Transmission filters, is it worth getting OEM?

zr2randozr2rando Member Posts: 391
edited March 2014 in Chevrolet
I know we talk about oil filters in another post, I am fixing to replace the transmission filter on a chevy truck (going to a shop actually, but I can bring my own filter) .
It's a pain but it's time for the job, have to move frame crossmembers out of the way to get to part of it...
Is it worth going with OEM transmission filters, AC Delco in my case? Do they actually last any longer than aftermarket? Anybody have any comment on best place to get the aftermarket, I know everyone sells them and they are about the same price, just curious about anybody's experience with it
see y'all


  • vidtechvidtech Member Posts: 212
    I do not believe there is much difference in tranny filters.i buy the napa kit because i like their pan gaskets that come with the kit.
  • armtdmarmtdm Member Posts: 2,057
    as most appear to be nothing more then a screen rather then a filter?
  • zr2randozr2rando Member Posts: 391
    The comment about the gasket is a good one, I replaced my Blazer tran filter the other day and the pan gasket was slightly too small, had to use the shops gasket, strike 1 against cheap aftermarket...
    For the Chevs the filter is a dacron material, not a metal screen like I had thought previously.
    It actually looks like a filter material (fuzzy fabric)
    The filter at Advance was $8 but the gasket did not fit, not sure how much the ACDelco would have been..I'm sure most shops would add a "shop cost )on top if they provide it too.
    I was at Cottman's Transmission shop they only charged $2 for the gasket.....I had no problem with that, they did a good service without any stupid extra charges
    any comments?
    see ya
  • swschradswschrad Member Posts: 2,171
    on something as expensive and complex as a tranny, I can't help but think about how Rolls-Royce approached licensing GM's ATM design. they got a shipment, tore them down, looked all the parts over, and remachined all the parts that looked rough. which of course were supposed to be rough, and those trannies didn't work.

    I want factory parts in my tranny, down to the filters, and fluid from one of the OEM suppliers. the cost of the parts is nothing compared to the cost of labor. I'm a little cranky about things like that unless I see enough documentation to the contrary (like about twice my own weight.)
  • brorjacebrorjace Member Posts: 588
    Sorry Rando, but I'm a die-hard manual shifting, old-schooler.

    I'm not familiar with transmission filters at all. As a matter of fact, I've never even serviced a single slushbox.

    I wish my manual tranny had a filter ... but I believe they are only splash-lubricated.


    I guess I'd be tempted to experiment with aftermarket ones from WIX (NAPA), Hastings or some other filter manufacturers whom I trust.

    --- <b>Bror Jace
  • bolivarbolivar Member Posts: 2,316
    Filters - I just replaced a Ford Ranger filter. Kinda wish I had bought a FoMoCo rather than whatever one I picked up at Autozone (maybe OReillys I don't really remember). Autozone one looked about half the physical size, the filtering element was a wire screen, the Ford one being replaced seem like the 'fuzzy fabric' another message referenced. It also didn't fit in 'square', there were 2 holes where pickups went into the filter and it 'rocked' back and forth between these. The bolt holding it on stopped this - but overall the quality just wasn't the same as Ford's. Now the gasket was great, a thick rubber one that held onto all 18 or so bolts at one time while I replaced the pan. Not one bolt fell out before I got them all started.

    Rolls-Royce story about them using GM transmission and trying to polish it up and then it not working.... I'm no kid - this story has been around for at least 35 years. Now it may actually be true, but it also could be an 'urban ledgend' of the shadetree machanic variety.......
  • vidtechvidtech Member Posts: 212
    i have changed lots of tranny filters,no matter what brand i chose they all looked the same.i suspect you installed the wrong filter.i never heard of the CORRECT replacement filters being a different size and material than the original.i would install the correct filter on your trans.before something bad happens.
  • frank4632frank4632 Member Posts: 2
    I also use NAPA filters. For my '82 Ford with an
    AOD transmission, you can buy a kit with a good
    high quality gasket instead of the cork gaskets
    that are usually in the kits. It's only a few $$
    more but worth it, imo.
  • bolivarbolivar Member Posts: 2,316
    I considered that.

    But the two pickup tubes and the securing bolt all matched and lined up. It had o-rings for the pickups and these seemed the right size.

    I think it is just a 'cheap' filter. Smaller, not built to very good specs.
  • zr2randozr2rando Member Posts: 391
    I have a 95 and 99 chevy 4x4, the 95 owners manual shows dexronIII for the transfer case, and is what I thought all Chevy transfer cases used. My 99 owners manual actually says DexronIII for the transmission but says automatic transfer case fluid part number 12378396 for the transfer case...
    My Chilton's/Haynes manuals for both vehicles show DexronIII for both transmission and transfer case...
    Anybody know why the 99 shows something different?
    I am about to change the transmission fluid/filter and was going to change the transfer case out too..
    Reckon synthetic makes a difference in the transfer case? Transfer case fluid is easy to change out, so there is no issue with trying to really extend the change interval with it...does the synthetic tranmission fluid condition seals the same as normal dexronIII?
    Thanks ahead folks
    see y'all in a bit..
  • brorjacebrorjace Member Posts: 588
    rando, if it were my vehicle, I'd use synthetic of some sort in every nook and cranny.

    A little less friction in the transfer case means a bit less rolling resistance (fuel economy) and less wear (longer life).

    Usually, these applications don't call for a lot of fluid so the higher cost of synthetics really isn't an issue.

    Why don't you e-mail Redline and ask them which fluid they'd recommend for the transfer case ... their MTL or one of their ATFs? It'd be interesting to hear what they say even if you decide to go with another brand of fluid.

    --- Bror Jace
  • zr2randozr2rando Member Posts: 391
    I just sent them an e-question, we will see what they say. I saw some QuakerState 4x4 synthetic dexronIII at Walmart is what made me think about the transfer case....remember....newyearseve...
    see ya
  • brorjacebrorjace Member Posts: 588
    The reason I think it's a good idea to e-mail them is because I don't know if transfer cases need some friction ... and so the most slippery formula may be a bad thing.

    --- Bror Jace
  • swschradswschrad Member Posts: 2,171
    transmission fluid is a strange critter... it has to be slippery in one place, provide a controlled amount of friction in some others, and have all the qualities of a good hydraulic fluid (antifoam, no gumming, solid heat resistance) everyplace. oh, and you want it to flow at ten below as well up nort, eh?

    the manufacturer's specs are supposed to take care of all that. if a synthetic meets them, it should work. if not, main street's full of lawyers who want your business.
  • zr2randozr2rando Member Posts: 391
    here tis,
    >Good morning,
    >I have a 99 Chevy S10 ZR2 p/u, what oil would you recommend for the
    >transfer case, normal fluid would be dexronIII.
    >Does synthetic make a difference in that gearbox?
    >Happy new year

    In the transfer case, I would recommend the Red Line D4ATF, it will
    certainly make a difference there as all of our lubricants would. In
    the transfer case it would offer better wear protection, better
    thermal stability and cooler operation.

    Thank you for your interest in Red Line Oil.
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