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Old 05-08-2021, 02:33 PM   #1
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Allison Transmission refill not showing full

I changed the fluid/filters yesterday on my Allison 3000 transmission in 2015 Dutch Star with 19 quarts, which is what my Allison Owners Manual shows needed. But after warming up for 20 minutes then taking a 10 mile drive the dip stick only shows in the section between cold and hot (as much as I could tell since the fluid is so clear) and the shift touch panel keeps saying 2 quarts low.


Since I had previously read this I special ordered 5 gallons of Allison approved fluid at $34/gal instead of locally paying $53/gal. Now I'm wondering what the difference is and has left me with just 1 quart from my 5 gallons to add.


Two questions: why am I still 2 quarts low (wrong in Manual possibility??), and if the two quarts LOW is correct would an additional quart of some other brand of synthetic transmission fluid be a NO NO here to top it off? Or am I going to have to buy another gallon just to get a quart? Unless something drastic would happen the 3 quarts would never be used. Never run into this problem in 30+ years of RVing.


Thanks for any help from the transmission specialists, or any well informed members.
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Old 05-08-2021, 02:43 PM   #2
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Forget the dipstick-- use the Allison shift pad to check fluid level.


According to Allison, a lot more accurate.


Yup, 19 should be the magic number.
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Old 05-08-2021, 04:29 PM   #3
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Is your transmission up to at least 140, also are you level when checking the dipstick. I donít think the shifting control will check it if under 140, so that would tell me you were up to temp. Verify you were level though as well.
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Old 05-08-2021, 08:58 PM   #4
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According to Temp Gauge the engine temp was approx 180, just about where it usually runs on level ground and no heavy towing. According to the concrete pad the coach sits on in the back yard it is level. I've tried to check on occasion when not level and the pad will not give a reading.

Any suggestions where I turn now since I definitely have put 19 quarts in the tranny and with the shift pad showing I need 2 more quarts. I surely don't want to over fill then have to crawl under the back and drain out some later on.
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Old 05-09-2021, 07:17 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfe10 View Post
Forget the dipstick-- use the Allison shift pad to check fluid level.


According to Allison, a lot more accurate.


Yup, 19 should be the magic number.
X2, I just had my fluid changed along with the filters, 5yrs about 50K miles. The fluid that was removed was captured and measured. Measured fluid was 19 3/4qts. Used key shift pad after warm up and key pad showed fluid OK. My Allison manual states that replacement is between 19 and 20 quarts.

How to test, fluid needs to be 140 degrees or higher. On a level surface, then while in neutral depress the + - key at the same time.....
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Old 05-09-2021, 07:18 AM   #6
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If the MH is level and up to temp. I say add the 2qts. One qt. first and recheck. There's hoses and cooler/HX to account for.
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Old 05-09-2021, 11:35 AM   #7
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Yep, I would start out only adding 1qt, and re-checking.
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Old 05-09-2021, 11:52 AM   #8
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The two responses immediately above are good IF (yes, big IF) one is to assume that the dipstick (not supplied by Allison BTW) is more accurate than Allison's own built in fluid level sensor.


Allison says theirs which is accessed from the shift panel IS more accurate than the dipstick and the method they recommend.


From experience, one has to drive quite a ways or in stop and go traffic to get the transmission up to temperature. But, not to worry, if you attempt to check fluid level under the wrong temperature conditions, the Allison is smart enough to tell you just that.


Absolutely, if the Allison shift pad indicates low, THEN add fluid.
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Old 05-09-2021, 02:25 PM   #9
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Great, appreciate all the help. Last question is: Where should I get the last of the 2 quarts if needed. After I add my last quart on hand then With 20 quarts of Allison approved fluid in the tranny will a second quart of another brand synthetic transmission fluid if needed be okay or do I pay $53 for another gallon to get that one quart? $53 will be excellent insurance, but overly expensive if not needed. Probably never need that other 3 quarts if purchasing another gallon.

To do or not to do, that is the question. Thanks.
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Old 05-09-2021, 10:32 PM   #10
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Most emergency vehicles are operated with the AT a quart low anyway to allow for high temps, and expansion. Over-filling an AT is worse than operating at the "ADD" mark.


My MH Allison is 1 qt. low now, that's how the Allison service center returned it to me after servicing the transmission.
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Old 05-10-2021, 11:58 AM   #11
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Understand. Will add my last quart bringing the total up to 20 quarts then watch closely. Also know about adding up to the Full mark then what happens when everything gets really hot, boil over.

Had a 1970 Pontiac I learned this the hard way. Always tried to keep all oil levels at Full but when engine got really hot ( clogged radiator) the transmission boiled out either the breather or fill tube onto the exhaust. Made lots of smoke but luckly no fires. Wasn't thinking the tranny was better to be at the Add mark, but should have from past experience.



Thanks again Guys, The Forum comes to my resque again.
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Old 05-15-2021, 08:21 PM   #12
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I added the last quart of transmission fluid bringing the total up to 20 quarts. The dip stick now shows the level in the middle of the Cold indication. This is immediately after starting up, and before any warm up. Outside temperature was almost 80 so the transmission wasn't exactly cold , just not up to operating temperature. Know the touch pad doesn't work here but now I feel better to at least see the level on the dip stick. Will check with the touch pad the first time I get out and go.



Appreciate all the responses I got. Everyone have fun this summer and drive safe. Just watch out for all those idiots on the highways.
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