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Thread: Transmission filter change ?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Charlotte, NC

    Default Transmission filter change ?

    A buddy convinced me we could change the filter in my drive in no time. We attempted it today and cannot get the pan off b/c of the brace in the frame. We've unbolted that and slid it as much as we could without removing the exhaust but still cannot get the pan out. Am I going to have to take the exhaust off in order to get the job done? Was this a job better left to a professional? Any advice or experience would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006


    Do you have a frame spreader handy?

    Seriously, a LOT of Discos don't get their filters changed because of the difficulty in doing it. I've "heard" that someone managed to slide the pan horizontally far enough to get it to where they could change out the filter with the crossmember in place, but I've not seen such successfully done. You shouldn't have to remove the exhaust if you can get the crossmember to move enough to wiggle the pan out. Which is why I mentioned the spreader, like you use for body-work... basically a hydraulic jack, but with feet on both ends to use to push things apart (was also handy when putting the galvanized bulkhead back onto the chassis, as the galvanizing had drawn the lower bolting points in a bit towards each other). With it, you could get a hair's more clearance to get the crossmember to move a little more (I wouldn't take it all the way out), then continue on.... it might help a little to use a floor jack under the transfer case to get the transmission assembly to move up a little, to get you a bit more room, too.... we're not talking about loads of room here, just enough to jiggle the pan out, then back in.

    Good luck....

    '72 SIII SW 88"
    '60 SII 88" RHD

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    CT, USA


    While I never used one for this, I remember Arthur recommending a Hi Lift jack for spreading the rails. It's tight under there but it can be done with a block of wood.

  4. #4

    Default Trans filter access

    I think you will have to remove the cross-member. I've done this job several times and each time I dropped the exhaust y-pipe to remove the cross member. THe hilift may seem to make sense, but after a few minutes I gave up and grabbed the rubber mallet, 5lb sledge and ablock of wood - it goes much quicker than you would think!

    While the cross-member is out, be sure to paint the flanges that touch the frame, or cover them with anti-seize paste. This is for corrosion protection, as moisture gets trapped between these plates and the frame.

    The only real trouble spot is whether or not you break an exhaust stud. So I always make sure I have six new studs and six new nuts before I drop the y-pipe.

    You do not want to skip this service if you want maximum life from the transmission.


    Tom P.

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