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Cruze Transmission Fluid Change (MANUAL)

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I am not a professional, just working on my car as a hobby*

Hello everybody, I made this account to maybe find the answer for my issue with the transmission fluid.
I own a Chevy Cruze J300 2.0 125hp Diesel. It's production Date is 2009 and it's approval date is 2011.

The Problem with this Modell is, there are 0 Tutorials, or Internet Links to this car. All the Videos on youtube etc. are from newer modells, or those are automatic transmissions.
Since I have a other modell and it's a manual, it's pretty hard to find any solutions, and to be honest, I don't want to go to the mechanics to pay huge amounts of money, which I can save by doing myself.

My car doesn't have a obviously drain/fill plug. I have a clue, how I could drain it/fill it, but that's why I am here to be 100% sure and don't make a mess at the end, or more work than needed. Depends how you see it, "practise makes the master".

Does anyone have the same car, or ever worked on the same car?
I would be gratefull for any help I can get.

Picture1&2:
Don't wanna mess anything up, but is that some kind of overpressure valve? I won't do it now, but I have a guess I can fill the fluid there.

Picture3 is made from side below, not unter the transmission:
I've seen on youtube, some cars simply don't have drain plugs, and drain it by opening the whole transmission metall cover. There is also a small hex bolt, maybe the level? And on top, I am not sure, might that be the magnet for the transmission?

I haven't worked anything around, so as I said I wanted to make sure :D

Sorry for my english, but I hope some people on this english speaking forum might find a answer to that.

Best regards,

CruzeNoob :p

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Do you have a weird grey-market import vehicle? No Diesel engines other than the 2.0 (151 hp, in model years 2014-2015) were sold in North America.
First of all THANK YOU for your reply !!! :D Yes, I live in Austria, and I am not sure if this is some kind of european import version. Mine is exactly a Chevrolet Cruze LS J300 (sedan) and I got the 2.0 VCDI 125hp/92kW Diesel (but buying parts, you only find the 2.0cdi, which is the same from parts)

I am not from america, but I made that discussion, cause there aren't anywhere any videos/tutorials about this version of the car

I really think, I will have to open the pen on the side, and probably drain the oil like that. And I searched the internet a little bit, and the tube coming from the transmission is some kind of overpressure/release valve, I guess I'll need to unscrew it and fill the oil right there.😅
 

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That looks awesome. I wish we had a manual transmission version with the 2.0L. We only had a manual transmission with the second generation 1.8L diesel Cruzes. Only in 2018 was the hatchback and manual transmission available together, which is my ideal combination to look for eventually.

The white plastic cap is a vent. The cap is meant to let air come and go as the fluids heat up and expand or contract without letting moisture in. They are common on rear axles like any Jeep would have. Some 1983 AMC cars used the same cap on top of a clear tube as the fluid reservoir for their hydraulic clutch master cylinders. Those are notorious for cracking and leaking or just sucking air because its too tiny of a volume of reserve fluid. The earlier ones from 1979 to 1982 had a nice big reservoir with a big cap instead.

Hopefully its just the vent for your front transaxle. Its way too tiny to try to fill through that. You're supposed to fill it using a hand pump. The hand pumps have a clear hose that you push into the fill hole and you pump away until fluid starts to flow out the hole. Thats when you know its at the right level and the plug goes back in. Sometimes the gear oil comes in little one liter bottles with the pump built into the top. Too much fluid will create a heck of a mess once it heats up. There should be a fill hole right above the drain hole about two thirds up from the bottom of the transmission.
 

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I own a Chevy Cruze J300 2.0 125hp Diesel. It's production Date is 2009 and it's approval date is 2011.

The Problem with this Modell is, there are 0 Tutorials, or Internet Links to this car. All the Videos on youtube etc. are from newer modells, or those are automatic transmissions.
I think the American Cruzes had a different Bosch version of accessories and injection stuff. I've heard the Turbo is different and all the emissions stuff of course. I've heard it referred to a "LPN 2.0 versus a LUZ 2.0." I think some Opals and other cars used the same version as yours. They share the same long block and internals but not much else.

I would look for a manual for one of the other applications of your engine even if its not a Cruze.

I often ignore recommended fluids for manual transmissions. The biggest pitfall to avoid is damage to the synchronizers. Some fluids attack and damage them especially in newer transmissions. The Borg Warner T5 transmission had a different factory recommended fluid every few years and Tremec has articles about what's really best for them. The factory never really had it figured out. I used the same fluid in Eaton Fuller transmissions because the Eaton official fluid is very expensive and hard to get. Worked perfectly. Those are big dump truck transmissions with similar internals. The NV3550 or NSG370 Jeep stuff also gets clunky and hard to shift if you use the wrong fluid.

The stuff I use is "Pennzoil Synchromesh". The bottle says its intended to replace "GM Part number 12345349 of GM Number 12345577 or Chrysler Part number 4874464." You may have a local product that is equivalent. I suggest looking for the fluid from a 6 speed Jeep 2006 or newer since those are as fluid sensitive and fragile as can be. I consider that Pennzoil fluid backwards compatible with any manual transmission I've encountered. I've used it in lieu of the thick gear oil or ATF in really old stuff with pleasant results.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Please post some more pictures of the whole engine bay and car exterior. Its really cool to see what else is out there.
Thank you ! :D Yes, I will post some more pictures. My car is a little "diffrent" from the others, for example, all the newer cruzes 2013-2015 have their engine oil filter bottom right side of the engine, mine is behind the top side engine at the botom. About the Synchromesh, this type of oil doesn't exist where I live, I bought some Mannol 75W-90 Universal transmission, translaxe etc. oil. We only have the brands like Mannol, LiquyMoly, Castrol, FebiBilstein etc. but no american/english oil brands.

