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Old 05-08-2016   #1
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Transmission Oil Change

Just about to order the Petronas transmission fluid from Shop4Parts..

https://www.shop4parts.co.uk/?name=s...401&sku=181457

But before I do, the Grande Punto Guide says 1.5kg of oil.. think that might correctly be 'L' for Litres?

The bottles come in a size of 1L, so am I going to have to order 2?


And another reason I'm sorting this, is because that oil leak Fiat told me about may well be a leak on the gear oil as opposed to the engine oil? So well worth keeping topped up as if there's a leak and its low, perhaps that explains the reverse crunch and tough gear changes at times? (pumping the clutch helps, low fluid in the gearbox?!)

Thanks again
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Old 05-08-2016   #2
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Quote Originally Posted by SB1500 View Post
Just about to order the Petronas transmission fluid from Shop4Parts..

https://www.shop4parts.co.uk/?name=s...401&sku=181457

But before I do, the Grande Punto Guide says 1.5kg of oil.. think that might correctly be 'L' for Litres?

The bottles come in a size of 1L, so am I going to have to order 2?


And another reason I'm sorting this, is because that oil leak Fiat told me about may well be a leak on the gear oil as opposed to the engine oil? So well worth keeping topped up as if there's a leak and its low, perhaps that explains the reverse crunch and tough gear changes at times? (pumping the clutch helps, low fluid in the gearbox?!)

Thanks again
So. Have you dipped it to see the level?
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Old 05-08-2016   #3
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Re: Transmission Oil Change

I haven't, but I was thinking carrying out the check would be better with the fluid there, as its likely been in so long that even if its full it'll need drained and filled?
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Old 05-08-2016   #4
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Re: Transmission Oil Change

Gearbox oil is quite thick and feels and smells quite different to engine oil.
If you wipe some of you leak on your finger and smell it, gear oil has a distinct stinky smell and feels tacky.

Engine oil will often be tan or brown (black in a diesel) and smell of normal oil

To change the gear oil, warm the car up by driving around a bit, as the oil will run better and get the car level.

On the back of the gearbox, at the lowest point is a drain plug.

Half way up the on the front is a filler plug.

Drain out and refit the drain.

Open the filler plug and start to fill.
You'll probaby need a funnel fitted to a pipe so you can pour from above and get the help of gravity, though if there is enough space you can use the bottles spout and pump it in.

It's level is the actual filler hole, so once full it will start to seep out of the filler hole, you're best leaving it a while and topping up as it takes a while for the thick oil to settle and find it's proper level.

Once you're happy it's settled and level with the filler hole, refit the filler plug and jobs done.

This might help
https://www.fiatforum.com/punto/2719...r-box-oil.html

Your crunch when selecting gears indicates a clutch issue, the clutch is not disengaging the power through the gearbox properly, so it drags the cogs around slightly.
You tend to notice it first when selecting reverse and it crunches as your gears are still under power one way, then you jab it in reverse and force it the other way!

Either it's a worn clutch friction plate or a hydraulic issue.
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Last edited by Goudrons; 05-08-2016 at 09:41.
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Old 05-08-2016   #5
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Re: Transmission Oil Change

Quote Originally Posted by Goudrons View Post
Gearbox oil is quite thick and feels and smells quite different to engine oil.
If you wipe some of you leak on your finger and smell it, gear oil has a distinct stinky smell and feels tacky.

Engine oil will often be tan or brown (black in a diesel) and smell of normal oil

To change the gear oil, warm the car up by driving around a bit, as the oil will run better and get the car level.

On the back of the gearbox, at the lowest point is a drain plug.

Half way up the on the front is a filler plug.

Drain out and refit the drain.

Open the filler plug and start to fill.
You'll probaby need a funnel fitted to a pipe so you can pour from above and get the help of gravity, though if there is enough space you can use the bottles spout and pump it in.

It's level is the actual filler hole, so once full it will start to seep out of the filler hole, you're best leaving it a while and topping up as it takes a while for the thick oil to settle and find it's proper level.

Once you're happy it's settled and level with the filler hole, refit the filler plug and jobs done.

This might help
https://www.fiatforum.com/punto/2719...r-box-oil.html

Your crunch when selecting gears indicates a clutch issue, the clutch is not disengaging the power through the gearbox properly, so it drags the cogs around slightly.
You tend to notice it first when selecting reverse and it crunches as your gears are still under power one way, then you jab it in reverse and force it the other way!

