2016.5 CX-5 Transmission fluid change questions

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16.5 CX-5 Tour/AWD
9/28:
So after taking apart the pan, I honestly don't even see anything wrong with the way I applied the RTV. Everything seems fine in my opinion as the RTV made its way all around. In fact, I would say that I did a way better job the first time applying the RTV two days ago than I did today with the Permatex Automatic Transmission RTV since it came out at a much more consistent and even pace and I didn't need to squeeze for dear life to get even a tiny bit out. Honestly, the only thing that I can think of is that the RTV got stuck on the tip of the new bolts and this caused the room to be taken up and then the bolt did not fully compress all the way into the hole.

In addition, somehow (6) quarts of fluid came out instead of the usual (5) quarts for the pan drop. I'm not sure if it's because I drained it last night and came back this morning and opened the plug again + dropped the pan but there is definitely (6) quarts, not including the amount that leaked out on my driveway.

This article honestly illustrates what I am talking about perfectly if anyone wants to have a read.

Transmission pan leaks

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For the second time, I cleaned up the bolts with all that extra RTV but I probably still made the same mistake of contacting the RTV on top of the bolts. It was getting extremely late and I had to start putting it all back together as I did not want the transmission to be exposed to the elements any longer due to being already open during the rain. I did not take any pictures since it was dark outside and I did apply a thicker layer on the transmission pan and also, I rubbed some RTV on the mating surface this time. So in about 48 hours, I'll post an update and let you guys know everything goes.

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Funny thing is, this area in red that seemed to have a light amount did not leak at all.

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The area in blue is where the ATF FZ was leaking from and if you look at the RTV, there is no breaks so the only conclusion I can come up with is that the bolts on that area had extra RTV on the top of it which made the bolts not compress all the way in.

Also, I'm going to rate the (2) two RTVs I've used so far if it helps anyone:

1 (Low) - 5 (High)
NamePermatex 81180 Automatic Transmission RTV SealantPermatex 25238 The Right Stuff Grey Gasket
Applicator14
Texture (Removal)Unknown1
Cure Time24 hours24 hours
Return Vehicle to Use24 hoursImmediately
Price$9$15

Review
1. Permatex Right Stuff:

So after applying the Permatex Right Stuff RTV about two days ago, I decided to remove the RTV today because there was a leak on the corner. I did my best to scrape off every single little bit of the RTV but the texture of this material is truly awful. Unlike the OEM one that was applied, this texture did not come off in long chunks, but it came off in little tiny pieces, almost like crumbs. I had an extremely difficult time trying to remove it so I had to use some scotch brite non-scratch to aid in the removal + scotch roller sheets and the scotch brite did help for the pan but caused some scratches. I probably won't ever use this RTV again in the future and the only good thing was the applicator.

2. Permatex Automatic RTV Sealant
I used this RTV sealant today and when I was trying to squeeze out the RTV from the tube, I had to use every single muscle in my finger and both hands to even consistently apply anything without breaking the bead. This is actually impossible unless you have vise grips or a pair of pliers and by the time I was almost done applying the last side of the pan, my hand/fingers were extremely sore to the point where I couldn't hand tighten the bolts so I had to use a ratchet and tighten it that way instead.

I don't know what the texture for the Permatex Automatic RTV Sealant is so I can't really comment but I don't want to find out. All I can say is, if you plan to do this yourself, do not get the squeeze tube unless unless you want to use vise grips/pliers.
 

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16.5 CX-5 Tour/AWD
there's lots of dried RTV in the screw holes. did you degrease the surfaces before applying?

Yes, I don't think its's due to not degreasing it but probably because I only had a limited amount of time to apply the right stuff (dries in 5 minutes) and I had to put everything back together immediately. The bolts most likely contacted the RTV when I was installing it and caused the RTV to compress inside of the bolt hole.
 
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16.5 CX-5 Tour/AWD
I had a few questions for anyone that can answer. So let's say that the RTV is already cured and I see some leaks on the floor still:

1. If it's caused by the RTV being stuck on the bolts still, would I be able to clean the bolts off and then torque to spec or is it too late since the RTV is already cured?

2. If you take the bolt off on one side, would it compromise the integrity of the RTV?
 

yrwei52

2016 Mazda CX-5 GT AWD w/Tech Pkg
Contributor
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Plano, Texas, USA
9/28:
So after taking apart the pan, I honestly don't even see anything wrong with the way I applied the RTV. Everything seems fine in my opinion as the RTV made its way all around. In fact, I would say that I did a way better job the first time applying the RTV two days ago than I did today with the Permatex Automatic Transmission RTV since it came out at a much more consistent and even pace and I didn't need to squeeze for dear life to get even a tiny bit out.
Thanks again for the update.