I really hope, someone reading my post will have an answer to all that :D
 

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About the Synchromesh, this type of oil doesn't exist where I live, I bought some Mannol 75W-90 Universal transmission, translaxe etc. oil. We only have the brands like Mannol, LiquyMoly, Castrol, FebiBilstein etc. but no american/english oil brands.
That stuff isn't common here either but its about a third the price of the expensive stuff the dealer sells.

I wouldn't use 75W-90 in anything, especially not a 2014 era transmission. Its too viscous and the generic stuff has way too high a sulfur content. Jeep owners have damaged their transmissions and they shift horribly once that sulfur attacks the little parts that make the gears slow and mesh together. Older transmissions used brass versions that were damaged by some corrosive fluids but not nearly as many as the new plastic stuff. If you don't know for sure that transmission called for 75W-90 then you should assume it needs the new stuff.

The NSG370 six speed is used on all the Jeep stuff 2006 and newer, including the diesel ones. I bet you have those in Australia. Any of your local brands that list compatibility with a Jeep Wrangler or Liberty or whatever would be the same stuff. You can probably just go to a local parts store and use their computers to look up a compatible fluid.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Yes, I already checked, the Mannol 75W-90 is the cheap alternative to go and compatible, but I wouldn't mind to change it more times. And about Opel, yes a lot of parts fit into mine, cause they used for the brands almost the same parts/components.
 

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I wouldn't use 75W-90 in anything, especially not a 2014 era transmission. Its too viscous and the generic stuff has way too high a sulfur content. Jeep owners have damaged their transmissions and they shift horribly once that sulfur attacks the little parts that make the gears slow and mesh together. Older transmissions used brass versions that were damaged by some corrosive fluids but not nearly as many as the new plastic stuff. If you don't know for sure that transmission called for 75W-90 then you should assume it needs the new stuff.
Amsoil has a GL-4 rated gear oil that is 75w90. It's the GL-5 rating that attacks yellow metals. A GL-4 rating is fine.
 

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Hi CruzeNoob,

Hab den gleichen Chevy mit 125PS und bin auch aus Österreich! Vielleicht könnten wir uns mal ein bisschen austauschen über unsere Autos!

LG Marcel
Klar können wir das, aber ich bin halt nur ein Hobby Schrauber der im Rahmen von Lockdown ein neues Hobby gefunden hat. LG CruzeNoob :D
Of course we can, but I'm just a hobbyist who found a new hobby during lockdown. LG Cruze Noob
 

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Hi CruzeNoob,

Hab den gleichen Chevy mit 125PS und bin auch aus Österreich! Vielleicht könnten wir uns mal ein bisschen austauschen über unsere Autos!

LG Marcel


I have the same Chevy with 125hp and I'm also from Austria! Maybe we could talk a bit about our cars!
Welcome Aboard!(y)

Don't forget to introduce yourself and your Cruze here.
 

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Klar können wir das, aber ich bin halt nur ein Hobby Schrauber der im Rahmen von Lockdown ein neues Hobby gefunden hat. LG CruzeNoob :D
Of course we can, but I'm just a hobbyist who found a new hobby during lockdown. LG Cruze Noob
Perfekt super :) ja ich bin auch nicht so drinnen in der Szene, ich will nur ziemlich viel selbst machen.
Welches Getriebeöl hast du denn jetzt genommen? Weil ich hab jetzt ein 75W90 gefunden von Manol und hoff das es das richtige ist 😅 LG Marcel

Perfectly super :) yes, I'm not really part of the scene either, I just want to do quite a bit myself.

What gear oil did you use now? Because I've now found a 75W90 from Manol and I hope it's the right one 😅 LG Marcel
 

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Perfekt super :) ja ich bin auch nicht so drinnen in der Szene, ich will nur ziemlich viel selbst machen.
Welches Getriebeöl hast du denn jetzt genommen? Weil ich hab jetzt ein 75W90 gefunden von Manol und hoff das es das richtige ist 😅 LG Marcel

Perfectly super :) yes, I'm not really part of the scene either, I just want to do quite a bit myself.

What gear oil did you use now? Because I've now found a 75W90 from Manol and I hope it's the right one 😅 LG Marcel
Hallo Marcel, tut mir voll leid für die verspätete Antwort, da ich so ziemlich zurückgetreten bin von dem ganzen. Ja ich habe mir von Amazon das Mannol 75W-90 gekauft. Laut den Specs sollte unser Auto Gl4 benötigen, und Mannol hat dazu Gl4/Gl5. Aber ich habe das mit dem Getriebe eher aufgegeben, hat mir zu viel Kopfweh bereitet ^^. Falls ich dir noch irgendwie helfen konnte, dann bin ich glücklich. LG

Hi Marcel, sorry for the late reply as I've pretty much stepped back from the whole thing. Yes, I bought the Mannol 75W-90 from Amazon. According to the specs, our car should require Gl4, and Mannol has Gl4/Gl5 for that. But I gave up with the gearbox, it gave me too much headache ^^. If I was able to help you in any way, then I'm happy. LG
 
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