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Discussion Starter #1
2011 malibu 2.4 liter 6 speed auto flex fuel. Thoughts on flushing transmission fluid. I wanna change the fluid since I don't know when it was last. Car fax doesn't have information from previous owner if it was ever done. 119,000 miles almost. I've heard bad stories about flushing the fluid and having issues after it. Would draining out what you can get out be better and filling it?
 

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Drain and fill is the simplest and best DIY. Not many shops (at least professional shops) do full pressure flush now. GM's a no on those. Most professional shops and dealers do a fluid exchange (most call it transmission service or informally a flush) via the cooler lines with a specific machine. GM approves the Bosch J-45096 for this. This exchanges all of the fluid via the transmission's normal pumping pressure.

GM recommends the J-45096 to flush transmissions via the cooler lines. They do not recommend flushing via the fill and drain plug. They also approve the drain and fill method. Nice bulletin here: https://static.nhtsa.gov/odi/tsbs/2017/MC-10159572-9999.pdf
 

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I have not read any reports of a transmission fluid exchange service performed with the proper method and the appropriate machine causing problems after. Same with drain and fill. It's just a balance of risk to benefit. With the dealer service and the right equipment you get it all out. What you don't get is work you did and can control. Is that machine working well? Is the tech hooking it up right? With a drain and fill you get the comfort of work you do and knowing what fluid went in and how much. You just don't get it all out (40% IIRC).
 

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If I had this 2011 with unknown history and the transmission seemed smooth and was operating quietly, I'd drain and fill twice over 2 weeks and call it good. I would also give consideration to just leaving it alone. Take some input from others over the next day. I have a hunch a couple studly community members will share their 2 cents.
 

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Well, after reading all that, I don't feel qualified to offer any input because I have never been considered "studly".

But I did sleep in my own bed last night! :D (Not a hotel . . .)

I have a 2011 V6, which has more clutches and disks than the 4-cylinder version, but that shouldn't change anything AFAIK.

I drained mine for the first time at 104K, then 3 more times at 127K, 132K, and 139K.

The only time I had an issue was on the first time, but there was a catch. My engine was replaced at 94K, and they had to disconnect the trans fluid lines. Apparently, when putting it all back together, it was a bit low and they never topped it off. I don't know if it was low before that, but I don't think it was, as you will see.

Between 94K and 104K, the trans continued to shift fine as it had before. Drained off 4-5 quarts, refilled with the same amount, checked the dipstick on the filler cap (another item found only in the V6 version) and it looked good. While driving it, I noticed that when accelerating at a relatively normal pace, it shifted fine. When accelerating briskly, the 1-2 shift took several seconds and felt like it would "slide" into gear. After a couple of weeks I pulled the dipstick and there was nothing on it. I ended up adding 3 more quarts before it finally registered and it has been perfect since then.

My guess is that the shop didn't realize how much was lost when disconnecting things.
 

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Drain and refill.
If your trans. shows NO sign of leaking just refill with the same amount that came out. I add a touch more myself. GM does NOT recommend flushing transmissions. They have a bulletin on it.
My '09 is at 190k miles now with the original trans. , sold it to a friend. Just got a '15 fleet car from wife's job w/77k on it. Fluid was dark. Did 2 drain/refill on it, will do another on the next oil change. Basically the same scenario and source when I got my '09 and it's still going.
 

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They have a bulletin on it.
And here it is: https://static.nhtsa.gov/odi/tsbs/2017/MC-10159572-9999.pdf

from page 2 (lays out the drain and fill, recommended flushing method, and states all other flushing methods are not recommended):
Transmission fluid should only be replaced by draining and refilling following procedures in Service Information (SI).
Approved Transmission Flushing Tool (Transmission Cooler Only) The Automatic Transmission Oil Cooler Flow Check and Flush Tool IS recommended for GM vehicles. Refer to Transmission Fluid Cooler Flow Check and Flush in the Service Information website using the J-45096.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thank you everyone. Noticed today when I came to a complete stop it quickly my rpms went up 3-4 hundred and could hear the engine reving. Is that normal? It was within first couple minutes driving. Kinda felt that the car lunged forward but I did have to brake harder than I like to.I was pretty sure I just shifted into second then had to come to complete stop quickly. Car pulled out in front of me before light
 

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If your manually shifting the trans and sudden stop it will down shift itself and it will be delayed or ''funny'' acting. Leave it in drive for normal driving for maximum trans life. I just did a tune in my car and tune included a trans reprogramming. I like it, plus auto stop is gone now. No need to manually shift in normal no snow driving anymore.
 
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