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I've been to the dealer for service today. They tried to sell a transmission service (among other things) for my 8 speed 300. After my last experience w/ the dealer I decided to check the owners manual for Chrysler's recommendation. I can find the 5 speed standard and severe intervals on page 554+ but nothing for the 8 speed. A quick google search was unproductive. Checking every term in the owners manual for transmission didn't reveal any service interval information.

So, the question is, what is the Chrysler recommended service interval for the 8 speed?
 

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From my research, there is none! No service required. No dipstick. No checking fluid. Lifetime fluid. If there is ever a transmission issue, it has to be removed from the vehicle, tilted into position, and disassembled to check the fluid and other mechanical situations.


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A lifetime interval is not realistic with any lubricating fluid.

I have not seen an interval listed in any of the literature I've found online, either.

But it won't go indefinitely. I think the "5-speed" only reference may be relevant to an earlier change interval than with the 4-speed auto without AutoStick.

I'd make some calls to several dealers and see if they can't provide a consistent answer.
 

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According to ZF 8 Speed Automatic Transmission Equipment And Tool Institute Tech Day PDF I download a while ago it's indeed sealed unit

Low Viscosity Oil
- Reduced spin loss
- Improves cold FE
- Fill For Life
I also remember reading that it requires some special Shell oil that's just slightly more common than unobtainium, and probably equally expensive.
 

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I wonder how on earth a 2013 could be up for such a service in the first place. Is OP a traveling salesman or something? Doesn't sound quite right to me anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I wonder how on earth a 2013 could be up for such a service in the first place. Is OP a traveling salesman or something? Doesn't sound quite right to me anyway.
Not a traveling salesman, just in at 25,000 for oil change and rotation. Dealer recommended, and we declined:

1. Cabin air filter, ordered today from Amazon, less than $30, Wix 24048
2. Transmission service due
3. Power steering fluid service due
4. Brake fluid service due
5. Fuel system service due, obtained Chevron Techron additive
6. Wheel alignment and balance, fell for that one @15,000 miles, steering wheel still not centered

Total amount of unpurchased service, $919.42 + $25 shop supplies

I checked Rockauto for trans service parts, looks like all they have are the NAG1 parts.

I also found the '14 Jeep Grand Cherokee uses a different pan with slightly more capacity, looks like it would be a straight bolt on and apparently no ground clearance reduction.

Based on what I've found I think using the NAG1 severe duty service schedule might be advisable.

Today I searched for Shell-L12108 and found some interesting information from the jeep forum, copied verbatim:

If you are speaking of the ZF 8spd transmission they all basically use the same method to service the transmission.
Procedure (we need to verify with the service manual but all ZF transmissions I have serviced operate this way)
Open the fill plug (by the way the fill plug is usually so tight that you need to tap it hard with a hammer on either a torx (typical) or Allen fastener
Open drain plug and drain old Lifeguard 8 out of the pan.
If you wish to change the filter typically (again we need to see the service manual) the pan and filter are an integral part and you take the 20 some bolts out after draining and expect another liter to be in there too. Some ZF transmission use a separate filter and pan, it all depends on what Jeep spec'ed.

Now to refill this is where ZF departs from almost all other transmission manufacturers. Fill transmission engine off to weeping out of fill hole obviously drain plug in. Then start car shift through all the gears until the transmission temp reaches 80-120 F. Now with the transmission RUNNING refill until weeping out the fill hole, put the plug in once done and that is it.

I am looking forward to seeing what the service manual says but I am guessing this is pretty close.
Here is where I get my ZF fluids and filters. Only the LG 8 is listed but it is listed for the 8HP70
The CTSC - ZF Parts

Hope this helps some. I am sure we will all learn more once more service information is available...

Next post from same poster:

We will have to see what the interval is but typically the manufacturer recommends a service at 100K miles and ZF at 50K miles. I will be changing mine at around 35-40K miles and every 40-50K miles there after.
No light I am aware of on any ZF transmission. Some transfer case cars do get a light to change their fluid.
I defer to the manual which I have not read in detail yet but ZF is very consistent with what they recommend...

This is from ZF responding to an Audi owner with the 8spd transmission. 2013
Your ZF automatic transmission is filled maintenance-free with specially developed partially synthetic ATF oil. Maintenance-free fills are intended for normal operating conditions.

However, especially driving at very high operating temperatures can result in accelerated aging or increased wear of ATF oils. It is recommended, in the event of severe operating
conditions, such as:

- frequent highway driving in top speed range,
- offensive, sporty driving style,
- frequent trailer operation,

being above average, oil purification (oil change) on automatic transmissions is recommended between 80,000 km and 120,000 km, or 8 years, depending on the load.

In each case, only released ATF oil may be used for oil changes. And oil changes must be performed in accordance with the relevant specifications.

This means that there isn't such a thing as lifetime fill and that virtually any kind of driving we do we should change the fluid at 50K miles or is you wish 75K miles...
 

