How to Check the Fluids in a 1997 Ford Ranger Manual Transmission


Check the manual transmission fluid level in your 1997 Ford Ranger at least twice annually to make sure the transmission isn't losing fluid. Even a small fluid leak can be debilitating to the vehicle over time. The Ford Ranger's manual transmission does not have a dipstick like automatic transmissions; you'll have to get underneath the truck to check the fluid. Ford recommends using only Motorcraft Mercon automatic transmission fluid in your Ranger's manual transmission.

Things You'll Need

  • Creeper
  • Socket wrench set
  • Flashlight
  • Funnel (if necessary)
  • Motorcraft Mercon automatic transmission fluid (if necessary)
  • Park your Ranger on perfectly level ground. If you park on a slope, you will not be able to get an accurate reading. Let the truck cool down for at least 30 minutes.

  • Approach the right side of the manual transmission case on a creeper. You'll see two large bolt plugs. The bottom plug is the drain plug; leave it alone. The top plug is the filler plug. This is the plug you will remove to check the manual transmission fluid level.

  • Remove the bolt filler plug with a socket wrench. Match up the head with your socket set to determine the appropriate size. Do not lose the bolt filler plug.

  • Shine a flashlight into the hole. The fluid should reach the bottom edge of the filler hole; if the fluid level is lower, add enough fluid to bring it to the proper level. Add sufficient fluid through a funnel, in very small increments; this prevents you from overfilling the case, which can cause damage. When the fluid reaches the bottom edge, replace the bolt filler plug.

Tips & Warnings

  • Wear old work clothes when working under the Ranger.
  • Letting the vehicle cool down sufficiently reduces the risk of burns.

Related Searches


  • "1997 Ford Ranger Owner's Manual"; Ford Motor Company; 1996
  • Photo Credit Images
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