You should consider changing the automatic transmission fluid and filter on your Mercedes-Benz every 60,000 to 80,000 miles. Years ago Mercedes-Benz claimed that these transmissions were sealed for life and didn’t require any oil change. But their recommendation on transmission fluid has changed and now they recommend that you do change the fluid.
Many owners and mechanics believe that if you change the transmission fluid you may experience transmission problems. The argument that is used to support that claim is that the transmission will act up because the viscosity of the old oil has changed compared to the new. Or that there may be particles that will be dislodged inside the transmission which can clog the new filter.
Our recommendation is to change the transmission fluid to extend the life of the transmission.
Required Transmission Oil
You will need 10 quarts of transmission fluid. Mercedes-Benz recommends that you use the MBZ ATF 236.14 transmission fluid. The only problem is that that oil sells for around $20 per liter.
Transmission Fluid Alternative
If you are looking for an alternative to Mercedes-Benz oil, we would recommend the Valvoline MaxLife or the Shell 134 transmission fluid. It is important to understand that Mercedes-Benz doesn’t have these two fluids on their approval list. That doesn’t mean that these fluids don’t meet the required specification. In fact, the same 722.6 transmission is used in many Dodge cars, and Dodge does use the Valvoline MaxLife in the same transmission. We have also used the Valvoline MaxLife in multiple Mercedes-Benz cars and have not experienced any problems. Valvoline Maxlife says that their oil is suitable for Mercedes-Benz, and Shell states that it meets the MB specs.
Tools & Parts Needed
In order to change the transmission fluid oil you will need:
- 5 mm Allen wrench
- Mercedes-Benz 722.6 Transmission Fluid Dipstick Tool
- Transmission Filler Lock Pin
- Mercedes-Benz Transmission Filter & Gasket Kit 722.6xx 1400095
We would recommend that you use a complete kit that includes the filter and gasket.
Step by step DIY instructions on how to change the automatic transmission fluid and filter.
- Set your emergency brakes. Jack up the car on the front if you are doing this job at home. Not necessary to jack up all four wheels.
- Remove engine undercover. The panels under the engine are held in place with 8 mm bolts.
- Remove the 5 mm bolt under the transmission using an allen wrench. Be careful as the fluid may still be hot.
- Drain oil from the torque converter and the transmission oil pan. Not all models have a torque converter drain bolt. The access hole for the torque converter was removed from the transmission casing in the early 2000 models. Let the oil drain for at least five minutes or until no oil drips from the transmission pan.
- Remove all the oil pan bolts. Lower the oil pan but be careful because you may still have oil that is still in the pan.
- Pull down on the transmission oil filter.
- Install new oil filter by pushing it up.
- Clean the pan and the magnet if your car has one.
- Install the new gasket and the oil pan.
- Install the drain plug.
- Fill the transmission with 4 quarts of oil. Drive the car for 5 min.
- Check the automatic transmission fluid using special Mercedes-Benz transmission dipstick which you could get on Amazon. Read this article if you need to know How to Check the Automatic Transmission Fluid.
Transmission pan bolts: 8Nn.
Drain bolt: 20Nm