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I asked the my service guy when I was at the dealer last time, and he had no idea. He had to call a few of his "buds", but eventually got back to me and said that even though it wasn't in the manual that the recommended interval is 100,000 miles. That sounds a little more realistic to me than a "lifetime" fill. It seems like a big oversight that none of this is mentioned in the manual though.
 
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Big Iron,

thanks for the information. That's way more than what we were given.

What I was getting at with my question is how 25K mileage could result in the service being necessary, unless you mention towing or drag racing or just spending the entire 25K "hot footting" I can't imagine wanting or needing that service so "soon".

I pulled the following from my manual:

Change automatic transmission fluid and filter if
using your vehicle for any of the following: police,
taxi, fleet, off-road, or frequent trailer towing (fivespeed
only).


The above was for 60000 miles or 96000 km

Reading that doesn't make me comfortable either. What is the regular interval, for example, for the 5 spd? Does that mean grandma drivers never have to worry about servicing the trans? Doesn't sound right either.

Also, the manual say nothing about the 8spd, so I think I'll use what you posted and kind of use that as a marker.

If I take my car in and service is suggested, hopefully it's becaused they checked it and saw that it was needed. I'll definitely ask to see it.

Otherwise, I'll look into this around 50K miles or so.

Again, thanks for posting that info.
 

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I asked the my service guy when I was at the dealer last time, and he had no idea. He had to call a few of his "buds", but eventually got back to me and said that even though it wasn't in the manual that the recommended interval is 100,000 miles. That sounds a little more realistic to me than a "lifetime" fill. It seems like a big oversight that none of this is mentioned in the manual though.
Agree 100%.
 

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I think I found clarity to the "fill for life" statement. They literally mean fill for life, meaning, this includes checking the fluid as part of the oil change interval, checking the fluid level (again when changing the engine oil), and topping off as needed. It's not as maintenance free as they make it sound. It's just that they don't talk about any drain/refill procedures.
In fact the service kit comes with a new pan and bolts, so it's much more than just draining the fluid and refilling it. Certain parts are replaced. Again, I can't imagine this being necessary at 25000 miles.

I wish I could find the earlier version of this that talks more specifically about the 8HP45.

Here's something I did find:

http://courses.chrysleracademy.com/MT201211/shell_popups/pdf/Reference.pdf

What I can't figure out is whether the 845RE is already in our cars are not. I'm assuming not and that we have the 8HP45. The difference is that the 8HP45 is built by ZF and shipped to the plant for installation. The 845RE is based on the 8HP and is built by Chrysler.

The reason I think we still have the 8HP45 is that the V6 Rams are slated to start getting the 845RE, along with the new stop/start system.

Again, I think waiting and following ZF's schedule as mentioned in Big Iron's post seems more reasonable.
 

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Small update: Guess we have to check the build date to know. The announcement of the 845RE replacing the 8HP45 was in January 2013. And it covered the charger and 300 models as well as the Ram. So at some point in 2013 300's may have been switched to the 845RE.

Differences are some parts not interchangeable and the 845RE has higher friction clutches and certain vehicles have a larger fluid capacity.

Again, fill for life, no filler tube, no dip stick, but an access on the side to check the fluid. Also, they say the pan on both is plastic. Probably a reason it is replaced when the service is done?
 

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My input;

#1 No such thing as 100k tranny oil changes, regardless of what the manufacturer states
#2 Changing the oil at 100k can realistically result in a previously properly-operating tranny no longer doing so.


I own an FJ Cruiser. Toyota states 100k miles between trans oil changes. My FJ doesn't have a dipstick either, just the fill and drain plugs as on these cars. Procedure is to flush the oil, then fill to where it's just weeping out the fill hole, but at around 110*F trans temp.

I replaced the oil on my FJ trans at 60k miles. Everyone here knows what auto trans oil looks like, right? My oil was BLACK, jet black. And my experience is the norm over on the FJ site, not the exception.

As far as changing the oil for the first time on a high-mileage transmission, it's suicide unless the tranny isn't operating properly to begin with. Then you have nothing to lose. But putting fresh oil in a tranny which has been neglected for 100k miles may very well net you a slipping transmission. Something about the "slipperiness" of the new oil playing havoc with the accumulated glaze on the friction plates and clutches.

There have been members on the FJ site who were suffering from transmission shudder and the problem evaporated after an oil change. This, after being told by the dealer that the transmission needed to be replaced and that it made no sense to replace the oil.

Last thing; I performed a transmission flush rather than simply a "dump & replace" for the first time on my Toyota last year. Awesomely easy to do with the engine running, and you literally see the oil changing colour back to a nice, blood-red hue. With an oil change, you don't get to the oil trapped in the converter. With a flush, you get it all at a cost of maybe one or two extra spilled/lost/dripped/knocked-over cans of oil!!!!
 
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