan master Tech. Been out of the performance "Scene" for a while since starting a family.

I have Always played with subarus for daily drivers and bashers but never built them for high horsepower applications. I've dealt with my fair share of different fluids for different purposes over the years, redline products being popular with customer cars. I don't know if they have changed formulas in the last 8 or 10 years but due to my experience with redline in the past, I would not run it in my personal car just due to the seal swellers in their products. I would say 9 times out of 10 if there was a transmission seal leak on a customer car, a redline product was installed. Output shaft seals were fairly common especially in the Nissan transmissions but after installing redline, the swellers would soften the seals and cause leaks. If a customer would want to install a redline product I would always recommend installing fresh seals at the same time as a precaution. Output shaft seal is no biggy to replace but when the front mainshaft seal goes you might as well replace the clutch while you are in there if the fluid leak hasn't ruined it in the first place.

As for the cocktail, I've never been one to mix fluids aside from adding a additive that is meant to be added to a type of fluid. I have always been loyal to Castrol Fluids for the most part and BG additives as I have real world personal experience with these on my own personal cars and customer cars from daily drivers to 10 second drag racers.

Now to the reason why I read every page of this thread. I have a 2001 2.5rs that I swapped a version 2 STI drivetrain into. As far as I know the 5 speed in my car is very similar to the USDM wrx 5 speeds so I've hoping that the feedback I am reading on here will be similar to my own situation. When I did the swap I installed Castrol 75-90 mainly because I had it on hand and it's what I've been using in most of my manual transmissions for years. Right off the bat I noticed when cold that going into 2nd was not the easiest thing. When it warmed up no problem. Now I would expect this in a colder climate, I now live in Florida so when I say cold sometimes it's 90 degrees outside. Only after the fluid has circulated and heated up from driving would it shift well. Now the strange thing is it has gotten better with mileage but still not great. I have about 6000 miles on the fluid but they are hard miles. The wife and I rallycross and autocross the car at least once a month. Shifting could be better in those situations but I must say the last rallycross it felt better than when the fluid was new. Downshifts into 1st were fairly easily made and high rpm shifts were a lot more solid than previous events.

Amsoil is one brand I have always had good luck with in customer cars but never really used it in my own vehicles. I didn't find my information in this thread about it until the last few pages. I know 06wrx4me used SVG in his cocktail and that there had been poor experience with straight sever gear. My main question is why hasn't anyone tried straight MTG? After all from what I can find it is severe gear with additives for synchros to help with shifting like what we are experiencing. After reading through this thread I searched high and low in the Tampa area and couldn't find an Amsoil dealer that had the actual MTG, everyone just stocks the Severe Gear and uses that. I had to head out to Orlando to pick up the Z32 transmission conversion parts for th Wifes S14 and Luckily I found a place in Orlando that stocked it and picked up 7 quarts of the MTG and one of the Severe Gear for my diff. I will be installing this in my car this weekend and also installed it in the Z32 transmission. The Z32 transmission is brand new out of the box from Nissan so I don't have anything compare with that but we do have an autocross session on the 25th so I will be able to put the MTG to the test. I may grab a sample from the Castrol and have it tested just for giggles but I have no idea what was in it from Japan. What I drained out when I got the clip looked to be in very good shape which made me feel better about the person that owned the car before as the rest of the car showed maintenance work as well.

I will let you guys know how the MTG compares and if it helps or hurts my situation. I'm hoping the thinner visc. when cold will help. Again Awesome thread with some really great information. I always like to see hard evidence and personal experience over hear say. There are too many people with opinions on something they have no personal experience with.

one thing that i have found to be absolutely critical is a braided steel clutch line. it might sound silly, but that $25 investment is worth $100 or more. it improves the pedal feel/reaction just like braided steel brake lines do for your brakes. i am running AMSOil DOT4 brake fluid for my brakes and clutch fluid. never once has my clutch ever felt mushy or less than responsive. the engagement point never changes either.

Techna-Fit | Stainless Steel Brake and Clutch Lines

that is the place where i get my lines from. i do get the black exterior teflon hose. it helps keeping the lines look like stock AND protects the braided steel from dirt particles getting inside and rubbing the teflon inside.
 

