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How to Change Transmission Fluid in a 2002 Ford Ranger

by Matt Scheer

The 2002 Ford Ranger requires a transmission fluid change every two years or 30,000 miles. Changing the oil involves emptying the old fluid, changing the filter and putting in new fluid. The Ranger takes type H transmission fluid; you can substitute Mercon or Mercon V. Completing regular maintenance keeps the engine lubricated and running smoothly. Neglecting this job can result in costly damage. The maintenance requires only a few tools and about an hour.

Prop the front of the vehicle up on a pair of jacks to reach the underside of the engine easily. Slide underneath the truck and locate the transmission drain pan in the center of the engine, just off to the driver's side. It looks like a large metal box surrounded by bolts. Place a pan with a minimum 4-qt. capacity underneath the drain pan to catch transmission fluid as it drains.

Loosen and remove the drain bolt located on the pipe in front of the drain pan using a 1/2-inch socket wrench. Wait for the transmission fluid to finish draining into the pan below, approximately 10 to 15 minutes. Remove all the bolts but one around the drain pan and wait for the fluid to stop running into the pan. Place a hand to steady the drain pan and remove the final bolt. Tip the remainder of the fluid into the drain pan. Wash the drain pan and bolt.

Remove the transmission filter located beneath the drain pan by loosening the three bolts with the 3/8 inch socket wrench. Place the new filter in its spot. Reattach the drain pan and the drain bolt. Lower the truck from the jacks.

Pop the hood by pulling the engine release lever underneath the steering column. Locate the yellow dipstick that rests above the drain pan. Pull out the dipstick and place a funnel in the tube. Pour in 3 qts. of type H transmission fluid. Replace the dipstick and close the hood.

Run the car for 5 to 10 minutes and open the hood again. Pull out the dipstick and check the level. It should be at the maximum line. Add any transmission fluid needed with the funnel until the level on the dipstick reads correctly.

Items you will need

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About the Author

Matt Scheer began writing professionally in 2005. His work has appeared in "The Daily Texan" and "The New York Tribune." Scheer holds a B.A. in English and a B.A. in history, both from the University of Texas. He is also a certified Yoga teacher and Web designer.

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