Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: New cars don't have transmission fluid dipsticks Transmission fluid changing

asked by on

How come modern cars no longer have transmission fluid dipsticks and recommended fluid change? Can you still change the fluid without one? If not--how long transmission fluid can last with the original fluid?

That’s a very good question. The reason they have gone with no dipsticks is because they don’t want people messing with transmissions other there at the dealership. Some cars went through that a couple of decades ago. They make it a very involved, convoluted process all through, in order to change the fluid on these modern cars. They have special adapters you have to put. Some of them have to have scan computers in order to read the data and what’s in there, and then be able to change it. A lot of these companies claim that this new fluid is the "lifetime" fluid.

Most new use synthetic fluid can last a long time but any fluid is going to get dirty and wear out over time. I would change it at least every 80,000 - 100,000 miles but if you’ve got one that is really hard to change, you are better off hiring a mechanic to do it.

On some of the cars, it would be too hard for the do-it-yourself because of all that equipment you need. The professional mechanics already have that. Just call any good mechanic, like one from YourMechanic, and they will be able to perform a transmission fluid service for you.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!
  • Home
  • Questions
  • New cars don't have transmission fluid dipsticks Transmission fluid changing

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: My truck won't shift out of first gear.

This may be a sign of low transmission fluid or a faulty transmission control solenoid. As you know, automatic transmissions use pressurized hydraulic fluid to change gears. Every time a gear change is required, the car's computer activates a transmission...

Q: Mazda RX8 creamy oil

Hello, thank you for writing in. All oil can accumulate water and moisture over time. Typically this is happens when the vehicle sits, is not getting up to operating temperature for long enough to burn off that moisture, or happens...

Q: Car chokes after starting

There are two options for the engine for your car. They are both 3.0 v6’s that are vastly different. If you are talking about oil in the spark plug tubes on the DOHC v6, that indicates a bad valve cover...

Related articles

P0052 OBD-II Trouble Code: HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1)
P0052 code definition HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1) What the...
How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.