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Hi OK great let us know. Be aware of how it ages too as done have reported great initial feel with some oils but they won't hold up over time. Good luck hope it works for you.
Will do, this car is also my daily driver so Mileage should go up decently quick. That is why I'm am going with Amsoil this time, the cars I have installed it in for customers seem to love if over long periods of time and they end up being Amsoil junkies and switching over the rest of their cars fluids much like not12listen. The one thing that I noticed when putting it in the Z32 tranny the other night is that is seems a lot thinner than any other 75-90 I have seen. Looked just like 5W-30 motor oil being poored in. I guess that's the lower viscosity property when cold, lets just hope it holds up with it gets really hot because both transmissions see many back to back runs with the wife and I driving.

Both cars have stainless hardware. Only running DOT3 in the clutches, will be switching over to a synthetic brake when I pick up some 4/2 pot calipers for the RSTI.
 

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Quick update. Replaced transmission fluid last weekend with Amsoil MTG. Cold shifting is noticeably better with this stuff. Driving around town during the week I didn't notice any other improvements over before but I didn't really have any complaints either. Took the car to AutoX this past Saturday and didn't have any problems with it. I didn't see any major improvements over the Castrol mix I had before, (whatever gear oil was ran in japan topped off with Castrol.) Car still downshifted into first without issue and felt fine the whole time. I'll keep people updated as the miles go on and we should be seeing 1 to 2 autox or rallyx events a month so it will see some abuse. I am also running this in my wife's Z32 trans and it seemed very happy even though it's not fully broken in yet.

One thing I saw people post on here about the Transmission capacity supposed to be around 3.8 quarts but only able to get 3 quarts in. One thing I ask is how are they changing their fluid? Jacking up the front like I did and draining then refilling? What I ended up doing was jacking up the front, drained, reinstalled the plug finger tight and lowered the car flat, then removed the plug again with pan under to catch the fluid and I got about another quart out with the car flat. Now my car is stock height for rally racing and some people may have a hard time doing this with a lowered car but this shows in order to get most of the fluid out of the transmission it should be on a flat surface, I lifted the back a little just to see if I could get more out and it didn't see to help probably just do to the shape of the transmission naturally sloping towards the front. When said and done it took all 3.8 quarts of fluid to fill so I'm sure if people are not draining flat and only lifting the front that they are not getting the full fluid change and that is why they can only get 3 quarts in?
 

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One thing I saw people post on here about the Transmission capacity supposed to be around 3.8 quarts but only able to get 3 quarts in. One thing I ask is how are they changing their fluid? Jacking up the front like I did and draining then refilling?
I drive onto ramps, drain the old fluid, replace the crush washer and torque the drain plug. I then add 3 qts and drive off the ramp. I wait, and check level. I have never had to add full capacity and usually only have to top off a bit after I've got the car on level ground again.
 

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With it at an angle like that you are not getting full drainage. I was looking at the angle of the transmission while I was under there and held up a level to the drain plug and found there is a nice sized pocket towards the back of the transmission where the extra fluid hangs out and does not get drained. This is why I decided to drop the car and found the extra fluid that needed to be drained to get a full fluid replacement.
 

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With it at an angle like that you are not getting full drainage. I was looking at the angle of the transmission while I was under there and held up a level to the drain plug and found there is a nice sized pocket towards the back of the transmission where the extra fluid hangs out and does not get drained. This is why I decided to drop the car and found the extra fluid that needed to be drained to get a full fluid replacement.
That makes sense, thanks.
 

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when i drained and filled the trans fluid, i did have my WRX Wagon up on 4 jack stands. i tightened the plug and all 4 quarts went into without issue.

for the rear diff, i had the same jack stands under the car, but the rear jack stands were 1 notch lower - cause the fluid to naturally drain out of drain plug due to the sloped setup.
 

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so after reading the 27 pages of info trying to figure out what would be the most used not best bc best is nonexistent im deciding to use the 2.0q amsoil svg and 1.7q redline lightweight shockproof for the trans of my wife 08 wrx but what im trying to figure out, which may have been lost in all the other info is what fluid I should use for the rear diff. I live in NE ohio so cold winter is a huge consideration as I don't want to go to thick or thin?...... thanks
 

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amsoil svg is also used for the rear diff.

trying to debate thinner vs thicker is a bit incorrect. what you are searching for is the fluid which flows best at colder temps. that is not always locked to the weight of the fluid. the additive package has a lot to do with it.

so, look for the info on each that details the cold flow temps. i run svg in my diff and trans (no other fluid). zero cold flow issues at 25 degree mornings and also no issues at 110 degree days. no gear grinds is nice too.
 
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