How to Change the Transmission Oil on a John Deere

by Clayton Yuetter

Changing the transmission oil in a John Deere tractor is part of the recommended maintenance that you should carry out every after 1,500 hours of operation. It may also be necessary if the tractor feels sluggish as it moves between the gears, especially reverse. Also, transmission oil that appears unusually dark on the dipstick or sight tube can suggest that it's time to change the transmission oil. Failure to remove old oil can lead to excessive wear on the tractor's engine.

Park the John Deere on a level surface. Check the level of transmission oil in the tractor using the proper dipstick or sight tube. Add more oil, if needed, to reach the maximum fill level.

Run the engine for five minutes to warm the oil. Stop the engine and recheck the transmission oil level. Add more, if necessary. Make sure the parking brake is engaged.

Place a bucket or pan under the engine of the tractor. Remove the drain plugs located on the bottom of the transmission housing, differential housing and clutch housing by turning them counterclockwise with the adjustable wrench. Drain the oil into the container.

Reinstall the drain plugs with the adjustable wrench once all the oil has drained.

Add fresh transmission oil until the dipstick or sight tube indicates that it is has reached the maximum level. Do not overfill, as this can lead to leaks.

Start the engine and let it run for five minutes. Check for leaks. Recheck the oil level and add more if necessary.


  • check Follow John Deere's recommendations for transmission oil to minimize clutch chatter.
  • check Change the transmission oil after the tractor's first 50 hours of operation.
  • check If you haven't changed the filter in a while, a good time to do so is when the transmission oil is draining.


  • close Do not mix transmission oils of different specifications in your tractor, as doing so can lead to excessive wear and clutch chattering.

Items you will need

About the Author

Clayton Yuetter has worked as a professional writer since 1999. His writing has appeared in many journals and websites such as The Milk House, The Country Folks, Progressive Dairyman and Three Times Daily. He received a Master of Arts in writing at the National University of Ireland, Galway.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera heavy construction equipment image by palms from