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  1. #11
    Frank
    Administrator nordwulf's Avatar
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    previous: 2006 9-3, 2001-06 9-5, 2011 9-4X
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    I have been going through the service recommendations from Saab for the different model years and they are all over the place with ATF replacement. For the 2003, they specify 100K miles, 2005 is 90K miles and 60K miles for 2006-and-up. I was also a bit surprised how black it was but that doesn't necessarily mean it can't do its job anymore. But I will definitely change it more often than 90K miles. I am tempted to do it every 40K miles because it is inexpensive and easy maintenance.

    I ordered mine from the Lubricant Store. They shipped out the same day and they sell it by the case of 12 quarts. $52.95 + shipping. They shipped from Chicago so shipping cost may be bit more to Portland.
    http://thelubricantstore.com/default...temcode=98GX57

    It's too bad you can't get all the fluid out. My old Mercedes I used to have had a drain plug on the torque converter as well so that worked much better. It also had a AT filter which was pretty easy to replace. Perhaps the fluid in the 9-5 gets black so quickly because there is no filter?

    I just did my final change yesterday so I should be good for a while.

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  2. #12
    Frank
    Administrator nordwulf's Avatar
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    Some of the newer 9-5s (I think it is 2008/2009) don't have an ATF dipstick anymore. Not only is it impossible to check the fluid level by the owner, refilling ATF after a change also makes it difficult. I really don't understand why they did this besides saving a few kronor. I think they want you to believe ATF is supposed to last the life of the car..

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  3. #13
    Robert
    Saabologist in Training weav999's Avatar
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    2004 9-5 2.3T Arc SportCombi
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    Transmission Fluid Drain and Fill

    Over the weekend I performed a series of transmission fluid drain and fill's on our 2004 Saab 9-5. The car has 79,000 miles on it.
    I purchased 2 cases of Moblie 3309 Transmission Fluid from thelubricantstore.com
    [FONT=arial]MOBIL ATF 3309 (12X1)[/FONT][FONT=arial]2[/FONT][FONT=arial]$52.95/CASE[/FONT]
    I wanted to be able to drain and fill 3 times, which according to the forums will result in about 90% fluid exchange.
    I am glad I went ahead and did this as the fluid in the transmission was very old, black and overall in poor condition.

    It is an easy thing to do if you have a set of ramps and an adjustable crescent wrench.
    I collected the fluid from each of the 3 drains, and to show what is currently in the transmission, I drained just a bit into a cup after driving to Brunch.
    The 4 cups are show in the images below.
    In the first image (cups only), The oldest is to the left and the Final fluid quality is shown to the right. The old fluid is nearly black, Terrible!
    after just one drain and fill, the quality is still horrendous. By the last drain, we finally have light penetration through the fluid, and the familiar red color.
    Name:  resize transmission 2.jpg
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    In the second picture I poured out some of the fluid onto a white paper. In this picture the order of the fluids is reversed. I was amazed at how bad/dirty the fluid was until the final drain and fill.
    Name:  resize transmission 1.jpg
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    The moral of this story: Yes the Fluid is expensive but it is worth it to get good fluid
    circulating through the transmission. Simply draining the fluid once and refilling leaves the fluid too dirty.
    There is a noticeable difference in the quality of shifting. The car is much smoother as it shifts through the gears.

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  4. #14
    Frank
    Administrator nordwulf's Avatar
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    Very nice to see the differences between the fills. The fluid in mine was very black as well but I didn't record the changes after each fill. Just the difference between the fluid before the change and the new fluid.

    You mention you used 2 cases of 12 bottles each. Shouldn't that be 1 case? 12 bottles is just enough for 3 changes.

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  5. #15
    Robert
    Saabologist in Training weav999's Avatar
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    2004 9-5 2.3T Arc SportCombi
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    According to the Manual, you will need 4L each time you drain and fill. So 12 L total.
    Here is the hitch, the fluid is sold by the qt.(quart) not the L. (liter).
    1qt.=0.946 352 946 liter
    so
    4qt=3.785 liter
    So to be spot on you may need just under 4.25 quarts to get the fluid level correct.

    I ended up using 12 full qts and about half of a 13th bottle (I was a bit nervous so I wanted to make sure the fluid levels were spec.) I went ahead and bought the 2 cases since the price was good (and free shipping), and I have 11.5 bottles left over for the next TF service.

    I have read that you can get through this using 4 qts per change.
    1 case has 12 qts. I am sure that there is a way to use only 1 case = 12 quarts. You can refill after the first 2 drains with 3 7/8 quarts, leaving 1/8 quarts after each one, so that for your 3rd and final fill you have the 4 full quarts and the 2*1/8 quart or 1/4=.25 qt left over from the 2 previous fills to get the level to spec.
    For the final fill put in the 4 full qts and then drive the car to get the fluid up to temp, then check levels and add if needed.

    If I had to do it again I would do it using this method, so that 1 case = one transmission fluid service.

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  6. #16
    Robert
    Saabologist in Training weav999's Avatar
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    In the end I think that the conversion difference in from quart to liter will not make a noticeable difference in the performance of the car. There is an optimal range (min-max at 80C) and using 4 quarts will put the fluid levels within this range. Since the transmission is one of those that too much fluid is surely bad, running at halfway between in and max at 80C is surely fine.

    As I am just starting to work on this car (this was the first TF fluid change that I have performed on the car), I find that I tend to try to err on the side of caution. As I get more comfortable with the car and its quirks and how it works I will relax a bit.

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  7. #17
    Robert
    Saabologist in Training weav999's Avatar
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    I just reread your tutorial:

    Tip
    4 quarts of ATF brings the fluid level right at the minimum on the ATF dipstick. 1 quart = 946ml so 4 quarts is 3.78 liters. Difference between min and max = 0.5 liters. I saved about 1/4 of the bottle of the 2nd change (used some of the drained ATF) and used that on the final change with the other 4 quarts so the level was right between min and max.
    That about sums it up.

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  8. #18
    Frank
    Administrator nordwulf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by weav999 View Post
    As I am just starting to work on this car (this was the first TF fluid change that I have performed on the car), I find that I tend to try to err on the side of caution. As I get more comfortable with the car and its quirks and how it works I will relax a bit.
    I think it always is a good idea to do this, no matter how long you have been working on cars. Or pretty much anything else in life.

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  9. #19

    Join Date
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    2006 Saab Arc convertible
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    I would suggest using the wolfshead universal trans fluid, usually $3.99 per quart but is better than even Mobil 1 (my opinion) also goes by the brand name Amalie. Used it on my impala, very good feel ..

    Quote Originally Posted by Wulf View Post
    I have been looking for this info a few times and info is spread out in many threads on a few forums. It'll be easier to have one thread with all the important info.

    These are the specifications from the Saab WIS.

    1998-2001
    Dextron III - Texaco Texamatic 7045 - mineral oil based

    Change at:
    60,000 miles / 96,000 km (North America)
    66,000 miles / 110,000 km (Europe, rest of world)

    2002-2008
    Saab 3309 - mineral oil based

    Change at:
    90,000 miles / 150,000 km (North America/Europe)
    96,000 miles / 160,000 km (Rest of world)

    Does anyone have any recommendations or suggestions for other brands of ATF? My car (2005) is currently at 70K miles. Change it early or just wait until 90K? ATF is pretty inexpensive so I guess I might as well do it early.

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  10. #20

    Join Date
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    2003 Saab 9-5 Linear, 2.3t
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    Thanks for the terrific writeup! I've followed your directions completely so far. Although, I'm having a difficult time tracking down a replacement washer for the ATF pan. Where did you obtain yours?

    Thanks!

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