Suzuki Forums banner
1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So since I just recharged my car's AC, my mind has been thinking about what else I may need to do. All advice appreciated.

I got the car last Fall with about 41K miles on it ... it is now at almost 50K miles. I religiously change oil every 3K miles. I've added windshield washer fluid and engine coolant. I know I need to rotate the tires and get wheels aligned and balanced.

**Oh by the way, my steering wheel points to the left slightly in order to keep the car going straight. I hope this is an alignment issue?**

But then I started to think about other stuff ... like:

1) Automatic transmission fluid and filter service: According to the service manual (not the owner's manual), it should be changed every 15K or 15 months under extreme conditions (temperature, mountainous, pull trailer, etc.). Every 100K if not under extreme conditions.

Question: I want to know what you guys do? I don't drive under extreme conditions. I also don't know when/if it was ever serviced.

2) Fuel filter: It says replace it every 30K miles or sooner if clogged. I have no idea if this was ever serviced/changed.

3) Power steering fluid: I know this is full. Just not sure when it should be changed? It just says inspect every 7500 miles.

4) Transfer case oil: No idea when/if this should be changed.

5) Brake fluid: I know this is full. Just not sure when it should be changed?

My next oil change is 1000 miles away and I know in late August I wouldn't mind having my mechanic do a look over at the car since I drive more in the Fall. So that's a perfect opportunity to take care of a lot of things.

Again, thanks in advance and any recommendations are welcomed. I just want to make sure the car continues to run well.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
25,554 Posts
Changing your oil every 3,000 miles is great, and will be the most important thing that you can do on this engine. Let's see what else you list:

The steering wheel - hmmm, when you are driving on a flat road, take your hands off the wheel (carefully, of course). Does your car track straight, or go off to the side? If it tracks straight, it's just a matter of re-positioning the steering wheel. If it runs off to the side, then you need to check air pressure in your tires, alignment, steering components for wear, etc. First just see if the car will run straight without your hands on the wheel. Re-adjusting your steering wheel, if that's all that's needed, is easy.

As the car is fairly new to you, it is normally a good idea to replace all fluids and filters everywhere, as you have no idea whether this has ever been done, regardless of what the previous owner may have told you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Bex. If I take my hands off the wheel, it will veer to the right - which is why I need to point the steering wheel to the left a little to keep it going straight. I've adjusted the air pressure a few months back (due to the hard ride), so that's not the issue. I bet is an alignment issue then. I'll try to take care of that with the tires rotation when I'm back from a week long trip.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
64 Posts
Hi shl junk,
Point by point to your concerns:
The steering pull is likely alignment, but could be a brake drag issue, wheel bearing, etc. The best solution is to get it up on an alignment rack and have it checked. Get your tires spin balanced at the same time just in case you have a tread separation that is making one tire larger than the others.

1) Automatic transmission fluid. At the mileage you list, I would change the fluid and filter and use a good consumer synthetic such as offered by Shell. Then I would just check it and be sure the fluid was clean and full and drive for 100,000 more miles. The transmission is the Asian Warner and likely one of the best in the industry.

2) Fuel filter. Fuel of today is not what it was in 1994, so change the filter every three years regular as clockwork, regardless of mileage. Also, use good fuel that has a cleaning additive in the mix. Most of the name brands do.

3) Power steering fluid. This is an area many people ignore and just keep the system full, I recommend changing the fluid every 50,000 miles. Sooner if it has any dark color. It is normal for the shop that changes this fluid to flush the system to remove contaminants, so get that done the first time and you will likely never have any issues with the power steering.

4) Transfer case oil. Change this every 24,000 miles to avoid metallic contamination that will tear out bearings. It is your option to use a synthetic oil here, but if you do it will lower operating temperatures and wear significantly. The front and rear differentials should also be changed on the same frequency.

5) Brake fluid. This fluid is what is known as hydrophilic, which means it attracts water. Change brake fluid every two to three years and have the system flushed when you do so. Old brake fluid turns acidic from the water it attracts and will pit the cylinders at the wheel end of the system and lead to brake failure if not changed.

