How to Change the Transmission Fluid on a '95 Ford E350

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Ford Motor Company does not provide a specific time frame for replacing the transmission oil on a 1995 Ford E350. Over time though, the fluid in your Ford's transmission will get filled with small particles shed from internal components, and will lose its clear, red color and become dirty. This, in turn, will accelerate transmission wear and decrease its service life. Keep your Ford's transmission in good running condition by changing the old fluid. You can perform this task in about two hours, using some simple tools.

Things You'll Need

  • Floor jack
  • Jack stands (2)
  • Chocks (2)
  • Goggles
  • Large drain pan
  • Adjustable wrench (optional)
  • Ratchet
  • Ratchet extension
  • Socket
  • Rubber mallet (optional)
  • Shop rags
  • Gasket scraper
  • Solvent
  • New transmission filter
  • Transmission filter seal
  • New oil pan gasket
  • New transmission oil

Draining the Old Transmission Fluid

  • Drive your E350 van for 20 minutes at highway speeds and than park it on level ground. This will help to get rid of most loose particles inside the transmission.

  • Set the transmission to "Neutral" and release the parking brake.

  • Raise the front of your E350 van using a floor jack, support it on jack stands and chock the rear wheels.

  • Put on your goggles, get under your van and set a large drain pan under the transmission oil pan.

  • Remove the drain plug from the transmission oil pan, using an adjustable wrench, if your particular transmission model is equipped with it, and continue with the next steps to remove the pan.

  • Unfasten and remove the side and front oil-pan mounting bolts, using a ratchet, large extension and socket. Loosen the rear pan bolts about four turns.

  • Separate the front of the oil pan from the bottom of the transmission to start draining the oil, if you have not done so yet. Tap the front of the pan with a rubber mallet, if necessary, to break the pan seal loose.

  • Hold the bottom of the oil pan with a pair of shop rags and finish removing the rear pan bolts, using the ratchet, large extension and socket.

  • Lower the pan over the drain pan and drain the remaining of the transmission oil.

  • Remove the pan and pan gasket from the vehicle, unscrew the transmission filter from under the transmission and take the filter off, using the ratchet, ratchet extension and socket.

  • Remove any residual gasket from the oil pan flange and the transmission mating surface, using a gasket scraper; clean the oil pan and transmission mating surface thoroughly with solvent. Let the oil pan and the transmission mating surface air dry completely.

Refilling the Transmission with Oil

  • Install a new transmission filter along with any new seal or gasket that came with the filter. Secure the filter to the transmission, using the ratchet, ratchet extension and socket.

  • Place a new gasket on the oil pan and position the pan under the transmission. Hand-tighten the pan mounting bolts first; next, tighten the bolts evenly and gradually, following a star pattern, using the ratchet, ratchet extension and socket. Avoid over-tightening the bolts to prevent gasket damage.

  • Replace the drain plug, using the adjustable wrench, if your particular transmission model is equipped with it.

  • Lower your E350 van off the jack stands, apply the parking brakes and remove the chocks from the rear wheels.

  • Pour three quarts of the recommended automatic transmission fluid for your particular model through the transmission dipstick tube, using a plastic funnel.

  • Start the engine and shift the transmission through every gear and back to "Park." Idle the engine for about 15 minutes to let the transmission oil reach operating temperature.

  • Pull out the transmission dipstick and wipe the oil from the tip. Insert the dipstick in its tube fully and pull the dipstick back out again.

  • Hold the dipstick horizontally, rest the tip on a clean shop rag and read the oil level. The oil should read between the “Full” and “Add” marks. If necessary, add more transmission oil gradually, to avoid overfilling the transmission, then turn off the ignition.

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References

  • "Ford Vans Automotive Repair Manual"; Ralph Rendina, Robert Maddox and John H. Haynes; 2006
  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images
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