Either it's a worn clutch friction plate or a hydraulic issue.
The clutch never slips and holds the gear very well however, so does that not rule out worn components? (I genuinely don't know) I doubt we could fit a clutch even with the kit, seems like its an extremely tough puzzle which would make a timing belt replacement seem as easy as making a Pot Noodle

Just realised Castrol and the likes have manual transmission fluid,and a guy on the Punto thread used a non-Petronas product. Am I silly to use anything other than the S4P product or just play it safe?
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Old 05-08-2016   #6
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Re: Transmission Oil Change

I bought Comma gearbox oil for my Brava 1.2, 75/90 synthetic or something...

Technically the "fill it till it starts dripping out" method is easy but isn't ideal, you should measure the correct amount. Modern manufacturers do lots of research to see how little oil they can get away with, since more oil = more drag = less MPG. I've been to the Getrag factory in Halewood Liverpool....

Your dodgy clutch sounds like old fluid or air in the hydraulics, assuming the RHD Panda has this setup. Could be that the slave cylinder seals are on the way out?
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Old 05-08-2016   #7
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Re: Transmission Oil Change

I would buy 1 litre of the right spec oil locally, so you can get another when needed. Go underneath and investigate the oil leak, and top up the gearbox until it drips out.

Check your clutch hydraulics for low fluid or seepage, ideally bleed it and replace with fresh fluid.

Then see if the gearchange has improved at all, at least you'll have covered your bases and checked the obvious.

If you do have a gearbox oil leak then you'll have to drop the box and dump the oil, so why waste new stuff? A specialist can change any leaky seals or weak bearings for you, and at the same time you can chuck in a new clutch.

Then the transmission would definitely be sorted for a few hundred quid and lots more miles...
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Old 05-08-2016   #8
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Re: Transmission Oil Change

Quote Originally Posted by bluejohn125 View Post
I would buy 1 litre of the right spec oil locally, so you can get another when needed. Go underneath and investigate the oil leak, and top up the gearbox until it drips out.

Check your clutch hydraulics for low fluid or seepage, ideally bleed it and replace with fresh fluid.

Then see if the gearchange has improved at all, at least you'll have covered your bases and checked the obvious.

If you do have a gearbox oil leak then you'll have to drop the box and dump the oil, so why waste new stuff? A specialist can change any leaky seals or weak bearings for you, and at the same time you can chuck in a new clutch.

Then the transmission would definitely be sorted for a few hundred quid and lots more miles...
Okay, just spoke to the service advisor at Fiat. Confirmed: My Panda Oil Leak is the GEAR OIL and not in fact the engine oil!!! Personally I believe that's preferrable..

400-500 he said likely for a new clutch (I'm sure they could fix that seal for the 4 it costs inside that labour charge). I'm not rushing out to do this, but its handy to have the facts now.

He also mentioned its only seeping through the seal, and any problems I'm having with the gears is unlikely to be caused by the oil seal / gear oil as it's not leaking at a high rate. But rather, that a new clutch would be needed (as someone said about it not releasing pressure causing the crunch and stiff operation). He still wouldn't guarantee that fix the problem of the rough gears, but I'm taking the car to let them drive it and see for themselves.

Now, despite the rip off of the Fiat dealer they seem to have been very honest about everything and not sure (if the clutch needed done) I'd take it to and local monk.. mechanics here to tamper with. But at the same time, I dont want to be buying a new clutch for that money unless its needed! The car holds its gears perfectly.. But could leaving this another year or two cause irrepairable damage to other components?
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Old 05-08-2016   #9
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Re: Transmission Oil Change

Clutch wear tends to show up either as slip or drag.

When they slip it's often because the friction plate is so thin, the pressure plate cannot hold enough tension against it.
You notice slip when applying higher torque/load through the clutch, like climb hills, pulling away from junctions, fully loaded car.

You hear/feel the rpms rise, but the road speed doesn't match it.
Smaller, lighter and less powerful cars don't always slip when worn as much as heavier and more powerful cars do.


Drag happens for the same reason, but this time the pressure plate/trust bearing has extended/self adjusted/bent the fingers so far out, it can't release the pressure from the worn friction plate properly, there's just nothing left, it's all moved up to the end of it's adjustment so it just drags on the friction plate.

Crunching when selecting gears and difficulty getting it in gear when running are signs it's on it's last legs.
(difficulty selecting gears with the engine off is a sign of a bad gearbox)

Also, you might notice a short clutch bite (clutch feels like a switch, on or off with little slip feel when pulling away).
It's bite gets close to the bottom of the pedals travel or it may feel like you can quite push the pedal down far enough to get a gear smoothly even though the pedal still moves through it's stroke as normal.

