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Old 04-22-2009, 11:08 PM   #1
PCW
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Default Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

Just wondering what everyone is using in their lifts? Is one better than the other? Also, anyone using Synthetic?

Thanks,
PCW
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Old 04-22-2009, 11:18 PM   #2
Torque1st
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

Check the manufacturer's recommendations. If you can not find the information the ATF will work and is readily available.
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Old 04-22-2009, 11:28 PM   #3
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

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Originally Posted by Torque1st View Post
Check the manufacturer's recommendations. If you can not find the information the ATF will work and is readily available.
They list both, that's why I asked the question.

PCW
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Old 04-22-2009, 11:54 PM   #4
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

Use the ATF.
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Old 04-23-2009, 12:48 AM   #5
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

hyd oil is cheaper
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Old 04-23-2009, 12:53 AM   #6
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

ATF is available anywhere and everywhere.

Mark
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Old 04-23-2009, 05:50 AM   #7
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

ATF is what Mohawk recommends & is what is in mine. Especially if your lift is in an area that gets cold the ATF has better cold flow characteristics.
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Old 04-23-2009, 10:40 AM   #8
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

Thanks to all, seems like ATF is preferred. What about Synthetic, is it worth the extra money? I use it in my cars and find it is, but not sure when it comes to hydraulic pumps.

PCW

Last edited by PCW; 04-23-2009 at 10:45 AM.
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Old 04-23-2009, 10:49 AM   #9
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

I don't think it'd make much of a difference in the lift... just make sure it's non-foaming. (Which I think all ATF is, right?)
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Old 04-23-2009, 10:50 AM   #10
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

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Thanks to all, seems like ATF is preferred. What about Synthetic, is it worth the extra money. I use it in my car and find it is, but not sure when it comes to hydraulic pumps.

PCW
I think I will change mine out for synthetic when I do a fluid change. It should work well & shouldn't have to be changed for several years, just checked every couple years for moisture & if there isn't any it should be good to go. At current prices to change mine over to amsoil would be 100.00 so it isn't something I would want to do very often.
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Old 04-23-2009, 11:17 AM   #11
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

What properties of synthetic do you think would be advantageous when used in a lift??
High temperature resistance?? Shouldn't be a problem in a lift that's run 1 minute at a time.
Better lubrication?? I doubt that a small hydraulic pump has much problem in that area.
Better fuel economy?? Don't think that's a concern.
Better flow at low temps?? If it's too cold for the lift, you should be in the house too.

Synthetics are fine in their place, I don't think a lift is one of those places.
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Old 04-23-2009, 12:32 PM   #12
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

+1 to tdkkart.

You are over engineering the problem.
Use what the Mfg recommends.
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Old 04-23-2009, 02:03 PM   #13
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

If your lift is being operated 10 times per day, 5 days per week, 52 weeks per year then, maybe an oil change every 5 years would be advisable. For a homeowner lift... -Never!

ATF is usually about a 10 or 15 weight oil. Hydraulic fluids are available in many viscosities but the generic stuff available to most of us is probably a 30 weight oil. The fluid in a lift does not get hot enough to need anything but the ATF.

A fill with standard ATF available everywhere will give a lifetime of service in a home lift. There is absolutely no reason to use a synthetic or amsoil etc in a lift.
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Old 04-23-2009, 02:10 PM   #14
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

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Originally Posted by kbs2244 View Post
+1 to tdkkart.

You are over engineering the problem.
Use what the Mfg recommends.
Thanks Torque1st, appreciate the the detailed reply, as well to all the others.

PCW
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Old 04-23-2009, 09:01 PM   #15
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

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What properties of synthetic do you think would be advantageous when used in a lift??

Better flow at low temps?? If it's too cold for the lift, you should be in the house too.

Synthetics are fine in their place, I don't think a lift is one of those places.
The only reason I would do this if in fact I do is my shop is not heated unless I am in there and I live in a location where it reached -17*F with -40*F wind chill this winter. Two winters ago my wife's car got water into the rear strut which didn't show up until the temp got down close to 0*F at which point it was like riding in something with no suspension & was physically uncomfortable to ride over bumps, RR tracks, etc. I plan to do all work in the fall before winter hits but sometimes Murphy strikes when you aren't expecting. While running the salamander will warm up the building to work, it won't do much for the fluid temp in the resovoir in the amount of time I'm out there. Once I get the corn furnace hooked up & working I plan on keeping it somewhere around 40*F so the cold flow won't be a problem. I definitely agree if the lift is in a heated area use regular ATF & use the money saved to buy more tools.
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Old 04-23-2009, 09:47 PM   #16
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

I think I will change mine out for synthetic when I do a fluid change

why its not like its going break down or get dirty, you just wasting money
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Old 04-23-2009, 09:59 PM   #17
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

The key to the proper fluid is the soft goods comparability. If the o-rings and seals are not compatible with the fluid, they will degrade or swell. As far as performance, there is little difference at the temperatures that the lift experience. As fa as price between the fluids, forget it and buy what the manufacturer recommends.
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Old 04-23-2009, 10:32 PM   #18
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

Some of you are making this too difficult; just buy the cheapest tranny fluid and fill it up. Don't loose any sleep over it.
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Old 04-24-2009, 11:18 AM   #19
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

Lets use Racing Fluid from B&M...
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Old 11-15-2010, 03:54 PM   #20
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Default Re: Hydraulic Oil or Dexron-III ATF fluid?

I used the ATF Dexron III. It cost more but I was told it was the better oil. I have a Bendpak and a Propark lift in my shop and this is what I use............

Nothing but the best........
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