Honestly, the only thing that I can think of is that the RTV got stuck on the tip of the new bolts and this caused the room to be taken up and then the bolt did not fully compress all the way into the hole.
IMHO the problem of your leak most likely is the degreasing the sealant area on the contact surface of the transaxle case and oil pan. The reason by comparing your ATF pan taken faience with factory RTV, and the pan with Permatex® the Right Stuff® 1 Minute Gasket™ GREY Gasket Maker:

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We can see the Permatex® the Right Stuff® does sealed every area properly including the leaking corner evidenced by the sign of metal-to-metal contact is made. I don’t believe the extra RTV pushed into the bolt hole would cause the bolt couldn’t be seated properly.

May be I should try ThreeBond 1207C Liquid Gasket Reddish Brown or OEM RTV as it looks like more easily to apply? (Or could be the guy in the video has good art skill?)

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In addition, somehow (6) quarts of fluid came out instead of the usual (5) quarts for the pan drop. I'm not sure if it's because I drained it last night and came back this morning and opened the plug again + dropped the pan but there is definitely (6) quarts, not including the amount that leaked out on my driveway.
6 quarts of ATF with pan drop was also reported by Boland01. So 5 ~ 6 quarts of ATF with pan drop is needed.
 
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16.5 CX-5 Tour/AWD
Thanks again for the update.


IMHO the problem of your leak most likely is the degreasing the sealant area on the contact surface of the transaxle case and oil pan. The reason by comparing your ATF pan taken faience with factory RTV, and the pan with Permatex® the Right Stuff® 1 Minute Gasket™ GREY Gasket Maker:

View attachment 227361
View attachment 227362

We can see the Permatex® the Right Stuff® does sealed every area properly including the leaking corner evidenced by the sign of metal-to-metal contact is made. I don’t believe the extra RTV pushed into the bolt hole would cause the bolt couldn’t be seated properly.

May be I should try ThreeBond 1207C Liquid Gasket Reddish Brown or OEM RTV as it looks like more easily to apply? (Or could be the guy in the video has good art skill?)

View attachment 227367
View attachment 227368
View attachment 227369



6 quarts of ATF with pan drop was also reported by Boland01. So 5 ~ 6 quarts of ATF with pan drop is needed.

Not a problem! I don't agree with the degreasing part as I did use 70% isopropyl rubbing alcohol on both the transaxle case and the pan itself so there should be no way that there's still grease. I have another theory though. It could be I did not wait a full 24 hours before re-applying the ATF fluid but that can probably be thrown out the window because "The Right Stuff" packaging/instructions did mention that it can be "put back in service right away."

If there was still grease left on the pan surface itself, I would assume that the RTV would've floated away after being compressed but in the picture that I've taken, everything looks symmetrical. Not saying you're wrong but it doesn't seem likely in my opinion. I think having that extra few mm of RTV on top of bolts definitely did hinder both surfaces from fully compressing and this probably created a gap big enough for the pan to leak out fluid. I honestly wish I knew the answer to this because it cost me a lot of time and money LOL...

May be I should try ThreeBond 1207C Liquid Gasket Reddish Brown or OEM RTV as it looks like more easily to apply? (Or could be the guy in the video has good art skill?)

On the official Three Bond website, the spec sheet doesn't list "Transmission" under 1207C. I think Three Bond 1215 is the one you're looking for but I could be wrong since the guy in the video is using 1207C.

Honestly, I have no idea on other brands as I've only used Permatex so far. Maybe other brands may have better consistency when being applied. Only way to find out is to test it but there's no denying that guy definitely has good skill :D

https://www.threebond.com.au/liquid-gaskets.html

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6 quarts of ATF with pan drop was also reported by Boland01. So 5 ~ 6 quarts of ATF with pan drop is needed.

I think it would've been (5) quarts if I left it alone and did it not drain at during the middle of the night. Would've saved $14 if I knew that would be the case

Here's a compiled list of probable causes that could've caused the pan to leak based on what I think happened.
  1. Extra RTV on top of the bolts around the corner allowing an extra gap for the ATF FZ fluid to spill out.
  2. Not tightening & torqueing the bolts before the 5 minute mark and by the time it was tightened, the RTV hardened up and did not become effective.
  3. ATF FZ fluid may have dripped onto the newly applied RTV while I was attempting to re-install the pan rendering the RTV ineffective/not curing.
  4. Not enough RTV being applied to the surface causing a small gap.
  5. Not waiting 24 hours for the cure time before pouring in new ATF FZ fluid
  6. Pan was moved during the installation process
  7. Did not smear a layer of RTV onto the mating surface
 
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2017 Mazda 6 Sport
Look at the RTV diagram posted. The bead runs on the inside of the screw holes only, not completely surrounding them. Could that be an issue?
 
