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Discussion Starter #1
Hi Guys,

My 2000SE Focus just turned 125,000 so I decided it was time to change the manual trans fluid. My understanding is that my 2.0 DOHC motor is mated up to the MTX-75 transmission. After some hunting on the internet about the correct fluid to use, I got even more confused. Some people say, it has to be the special Ford fluid, others say a synthetic gear oil is good (like lucas or amsoil) and others say they are running ATF and it's fine.

Well the fluid that was in there was definitely thicker than ATF, but it had a ATF smell to it. Still puzzled, I just decided to run Lucas synthetic gear oil in there.

I guess I'm still questioning my decision. Will I hurt the trans by running the Lucas? Or should I bite the bullet and get the special Motorcraft fluid and change it again?
 

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And the can of worms opens again....

The Ford synthetic manual transmission fluid is the simple & proper answer.

There ARE other similar fluids, and the discussions have been endless. You can read to your heart's content prev. discussions here & in the performance sections, with some different answers for the MTX75 and the Getrag 6 spd for the SVT.

"Gear Oil" per se is NOT one of the fluids known (or debated) to work. It's too thick & some types have additives which can damage the transmission. ATF in general isn't a fluid to be used either, if only because most is not full synthetic.

You didn't mention the details of the "gear oil" you used, so no definite answer can be given. IF you called a manual transmission fluid "gear oil" it MIGHT be one that works. Redline for one has two types that look nearly identical by the bottle description, one that they approve for the purpose & one that's definitely wrong.

With a 100,000 mile change interval, using 2 qts. of the official fluid seems like the best course to me for a typical owner. (you aren't racing & only worried about best performance today)
 

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That's definitely Gear Oil, it'd work in a Peterbilt but not for your Focus.

One piece of good news that's been reported here (with copies of Ford documents).

The "2.1 qt., fill to edge of hole" spec. for filling the trans has been changed. Ford decided that 2 qts. and a fill to just under the hole is adequate. Saves buying an extra quart at about $25 just to top up. Put the entire 2 in & you're OK.

The other fluids that are really good are expensive as well, so searching for alternatives won't save appreciably.

You'll be happier in the winter, Gear oil would make a cold morning pretty difficult with stiff shifting.
 

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w/ my magic bag
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Use the Ford synthetic fluid & your good. I ended up using 3.5qtrs when I had my trans hanging on the end of a trans bench & sucked out all the fluid at the bottom.
 

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Not trying to throw a wrench into this thread but gear oil was used in mine when changing the fluid and haven't had any issues other then noticing that my transmission gets hot to the touch after a short amount of time of use.

When I have it rebuilt of have it off next I will drain that oil and have it/checked out. Need new synchronizer rings in mine. Or will just opt to get another MTX75.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Did you ever see if it got hot to the touch before you changed to gear oil? To me it sounds like more heat sooner is a problem.
 

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Trans fluid should be changed every 30,000 and the Ford honey is the best. Mobil 1 50wt is good as well.

DO NOT use conventional gear oil. The above poster mentioned heat, this means excessive wear.
 

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Did you ever see if it got hot to the touch before you changed to gear oil? To me it sounds like more heat sooner is a problem.
No I didn't check it before changing the fluids but you're right. Getting as hot as it was with just the amount of driving (and at night) I did doesn't seem right. Then again it could be heat transference from the engine.
 

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As Vince kinda mentioned with the Mobil 1 reference, GL-4 is the ticket in full synthetic, while GL-5 Gear oil in some cases has additives that attack the synchros (brass) & is too heavy.

Humphrey - trans will get hot itself, and with some transference. Trans temps in general run similar to engine temps - 250* is where to start worrying for them. Hope the synchro issue preceded the Gear Oil use & the "heavy stuff" was an attempt to keep it going longer.
 

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So I replaced my cv axles and had to put more manual transmission fluid in. I drained as much as I could as I didnt find a drain plug. Seems most the fluid was lost from pulling the axles any how. Went back with SAE 75W 95 (I think) valvoline. Shifts like hot knife through butter.

Originally had some gear lube of a different consistency.
 

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Why?

Drain bolt is at the side of the trans. at the bottom towards the engine. (fill at the front)

Read all the old threads debating fluids if you wish, conventional gear oil is NOT one of the fluids recommended by ANYONE.

Other than wear issues (some types will KILL the trans), that 'butter" sensation will turn to TAR with colder weather, making shifting difficult until the car is fully warmed.
 

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The 75W 95 (i checked.. this weight is what alldata said my car needed.) is "full" synthetic. Idk if it has additives.
Im not going to argue with anyone over what fluid is best as there are better things to do.
I cannot deny the many years of combined experience here but can choose to follow it or not.
If by chance my trans gets turned to a brass soup, that just means you guys (most of you) are right and I was wrong and that I get to have my trans rebuilt sooner than later.
 

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Well thats silly , your not in the 70`s with these Foci and you for sure dont want of need conventional gear oil in your Focus trans , the gears are not cut the same and dont need it , is it going to hurt to run it more then likely not , if you were further north your cold day starts would be a PITA on cold shifting

I use Mobile 1 50wt in all my Foci and in my customers Foci and many are now over 150,000 miles on them and going strong , my postal guy drives a Focus 285,000 and when he went to Mobile 50 he stated his shifting was better and he has not needed the normal 50.000 mile syncro he was going through the first 105,000 miles he did , for 180,000 and same syncros

Tom
 

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We're worry warts.

Synthetic is less worrisome than "Dino" for the application, and synthetic gear oil will be closer to an appropriate viscosity. The "additives" mentioned are the only remaining real concern, and they (and amount) can vary in "gear oil" brands.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Thanks for the replies. I get it change out to the ford stuff eventually. I'm not too concerned with the "cold" shifts. Living in So Cal, the temp never gets very cold, even in the winter.
 

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It has been over a year and my gear oil choice hasn't caused any issues of yet and my synchronizer is still hanging in there. Will come back at end of this year if I remember a d post another update.
 
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