Dealer said No for transmission fluid change.

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JJFW831

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2016 1500 Ram Bighorn, 5.7 8 speed trans. 117,000 miles. First post here, I called local dealership for price on tranny fluid and filter change. They ask if I was having problems, I said no. Well they said for my PU the fluid and filter is for Life time, unless there is a problem they won't change it. I said nothing is life time and it ended. How true is this, Life time? I don't haul anything, no slippage, just thought it should be serviced. Thank you.
 

Wild one

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2016 1500 Ram Bighorn, 5.7 8 speed trans. 117,000 miles. First post here, I called local dealership for price on tranny fluid and filter change. They ask if I was having problems, I said no. Well they said for my PU the fluid and filter is for Life time, unless there is a problem they won't change it. I said nothing is life time and it ended. How true is this, Life time? I don't haul anything, no slippage, just thought it should be serviced. Thank you.
Lots of threads on this already if you use the search bar at the top. But ZF says to service the transmission between 80,000 and 130,000 "kilometers" ,not miles , or 8 years,so you're due for a transmission service. In most respects following the owners manual for service reconmendations is okay,except for the one that says the transmission is sealed and the fluid is a life time fluid , no fluid is a life time fluid. You'll find alot of dealers that won't service the 8 speed .It's not hard to do , and is far cheaper if you do it yourself. Alot of us put more trust in ZF's reconmendations,then we trust the outfit trying to sell us a new truck every 3 years.
The toughest part of doing it at home,is jacking the rear tires roughly 9" in the air to level the transmissions pan rail.
 

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Mb7640

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2016 1500 Ram Bighorn, 5.7 8 speed trans. 117,000 miles. First post here, I called local dealership for price on tranny fluid and filter change. They ask if I was having problems, I said no. Well they said for my PU the fluid and filter is for Life time, unless there is a problem they won't change it. I said nothing is life time and it ended. How true is this, Life time? I don't haul anything, no slippage, just thought it should be serviced. Thank you.
Strange the dealer wont take your money and just do it
 

BenchTest

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Lots of threads on this already if you use the search bar at the top. But ZF says to service the transmission between 80,000 and 130,000 "kilometers" ,not miles , or 8 years,so you're due for a transmission service. In most respects following the owners manual for service reconmendations is okay,except for the one that says the transmission is sealed and the fluid is a life time fluid , no fluid is a life time fluid. You'll find alot of dealers that won't service the 8 speed .It's not hard to do , and is far cheaper if you do it yourself. Alot of us put more trust in ZF's reconmendations,then we trust the outfit trying to sell us a new truck every 3 years.
The toughest part of doing it at home,is jacking the rear tires roughly 9" in the air to level the transmissions pan rail.
+1 - plenty of write-ups on doing this yourself. Follow the manufacturer's recommendations and specific service techniques. ZF has been in the business for a LONG time and builds these transmissions for a LOT of vehicles (in different configs). If you ask 10 people, you'll get 10 different answers on what fluid, what type of pan (the pan/filter is a singular unit on these transmissions) service interval, etc. etc. I won't say "you MUST do it this way with THIS product", but from my experience (30+ years of automotive) my preference is OEM on the pan/filter unit (fits correctly, readily available, zero leak issues) and I use Valvoline's ATF that meets ZF spec. No issues to report. The key to success is following service protocol for proper refill with SPEC fluid. Outside of that, it's a pretty typical transmission service.
 

Rlaf75

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I believe Mopar says it is lifetime fluid but the transmission manufacturer (ZF) says otherwise. If you can't or aren't able to do it yourself then bring it to a reputable local shop and have them pull and replace the transmission pan. The filter is built into the pan and filter itself is not serviceable which means the pan has to get replaced
 

Jeepwalker

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They probably did you a favor (OP) by not giving you a price. It would have freaked you out and you'd end up shopping around & taking it somewhere else anyway.

The procedure for getting the fluid level 'right' is a bunch of goofing around and not what most mechanics like to do on a daily basis. So they gotta charge handsomely for it. And I don't blame them. Contact a tranny shop or a local shop (probably avoid chain shops unless they tell 'you' how they're going to do it.

