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Technical / Installation Articles - Engine / Drivetrain

AX5 or AX15 Manual Transmission Oil Change

Article written by Moab Man

Date Added: 02/08/2009

We're not really sure how it happened, but people seem to forget that transmissions need a little love too from time-to-time. And while they are not as needy as our vehicles engines, they still need a little maintenance.

Any moving parts on your Jeep need lubrication and maintenance. Changing your motor oil is the most common and obvious one, tie rod ends are another, but some parts are sealed and lubed for the life of the part. Manual transmissions are not sealed and lubed for life, but you wouldn't know it by how few change this critical lubricant.

Many first time Jeep owners will ask us about what they should be doing to take care of their Jeeps. Almost every time we get to changing the transmission fluid we are met with blank stares, and they tell us they have no idea how it's done. Fortunately, if you can change your oil... you can change the oil in your manual transmission.



1. Besides having a standard socket set, or wrenches, you will need an oil pump. While not a special tool; we do understand not everyone has one.

2. Of course you will need the appropriate transmission oil. We recommend **RED LINE MT90 (read why we recommend RED LINE MT90) for transmissions such as the Jeep AX5, AX15, or any other transmission with brass internal.

**Legal Disclaimer: The recommendations of MOABJEEPER Magazine are our recommendations based on our experience and education on the matters discussed. We would never direct you to supersede the recommendations or requirements of your manufacturer possibly voiding your warranty.

3. Locate the filler plug on the passenger side of the transmission. It is located halfway up the side with no direct easy access. Remove the bolt.

4. Locate the large drain plug bolt on the bottom of the transmission. On Wranglers it's located just ahead of the transmission skid plate.

5. Break the drain bolt loose so that it can be turned by hand, but don't remove or it gets really messy. Hold a funnel under the drain plug, and now you can remove the plug with the funnel directing the oil ahead of the skid.

6. Once the transmission is drained, put the drain plug back in.

7. Fill the transmission, using the above mentioned oil pump until oil starts to seep out of the fill hole. How much oil? The AX5 and AX15 use about 3.5 quarts. This means you will have a half quart left. If you're diplomatic enough, convince your buddy to change his at the same time and split the cost. RED LINE MT90 is about $11 per quart and you won't have any other use for that remaining $5 of oil in that last quart.

8. Replace the filler bolt.

9. A final word of caution for those that don't follow directions too well(that means most of us guys). On the drivers side is another bolt that looks very similar to the fill plug located on the PASSENGER SIDE. If you start eye-balling that driver side bolt, and you get the urge to remove it, STOP and heed the advise stamped on the bolt - "DO NOT REMOVE". There is a reason for this. The bolt is used to keep the internals of your transmission in there proper alignment. Additionally, the bolt is located lower on the transmission, and you will not have filled your manual trans to its proper level.

Installation Issues

Filling the transmission is awkward. Some have suggested, and we tried it, filling the transmission using a funnel and some hose. They passed the hose through the drain hole in the floor or through the opening in the transmission tunnel that your shifter passes through. Save yourself the frustration, and buy the pump we suggested earlier. Oil doesn't gravity feed down the tube very well, and it isn't worth the couple bucks you'll save by not purchasing the pump from your local auto parts store. Plus you're way more likely to spill some of the liquid gold Red Line oil and lose more money than you saved on the pump.

Final Thoughts

It is amazing the abuse a typical transmission will take as a result of no regular oil changes. With just a little occasional love, unlike the super-clingy constant love engines demand, your transmission will probably soldier on long after your engine has left you.

Purchase / Vendor Info

Vendor Name: Purchased locally.

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