Audi automatic transmission fluid flush & replacement, made easy

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Our expert insights into automatic transmission fluid flush & replacement

What does Automatic Transmission Fluid (ATF) do?

Automatic Transmission Fluid (ATF) provides the lubrication to the moving parts, wear and corrosion protection and is there to transfer the mechanical power of the automatic transmission.

What are the symptoms of requiring an Automatic Transmission Fluid Flush & replacement?

Usually, there a few signs you can look for:

  • Transmission grinding or strange noises

  • Problems changing or selecting Gears

  • Slipping gears

  • Failure to change up or down smoothly

  • Jolts or a delay as you change from Park to Drive

  • Transmission overheat warnings

  • Transmission Control Unit warning lights

What happens when we do automatic transmission fluid flush and replacement?

  • The gearbox drain plug will be removed, or a syphon pump inserted down the filler tube.

  • The old fluid will be removed and replaced with new fresh transmission fluid.

  • Once refilled to the correct level and run through its selection routine, the vehicle will be test driven before returning it to the owner.

Daniel, from LondonDaniel, from London

Hey Fixter, how often should I have my automatic transmission fluid flushed?

Most manufacturers recommend replacing transmission fluid every 30,000 to 60,000 miles. If you tow anything, or do mostly city driving with more frequent changes of gears, it may be wise to change your ATF even more often.

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Want to learn more about Audi automatic transmission fluid flush & replacement?

What does Automatic Transmission Fluid (ATF) do?

Automatic Transmission Fluid (ATF) provides the lubrication to the moving parts, wear and corrosion protection and is there to transfer the mechanical power of the automatic transmission. This is why regular servicing of an automatic transmission is vital to change this fluid (and its filter where fitted) in line with manufacturers recommendation. Failure to do this can result in many issues, such as transmission overheat, solenoid failure, jerky gear changes and even total gearbox failure.

What is an Automatic Transmission Fluid Flush?

A transmission fluid flush is a process in which the fluid in an automatic transmission is flushed out of the transmission (gearbox) and replaced with new Automatic Transmission Fluid (AFT). The flushing process, when done correctly, replaces nearly 100% of the old fluid with new fluid, including fluid in the torque converter and oil cooler lines.

Audi

Audi AG is a German automobile manufacturer, established over 100 years ago in April 1910, and has been owned by the Volkswagen Group since the 1960s.

This marque design and engineer luxury vehicles and distributes them worldwide. In the UK alone, there were over 1.7m Audi vehicles on the roads in the final quarter of 2018; a number that is continually growing year after year, and has more than doubled in the past decade.

Audi’s success can be attributed to its ability to move with the times, retaining its reputation as a prestige manufacturer and as part of the ‘big 3’ German marques responsible for high sales throughout the world market, alongside Mercedes and BMW.

Luxury executive vehicles for every type of driver

Audi’s current range features predominantly luxury executive and family cars of varying sizes: with compact to full-size saloons, coupés and sportback models, complemented by a growing range of SUV and sports car models.

Vorsprung durch Technik

The Audi brand is easily recognisable by their 4-ring logo—originally representing the four car companies to create Audi’s predecessor company, Auto Union—and their world famous slogan that ran for over 30 years, translated as ‘Being ahead through technology’. Despite no longer being used in their mainstream marketing, the meaning behind it still stands true of the brand today.

Audi: A sensation in rallying motorsport

Throughout the 1980s the Audi Quattro was famous for dominating rallying worldwide. The introduction of their four-wheel drive turbocharged model went on to win the World Rally Championships in both 1983 and 1984 and amassed a number of podium finishes and titles throughout the decade, all across the globe.

Audi’s reliability and reputation

Audi ranked 20th place out of 30 car brands in the What Car? Reliability Survey in 2018. Audi’s reputation for creating reliable running vehicles has steadily improved over time to become a strong contender to some of the Asian brands that have continued to dominate in this area.

How often should I have my automatic transmission fluid flushed?

Most manufacturers recommend replacing transmission fluid every 30,000 to 60,000 miles. If you tow anything, or do mostly city driving with more frequent changes of gears, it may be wise to change your ATF even more often.

What happens during an automatic transmission service?

There are many different processes required depending on the manufacturer, some of which may include all the following or just some:

  • Mechanics will raise the vehicle and increase the gearbox temperature if required by the procedures.

  • The gearbox drain plug will be removed, or a syphon pump inserted down the filler tube.

  • If the vehicle has a filter, the sump is likely to be removed so the filter can be accessed.

  • The parts will then be cleaned before a new filter is installed and the sump refitted with a new gasket or sealing compound.

  • The gearbox will then be refilled with the correct ATF for the gearbox and application in accordance with the manufacturer's procedure.

  • In some cases the refilling operation requires diagnostic input as well as manual.

  • Once refilled to the correct level and run through its selection routine, the vehicle will be test driven before returning it to the owner.

What are the symptoms of requiring an Automatic Transmission Fluid Flush & replacement?

Usually, there a few signs you can look for:

  • Transmission grinding or strange noises

  • Problems changing or selecting Gears

  • Slipping gears

  • Failure to change up or down smoothly

  • Jolts or a delay as you change from Park to Drive

  • Transmission overheat warnings

  • Transmission Control Unit warning lights

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