Either way, I would want to be there when they were adjusting the final level b/c a lot of mechanics are going to just "quickie" the job. And also, I would probably get up there with a small wire brush and brush the area off. and hose it off too. Mechanics generally don't do that, and the last thing you want is a gob of dirt falling into the hole.
 
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JJFW831

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Appreciate all the advice and answers. I do know and read some write up's on the fluid change. Just wanted to know how true no transmission fluid change and filter wasn't needed since I was told it was Lifetime. Thank you.
 

NETim

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I don't see the harm, other than the time and expense, if the procedure is followed.

It gave me some peace of mind. I've done something that I believe will extend the life of the ZF. I intend to drive this truck into the ground.
 

EdGs

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Definately do it or get it done.

It really isn't too bad if you are mechanically inclined.

OE pan/filter (comes with bolts, fill plug, and gasket) can be had for about $270, but the solid aluminum PPE pan is not alot more (not sure what comes with it, though, and I believe you should use the sleeves that are on the OE pan to retain the gasket and help it to seal)

OE fluid will run you approximately $20 a qt. and you will need at least 6 or 7 to drain and fill, and maybe 1 or 2 more if you go with the PPE pan.

Valvoline Maxlife has been used by members here with great results, and it is around $25 per gallon, so much cheaper than OE fluid. Your call.

Good luck and smooth repairs with whatever you decide to do.
 

Ashton

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I opted to use the ppe pan and zf lifeguard 8. The difference in the way it shifts is night and day. Mind you, I did my own service at like 39k miles. You would notice a massive difference at over 100k miles. Have you ever changed the diff fluid and transfer case? Worthwhile things do change in my opinion. Also the ram specifies lifetime like alot of other manufacturers so people dont mess with it and when it breaks you buy a new trans or car. Most dealers define lifetime as the standard warranty period. Example the 3yr/100k warranty. ZF recommends the trans be serviced at 60K (being a germany based country i'm not sure if thats 60k miles or kms.) I just noticed my truck not shifting as nice when cold in the morning and now after service it shifts like new again. I do tow frequently for what its worth
 

Black1500Ram

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OE pan/filter (comes with bolts, fill plug, and gasket) can be had for about $270
OE pan / filter can be had on Amazon for $100 ZF Pan

$40-60 depending on manufacturer
Aftermarket ZF Pan 1
Aftermarket pan 2

I have the first one linked on my truck for 40k now coming up on time for a change. fits 100%

Not endorsing any of them just saying there’s options out there for far less than $270.

That PPE pan sure is nice!
 
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EdGs

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OE pan / filter can be had on Amazon for $100 ZF Pan

$40-60 if you go aftermarket.
Aftermarket ZF Pan 1
Aftermarket pan 2

I have the ZF one linked on my truck for 40k now coming up on time for a change. fits 100%

Not endorsing any of them just saying there’s options out there for far less than oem as with any part.

PPE pan sure is nice though!
Yeah, definately other options for sure.

Only posted what I had run across. I hate spending alot if I don't have to, but also prefer the OE parts in some cases.

Am at 183k myself, so will be servicing my ZF again around 200k, along with the other standard service items.
 

Ashton

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I used the Dorman pan. No issues whatsoever.

There's alot of opinions on dorman products. Personally i've had good luck with their products. Though IMO the ppe pan pays for itself in the long run. Also those skeptical of the filtran vs oem zf made pans. My 18 ram hemi had the filtran made in usa pan from the factory. So it just depends on budget and preference. I think all the plastic pans are on par.
 

EdGs

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I do like the fact that the PPE pan is aluminum, I know of at least 1 Ram owner and read of several more that hit debris that cracked their OE plastic pan.
 

marine0311

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There is a lot of excitement advice here. A dealership not wanting to hose you is a rarity. Unless the dealership is hoping you head their advice, and want to have you over the barrel to either buy a new tranny as you ruined yours. Or have to buy another truck. Either way, that particular place is doing you no favors.
I would go elsewhere to have work done on my truck. Piece of mind has a price to pay. Pay little now for preventative maintenance. Or pay much more on down the line. The choice is yours to make
 
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