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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I got a 2007 Altima SL 3.5L for my son. The car has been sitting in a garage for over a year. The previous owner couldn’t afford to fix it. He gave me the car and I got it running. It runs great! My only concern is the CVT fluid. I have no idea if it’s ever been changed but it doesn’t look super dirty on the dipstick. However with the car sitting for so long I wonder if it could cause some condensation in the fluid. I’m not real familiar with these transmissions and I don’t want to cause more harm than good by changing it. It has 156,000 miles on it. So onto my questions.
1) should I even change it?
2) no drain plug so either I drop the pan or do like stated in the Chilton book and disconnect the transmission cooler hose and run the car wile poring new fluid in until it comes out clean.
3) am I safe replacing it with valvoline full synthetic CVT fluid or should I order Nissan CVT fluid?
I appreciate your all’s help with this. I’ve invested about $2,300 into the car now. I’m very happy with the way it drives so I’m not trying to ruin everything by causing transmission issues lol.
 

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1) should I even change it?
Positively, and going forward at 30K intervals. There are no worries about "ATF soup" on a CVT, it has almost no clutch material to make soup.

2) no drain plug so either I drop the pan or do like stated in the Chilton book and disconnect the transmission cooler hose and run the car wile poring new fluid in until it comes out clean.
I've never been a fan of using the cooler hoses that way, it's hard on the front pump. If possible, you're better served buying a sucker to take it out through the fill tube.


3) am I safe replacing it with valvoline full synthetic CVT fluid or should I order Nissan CVT fluid?
Valvoline is safe but some folks (including one of my customers) say it's noisy just like NS2/NS3. My personal favorites are Eneos and AMSoil. Especially Eneos because it's even the same color as NS3, just much quieter and better specifications.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Awesome thank you so much for your help. I will get a pump like you said and pump it out the fill tube. I love Amsoil and use it in my Frontier. I see if I can get it for the Altima. If not I look for the Eenos. I’ve never heard of it but will check it out. Thanks again.
 

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I used the hose down the fill tube and pumped as much as I could out of the pan on my '09 2.5 coupe . If I remember correctly it was 4 or 5 quarts. I replaced it with Amsoil and then disconnected the hose to the radiator and flushed the trans with it running. I think I ran about 10 quarts total through it. I will say, it made a BIG difference! It shifts much smoother, quieter, and definitely feels like more power. I changed it at just over 120k, not sure if the previous owners changed it or not. FYI, I bought it for 3k with 114k on it. It did have a Carfax but didn't say anything about the CVT being serviced.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I used the hose down the fill tube and pumped as much as I could out of the pan on my '09 2.5 coupe . If I remember correctly it was 4 or 5 quarts. I replaced it with Amsoil and then disconnected the hose to the radiator and flushed the trans with it running. I think I ran about 10 quarts total through it. I will say, it made a BIG difference! It shifts much smoother, quieter, and definitely feels like more power. I changed it at just over 120k, not sure if the previous owners changed it or not. FYI, I bought it for 3k with 114k on it. It did have a Carfax but didn't say anything about the CVT being serviced.
Thanks for the info. Yes ideally I would put some Amsoil in it but it’s just a bit to costly at the moment. I love it in my frontier but I use that like a workhorse lo. So I ordered 12 quarts of Idemitsu CVT fluid NS-2 because from my research they manufacture the Nissan NS-2. I figured I would at least get some new fluid in it now and change it again at my next oil change. That should get most of that old fluid out. I ordered my pump extractor and will do like recommended and pump as much out as I can. Run it for 5,000 miles and do it again, then keep up on it every 20-30 thousand miles.
I did see a very informative video on flushing it via the cooler hose doing it at 2q at a time. Drain 2 quarts than add 2 quarts. Keep doing it until it comes out clean. I might still do this later down the road but for now I’m hoping this will suffice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Wile I have you all here I do have one question/concern. I’m hoping it’s normal or changing the fluid helps but I notice what almost sounds like slipping rubber when I’m in reverse. Slightly again when putting it in drive. It shifts easy and drives very smooth it’s just a bit of a sound. I’ve never driven a CVT transmission before so I really don’t know what’s normal and what’s not. It doesn’t feel like the transmission is slipping at all. Hard to describe other than it sound like wet rubber slipping on a smooth surface if you know that sound lol. Buuurop. It runs great so I’m hoping it’s not serious but as much as it scares me to ask I would like to know your all’s opion. Thanks for all the help.
 

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It doesn’t feel like the transmission is slipping at all. Hard to describe other than it sound like wet rubber slipping on a smooth surface if you know that sound lol. Buuurop. It runs great so I’m hoping it’s not serious but as much as it scares me to ask I would like to know your all’s opion. Thanks for all the help.
It isn't overfilled, is it? Overfilling is a CVT-killer, even a little bit. Now that it's been driven awhile, you should probably double-check.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
It isn't overfilled, is it? Overfilling is a CVT-killer, even a little bit. Now that it's been driven awhile, you should probably double-check.
No it’s not overfilled. I haven’t driven it much as I’ve been doing a bit of repairs on it. I’ve only driven it around the block a few times to warm up the engine. I will check the fluid level again because it might be slightly under filled. I did lose a little when I replaced the radiator. Once the new CVT fluid comes in I’ll change the fluid and be sure I’m properly filled. I’m just unfamiliar with what CVT sounds like normally when switching from Park-reverse-drive and so on. It’s been my biggest worry with taking on this car. With it not drivable when I got it I couldn’t see how the engine and transmission were. Visual inspection can only see so much lol. Now after money is invested I’m finally getting to try it out. Heavily reliable on your all’s experiences and knowledge. What I probably need to do is go test drive a car with a CVT and see what sounds it makes.
 

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Underfilled won't hurt it, I've seen them run a half quart low for years (literally) with no apparent harm. It shouldn't be making rubber squeaks when shifting R -> D -> R. It probably isn't the tranny, check your motor mounts.
 
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