As a side, I prefer the Shell synthetic oils because the synthetic feedstock used is high quality and also provided to one of the big name companies for their much higher priced products, the additive packages are stable, and it performs with the designer synthetics at a much better price point. But, if you want to use one of the designer products such as Red Line, Amsoil, or Royal Purple they are excellent products too.
I do not use synthetic brake fluids at all. They are too expensive for a throw away product, and some of them will gel any conventional fluids left in the system after flushing.

Good luck,
Randy
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
4) Transfer case oil. Change this every 24,000 miles to avoid metallic contamination that will tear out bearings. It is your option to use a synthetic oil here, but if you do it will lower operating temperatures and wear significantly. The front and rear differentials should also be changed on the same frequency.
Hey Randy, thanks for the sound advice. I was just doing some research on the transfer case oil. The service manual says "Synthetic 75W-90 GL4 Lubricant GM P/N 12345871, or equivalent." And it says the capacity is 1.7 liters (1.8 qt).

The problem is I'm having a tough time finding Synthetic 75W-90 GL4 lubricant. I keep seeing the Red Line brand but that's for manual transmission and my car is automatic transmission.

I looked through Autozone search results and none of them really reference GL4. I also looked through eBay and Amazon results and got more confused.

Can you point me to a particular brand and model #?

Thanks.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
25,554 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
64 Posts
The ATF I prefer is Shell ATF 3403 M-115 Synthetic Automatic Transmission Fluid. Shell ATF 3403 M-115 was developed for Mercedes 8 speed automatics.
If you run off road, then Shell Spirax S6 ATF A295 would be a better choice and is available from Allison transmission distributors and most truck shops.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
621 Posts
Just a headsup... oils changes every 3k are a thing of the past. Startong in the early 2000s...the additive packs allow conventionals to be pushed out to 5k with zero worry. The oil isnt used up at 3k. Or 5k. Or to be honest...even 8k. Unless you are only running short trips with no time for the engine to hit operating temps, you're wasting money.

As for the diff oils...if i were using a rig very very harshly, I might change every 24k miles, but for me thats less than a year of use. Supertech and Coastal gl5 is fine for the diffs as well as the transfer case. It isnt synthetic, but even running large tires for long distances, my diff and tcase run fairly cool.

Nothing wrong with synthetics, in the engine or the accoutrements. Id be leery of an oil leak happening though as things get cleaned up by the synthetic, though it is gonna happen, even with conventional, if sludge is the only thing stopping a seal from leaking.

For the brakes and powersteering, get the old out and the new in.

Ive got a few more gallons of mystik and coastal gear oil to get through, then I think amsoil is in order.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
25,554 Posts
I still change my oil at 3,000 miles. I don't think that the increase in interval has a lot to do with advanced is oil, but more advances in the engine - EFI, computers, less oil contamination in the engine due to tighter tolerances, etc. There is somewhat of an argument as to whether modern oil, due to EPA regulations, doesn't have some inferior aspects to it. It any event, oil and coolant are important, and I would rather err on the side of caution.
Interesting comments here:
Oil change frequency
and here:
AGCO Automotive Repair Service - Baton Rouge, LA - Detailed Auto Topics - The Sad Truth (about extended oil changes)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
Hi, I'm back after a week's trip away.

So I'm reviewing everything again and I'm stuck on the Transfer Case Oil.

In the owner's manual, the transfer case uses "SAE 75W-90 GL-4 Gear Lubricant". For the front axle and rear axle housings, they use "SAE 75W-90 GL-5 Hypoid Gear Lubricant".

So I was thinking to kill two birds with one stone if the Royal Purple Max Gear is the way to go. It references both GL-4 and GL-5.

My only concern is that my car is automatic transmission. Not sure if that matters?

Thoughts?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
621 Posts
The tranfer case and transmission do not share fluid.

The auto trans is full of transmission fluid... dexron 3+ i think...or mercon 3+... I can never remember which. I just use castrol dex/merc and drain and fill once a year.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks "The Goat." I also found the exact Castrol brand ATF you use from Autozone, so I will be using that. But my question really is whether or not Royal Purple Max Gear will be fine for both my transfer case and axle housings.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks "big ed". The reason why I thought Royal Purple Max Gear would be a solution is because it is REALLY hard to find "SAE 75W-90 GL-4 Gear Lubricant.".

