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Discussion Starter #1
I wanted to share my experience doing a transfer case fluid change today. I know there are write ups and for those that want to perform this my advice which is you need the right tools. Next you need the steps how to do this. By the way the transfer case is only found on 4wd vehicles so if you have fwd you don't have one. Also this is not to be confused with the rear differential which is at the back of the vehicle.

Now this is my first time doing a transfer case in this vehicle so there was a few things that I learned which I can help pass on. I have a 2009 V6 AWD Sport so the 4 cylinder should be similar.

Location:
The transfer case is located some what in the middle of the vehicle. It is just to the left of the engine oil drain bolt if you are looking from under the car. Also it is close to the exhaust pipe.

Tools & Equipment:
For you to do this job without too much stress and problems you should have some tools and equipment.

Hydraulic Lift, Car Ramp, Jack Stand
- Something to lift the car up. You can use car ramps or a hydraulic jack. I don't recommend the one you get with the car. If you are using a hydraulic jack use jack stands for safety. If you use car ramps jack stands would be a good idea also. Now the reason you need something to lift up the car is because there is little room to work under the car. Unless you have a big hole under your driveway you can go under than that will work. I used a 3 ton hydraulic jack. I noticed the rubber pad worn down due to the front jack position is not flat so I cut and placed a small piece of wood on top of the jack pad. For the jack stands I used one rated for 3 tons. I also have hockey pucks under a metal bar on top of the jack stand to prevent crushing the side of the car. All the weight is applied equally on the rubber each side of the puck.

Allen Wrench
There is not much room on the fill bolt for a 10 mm hex socket to fit. I used a modified 10 mm allen wrench. I cut it so it is only 1/2 inch wide. The bolt is super duper tight so I put a 10 inch pipe inside the allen wrench handle to get the needed torque. I cut it with a grinder. The pipe I had was a bit wide (11/16 in) so was loose. I taped the allen wrench to fill the gap so it fit snug. The length of the pipe was 10 inches because any longer it would hit the ground. The fill bolt was super tight but easy to get off with the allen wrench and long tube. I did not remove the bottom cover. I tried to remove the corner clip because the cover was in the way but the clip was snapping off so I did not remove it. I just bent the cover by hand so I can turn the allen wrench removing the fill bolt. Always remove the fill bolt first or else you may have a vehicle with no fluid after draining it you can't remove the fill bolt.

Socket Ratchet
The drain bolt was on super duper tight. So a regular ratchet and extention adapter will not work. You need a long ratchet to give you the torque. I used a rachet that can extend out or go shorter. I extended the rachet to 13 inches. The drain bolt came off no problem. Take off the drain or fill bolt by turning it anti-clockwise!
By the way the fill and drain bolt looks almost similar. The drain bolt has a black marking inside and is magnetic.

Transfer Pump
You need something to pump the gear oil into the fill hole. There is a hand pump you can use and this is what I used :
Manual Transfer Pump | Princess Auto
The writing on that pump said to lubricate the barrel. What I did was stray some oil lubricant inside so the rubber don't stick. So when you pump there is less friction. When pumping the gear oil it came out very easily. This is a high quality pump. The hoses are very strong and there was no kinks as it bend.

One other thing I found out was it made no difference if the car was raised up, no no additional fluid drained out when I put it down to the ground. I also did not torque my bolts since I like to feel how tight they are. I will recheck it later if there is any leaks. For those that want to go ahead and torque it. The fill bolt is impossible though.

You can hit the thanks button on the bottom of this post if this helps you.
 

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Nice writeup. I'm going to do mine soon just because it's 4 years old (only 34000 miles). What fluid did you use?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Nice writeup. I'm going to do mine soon just because it's 4 years old (only 34000 miles). What fluid did you use?
I used Mobil 1 75W-90 (Synthetic Gear Oil). The viscosity is thinner than the one that came in the car but will flow better when colder.
 

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When is it recommended to be doing this, and the rear differential changes? I'm in the similar situation as Road_Rascal, 33,000+ miles, 2012 v6 Sport.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Transfer Case & Rear Differential Service Interval

ApeofDooM, here is what my Owner's Manual Supplement say: (The Canadian manual spell it out where as the American manual does not say even though it is basically the same mechanically.)

Rear Differential (4WD Models Only)
- Replace fluid every 48 months/64,000 km (40,000 miles)

Transfer Case (4WD Models)
-Replace fluid every 48 months/64,000 km (40,000 miles)

* Note: The scheduled maintenance is determined by the odometer reading or the time interval, whichever comes first.

It does not specify engine size so assume it is for both the V6 and 4 cylinder models.
 

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I'm going to tackle the transfer case and rear diff this afternoon in my workshop at the plant I work at (access to a 4 ton floor jack, jack stands plus all my tools are there). I bought 2 bottles of Lucas heavy duty 80w/90 gear oil (cheap @ $9 a bottle) and I already have a transfer pump (I also work on Bobcats and turbo diesel John Deere tractors). I'm interested on how nasty the rear diff fluid comes out- judging by the other posts here.

UPDATE: I went into work 1.5 hours early to get the job done before my shift started. The rear diff fluid was pretty gross with 37,000 miles on the clock. The transfer case looked pretty clean. Fairly easy (but putzy) and I'd like to have a word with the folks who decided putting the exhaust pipe right under the rear diff fill plug was a good idea (not).
 
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