Transmission fluid for Power Steering fluid.

Discussion in 'Shop Talk' started by Oldcountryboy, Mar 21, 2011.

  1. Oldcountryboy

    Oldcountryboy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Is it still acceptable to use transmission fluid for power steering fluid in the newer vehicles? My wife has a '06 passenger van and am wondering if I have to buy the more expensive power steering fluid for it, or can I use type F transmission fluid which I have several bottles of in the shed?

    Thanks for any response!
     
  2. PyroDon

    PyroDon Well-Known Member

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    we always used dextron, I did use type f in an old dodge trucks auto tranny when the bands started slipping , got another year out of the tranny . F swelled the band
     

  3. foxtrapper

    foxtrapper Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Depends entirely on the vehicle. In many it is not acceptable.

    In no vehicle was the type F ATF ever acceptable as a power steering fluid.
     
  4. GREENCOUNTYPETE

    GREENCOUNTYPETE Moderator Staff Member

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    I just used it on my 2001 passenger van maybe 2 months ago , i think i used mercron dextron, it's working
     
  5. Beeman

    Beeman Well-Known Member

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    No simple fitzall answer. Each vehicle manufacturer is very specific about which fluids to use in all of their systems. Use the wrong fluid and it might work OK for a while but other parts of the system might have problems down the road.
    Look in the owners manual to find the specs for the correct fluid, don't guess or take others word for it.
     
  6. MattyD

    MattyD Well-Known Member

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    -My '05 Dodge Neon uses ATF+4 tranny fluid only for the power steering pump. You can find it online or in your owner's manual about what fluid are to be used in your vehicle.

    L8R,
    Matt
     
  7. foxtrapper

    foxtrapper Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Mercon Dexron is a completely different fluid than Ford type F fluid. Mercon Dexron is Dexron fluid, fundamentally.
     
  8. mekasmom

    mekasmom Well-Known Member Supporter

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    We use transmission at times. It just depends on if we have the other on hand.
     
  9. Ray

    Ray Well-Known Member

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    Most any fluid will work, However the problem that can arise, is the seals, are compatible with only one type fluid. This means that the wrong fluid might dissolve the seals over six months or a years time.
    It's kind of like pouring gasoline in a Styrofoam cup, the cup will dissolve in your hand, but it takes a little longer for the seals to fail, but not too long, then you have a serious problem, same goes for transmissions and different fluids. Always use recommended fluids for seal protection. If all internal seals fail, nothing works, and all fluid leaks out too. and best wishes, ray
     
  10. Oldcountryboy

    Oldcountryboy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Well I don't want the seals to fail. I have enough things to do without adding anymore work on myself. I'll just go buy some power steering fluid for it. Thanks everyone.
     
  11. Beeman

    Beeman Well-Known Member

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    Power steering fluid isn't universal. What brand of van do you have?
     
  12. Danaus29

    Danaus29 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    This is totally incorrect:
    "In no vehicle was the type F ATF ever acceptable as a power steering fluid. "
    Many Fords used type F ATF as power steering fluid in the 80's. My old '85 wagon used it and my current '84 Crown Vic uses type F.

    Oldcountryboy, what make and model do you have? Do you have the manual or does it specify what type on the filler cap? Go with what your manual says, with the exception of Dextron or Mercon. All you can get now is a Dextron/Mercon blend. Keep in mind that Mercon 5 is not the same as plain Mercon.
     
  13. StanInPa

    StanInPa Member

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    The thing that makes type F unique is an anti-foaming additive, due to the presence of a bleed orifice in the valve body which let high pressure from the pump be exhausted to zero back pressure in the pan. This violent squirt nozzle would foam up the fluid in the pan to the point that the pump couldn't pick up solid fluid, and it would try to run the transmission on foam.
    No other tranny has this need for anti foam. The action in a power steering system is not entirely unlike the orifice in the old Ford-O-Matics that needed type F.
    My F350 has a leaky seal, and I've been using up a couple of cases of orphan type F that I've had forever. Steering works fine, leak isn't getting worse, saving a bundle on fluid by being able to use up the leftover stuff.