Everything is specialized these days. In the old days of the mid-20th century fluids were fluids and engines and transmission could run on just about any type of fluid you could buy. But in today’s modern engines, you have to be careful of the type of fluid you put in both your engine and your transmission.
The proper transmission fluid is going to be labeled ATF +4. The brand does not matter as much as the type but as always, be careful of the no-name brand of ATF fluid. Its quality will not be as good as the better known brands.
To learn more about this transmission and the fluid it needs, just continue to read our article. It has the information you want to know about so you maintain your modern transmission and keep it at peak performance.
This will depend on how long you let the transmission drain. Most people will tell you that it takes between 6 to 7.5 quarts. But that is the amount for the transmission pan only.
If you let the transmission drain overnight, you may see an extra 3 to 4 quarts drain out of the torque converter. Some people have added 9 quarts and only got to the A in the ADD word so you will need to add more after seeing that level.
Overall, you may end up putting 10 quarts in it. You should add slowly as it takes a very long time for the fluid to get into the pan and all other locations it goes to. Wait about 15 minutes between quarts to get a more accurate reading when you pull the dipstick.
If you are doing a pan drop and filter change, then expect to use about 7.5 quarts of transmission fluid. If you are trying to drain the complete transmission of all its fluid you may use up to 12 quarts of fluid before you are done.
The key to changing the transmission fluid will be to meet Mopar standards. You have to do this every time you do any maintenance on your transmission. That means using ATF +4 and the brand does not matter. Just those letters, numbers, and symbols.
Check your owner’s manual to see if they have any special recommendations for your vehicle. The manual will also guide you on the capacity and type of fluid you need to buy.
As we said when talking about the oil type needed for an engine, the brand does not matter as much as the type. If you get the wrong type you may not see your transmission perform as it should and you may cause some damage to the transmission.
Since the 68RFE transmission is most often installed in RAM and Cummins Dodge vehicles, most dealers will recommend Mopar ATF +4. However, you can use the brand of fluid you prefer.
The different brands will cost more or less depending on where you buy them. Some places will charge more because it seems to be a specialty fluid. But as long as the label says ATF +4 then you should be okay.
The type for this more modern transmission will be ATF +4 and this code should be written right on the front label in large letters. You cannot miss it. In fact, that code should be printed larger than the brand name to make sure you get the right type for this transmission.
The average price for this type of fluid seems to be around $10 to $12 per quart. Some owners have reported buying it for around $6 per quart so you will have to shop around to get the best price.
Prices will vary depending on where you live as well. But you do not want to use a lesser transmission fluid as the quality will not be there and you are putting your transmission at risk.
The best transmission fluid is ATF +4. That is the recommended transmission fluid for this transmission model. However, the brand you buy will vary.
According to one top best list, there are 5 brands you should be buying right now. Those brands started with Amsoil Multi-vehicle and it was number one on that list. The next one was Castrol Transmax.
Valvoline ATF +4 came in third and Mopar ATF +4 came in fourth. Rounding out the top 5 was Royal Purple Max. But you are not limited to these brands. One owner has been using Walmart’s ATF +4 without any problems. The key is to find a good brand and stick with it.
The manual may say that the first time you need to change the transmission fluid is 60,000 miles. But that is not set in stone as other owners tend to do their own maintenance a lot sooner.
Some owners tend to change the fluid at about 3000 miles approx., to get rid of any manufacturing debris that may be inside the transmission. Others may do it a little later but that is up to you.
Some owners change their fluid every 20,000 miles but that may be too frequent as ATF +4 is designed to last 120,000 miles. The 60,000-mile fluid change is for when you do a lot of heavy towing or hauling. Anything sooner than those numbers is a waste of time and money.
The 68RFE transmission is one of the more modern devices you can have on a truck. The best thing to do is follow the owner’s manual as that should give you accurate information for that specific model.
Talking to other people may give you some insight on maintenance, etc., but do not blindly trust everything you read. You may be wasting your time and money by following their advice.