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Q: Differential Fluid Service

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I was at Jiffy Lube about a month or two ago. They asked if I had my rear oil differential (don't think they called it this) done and said I don't know. They asked if i wanted to get it done that day however, I wanted to check to see if it hadn't been done already recently. Went through the records for the life of the car (bought the car at about 75,000 or so) and couldn't find anything about it. My question is when does it need to be done, how important is it, and is there a front oil differential thing to do as well. Thanks!

My car has 82000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: The Matrix was offered in both front-wheel ...

The Matrix was offered in both front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive. If your vehicle is front-wheel drive, then it only has a front differential. If it it is all-wheel drive, then it has both front and rear differentials. However, the front differential is incorporated in the transmission, or trans-axle. If it is all-wheel drive, the rear differential is stand alone. Since fresh and clean fluids (engine oil, transmission oil, differential oil,etc) are vital to a long life for your vehicle, follow these rules. If you do not do any heavy towing or severe usage with the vehicle, every 5 years or 60,000 miles - whichever comes first - is a good rule of thumb for transmission / trans-axle and differential fluid services. If the vehicle is used under severe conditions or towing, you should reduce that service interval by half - every 30 months or 30,000 miles - whichever comes first.

A certified technician can perform both the rear differential fluid service - if applicable, and a transmission fluid service at your convenience.

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