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Old 06-11-2014, 07:29 AM   #1
SkyPiGG
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Transmission Overheat Message Silverado

After I saw some message on this board about transmission temperature, I called my Chevy dealer and spoke to the transmission mechanic about transmission fluid that could withstand hotter temperatures, and when he thought I should have the fluid changed. He said that he didn't know of a synthetic fluid that would make a noticeable difference, and that the change interval would be dependent on how frequently I tow. I told him that I go on 6 trips a year logging about 1000 miles, and that the average temp was about 180. He said 50 was probably ok, but if I was concerned about it, I could do it at 30.



He also pointed out that there's an overheat message in the Silverado, but that he didn't know at what temperature the message is displayed at. The manual doesn't say either. Anyone know? I was concerned because when I am in bumper to bumper traffic, the transmission temperature creeps up significantly over 200 degrees. Does anyone know the best way to tow in stop n go traffic? Do you just keep up with everyone else, or is it better on the transmission to accelerate slowly and just creep along hoping not to have to stop again?







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Old 06-11-2014, 09:01 AM   #2
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I had my trans temp up to 218 towing in the Sierra Nevadas and I got no warning lights about my trans temp. Now my truck is a ram not chevy, but trans. temp fluid is the same right????? Just FYI.

Also, though, I've never seen my trans temp get anywhere near 200 in stop and go traffic. Interesting, I will have to pay more attention next time while towing through Los Angeles.
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Old 06-11-2014, 02:31 PM   #3
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When you get stuck in traffic there is not much you can do except plan for it to happen. I doubt the dealer will change/upgrade anything. I would say you have acouple things you can do. Check with a aftermarket tranny shop and advise him whats going on and how and what your towing. There are aftermarket larger tranny coolers. I currently have one and even a electric fan connected to it. There are larger tranny pans they hold more oil and have fins. Lastly get a bigger truck that has more pulling/cooling abilities.
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Old 06-11-2014, 04:56 PM   #4
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I believe the trans hot warning comes on at 250, but that is time to stop immediately. 180-200 is pretty much normal during towing especially in traffic where air flow is limited or going over hills. I wouldn't worry too much about 200 or even 210. If you start gettin above that for any length of time change the fluid as it will start to degrade. If you add a deeper pan with cooling fins add higher fluid capacity it helps. As for in traffic, you want to keep airflow going through the cooler an eliminate starts as much as possible, starting from a dead stop generates a lot of heat.
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Old 06-11-2014, 05:54 PM   #5
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I always thought this chart was interesting. Not sure how accurate it is.

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Old 06-12-2014, 02:49 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SkyPiGG View Post
After I saw some message on this board about transmission temperature, I called my Chevy dealer and spoke to the transmission mechanic about transmission fluid that could withstand hotter temperatures, and when he thought I should have the fluid changed. He said that he didn't know of a synthetic fluid that would make a noticeable difference, and that the change interval would be dependent on how frequently I tow. I told him that I go on 6 trips a year logging about 1000 miles, and that the average temp was about 180. He said 50 was probably ok, but if I was concerned about it, I could do it at 30.
I've asked the same question both at dealer and online, got same responses. Hard to pin down a response based on long-term use experience, or from a scientific / engineering perspective. That being said ... here is my short-term experience!

When starting to tow with my '09 Silverado, I did the tranny fluid & filter a bit early at 40k miles. I plan to do a full flush soon with 30k miles on this tranny fluid. When towing, mine runs in the mid-190's, spiking to 205 to 210 in stop & go traffic.

Interesting to note, in December the truck was in the shop (lifter failed, chewed up lobe on camshaft, thankfully just inside warranty!) and the Chevy dealer gave me a 2014 Silverado to drive while mine was in the shop. It was configured as a basic model work-truck and no tranny cooler. Tranny temps consistently ran high 190s to 200 degrees. I'm wondering if that is standard for a tranny without a cooler (not towing!).

Hope it helps with the conversation.
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Old 06-12-2014, 03:05 AM   #7
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If you are worried about temps in you trans...a switch to Syn is a must. Your dealer's trans tech probably just hasn't tried it as GM doesn't make a Syn trans fluid. Dex 6 is not Synthetic. On my last 2 Allisons I have flushed the dino oil from them at the 2500 mile mark. With the dino while towing, the trans temp would go to the 180s. After the switch to a full Synthetic...the temps never g over 145. Your 6 spd is not an Allison, so it may be a bit different. I had an 09 gasser with the same 6 spd and the temps would run around 210 while towing in the hills. I was told the overheat msg would appear around 275...which in my opinion is too late.
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Old 06-12-2014, 10:44 AM   #8
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Thanks for all the responses. I'm going to have my fluid changed at 30k and see if they have a synthetic alternative.



