Properly maintaining your car’s fluid levels is an easy way to help ensure that your vehicle runs smoothly between service visits.
Before checking, always stop the engine, remove the key from the ignition switch, set the parking brake and let the engine cool down completely. Take care not to spill any engine oil, engine coolant, brake fluid or any other fluid on hot engine components.
Use your Owner’s Manual as a guide for more details and to locate specific engine parts.
When: Every Fuel Stop. Park your vehicle on a level surface and stop the engine. Pull out the dipstick, wipe it clean, and insert it again until it stops. Pull out the dipstick again and check the oil level on it. If it is below the lower level, add oil to bring it up to the upper level. Important: Use only engine oil with the grade and viscosity recommended in your Owner’s Manual.
When: Every Fuel Stop. Check your car’s coolant level on the outside of the reservoir while the engine is cool. If the level is close to or lower than the “LOW” mark, add coolant up to the “FULL” mark. If the reserve tank is empty, remove the radiator cap (Do not open when the radiator is hot!) and refill as required. After filling the reserve tank and the radiator, reinstall the caps and check that the rubber gasket inside the radiator cap is in the proper position. Important: Use the coolant recommended in your Owner’s Manual only. Use of other coolants may result in corrosion.
Automatic Transmission Fluid
When: Monthly. (Automatic transmission equipped models only.) Drive several miles to raise the temperature of your car’s transmission fluid up to normal operating temperatures (140 to 176 degrees is normal). Park on a level surface and set the parking brake. Shift the selector level in each position. Then shift it in the “P” position, and run the engine at idling speed. Pull out the dipstick and check the fluid level on the gauge. If it is below the lower level on the “HOT” side, add the recommended automatic transmission fluid up to the upper level. Important: If you don’t have time to warm up the automatic transmission, check to see that the fluid level is between the lower level and the upper level on the “COLD” side. If it is below that range, add fluid up to the upper level. Be careful not to overfill.
Manual Transmission Oil
When: Monthly. (Manual transmission equipped models only.) Park your vehicle on a level surface and stop the engine. Pull out the dipstick, wipe it clean, and insert it again. Pull out the dipstick again and check the oil level on it. If it is below the lower level, add oil to bring the level back up to the upper level.
When: Monthly. Check the fluid level on the outside of the reservoir. If the level is below “MIN,” add the recommended brake fluid to “MAX.” Important: Use only brake fluid from a sealed container. Never mix different brands of brake fluid together. Brake fluid absorbs moisture from the air. Any absorbed moisture can cause a dangerous loss of braking performance. Take care not to splash brake fluid over any painted surfaces or rubber parts, as damage may result. If your vehicle requires frequent refilling, there may be a leak. Have the vehicle checked at your local Bertera Service Center.