Q: 1998 Benz ML320 - how to check transmission oil level

asked by on

How do I check the automatic transmission oil level? What kind of ATF should I use? (Looks, smells like Dexron II or III . Certainly don't want to use "official" Mercedes ATF at about $50.00/quart!) There's a tube that goes down into the transmission at the right rear of the engine. Goes up to about the same level as the top of the valve cover - has a rubber cap that says "MB workshop use". If I take it off, there's an "o"-ring that seals the cover into the metal tube (about 5/8" ID tube) but no dipstick. I assume that's the oil-level check and fill tube...right? Can I improvise a dipstick? How long should I make it? (Should be able to use a thin coathanger or some 1/4" wide sheet metal). Car won't shift into any gear but makes a slight attempt to move (backwards) when shifted into reverse.

My car has 175000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Mercedes stopped including dipsticks on their cars when they switched to electronically controlled transmissions. One of the reasons was to discourage the owners from doing just what you are trying to do. The transmission fluid is unique, and adding dexron or other generic fluid can really foul things up. There are a few fluids that can substitute for the Mercedes factory fluid, but they are not cheap either. You can go to the Mercedes parts department and buy a workshop dipstick that will enable you to check the fluid but it is very long and doesn’t stay in the tube the way they used to, you just hang it up in your garage. Additionally, you will need a method of monitoring the transmission temperature when you check or add fluid, this is usually done with the scan tool. If you decide you’d rather have a professional do this for you, you can contact Your Mechanic to have a technician come to your home or office and service your automatic transmission for you.

Was this answer helpful?
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. 1998 Benz ML320 - how to check transmission oil level

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: As soon as I start up the car and I press the brake I hear a beep sound and my right low beam headlight goes out.

The chime that you are hearing is for a brake light or a headlight that is burned out or shutting off. The brake system could have a problem and shorting out with the headlight circuit and the right headlight could...

Q: New head gaskets not over heating or dripping fluid but radiator is steaming and spraying a little fluid. What is wrong ?

Hello, thanks for writing in. The best way to determine what your issue is would be to find the source of your leak. There are a few places to check first. One of which is the top radiator hose. Holes...

Q: Car idling high when stopped

Hi there. A vehicle idling high can be caused by a couple of problems. First, it can be due to a loss of manifold pressure, causing the vehicle to compensate the lack of air intake by throttling higher on its...

Related articles

How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.