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Old 02-17-2011, 09:10 PM
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I'm in the Middle of an AX15 Oil Change...Please Help!!!

Well, I drained the oil out of the AX15 in my new '97 TJ just a few minutes ago. The drain plug fell into my oil drain pan and when I picked it up there was no drain plug washer. I looked around and then assumed that there wasn't supposed to be one. While the oil was draining, I removed the fill plug and there was a washer. So, is there supposed to be a washer on the drain plug??

Thanks so much,

Wes

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Old 02-17-2011, 09:15 PM   #2
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There is no washer on the drain plug. It has a flat flange that seals fine against the pan. Don't overtighten the drain plug.

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Old 02-17-2011, 09:20 PM
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Jerry,

Thanks for the quick followup! But..... I spoke too soon. I was just now cleaning up the drain hole and realized that there was a drain plug washer, but it was gunked onto the side of the transmission and looked like part of the case. So maybe it was serviced by a transmission place that thought they should add washers? Now the question is whether or not to keep the washer or leave it off!

Thanks so much,

Wers
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Old 02-17-2011, 09:23 PM   #4
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Perhaps someone added that washer, neither of my TJ's oil pans came from the factory with a washer for the drain plug.
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Old 02-18-2011, 01:27 PM
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Well I got my oil changed last night and just decided to leave the washers on since it didn't leak before...we shall see how it works in the next few weeks. Anyway, I purchased Pennzoil Synchromesh for the transmission and it seems to shift so much better. The old oil was quite nasty and almost just seemed like dirty water. I know the current recommendation for the AX15 is 10W-30 motor oil but I had already bought the Synchromesh before I found that out. Oh well, it's designed for transmissions and it seems to work well so I'm sure it will be fine!

One question I did have was about stripping out the drain plug on the AX15: I wanted to make sure and not over tighten it, but the only 24mm socket I had was in a 1/2" drive. To compensate, I made sure not to grab the ratchet at the end so as not to apply as much torque. I gave it a semi-firm tug (not really hard at all) and I felt the plug sort of give...I was a bit worried that I may have screwed the aluminum threads up so I backed the drain plug out to inspect the threads. The threads appeared to be fine, although they're not the closest fitting threads I've ever felt a bolt or plug mate with (FYI, the fill plug threads fit pretty much the same way). I figured that little tug just caused the well lubricated plug to slip a bit more before becoming tight. In order to make sure that I didn't screw up my threads, I noticed that a 15/16" socket fit the drain plug perfectly and that I did have one of those in 3/8" drive. I looked up the torque spec in the FSM and it showed 27 ft-lbs of torque so I set my torque wrench to that and tightened the plug down. Everything seemed to be fine and I achieved 27 ft-lbs no problem. My question is this: is it possible to screw up threads and not really realize it or would it have been obvious if I had caused any damage? I've never stripped out a drain plug to know how this looks/feels so I was simply wondering. In case you guys can't tell, I have a habit of maybe worrying about things that I shouldn't.

Thanks so much,

Wes
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Old 02-18-2011, 02:43 PM   #6
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I wouldn't worry about it. Funny, the same thing happened to me when I changed my AX15 fluid at 69k. It was also real dark looking, and it DID have a washer (metal). I think that little extra slip we felt was the washer flattening a bit. I would imagine it would be real hard to strip it by tightening.
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Old 02-18-2011, 03:16 PM   #7
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A 24mm drain plug bolt? The AX15 drain plug is only about a 13mm if I remember correctly. Are you sure you didn't just drain and refill the transfer case instead which has a drain and fill plug about that size? The transfer case requires atf, not gear lube. The AX15 drain bolt is on the passenger side near the front of the transmission. The transfer case drain plug is at the very rear next to where the rear driveshaft connects.
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Old 02-18-2011, 03:23 PM   #8
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I think 24 is correct, if I remember correctly I used a 15/16th inch socket.
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Old 02-18-2011, 03:42 PM
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Quote:
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A 24mm drain plug bolt? The AX15 drain plug is only about a 13mm if I remember correctly. Are you sure you didn't just drain and refill the transfer case instead which has a drain and fill plug about that size? The transfer case requires atf, not gear lube. The AX15 drain bolt is on the passenger side near the front of the transmission. The transfer case drain plug is at the very rear next to where the rear driveshaft connects.
I'm positive that's the size of socket it took. I'm guessing that they changed the AX15 drain plug sizes a bit since I've also heard others reference a different size on some AX15s. I've also heard some people people reference an allen head plug for the drain which mine most definitely was not. The fill plug was also the exact same size.

That would be pretty funny though if I were bragging about the improvement that the synchromesh made in the shifting when, in fact, I had put it in my T-case I'm sure people have done crazier things to their TJ's fluids.

-Wes

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