I have a 2001 Cavalier 5-speed manual 2.2. I have owned it for every day and every mile (204K) since I bought it new in April of 2001. I have had many mechanical disasters and problems mostly starting a couple of years ago - and a lot of them I have worked on or fixed and/or replaced the part myself.
The transmission fluid in this car has never been changed, looked-at, drained, added, etc…because I was told that it didn’t need it. The manual says the same thing. For as long as I’ve had this car, it has had a intermittent rattle noise that I figured was just the “Getrag rattle” - so I didn’t pay much attention to it. But over the past year - especially the last 6 months - this rattle has just gotten totally insane and out of control. It is now a constant loud rattle whenever the car is in gear - especially starting out in 1st or 2nd. I mentioned this to someone and they asked when the last time the fluid was changed and said that would fix the problem - and couldn’t believe that the fluid had never been changed after 15 years and 200K miles.
This model has no dipstick. There is a big red vent cap and I think I found a HEX plug close to it, but before I go out and buy the wrong size hex key - can someone tell me what size these are and if they are even what I am looking for to fill/check/drain it? So frustrated. Also - since I can’t find DEXRON 3 anywhere am I supposed to use this DEX/Mercon stuff ? Any help, ideas, suggestions, info would be great. Thanks.