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PTU Drain and Fill.

Posted: Wed Nov 20, 2019 9:59 am
by tsuggs124
I have a new to me 2014 Taurus PI AWD with the 3.7. Car has just over 67,000 miles on it. I went to a Ford dealership where I was initially told it would be 1 hour of labor to drain and fill the rear diff and front PTU. All of the sudden I am being told it's actually a 4 hour job to fill the PTU because the cat has to be removed and a whole bunch of other stuff. I though the procedure was as simple as locating drain/fill hole, suck out all the old fluid, replace new fluid through same hole. Am I wrong in that procedure? Needless to say I declined the service for now. I will visually confirm that the drain/fill hole is inaccessible before I throw that kind of money at it. I cannot imagine you guys are paying 4 hours every 30,000 miles to change your ptu fluid. Any info would be appreciated.

Re: PTU Drain and Fill.

Posted: Wed Nov 20, 2019 2:23 pm
by andynumbers
The PI's have a cooler attached to the PTU which makes it a tad more difficult to do a drain and fill compared to civilian models. The cooler temperature sensor bracket actually blocks access to the fill hole. Additionally, the fill hole has a temperature sensor in it. I'm guessing the dealer wants to follow the service manual which involves removing the cat in order to access and remove the temperature bracket, which then allows access to the fill plug.

There are two possible workaround methods to avoid doing all of this. Drain through the drain hole normally and then either refill through the vent tube (you'll need to extend the vent tube to do this, by replacing with a longer fuel hose) or you can refill through the drain hole by using a check valve and then quickly replacing it with the plug. (You'll lose about 1 oz of fluid when quickly switching from the valve to the plug.

I would ask around local independent shops to see if they will do this. Dealers love to give excuses to not touch the PTU.

Re: PTU Drain and Fill.

Posted: Wed Nov 20, 2019 6:13 pm
by FLZ_Boy
As mentioned above, regarding the vent tube modification, you can run a search on the ford explorer forums regarding that mod. Also, there is a couple of youtubers showing the process.

I bought a 5/15" connector with a clear 5/16" tube to help the with the refilling process. When you begin pushing the 75w-140 (I'm assuming you are using the 32 oz bottles) through the tube, you will eventually have to tilt the bottle at angle to allow some of the oil to backflow into the bottle. When you get experienced, it should rake 45 minutes to drain and fill through the vent tube.

Re: PTU Drain and Fill.

Posted: Thu Nov 21, 2019 8:40 am
by tsuggs124
Thanks guys. I am going to have a mechanic friend of mine look at it and see if the check valve option is doable for him and if not I will look at talking to independent shops. Thanks for the info.