When Should You Need A Semi Truck Transmission Oil Change?

A very essential maintenance task to keep your semi truck running smoothly is regular oil changes whenever necessary. There are many benefits to your truck while performing this basic function in the long run.

For example, keeping your engine safe, extending your semi truck life, and reducing the number of your semi truck repairs. Due to many causes you need to semi truck transmission oil change. And all of this is related to your semi truck’s health and performance.

When you are driving a long distance then you need to ensure it’s well lubricated. However, to know when and how often you should need to change your semi truck transmission oil. Just dive on.

Semi Truck Transmission Oil change

Why It’s Important To Change Semi Trucks Transmission Oil Timely?

If you change the oil in your semi truck, it extends the life of your vehicle. Oil changes prevent premature wear and tear on your engine parts. Additionally, it’s an essential step in enhancing your safety while driving a semi truck.

When you have Trailer Repair Inc and Tri-County Truck, timely changes to your oil are no hassle. Hire our oil change team to gain peace of mind while driving your heavy vehicle.

How do I know When My Semi Truck Needs an Oil Change?

It is essential to know that each semi truck has its oil consumption dynamics. Some factors to consider are the age and model of your semi truck. You also need to consider the driving conditions the truck goes through while operating and your driving style.

Today’s technology is very good at alerting you when you require an oil change. Your truck’s dashboard will notify you when it’s time for an oil change. However, techs and machines can be fiddly and take improper readings of your engine’s health. So it’s always the best idea to have your truck checked manually.

The conventional but most appropriate way to monitor your truck oil level is by using a traditional dipstick. To wipe your dipstick, use a clean towel then insert it into the oil tank. Here you can see the markings on the dipstick that shows you the minimum and maximum levels. In this way, you can determine when your truck needs an oil change.

See: What to Do, if No Oil on Dipstick

How Often Do I Need To Change My Semi Truck Transmission Oil?

The most frequent maintenance of your truck that you need is an oil change and a battery service. Depending on your usage, you need to change your battery every six months. Your battery takes a hit, and you don’t need it to fail when you stop for fuel.

Transmission fluid on semi truck changes should be done at least every 30,000 to 60,000 miles or once every 2 years or so. ATF is just like motor oil – it needs to be changed periodically along with the filter to keep your car running properly. Consult your vehicle’s owner’s manual to know the correct mileage intervals in the maintenance schedule recommended by the manufacturer.

Drivers always know about their trucks better. Ergo we advised you to schedule earlier than recommended so you can drive your semi truck without oil changes.

Semi Truck Transmission Oil Change Cost

Any repair shop takes a charge for transmission oil changes anywhere between $90 and $150. The dealer will take the same for $150 to $250. The average cost for both automatic and manual transmissions is around $100.

Certainly, if you want to do it by yourself, a new fluid, filter, and gasket will cost $50 and $100. You will drain the old fluid and pour in the new fluid. But we have recommended cleaning the bottom pan and replacing the filter.

Semi Trucks Transmission Oil Capacity

All semi trucks have diesel engines. According to design, diesel engines always need more oil than gasoline engines.

Furthermore, semi trucks contain very large diesel engines which put out 400-500 horsepower. Hence, these transmissions will need a big amount of oil. The amount of essential oil is mostly about 10 gallons (40 quarts). In contrast, your car can hold about a gallon or a little more.

Read: How much does a gallon of oil weigh?

Heavy-Duty Truck Transmission Oil

Heavy-duty transmission oil comes for use in manual transmissions that withstand severe duty and extended drain intervals. Additionally, it’s designed with a synthetic base stock and advanced additives.

So, they can provide incredible cold temperature performance and also can protect your vehicle against oxidation, corrosion, and deposition. Besides, this heavy-duty transmission oil is suitable for use in calling for Mack TO-A Plus, Meritor O-81, MT-1, and International TMS 6816 applications.


Heavy-duty manual transmissions are used in applications where extended service intervals are necessary. Moreover, you can use this oil in a commercial light, on-highway, and heavy-duty trucking, vans, and buses. Likewise, this oil is suitable to use in off-highway industries including, mining, agriculture, and construction.

Note that: Accordingly, this oil is not suitable for hypoid gear applications on final and differential drives.

Semi Truck Transmission Oil change cost

Semi Truck Manual Transmission Fluid

Key performance and safety requirements for manual transmissions include synchronizer durability, compatibility, and shift quality. For accurate shift performance, the transmission synchronizer has to engage smoothly. Additionally, the anti-wear and load-bearing equipment in the transmission fluid must ensure gear protection. Manual transmission fluid, color is amber like engine oil.

The commonly recommended manual transmission oil formulations include 75w90, SAE 90, SAE 80w, and 80w90. Nevertheless, it’s best to use manual transmission fluid in your manual transmissions. Always follow the owner’s manual to use the correct transmission fluid on your semi-truck.

Semi Truck Automatic Transmission Fluid

Automatic transmission fluid usually indicated as ATF ensures the appropriate operation, protection, and performance of your semi-truck automatic transmission.

Usually, this fluid comes with a red color, except for oil specifically designed for continuous variable infections. Most importantly, they provide outstanding friction stability, and oxidation, plus anti-wear properties.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions):

Q. How do you check the transmission fluid in a semi truck?

Improper dimensions in your semi-truck manual transmission can mean serious damage and expense. Below is a brief description of how to check the semi-truck transmission fluid level:

  1. First, you have to park your truck on a level surface.
  2. Your truck rig should be running while checking the level, so use the parking brake.
  3. Pull the dipstick. It should be located behind the engine near the firewall.
  4. Wipe it, replace it, then drag it again.
  5. Using the marks on the bottom of the dipstick, check the transmission fluid level.
  6. With a transmission specialist, a low level should be addressed immediately.
  7. Also, consider the color of the liquid. In particular, you should run clear pink/red. Darkness or traces of debris means it’s time to change the filter.

Take care to use the proper semi-truck automatic transmission fluid. Consult your operator’s manual or a certified technician for exact specifications. Especially if you notice any signs on your semi-truck transmission that may need repair.

Q. What types of transmission fluid are used in semi trucks?

It is important to understand what type of transmission fluid is used in a semi truck. These are the basic reasons why it’s important to make sure you’re using the right type of transmission fluid for your truck.

There are many different types of transmission fluid available in the market and each has its advantages and disadvantages. You can use OEM transmission fluids, universal transmission fluids, synthetic transmission fluids, and heavy-duty transmission fluids.

Q. Do Semi Trucks use mineral or synthetic oil?

Semi trucks use synthetic and mineral gear oils. In reality, depending on the user’s preference and the car’s manual recommendations you can use the oil. Nonetheless, these days, synthetic oil is most commonly used by semi trucks for many reasons. On the contrary, mineral gear oil is suitable for older semi trucks.

Final Word:

Knowing the basic transmission oil change and maintenance is a must for every truck driver. Ultimately, if you can know the changing time of semi truck transmission oil, then you can avoid many problems. Besides this, if you can do it by yourself it’s better.

Overall, it’s best to keep your truck in the right position. From here we hope you can know when you should need a semi truck transmission oil change. For more tips, you can just contact us. Thanks for getting us important.

Read Also:

Transmission Fluid for Chevy

What Is 10W30 Transmission Oil


I am Engr. Z Eusuf Lubricant Specialist, Mechanical Engineer & has been working with engine lubricants for a long time and knows what makes them work best. I can help you find the right oil for your needs, and I have tips on how to keep your engine running at its best.