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16.5 CX-5 Tour/AWD
Thanks again for the update.


IMHO the problem of your leak most likely is the degreasing the sealant area on the contact surface of the transaxle case and oil pan. The reason by comparing your ATF pan taken faience with factory RTV, and the pan with Permatex® the Right Stuff® 1 Minute Gasket™ GREY Gasket Maker:

View attachment 227361
View attachment 227362

We can see the Permatex® the Right Stuff® does sealed every area properly including the leaking corner evidenced by the sign of metal-to-metal contact is made. I don’t believe the extra RTV pushed into the bolt hole would cause the bolt couldn’t be seated properly.

May be I should try ThreeBond 1207C Liquid Gasket Reddish Brown or OEM RTV as it looks like more easily to apply? (Or could be the guy in the video has good art skill?)

View attachment 227367
View attachment 227368
View attachment 227369



6 quarts of ATF with pan drop was also reported by Boland01. So 5 ~ 6 quarts of ATF with pan drop is needed.

I took a look again at the picture of the Three Bond. It doesn't look like he used the continuous "bead" method but the "smear" method. Reason being that the lines look too perfect so it looks like he just traced the pans lines using his fingers. For example, in the below picture, there is no RTV but you can see the indentations.

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16.5 CX-5 Tour/AWD
Look at the RTV diagram posted. The bead runs on the inside of the screw holes only, not completely surrounding them. Could that be an issue?

I don't know if that would be a cause for concern but I would think having RTV around the bolt holes would provide additional coverage when it is being compressed. For the second time I applied the RTV last night, I didn't go on the outer edges of the bolt holes. I simply remained on the inner portion of the bolt holes so hopefully it makes a difference. I mean the Permatex TDS recommends to apply around the bolt holes but in the diagram from Mazda, they skipped the outer portion...

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2014 mazda cx-5 touring FWD
When torquing the pan bolts, did you tighten them in a proper pattern and in a couple of steps leading up to final torque? Like doing head or intake manifold bolts for instance.
 
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16.5 CX-5 Tour/AWD
When torquing the pan bolts, did you tighten them in a proper pattern and in a couple of steps leading up to final torque? Like doing head or intake manifold bolts for instance.

I did my best to torque them in a star pattern at random bolts left-right/top-bottom after finger attempting to finger tighten them. This is for the Permatex Right Stuff which dries in 5 minutes. Not sure how head/intake manifolds work so I can't comment on that.

For the Permatex ATF RTV, I finger tightened them/used a ratchet but used my finger to turn the ratchet. I then waited an hour and came back to torque them at a star/random pattern followed up by going in a circle to make sure I did not miss anything.

I won't find out if the second attempt was successful until tomorrow morning. I'm planning to put in 4 quarts as a test to see if it'll leak first and then proceed to put in the rest of the 2 quarts after a few hours.
 
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'15 6, '06 5
If you look at the video, the guy’s CX-5 diesel has only 13,121 km / 8,153 miles, and the magnetic has similar amount of metal shavings like your transmission with 63K miles. Those metal shavings should have been there since early stage of the transmission life.

That is precisely why _all_ gearboxes, including A/Ts, get an early oil change in my household. It is only after that early initial change that I extend drains to factory (or other suitable) change interval.
 

yrwei52

2016 Mazda CX-5 GT AWD w/Tech Pkg
Contributor
:
Plano, Texas, USA
I did my best to torque them in a star pattern at random bolts left-right/top-bottom after finger attempting to finger tighten them. This is for the Permatex Right Stuff which dries in 5 minutes. Not sure how head/intake manifolds work so I can't comment on that.

For the Permatex ATF RTV, I finger tightened them/used a ratchet but used my finger to turn the ratchet. I then waited an hour and came back to torque them at a star/random pattern followed up by going in a circle to make sure I did not miss anything.

I won't find out if the second attempt was successful until tomorrow morning. I'm planning to put in 4 quarts as a test to see if it'll leak first and then proceed to put in the rest of the 2 quarts after a few hours.
Any update?
 
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16.5 CX-5 Tour/AWD
Any update?

It doesn't look like it's leaking after putting about 5.8 quarts in there. However, I think I may have overfilled it previously so I may need to wait till tomorrow to siphon out some fluid, drive it off my driveway and then reassess.

This makes me wonder, could the puddle I have previously be due to overfilled ATF. Does the transmission have a overfill valve somewhere? I was reading other articles and forums and they mentioned that newer cars have a passageway that allows extra fluid to spill out.