The above can be true of clutch hydraulic issues.
Air in the system, leaks or worn seals in slave or master cylinder will cause similar problems as drag.

The usual give away between drag due to wear or a hydraulic issue is when you drive along and you can get the clutch to start slipping with just the lightest pressure on the pedal, it's usually because the friction plate is worn.
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Last edited by Goudrons; 05-08-2016 at 13:07.
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Old 05-08-2016   #10
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Re: Transmission Oil Change

@Goudrons, thanks for all the info.

Even with a full load, my car is powerful getting up hills even in 5th magically! Though I'd call them moderate hills. It still seems to surprise me how I don't have to drop a gear.

I would say, if anything, it is drag I'm experiencing.. However the crunching only occurs in reverse. Havent ever had this problem even briefly on the other 5 forward gears. If I'm slow (and double hit the clutch) it either reduces or eliminates the noise, but I rarely achieve this fidelity during parking.

When the engine is off, I'll give gear selection a go but the only problem I have then is with the selector, and possibly unrelated. It slips in and out of gears, mind you, reverse is difficult to get out of when the car is off without the clutch in, but this could be normal.

Clutch bite seems to be fine, if I dont get it right I can stall but its much harder to stall the Panda than the old Corsa's I find. And it is capable of abrupt and quick take offs, I could make a POV video to show this if its any good.

Is it straightforward to bleed / re-fluid the clutch? Can I check for leaks in that cylinder easily too?
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Old 05-08-2016   #11
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Re: Transmission Oil Change

Most gearboxes will crunch or baulk slightly when selecting reverse.

They tend to get worse when either the car's still creeping forward or the rpms are still higher than normal idle, ie bad driving!

If it selects first ok without a struggle when stationary, but running, it's probably ok for now at least.

I seem to think I've read a post of yours regarding the starter motor.
Clutch problems and starter motor issues might be due to a weeping or leaking input shaft seal.
Gearbox oil and friction plate dust might be your problem with the starter, but oil on the clutch plate would normally cause slip, not drag.

Hydraulic issues tend to be one of three.
A leak.
With a leak it obviously won't transmit the full movement of the pedal to full movement of the slave as some fluid escapes.
It can also draw in air to the system, air compresses, hydraulic fluid doesn't, so you get the same effect.
You may notice the ressie is low or you find fluid dripping off connections and/or pipe work.

Old or contaminated fluid.
Clutch and brake fluid is hygroscopic, meaning it absorbs moisture really easily , it'll even pull it out of the air, which it why you shouldn't use fluid out of an open container.
Water in the fluid tends to cause it to lose it's properties and can, in the case of brakes, cause the fluid to boil a lot sooner than it should.
Manufacturers tend to advise the brake and clutch fluid is replaced every two to three years.

Master and/or Slave seals worn.
If the seals are worn on the rod/piston of either master or slave, when you push against the fluid, it doesn't transmit the force but passes back or out passed the seals.
If this happens in the master cylinder it's hard to notice any leaks, but slaves with worn seals tend to leak.

Probably best to check them in this order.

It's also worth mentioning, most brake and clutch fluid is extremely corrosive.
If split on the paintwork and not washed off quickly, it'll strip paint off the car, left long enough it'll also damage the metal underneath making it impossible to repaint.
It's also really nasty stuff if you get it on your skin, and don't try drinking the stuff!

There's a few written guides for bleeding a punto.
http://fiat-punto-cars.info/clutch/1...ystem-bleeding
https://www.fiatforum.com/punto-ii/1...000-punto.html

Once you find the bleed nipple, it's pretty straight forward and any bleeding of clutch/brake guide would be fairly valid.
To save a bit of time and effort, if the ressie is full to start with, suck out the old fluid first with a syringe and a bit of pipe and top up with new fluid before starting, otherwise it takes longer to pump all the old fluid in the ressie through.
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Old 06-08-2016   #12
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Re: Transmission Oil Change

Quote Originally Posted by Goudrons View Post
Most gearboxes will crunch or baulk slightly when selecting reverse.

They tend to get worse when either the car's still creeping forward or the rpms are still higher than normal idle, ie bad driving!

If it selects first ok without a struggle when stationary, but running, it's probably ok for now at least.

