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Old 07-28-2012, 06:13   #1 (permalink)
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Any issues switching to synthetic transfer case fluid?

I'm needing to drain and replace the transfer case fluid in my '01 Escape. All I found at WM is Synthetic 75w-140. I've been using regular fluid and am asking if there are any issues with switching over to the synthetic?
Also, my Chiltons manual is showing it will take "up to 12 ounces" of fluid. That sounds low to me?

Thanks
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Old 07-28-2012, 06:42   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Any issues switching to synthetic transfer case fluid?

Not sure when they switched but my '09 came with synthetic. I don't think that it matters.
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Old 07-28-2012, 06:49   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Any issues switching to synthetic transfer case fluid?

The transfer case should take Mercon, a transmission fluid, not gear oil. And I believe Mercon is synthetic. The transfer case is small and most are oiled by "slingers" and generally don't have a positive flow by a pump. Even larger transfer cases on full sized trucks don't take a lot of oil as compared to the engine block.

Check your owner's manual to be sure of the specs, though.
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Old 07-28-2012, 06:56   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Any issues switching to synthetic transfer case fluid?

Quote:
Originally Posted by CatSkinner View Post
The transfer case should take Mercon, a transmission fluid, not gear oil. And I believe Mercon is synthetic. The transfer case is small and most are oiled by "slingers" and generally don't have a positive flow by a pump. Even larger transfer cases on full sized trucks don't take a lot of oil as compared to the engine block.

Check your owner's manual to be sure of the specs, though.

I got curious and did a little looking, forget the Mercon. Ford says Motorcraft SAE 80W-90 GL5 for a manual transmission and Motorcraft SAE 75W-140 High Performance Synthetic Rear Axle Lubricant for an automatic. Because of seal composition and bearing material, I always advise to going back to manufacturer's known specs and not go cheap on lube.
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Old 07-29-2012, 17:02   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Any issues switching to synthetic transfer case fluid?

I picked up some 75w-140 synthetic, and will change it out tomorrow.

Thanks for the help.
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Old 07-29-2012, 18:33   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Any issues switching to synthetic transfer case fluid?

Glad I could help, just glad I followed up after blurting stupidity.
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Old 08-01-2012, 17:36   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Any issues switching to synthetic transfer case fluid?

Most transfer cases require ATF, not engine or gear oil. The Escape is different here (see below). The transfer case is essentially a 'transmission' in which can shift automatically or manually to different modes, sometimes even on demand. Lighter duty vehicles with single speed transfer cases are less complex.

I run Amsoil ATF in my '00 Durango R/T and drains clear after 60K miles. Remember that most transfer cases only require 1-2 quarts of fluid.

Manual transmissions require specified oil, such as synchromesh, and there are several varying viscosity levels. In some cases, a gear oil can be used in a manual transmission as well as differentials thus saving costs, etc, on not having to order an additional fluid type.

Automatic transmissions all use ATF, mostly full synthetic. If full synthetic is not specified on the label, it could be a semi-synthetic fluid. So be forewarned.

This might be of assistance:

2001 FORD TRUCKS ESCAPE 3.0L 6-cyl Engine Code [1] DOHC
LUBRICANTS & FLUIDS:
Engine Oil
Grade 1......API*[1]

Maximum Performance SAE 5W-20 Signature Series 100% Synthetic Motor Oil (ALMQT)

Performance Plus XL 5W-20 Synthetic Motor Oil (XLMQT)

Performance Synthetic 5W20 OE Motor Oil (OEMQT)
All TEMPS......5W-30, 5W-20 [2]
Manual Transmission,4WD......GL-4
All TEMPS......75W-90
Synthetic Manual Transmission and Transaxle Gear Lube (75W-90) API GL-4 (MTGQT)
Manual Transmission,2WD......GL-4
All TEMPS......75W-90
Synthetic Manual Transmission and Transaxle Gear Lube (75W-90) API GL-4 (MTGQT)
Automatic Transmission,CD4E......MA
Synthetic Multi-Vehicle Automatic Transmission Fluid (ATFQT)
Torque-Drive Synthetic Transmission Fluid (ATD1G)
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)
Transfer Case,W/ PTU, AT......GL-5
SAE 80W-90 Synthetic Gear Lube (AGLQT)
SEVERE GEAR 75W-90 Synthetic EP Lubricant (SVGQT)
75W-90 Synthetic Long Life Gear Lube (FGRQT)
Transfer Case,W/ PTU, MT......GL-5 [3]
SEVERE GEAR 75W-140 Synthetic EP Lubricant (SVOQT)
80W-140 Synthetic Long Life Gear Lube (FGO05)
Fluids
Brake Fluid......HB
AMSOIL Brake Fluid DOT-3 (BF3SN)
Clutch Fluid......
Power Steering Fluid......MA
Synthetic Multi-Vehicle Automatic Transmission Fluid (ATFQT)
Power Steering Fluid......MA
Torque-Drive Synthetic Transmission Fluid (ATD1G)
Clutch Fluid......HB
AMSOIL Brake Fluid DOT-3 (BF3SN)
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Old 08-01-2012, 19:00   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Any issues switching to synthetic transfer case fluid?

I had a '86 and '97 4x4 Ranger but don't remember what the transfer case used. I just looked at the owner's manual for a 2011 Ranger. For a transfer case it list Motor craft Transfer Case Lubercant and not ATF . It does seem that they used ATF because of the chain drive used.
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