Question about transmission fluid level for 4T45-E transmissions ('00 GA V6)


New member
I have both of my transmission lines disconnected from the radiator (I'm installing a new one). I'll be replacing the filter and cleaning the pan with brake fluid as well as installing a new gasket.

I read this great post which says:
a) As level as possible, raise front wheels off the ground (preferable lift/hoist or jack-stands); IMPORTANT: vehicle must be kept as level as possible on the lift/hoist/jack-stands.
i) Adding Transaxle Fluid: SEE notes above FIRST! Raise front wheels off ground before starting engine to idling condition ONLY!

I'm confused here. How can the car be as level as possible if the front wheels are off of the ground? Shouldn't I just lift the entire car up so that all 4 wheels are up as level as possible?

My next question is about how to know the fluid level given this info:
j) Proceed to add fluid at the transaxle top vent cap location in half-liter (1 pint) increments until the hydraulic fluid drains through the fluid check hole/port. Pause, or wait, fifteen (15) to thirty (30) seconds between incremental fluid additions to observe fluid drainage from screw check hole/port. Allow fluid to finish draining through the fluid check hole/port; small amount of seeping/dripping fluid is OK.
k) Once fluid drainage is observed, allow drainage to complete down to small seepage/dripping condition.

I assume that this means the fluid is FULL since he doesn't say after that to empty it.

This seems pretty simple, I'm surprised. I just have to unscrew the level plug while the car is running to know that it's full.
So basically what I need to do then is take off the drain plug to drain fluid while the car is off, replace filter & gasket, put it back on and add about 9 quarts of fluid since pan removal is 7.5qts and I've already lost some from my transmission lines. Turn on the car, let it run for about 30 seconds and then unscrew the level plug until it's only dripping. Am I right?

Also, I'll have to remove my throttle body or MAF at the least to get to the transmission fluid cap, can a car really run without that plugged in? I thought it makes the engine turn off or something.

As always thank you for the help.


Staff member
The vehicle has to be up in the air and level to access the port that the fluid is supposed to be level with. How you do that is up to you, a lift, 4 jack stands, etc. You use a long transmission funnel you do not disconnect the MAF. Put in about 1 quart less than the max and let it fully warm up. Then you remove the plug and bring the level up to the proper amount.