I seem to think I've read a post of yours regarding the starter motor.
Clutch problems and starter motor issues might be due to a weeping or leaking input shaft seal.
Gearbox oil and friction plate dust might be your problem with the starter, but oil on the clutch plate would normally cause slip, not drag.

Hydraulic issues tend to be one of three.
A leak.
With a leak it obviously won't transmit the full movement of the pedal to full movement of the slave as some fluid escapes.
It can also draw in air to the system, air compresses, hydraulic fluid doesn't, so you get the same effect.
You may notice the ressie is low or you find fluid dripping off connections and/or pipe work.

Old or contaminated fluid.
Clutch and brake fluid is hygroscopic, meaning it absorbs moisture really easily , it'll even pull it out of the air, which it why you shouldn't use fluid out of an open container.
Water in the fluid tends to cause it to lose it's properties and can, in the case of brakes, cause the fluid to boil a lot sooner than it should.
Manufacturers tend to advise the brake and clutch fluid is replaced every two to three years.

Master and/or Slave seals worn.
If the seals are worn on the rod/piston of either master or slave, when you push against the fluid, it doesn't transmit the force but passes back or out passed the seals.
If this happens in the master cylinder it's hard to notice any leaks, but slaves with worn seals tend to leak.

Probably best to check them in this order.

It's also worth mentioning, most brake and clutch fluid is extremely corrosive.
If split on the paintwork and not washed off quickly, it'll strip paint off the car, left long enough it'll also damage the metal underneath making it impossible to repaint.
It's also really nasty stuff if you get it on your skin, and don't try drinking the stuff!

There's a few written guides for bleeding a punto.
http://fiat-punto-cars.info/clutch/1...ystem-bleeding
https://www.fiatforum.com/punto-ii/1...000-punto.html

Once you find the bleed nipple, it's pretty straight forward and any bleeding of clutch/brake guide would be fairly valid.
To save a bit of time and effort, if the ressie is full to start with, suck out the old fluid first with a syringe and a bit of pipe and top up with new fluid before starting, otherwise it takes longer to pump all the old fluid in the ressie through.
It's all getting rather involved and around parts of the car I've never been near / don't understand fully yet. Still, I can learn.

We probably won't be up in the garage until the end of the month, we're doing an oil change for all three of the cars (The Bora, Astra and Panda), and as I've already bought 1L of transmission fluid (picking up the other 1L on Monday..) I'll be doing that to the Panda too.

All I can think of, is that I show my uncle your reply and then we work through it checking those things as he's going to know more about them than I do myself.

The car goes in and out of gear easily when it's off, checked that last night so hopefully it's all good.

Oh, and I went to a local factors to get the transmission oil... Semi synthetic 75w 90 GL5 .. they said it would fit. Do I return it or will this be fine? He also only had 1L in, said he'd get another 1L bottle in on Monday. I don't want to risk trying it without the 2L as there's no success in draining and putting only 1L in the gearbox could do damage?
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Old 08-08-2016   #13
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Re: Transmission Oil Change

I've returned the stuff I originally bought.. to no surprise the motor factors said "we dont stock anything else" so clearly he ignored the system they have and thought that the incorrect grade would do.. Well, refunded.. 5 did seem a little cheap...


Now I'm going for the Shop4Parts product.. although it still doesnt seem to match what the owners manual online said.. Which was as follows;-

Synthetic oil SAE 75W- 80 EP, that passes API GL5, MIL - L - 2105 D LEV specification

The Petronas on S4P is 85 , and GL4 .. will this matter? Dont want my gearbox to explode..
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Old 08-08-2016   #14
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Transmission Oil Change

If it states gl5 for your gearbox then I'd use gl5. Gl4 won't provide the same wear protections as gl5.

But..... I was always led to believe that a EP GL5 is not suitable for a gearbox with synchros. But surely the manufacturer knows what oils to use.
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Last edited by dozer; 08-08-2016 at 17:30.
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Old 08-08-2016   #15
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Re: Transmission Oil Change

Quote Originally Posted by dozer View Post
If it states gl5 for your gearbox then I'd use gl5. Gl4 won't provide the same wear protections as gl5.

But..... I was always led to believe that a EP GL5 is not suitable for a gearbox with synchros. But surely the manufacturer knows what oils to use.
http://www.eurocarparts.com/transmission-oils

that's for my 1.1 ,
@SB1500 - your 5 looked CHEAP..!!

BOTH a#4 grade.., and NEITHER an 85...
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Last edited by varesecrazy; 08-08-2016 at 17:33.
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