2013 Nissan Altima Transmission Fluid and Filter Change
In order to keep your 2013 Nissan Altima running in top condition, it is important to follow the manufacturer’s recommended service intervals. This includes changing the transmission fluid and filter at certain points throughout the vehicle’s life. Luckily, this process is relatively simple and can be completed in a matter of hours. Here at our shop, we use only Genuine Nissan Parts to ensure quality and compatibility with your car. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us today. We would be happy to help!
2013 Nissan Altima Transmission Overview
The 2013 Nissan Altima is a family sedan with fuel efficiency in mind. The engine has been designed to save gas and the transmission is constantly being monitored in order to keep both gasoline consumption and noise production to a minimum.
Since the car is so fuel-efficient, it does not need a lot of upkeep. In fact, there are only two scheduled maintenance tasks for this vehicle — an oil change every 7,5000 miles and a transmission fluid/filter change every 30,000 miles. Keep reading to learn more about Nissan’s recommended maintenance schedule for your Altima’s transmission system.
What Does Transmission Fluid Do?
Transmission fluid lubricates moving parts within the transmission. It also acts as a coolant. Lubrication is important for proper function and longevity of the transmission components.
Additionally, transmission fluid regulates the temperature of components within the transmission.
In a conventional automatic transmission, the transmission fluid is pumped from a reservoir by an oil pump to various parts of the transmission as needed. The entire process is controlled by a torque converter that diverts some power to run the pump and directs it to specific parts as needed. In turn, these parts move with respect to each other based on their proximity to one another.
The most common problem with transmissions is overheating due to low or dirty fluid levels which causes wear and possible damage to internal components.
Replacement fluids are generally compatible with all manufacturers provided they share similar characteristics with their branded product (i.e., viscos). However there are universal specifications for fluid.
Best Transmission Fluid for a 2013 Nissan Altima:
According to the owner’s manual, the manufacturer recommends the use of Genuine NISSAN Super Heavy Duty ATF.
The car should not be driven until the transmission fluid has been changed out.
The Nissan Altima is a front wheel drive vehicle, which means that it does not have a rear differential, and only the front wheels receive power from the engine.
The transmission fluid in a 2013 Nissan Altima is red in color and is responsible for transporting lubrication throughout the transmission system of the car.
When to check transmission fluid in the 2013 Nissan Altima
The transmission fluid in a 2013 Nissan Altima should be changed at least once every 40,000 miles or when the “Change Transmission Fluid” light goes on in the vehicle. The procedure below provides steps for this.
How do You Check Transmission Fluid?
Transmission fluid is the lifeblood of your car’s automatic transmission. Fluid level should be checked regularly (typically, every oil change), and maintained at the required levels to ensure proper performance.
The most common location for checking transmission fluid in most cars is on top of the radiator cap or between the cap and the hood. Check your owner’s manual for exact directions. Typically you’ll see a dipstick (long skinny stick with markings) leading down into where you check the fluid level.
The fluid itself will look red or pinkish brown, although different manufacturers use different colors – some even use black or green! But whatever color it is, if it smells burnt, has particles floating around in it, or has a burnt metallic scent, you should bring it to your mechanic’s attention.
2013 Nissan Altima Transmission fluid dipstick location
The fluid dipstick for the Nissan Altima is located on the drivers side of the vehicle. You will need to carefull pull back the rubber plug, remove the stick and wipe it clean with a paper towel or rag. The transmission fluid level should be between the two marks on top of the stick. Once you have replaced it back into its location, check underneath your engine for any leaks. These are normally indicated by a puddle or trails of liquid under your car.
Steps for changing 2013 Nissan Altima Transmission Fluid:
Check your transmission fluid and filter condition regularly – at least once a month and before any long road trips. It’s easier to check the fluid level when it’s warm outside, since heat causes the oil to expand. Make sure that you use the transmission dipstick (or stick) for checking; failure to do so may lead to an incorrect reading.
What You Will Need:
- Transmission Fluid (you can find this in either a red or pink bottle at your local auto parts store).
- A rag.
- An adjustable wrench or a strap wrench for removing the drain plug on the bottom of the power steering reservoir, allowing you access to check your transmission fluid. A strap wrench just provides extra grip.
- A replacement gasket for the transmission filter, otherwise your car will leak transmission fluid from this area.
What to Do:
- Make sure that you have enough room around your vehicle to work comfortably; also make sure that the ground is flat and level where you plan on working (this makes it easier to change or check the transmission fluid).
- Remove your cap/dipstick – there should be either a screw or clip holding it in place; if it’s sealed with rubber, let some air pressure into the container before removing the stick completely (otherwise oil may drip out).
- Wipe off all excess dirt or other contaminants from your dipstick using your rag (you can use soap and water if you want).
- Put the transmission fluid bottle underneath where your cap/dipstick was; carefully pull out your dipstick (or screw off the cap), wipe it clean, then reinsert it into the clean container (if your car has an automatic transmission, you will need to put 1-2 quarts of oil in here to make the reading accurate; it’s best to take this amount from a separate container – don’t try adding it directly to this one).
- Remove your transmission filter (this normally involves taking off some other parts first); while doing so, be cautious not to allow any dirt or other contaminants into the engine bay.
- Replace old gasket new one if applicable(remove old one while changing filter) – make sure that the new gasket seats completely in the groove (otherwise your transmission fluid won’t stay sealed).
- Replace drain plug
- Lower car back onto ground
- Pour oil into dipstick tube, check level
- Put cap/dipstick back in place – wipe clean if needed
- Start Car
Use 2 quarts of new transmission fluid (which should be about half of what is in each container) to completely refill your transmission pan until it meets its maximum recommended volume capacity. Replace any caps that are used to cover holes within the unit before wiping around them with a clean rag so no dirt or debris can enter these areas later when you drive your car again.