Does Transmission Fluid Expire?

Transmission Fluid does not expire if kept an unopened bottle. After a bottle is opened it is exposed to humidity and air which can cause contamination.

Friction and heat will break down ATF, but not sitting in a bottle on a shelf.


Transmission fluid is an essential part of the engine. Without good transmission fluid levels in the car, you shall run into all sorts of problems. Also, if the transmission fluid is not changed periodically, you will encounter problems. Some people think transmission fluid is something that they should never replace. Although it should not be changed as often as the oil, it is still necessary to check fluids and keep them clean in the car.

The transmission fluid change program will vary between manual and automatic transmission. Every 30,000 miles is an excellent proposition for all drivers, whether they own automatic or manual. For heavy drivers in the manual transmission, it is suggested to shift every 15,000 miles. The intervals for automatic cars increase up to 100,000 miles between shifts. There are reasons why you may want to change the transmission fluid more than once. Due to the long length of this type of fluid in automatic cars, some believe it should never be changed. This is incorrect and can lead to costly repairs.

The problem you will face is the accumulation of metal particles. These particles will float through the engine and build up in various components, causing other types of issues for you. The money you saved by not changing the transmission fluid will seem like a drop in the mug compared to the full transmission replacement price later. This can be avoided simply by changing the fluid regularly. ATF runs hotter than the manual transmission. For this reason, transmission fluid can be cracked over time. This will not lubricate the fluid as well, which will lead to mechanical problems.

Those considering changing the transmission fluid may want to reconsider, as it is not as simple as changing the oil. With regular oil, you can use gravity to drain any oil the car contains gently. It’s more sticky and requires transmission wash to get everything out. It is recommended that you bring your vehicle to have this type of fluid exchange to ensure all the old fluid’s metallic chips have been washed away. If you don’t remove all of the liquid, it can cause as many problems as if you did nothing.

Those who want to check levels in between maintenance visits need to know what they are looking for. Keep in mind that most manual drives will not come with a dipstick to help you check the fluid level. Those with an automatic transmission will want their driver to either show the correct dipstick or check the owner’s manual. Many will confuse the crankcase with the transmission. Keep in mind, generally, that the only reason for a low fluid level is a leak. If you check your level and it is low, you must ask the driver to block transmission immediately.


Types of transmission fluids

Most of you think lubrication is necessary for almost every mechanical component. Consequently, transmission fluid also deserves people’s attention, as it can provide much-needed lubrication for complex gears and other moving parts in a car’s transmission. Both automatic and manual transmissions need transmission fluid to support proper performance.

Two types of transmission fluid can be widely used in vehicles. These are conventional transmission fluids and synthetic fluids. Although this latter type requires more than the initial type, no one can provide an exact answer as to whether the first type is better or not, because both have their characteristics and can be applied to meet different requirements. But to keep your car in good condition, you need regular vehicle maintenance and fluid replacements, no matter which type you use.

Synthetic fluid is becoming increasingly popular because it does not lose its viscosity or ability to paint. Moreover, it can transfer heat evenly for more extended periods.

Usually human-made, it is produced from refined oils and treated with a variety of chemical additives. As mentioned above, it can retain its viscosity for a more extended period than conventional liquids; Hence, you do not need to change it frequently.

Traditionally, transmission fluid was oil-based. The most significant problem with manual transmission is fluid pollution, either because of oxidation or even friction between the moving parts that form small metal particles in the fluid.

Also, its viscosity or lubrication ability deteriorates over time. This is why it’s necessary to replace the transmission fluid more often in a manual transmission than automatic transmission.

Be sure to use fluid from an unopened bottle so you do not have to worry about it.