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GMTechBernard, Shop Foreman
Category: Saturn
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Experience:  GM
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2004 saturn ion: u check the transmission oil level

Resolved Question:

how do u check the transmission oil level on a 2004 saturn ion and how much fluid does it take
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Saturn
Expert:  GMTechBernard replied 6 years ago.
Hello and welcome to Just Answer!

There are three transmission available for this vehicle and each has its own method of checking the fluid level.

The First Automatic transmission, does indeed have a dipstick. Since you can't find the dipstick, this may not be your transmission. We will skip this transmission unless we find out you have neither of the following two

The second, is the Variable Transmission (CVT), you will find a plug inside a plug, on the bottom of the case (see image). The inner plug is for checking fluid level. The outer plug is for draining the transmission. With the engine HOT (warmed up) and the engine running, remove the inner plug. If nothing comes out, its LOW. If fluid come out, let it keep coming out until it stops (overfilled). The fluid will be at the correct level when it goes from running out, to not running out). If nothing comes out, you will want to add fluid until it does come out.
Do not remove the outer plug, unless you plan on draining the transmission!

Lastly is the manual transmission. This has two separate plugs, on the side (see illustration) The lower plug is the drain and the upper plug is the level check/fill. If you remove the upper plug and nothing comes out, you will need to add fluid until it does come out, and once it stops, its full.
Not knowing which transmission you have, its hard to tell you how much it holds. The autos usually hold around 8 quarts (bone dry) and the manuals around 2 quarts. If you can tell me, out of the methods I gave, which one applies to you, I can give you an exact figure.

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