Keeping Old Transmission Fluid

I recently took my 2002 Lincoln Continental to a transmission shop for a fluid and filter change. When the shop pulled the pan off, they showed me some brown “goo” in the pan. Car has 73000 miles on transmission. The shop people said they should just put the pan back on and use the old fluid that came out. I strongly suggested they change the filter and clean out the “goo” in the pan, which they did. However, I could not get them to fill it with new fluid. They said the new transmission fluid has strong chemical cleaners and that it would make the transmission fail very quickly. Do you agree with keeping the old fluid ?

Larry in Atlanta

The usual BS! They probably have a machine that recycles the fluid, and that way you still pay the same amount to them, but they only have to top up the fluid.

I would also strongly recommend NEW fluid and filter. Your transmission NEEDS those additives in the new fluid. Go to another, more reputable trnasmission shop. This one will likely shorten the life of your transmission.

I’ve sometimes heard this with an old transmission (don’t know if it’s true even then), but yours isn’t old. Sounds like bad advice. Like doc said, find another shop.

Like the others said, find a new shop and never go back to this one and never recommend it to any of your friends.

Is this the first time your trans has been serviced? If so, it might be toast. IIRC, it is supposed to have new fluid every 15K for severe service and 30K regular. The difference between fluids is in the nature of the “friction modifiers”. Change the fluid now and use what Ford recommends. Look at to find out what fluid to use. There is a chart there somewhere. If it is too late, your trans might go out a little faster than it might if you left the old stuff in, but I doubt it. Changing the fluid might save the trans. Be sure the battery is disconnected to reset the PCM when the fluid is changed.

If the transmission does need to be replaced and you have not been able to find a local transmission shop to rebuild it, get a Ford remanufactured transmission. They are high quality, reasonably priced, and come with a remarkable warranty. I have seen figures of 3 yr and either 75 or 100 K.