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Old 06-12-2014, 11:47 AM   #9
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If you are worried about temps in you trans...a switch to Syn is a must. Your dealer's trans tech probably just hasn't tried it as GM doesn't make a Syn trans fluid. Dex 6 is not Synthetic. On my last 2 Allisons I have flushed the dino oil from them at the 2500 mile mark. With the dino while towing, the trans temp would go to the 180s. After the switch to a full Synthetic...the temps never g over 145. Your 6 spd is not an Allison, so it may be a bit different. I had an 09 gasser with the same 6 spd and the temps would run around 210 while towing in the hills. I was told the overheat msg would appear around 275...which in my opinion is too late.
MGUAY, GM does make a synthetic oil for the Allisons it's call Transynd. I have it in my Allison and have noticed a decrease in the temps of about 10 degrees. Check it out...FYI.
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Old 06-12-2014, 01:36 PM   #10
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MGUAY, GM does make a synthetic oil for the Allisons it's call Transynd. I have it in my Allison and have noticed a decrease in the temps of about 10 degrees. Check it out...FYI.

TranSynd is not made by GM. It is made by Allison and GM refuses to use it. I have heard of the 10deg decrease with it and decided to go the Amsoil route which is in the 20-40 deg cooler range.

Check this thread out http://www.duramaxforum.com/forum/tr...-transynd.html
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Old 06-12-2014, 02:31 PM   #11
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TranSynd is not made by GM. It is made by Allison and GM refuses to use it. I have heard of the 10deg decrease with it and decided to go the Amsoil route which is in the 20-40 deg cooler range.

Check this thread out http://www.duramaxforum.com/forum/tr...-transynd.html
Damn you! You know how long it's going to take me to read all of that.......

Coming up on 150,000 kms so about time I did the tranny fluid.
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Old 06-13-2014, 11:06 AM   #12
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Actually the oil is mfg by Castrol for Allison but thanks for the link. Very informative. Check on that Amzoil because it does not meet the specs to be run in the Allisons even if the can says it is "recommended" by Amzoil.
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Old 06-13-2014, 12:56 PM   #13
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Actually the oil is mfg by Castrol for Allison but thanks for the link. Very informative. Check on that Amzoil because it does not meet the specs to be run in the Allisons even if the can says it is "recommended" by Amzoil.
To be clear (and I just read that entire thread over the last couple of days), Amsoil never paid to have their fluid tested by Allison. It isn't that it didn't meet the specs, it is that it was never tested. It may or may not work just as well as the Transdyn, it just is not Allison certified.

I'm thinking I will do the transdyn once I find a source up here.
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Old 06-14-2014, 03:48 AM   #14
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Both of you are right about Amsoil not being "certified" by Allison...however it is made to the TES-295 spec. Amsoil didn't spend the $$$$$$$ to get it certified. I have run it in the last two with no problems. From what I have read at the DF it is a 50/50 TranSynd or Torque Drive.

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Old 06-14-2014, 04:23 AM   #15
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X2 on Torque Drive. Been using it for 10 years on 2 trucks, 200k combined towing miles. Good stuff.
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Old 06-14-2014, 04:24 AM   #16
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Actually the oil is mfg by Castrol for Allison but thanks for the link. Very informative. Check on that Amzoil because it does not meet the specs to be run in the Allisons even if the can says it is "recommended" by Amzoil.
"Castrol" does not make anything.

Castrol is a brand manufactured by BP.
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Old 06-14-2014, 08:50 AM   #17
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"Castrol" does not make anything.

Castrol is a brand manufactured by BP.
Thanks, that was of great value.
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Old 06-15-2014, 12:22 PM   #18
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Thanks, that was of great value.
Value is subjective. Accuracy however, is not.
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Old 06-15-2014, 02:00 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by SkyPiGG View Post
After I saw some message on this board about transmission temperature, I called my Chevy dealer and spoke to the transmission mechanic about transmission fluid that could withstand hotter temperatures, and when he thought I should have the fluid changed. He said that he didn't know of a synthetic fluid that would make a noticeable difference, and that the change interval would be dependent on how frequently I tow. I told him that I go on 6 trips a year logging about 1000 miles, and that the average temp was about 180. He said 50 was probably ok, but if I was concerned about it, I could do it at 30.

He also pointed out that there's an overheat message in the Silverado, but that he didn't know at what temperature the message is displayed at. The manual doesn't say either. Anyone know? I was concerned because when I am in bumper to bumper traffic, the transmission temperature creeps up significantly over 200 degrees. Does anyone know the best way to tow in stop n go traffic? Do you just keep up with everyone else, or is it better on the transmission to accelerate slowly and just creep along hoping not to have to stop again?

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Back to the OP's original question, according to the OBD codes repair site, the code P0218 which is "transmission overheat condition", the transmission overheat light will illuminate at 290 degrees and the code will be stored in the OBD databank.

Here's the link to that discussion. The site has some very interesting "didn't know that" information for anyone who may be interested.

http://www.obd-codes.com/p0218
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Old 06-15-2014, 05:16 PM   #20
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Back to the OP's original question, according to the OBD codes repair site, the code P0218 which is "transmission overheat condition", the transmission overheat light will illuminate at 290 degrees and the code will be stored in the OBD databank.

Here's the link to that discussion. The site has some very interesting "didn't know that" information for anyone who may be interested.

http://www.obd-codes.com/p0218
290!!!! wow, I guess when you see that light it should say contact your nearest tranny shop. I monitor my tranny temps constantly while towing so I know I would never see that light, I would have stopped about 50-60 degrees before that.
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