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2014 outback, 2.5, CVT, red
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5 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Good morning,
so it's the weekend, and I've drained the ATF instead of the engine oil in my 2014. Momma needs her car in the morning, I live on an Island. Friends are coming to visit. they were nice enough to pick up atf from Wal-Mart.. do I even dare try using it? it says for subaru's, but.........

2nd, where in the world do I put it. I can't find a dip stick anywhere. Feeling dumb.

thanks in advance. really need to know quickly. I have mobile 1 full syn atf waiting at auto zone, but that's on the other side of a 45 minute ferry ride and 45 minutes away after that. Serious, honest answers.. I can take it..

thanks again
 

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On the Super Mod Squad
2002 3.0 VDC Wag + 2018 2.5 Leg Ltd
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26,843 Posts
that takes special weirdo subaru CVT fluid, which is not something you can buy at walmart or autozone.

(edit: the wallmart stuff is problably some type of plain old Dexron like pre-2010 plain automatics had and you should not put in this car)

so your mom is going to be driving something else until you round up that fluid from a dealer or get it shipped to you.

and there is no dipstick on that car. so you have to find the filler hole for the CVT down underneath and refill it, or have it flatbedded in. or ask for some "road service" from the dealer. (if you can find one,...or some smart subaru specialty shop that will do such a thing).

swapping that CVT fluid is one thing DIY people actually dump on the dealer to try to get 100% of it out.

subaru sold it as "forever fluid" but people that leave it in forever get a busted trans eventually. how many miles on this,?

I would not start it or move it.
 
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On the Super Mod Squad
2002 3.0 VDC Wag + 2018 2.5 Leg Ltd
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26,843 Posts
and moved to the 2010-14 section, and updated title where maybe some that have owned / worked with that trans will see it more. (and offer more )
 
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2012 Outback 2.5 Limited
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1,042 Posts
Whatever you do, do NOT use normal ATF in it! The ATF has friction modifiers that will do wonders on a normal tranny in terms of smooth shifting, but will wreck havoc on your CVT belt.

If you're handy you can top it off yourself, there's a DIY here: https://www.subaruoutback.org/forum...-2011-2-5i-cvt-differential-fluid-change.html

NOTE: DO NOT use that DIY for the diff drain & fills! They are different on your 2014! (Front has different fill hole, rear has different plugs)

Acceptable fluids are Subaru OE CVT Fluid (newer version comes in 1 qt bottles), Red Line CVT fluid (what I'm using), Valvoline CVT fluid (what many others are using), Amsoil CVT fluid (seen some of that here on the forum too), etc. People who are concerned about warranty often opt for the Subaru fluid, but these others have been proven to work wonderfully too.

You'll need about 6 quarts to refill. You HAVE to follow the DIY steps including doing this on level ground, and running the engine while adding the last couple quarts. Skip any of the steps and you'll have too much or too little fluid in the tranny, which is not a good situation. Ideally you'll want a scanner to read the transmission temperature - there are some $50 options that'll work with Android devices via Bluetooth. A standard OBD2 scanner won't pick up Subaru's Transmission Temp signal. Before I got my device I used an IR scanner. Not as accurate but it'll get you in the neighborhood.
 

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On the Super Mod Squad
2002 3.0 VDC Wag + 2018 2.5 Leg Ltd
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26,843 Posts
awesome, thank you. . I've ordered Amsoil cvt..
tell your mom things could be worse,...you could be on a island on the west side of florida,...missing a half load of CVT fluid, trying to evacuate from a hurricane.
 

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2014 outback, 2.5, CVT, red
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5 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
what is the scanner that will work with my android? Maybe I am over thinking it, thinking it's super specific, like the cvt fluid
 

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On the Super Mod Squad
2002 3.0 VDC Wag + 2018 2.5 Leg Ltd
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26,843 Posts
outside the box thought,

was that drain pan clean?...

maybe you could put the old used fluid back in the CVT filler hole, with the directions in the linked thread.
 

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2012 Outback 2.5 Limited
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1,042 Posts
OBDLink LX. Download Active OBD from the google play store to pair with it. The app that comes with the device won't pull the temp by itself.
 

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2014 2.5i Limited pzev
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62 Posts
When you follow the DYI guide it will tell you to have the car on level ground and to have the transmission temp in a certain range as has already been stated on this thread. I don't have the fancy scanner so I used an IR gun and a forehead temp scanner. I changed my thermometers over to Celsius because it easier for me to remember the 35 to 45 degree C range than the equivalent Fahrenheit range. I assume that the temp inside the cvt is higher than what is showing on my thermometers. So I'd work from the lower to middle of the range if you go this route. The cvt drain/refill guide on the forum plus a YouTube video from a guy called DYI on Subaru cvt drain/refill is very helpful and is what I used. Good luck and welcome here!
 

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2012 Outback Ltd 3.6r
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526 Posts
I knew the CVT didn't have the filler tube/dip-stick, but didn't know there was actually a drain plug. My 3.6r has a drain, but also a filler tube...but then it also just needs the Foreign dextron synthetic mix.
 
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