What kind of transmission fluid does your Cadenza take?

What kind of transmission fluid does your Cadenza take?

In short:
The key is to choose the right quantity, quality, and type of lubricant you will use. There are manual transmission fluids and automatic transmission fluids.

Manual transmission fluid

Manual transmission lubricants can be recognized because of their viscosity (their SAE number) and because of the API GL standards they must meet.

The viscosity of the manual transmission fluid

This information is usually found in the owner's manual. If there is an emergency and you do not know which transmission fluid you should use, you can use a SAE 75W-90 fluid, and your transmission will be safe until you can buy the right one.

Nowadays, there are almost no fluids with only one type of viscosity. Those fluids are called monograde oils. You can find monograde oils that go from SAE 75 to SAE 140.

You will usually find multigrade oils. Multigrade oils can flow as if they had 2 different viscosities since they can be exposed to both low and high temperatures. Because of this, the oil can flow efficiently in both cold and hot temperatures.

Here are some examples of multigrade oils: SAE 75W-80, SAE 75W-90, SAE 80W-90.

API GL standards

You can usually find this information in the owner's manual. If there is an emergency and you do not know which kind of oil you need, you can use a GL-4 oil until you can buy the right one.

Manual transmission fluids meet different API GL standards. The ones currently commercialized are API GL-4 and API GL-5 (the latter is not so common and does not work as a replacement for GL-4). These standards will indicate the properties of the lubricants and we should take them into account when we choose the oil we will use for a refill.

If the recommended standard for your Cadenza is GL-4, you should use a GL-4 oil; this way the bronze synchronizers of your transmission will not be ruined by the sulfur found in GL-5 oils.

Automatic transmission fluid

Automatic transmission fluids are usually called ATF. They are typically red or green to distinguish them from other types of oils.

You must always use the type of oil recommended in the owner’s manual of your Cadenza. If there is an emergency and you do not know which oil you should use, you can use the following list as a guide.

What happens if I do not use the recommended oil for my Cadenza?
Over time, the transmission may get damaged. You will not notice it right away, but you will surely see this after a few thousand miles. You may also notice that the car jerks when you change gears or that such gears feel stiff. If you have an automatic transmission, the clutch pedal may also feel loose when you try to accelerate.
Your car’s fuel consumption may also be increased due to using the wrong type of oil.

The ATF oils currently used are:

  • Dexron III: It was used until 2005. It was created for GM cars.
  • Dexron VI: This product is the enhanced version of the Dexron III oil. It offers high thermal stability, an excellent performance even with low temperatures, and it is a great antioxidant.
  • Mercon V: It was created especially for Ford cars since 1999.
  • ATF+3, ATF+4 (MS 7176 and MS 9602): They are mainly used for Jeep, Chrysler, and Dodge cars. The +3 fluid is oil-based, while the +4 fluid is synthetic. The ATF+4 can also be used in most Dodge, Plymouth, BMW, Mercedes, Volkswagen, and Jeep cars.
  • Highly Friction Modified ATF: This fluid is mainly recommended for Honda, Acura, Toyota, Jeep, Lexus, and Saturn cars with automatic transmission.
  • SP-II, SP-III, SP-IV: These are special oil types for Mitsubishi’s automatic gearboxes.
  • Toyota WS (World Spec): They are characterized by their low viscosity. They were developed for automatic Toyota cars.
  • DSG fluids: They lubricate, trigger and refrigerate the gear components. They are called DCTF. They were created for DSG transmissions of multiple clutches immersed in oil.
  • CVT fluids: These lubricants were designed for CVT transmissions.
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