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How to Change the Transmission Fluid in a 2005 Nissan Maxima

by Grace Mclain

The 2005 Nissan Maxima requires a drain and fill process for changing the transmission fluid. Nissan also requires a special type of automatic transmission. The transmission fluid circulates through the transmission and keeps the gears, bearings and seals lubricated. It also keeps the moving parts from burning up and locking up from heat friction.


Drive the 2005 Nissan Maxima around for 10 to 15 minutes to heat the transmission fluid. The hotter the transmission fluid, the more fluid will come out of the transmission.


Open the hood and remove the transmission dipstick. The dipstick in the 2005 Nissan Maxima is located on the passenger-side rear of the engine. Look for the yellow handle that says "automatic transmission fluid." Set the dipstick aside.


Jack up the 2005 Nissan Maxima and put jack stands behind each front wheel. Make sure that the jack stands are securely under the frame rail on both sides of the Maxima. Lower the jack so that the Maxima rests evenly on the jack stands.


Crawl under the driver side of the 2005 Nissan Maxima and find the transmission fluid drain plug. The plug on the 2005 Nissan Maxima is located on the bottom of the transmission.


Slide the fluid catch pan underneath the drain plug on the bottom of the transmission. Unscrew the transmission drain plug with the 1/2-inch drive ratchet and a socket. Finish removing the drain plug with your hand. Wait for all of the transmission fluid to drain out and screw the drain plug back into the bottom of the transmission. Tighten the drain plug with the 1/2-inch drive ratchet and socket.


Slide the transmission fluid catch pan out from under the 2005 Nissan Maxima. Put the funnel into the dipstick tube located on the passenger side rear of the engine. Pour in three quarts of the "Genuine Nissan Automatic Transmission Fluid" or the "Dexron-3" transmission fluid. Put the dipstick back in the tube.


Crank the engine and it run for about two to three minutes. Check the transmission fluid level on the dipstick. The fluid level should be just a little bit below the full mark. Turn off the engine and remove the dipstick again.


Pour in the other half quart of transmission fluid and put the dipstick back in the tube. Close the hood.


Jack up the 2005 Nissan Maxima and pull the jack stands out. Lower the Maxima to the ground.


  • The engine has to be running for a few minutes before you can get an accurate reading of the transmission fluid level on the transmission dipstick.
  • You can buy Genuine Nissan Automatic Transmission Fluid or Dexron-3 automatic transmission fluid at a Nissan dealership or most auto parts stores.


  • Always wear safety glasses when replacing transmission fluid.
  • Always be careful around any vehicle that is sitting on jack stands. The vehicle could fall off of the jack stands if it is not secured properly.

Items you will need

About the Author

Grace Mclain has been writing professionally since 1998. Her articles have appeared on, and LIVESTRONG.COM, and she specializes in automotive and business topics. McIain has a professional writing certificate from JB Hunt in Little Rock, Ark.

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