Success and Mobility (transmission)

I decided to give the hydraulic jack another try to see if I could raise the transmission. This time I dug out the one from my pickup. I think that the one I had been using was low on oil, and not able to fully jack. So I get the tranny raised, and with the center bolt raised out of the crossbar, the crossbar could be freely moved pretty easily.

Using a Hydraulic Jack to Raise the Transmission

The Last Few Bolts on the Transmission Pan
I now understood the design. The crossbar is not to be removed without supporting the transmission for safety reasons. So the last few bolts out, I drained the pan, inspected the number of holes, and took the pan dimensions.

Transmission pan removed

There are 2 different kinds of transmission kits for the Allison 4L60E – one has 16 bolts, the other one 17 bolts. Mine had 16. So I order the part:

There were some instructions about what else to check before installing the new filter – notably the front and back seals. Although there is no pink fluid in my transmission, I did note some probable fluid at both seals. The proposed solution is to drop the transmission and replace the seals. I wasn’t up for that.


Driveshaft seal
So I cleaned the gasket off with a blade and brake cleaner, and also cleaned the steel out of the bottom of the pan.

Cleaning the pan surface
There is a magnet on the side of the pan that collects the steel (see bottom grey blob in picture).

When I cleaned off the magnet, I would say that there is definitely more than a teaspoon’s worth of steel

After cleaning both surfaces, I used a little guerrilla glue to set the gasket to the pan (this was pretty critical to the success of the project since mounting the pan alone under a truck with less than a foot of clearance is not really very easy.

After pulling the old filter, I realized that the rubber fitting did not release with it. It was deep in a hole. I tried getting it out with an awl, and then a screwdriver, to no avail. I finally asked Paul, and he said to leave the old one in and not worry about changing it – so I did. I installed the new filter, putting the clip in, that fell out in a place that worked.

Then after about 5 tries, I finally got the pan on, tightening the 16 bolts. I then added 4 quarts of transmission fluid starting the engine in neutral and measuring the level as I added it.

Nice and pink.
With the transmission fluid in, I took the truck out for a spin to check for leaks before remounting the crossbar. No apparent leaks. So I reinstalled the crossbar, raising the transmission to lower the center bolt through the bar, and then tightening the 4 frame to crossbar bolts to tight for me with a 12 inch wrench. They are not torqued to spec, but I am not going off-roading with it any time soon, and the tranny really probably doesn’t have that much life left in it.

That said, it runs nicely and pretty smoothly now. It was a relatively cheap thing that I could do for the transmission ($35). And I’m mobile for awhile.

My aching back…

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