However, I did go to Amsoil website and it conveniently spit out the list of lubricants and fluids.

It says:

Transfer Case,4WD......GL-4 [2]
Synthetic Manual Transmission and Transaxle Gear Lube (75W-90) API GL-4 (MTGQT)

**See why I'm confused? My car is automatic transmission and Amsoil is recommending that. I guess as long as the specs are equivalent, it should be OK??**

Differential, Front......GL-5
All TEMPS......80W-90
SAE 80W-90 Synthetic Gear Lube (AGLQT)
SEVERE GEAR 75W-90 Synthetic EP Lubricant (SVGQT)
75W-90 Synthetic Long Life Gear Lube (FGRQT)
SEVERE GEAR 75W-110 Synthetic EP Lubricant (SVTQT)

Differential, Rear......GL-5
All TEMPS......80W-90
SAE 80W-90 Synthetic Gear Lube (AGLQT)
SEVERE GEAR 75W-90 Synthetic EP Lubricant (SVGQT)
75W-90 Synthetic Long Life Gear Lube (FGRQT)
SEVERE GEAR 75W-110 Synthetic EP Lubricant (SVTQT)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
See that's another confusing thing ... you look at that Red Line "MT-90 75W90 GL-4 Gear Oil" and it says "Manual Transmission". And again, my car is automatic transmission.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
19,087 Posts
And again, my car is automatic transmission
So what does your Owner's Manual state? Dexron probably or equivalent for the transmission, right? That isn't GEAR oil (75W90) which goes into the TRANSFER case.

Are you confusing the two (separate) sumps maybe? :huh: GL-4 for the Transfer Case portion only in your (non-manual OR manual trans) vehicles.

And there is some misinformation thrown about here...
And again your car doesn't need that type of oil in the transfer case and rear ends. Just go get yourself some hypoid gear oil.
Only the differentials receive GL-5 (hypoid) gear oil.

Simply put...stick with what is recommended by Suzuki per the manual. That is what I've laid out for you anyway. If by chance you want to dabble in the world of gear oils that are touted to be both GL-4 and GL-5 compatible (in some cases), that is your other option.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
110 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
OK, let me repeat.

For the ATF, I know what to get. That's a non issue.

In the owner's manual, the transfer case uses "SAE 75W-90 GL-4 Gear Lubricant". For the front axle and rear axle housings, they use "SAE 75W-90 GL-5 Hypoid Gear Lubricant".

The problem is that every time I see a SAE 75W-90 GL-4 Gear Lubricant, it would say it is for manual transmission. You can look the Red Line and the Amsoil products. This is rather confusing for me since my car is automatic transmission.

The gear oil for the axle housings is a non issue because that's readily available.

So I'm really stuck with the transfer case oil issue, but I'm also fascinated by it.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
19,087 Posts
The problem is that every time I see a SAE 75W-90 GL-4 Gear Lubricant, it would say it is for manual transmission.
It precisely IS for manual trannies! The oil sites that you are visiting just don't additionally say that it is also used in Transfer Cases as well! ;)

Go by the Suzuki Manual, as it states same (GL-4).

Again...
GL-4 for the Transfer Case portion only in your (non-manual OR manual trans) vehicles.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
25,554 Posts
Dexron for your auto tranny.
GL-4 oil for your transfer case (GL-4 indicates that it is safe for yellow metals).
GL-5 for front and rear differential.

Some oils now indicate GL3/4/5, etc. As long as the label says safe for yellow metal, you can use it in the transfer case.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
19,087 Posts
Unless the transmission specifically recommends an API GL-5 fluid for your transmission (Edit: or transfer case in this scenario), it should not be used. GL-5 gear oils are designed for gears that require a high level of EP (Extreme Pressure) additives to protect gear teeth under extreme stress. Unfortunately, these same additives can be very aggressive toward “yellow metals “and are generally not recommended where copper, brass and bronze components are used.
Mobil Ref: Does Gear Lube Corrode Yellow Metals
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
Top