03 Ford F-150 - Transmission Flush vs Pan/Filter Change?

Tiny
MABRANT61
  • MEMBER
  • 2003 FORD F-150
I have a 03 F150 4.6 2WD. A little over 29K on it. Which route should I go. A Trans Flush and don't touch the pan at this time or just go "old school" and drop the pan / change filter / refill 5 qts or so?

The truck has not done any hard towing / racing /etc. The fluid seems ok, but I guess Ford recommends a 30K service. I called the dealer where I bought the truck. Said they don't have the flush machine yet, but still will do the pan option. Although, he was not against doing a flush. They just don't have a machine to do it. Plus, on a 03 the torque converter does not have a drain plug any longer.

I went to another Ford dealer today and they push the flush for $139. That is the only thing they do. Told me Ford recommends this and the pan should not be removed. They warranty it ( I guess the flush process from any damage incurred by this process). Plus they said (who knows if this is true) that it will benefit my extended warranty by having this done. I have the 6yr/75000 mile extended warranty and by following this type of trans service, if I ever have trans issues the extended warranty should never be questioned because I followed the Ford recommended service.

Just for the heck of it. I called two trans shops in town and they both said just drop pan/filter/refill. One for $85 & one for $110.

Now if that doesn't make things more confusing. I agree with the drop pan method because that is what I have always done in the past and have always had good trans life with doing that at regular intervals.

I am really confused. Seems you can find a different opinion at every turn! I guess I'm not "sold" on this flush process, but then again I am not that familiar with it. I would greatly appreciate your advice! Thank You.
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Tuesday, April 10th, 2007 AT 4:57 PM

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Tiny
PEPPERMRJ
  • MEMBER
Hey mabrant,
IMHO it is best to do both. Cleaning the pan and magnet of sludge is a necessity in my book. So is changing the filter. This also gives you the chance to inspect the sludge for any metal shavings that would forcast tranny problems and warranty work.

Flushing the system gives you the opportunity to replace the 16 or so quarts of fluid entirely. Not just 5 or so quarts.

If I had to pick one it would be the pan and filter option.

I am lucky as my 98 F150 has the drain plug in the torque convertor.16 quarts of synthetic tranny fluid was expensive for this change. Necessary though for the truck as it is asked to tow a 30 foot trailer, Synthetics have excellent heat stability.

It is not that hard to do your own flush and filter change if you feel mechanicaly confident to do so. Here are two links with info on the procedure. They also discuss the pros and cons of the procedures.

Good luck and let us know. :)
peppermj
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Wednesday, April 11th, 2007 AT 3:26 AM
Tiny
MABRANT61
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This is what the "warranty" the dealer was talking about. They use the BG Protection Plan

Seems advice is leading towards. Flush at 30K and Pan/Filter/Flush at 60K.

I think that is the route I am going to go.

Thank You for your reply!
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Wednesday, April 11th, 2007 AT 11:59 AM

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