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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Checking in the manual it states that the CVT need a fluid change at 60k. My Caliber has 86k on it, and since I don't have good service record of the previous owner I figured I would get it changed to be on the safe side.

Called up the dealer and at first he just told me they are a sealed unit, he can't change the fluid. I then said the manual says dealers are the only people that should be changing the fluid. I got put on hold for a few minutes and he told me that an updated manual came out, and it says the CVT fluid should last for life, and that it doesn't need changing.

I looked up on the forums on found this thread with a bulletin saying "All Caliber models manufactured 2007-2010- Chrysler Group vehicle fluid systems do NOT require regular flushing."

soooo.....I shouldn't get a change until something breaks? Or is a flush different than a change? What about the filter?
 

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By exact definition a flush is different from a straight change.
The '07 should be changed in accordance with original owners manual.
Apreciated that it isn't cheap but I would rather spend the money
for the servicing then chance the no maintenance/driving record.
Find another dealer the one you went to is stupid/non caring.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yeah, pretty sure I'm going to try and get it done regardless. They are the only dodge dealer in the larger city I'll be going to at the end of the month. Will call some transmission shops and see if they'll touch the thing (I doubt it), and if not I'll just call the dealer back and ask why he won't take my money...

Should I go for just a change and filter, or a full flush? Flush costs so much more, he quoted me prices for standard auto transmissions before I realized I said CVT 3 times, I was expecting a lot, but I think the full flush was over $400....crazy. And with the Mopar CVT fluid I bet the price is a good deal more...
 

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Chrysler definitely recommends against flushing the CVT. Actually most modern automatics do not need flushing or fluid changes ever.

Valvoline makes the CVT fluid used in my '09, so you don't need the "genuine" Chrysler CVTF+4 (actually Nissan NS2) fluid for the change.

http://www.caliberforumz.com/album.php?albumid=66&pictureid=492


Strainer and pan gasket are available through NAPA.

 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hmm, well now I'm more confused on whether I should do it or not. If the dang thing came with a dip stick I'd just do a quick change myself. Drop the pan, let as much out as I can, change the filter and top it off with the valvoline. Partial change like that would let me sleep better anyway, even if it didn't accomplish anything.
Sigh, I guess I'll just risk it. It's only money anyway right?
 

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I made a dipstick myself so I could check it.

When sitting on level ground at ambient temperature (70 to 100F) for several hours. the fluid level should be about 1 to 1.5 inches above the bottom of the pan.

The fluid should be a clearish or greenish color, it will smell funny, but should not smell burnt.

Bear in mind that CVT fluid is a high quality synthetic oil, so it does not "wear out" like natural oils.
The internal mechanisms of the CVT do not "punish" the oil like a conventional automatic can. (no clutches or brakes are active during normal driving with a CVT)

If things seem OK, it may be best to leave well enough alone.
 

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Oil dipstick also works, but does not reach the bottom, so you cannot tell the exact level. If the level is good, the fluid comes up into the "safe zone" of the stick.
The oil dipstick will show that you have a constant level of fluid over time, and enable you to bring some fluid up for inspection.

Yes - clean it very well before using it:

Wipe all motor oil off of it.
Clean with a generous amount of rubbing alcohol on a paper towel.
Dry it thoroughly so no traces of motor oil remain. (stick should feel like bare metal)

Push it down as far as it will go (don't force) - it won't hit bottom.
Pull it up, note the fluid level and condition.

Repeat again in about six months - level and fluid condition should remain constant over time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks guys. I think I'll just keep an eye on the trans fluid with the oil dipstick. At $60-75 for a dipstick I start to see why vehicles are so costly.

If the fluid ever starts to drastically change color or smell burned I will then start to worry about it.

Thanks again!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Well this is interesting...stuck the oil dip stick down there (after a good cleaning) and the CVT fluid is YELLOW. So the fluid has been changed out at some point with non-chrysler stuff. (should be green, right?)

Not sure if this makes me feel better or worse...haha. Smells fine though. At least I know I won't be getting a change, I can spend that money on a tint job! and maybe a scan gauge....those are cool :cool:
 

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Yellow or yellowish?

The Valvoline is clear, but yellows slightly with age.

As I said above, my car came with Valvoline from the factory, so it is clear with a slight yellowish tinge.

(I think that the "genuine CVTF+4" is just something to increase dealer profit)
 

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Then leave it alone and go get those window tinted. Sounds like you have the correct fluid in it to me. And BTW, is it shifting okay? If so, don't monkey with it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Good thing to tell the girl friend ;)
I have the in dash computer thing in my '12 Ram, it's really cool, and I love watching my MPG go up and down (don't care about mileage since it's the work's truck, they pay for gas).

Can't wait to play around with the scan gauge.
 
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