To change the transmission fluid in a Subaru Legacy, first warm up the car, then drain the old fluid and refill with new ATF. As a vital routine maintenance task, replacing transmission fluid in your Subaru Legacy ensures smooth gear shifts and prolongs the life of your vehicle’s transmission system.

Regularly checking and changing the transmission fluid is key to maintaining optimal performance and avoiding costly repairs down the line. Vehicle enthusiasts and Subaru Legacy owners understand that proper fluid maintenance contributes to the reliability and longevity of their car’s transmission.

With appropriate tools and instructions, this process can be completed efficiently, keeping your Subaru Legacy running smoothly on the road. It’s recommended to consult your owner’s manual for the specific type of fluid required and the recommended service interval for your particular Subaru model year.

Step-by-step Guide To Change Transmission Fluid Subaru Legacy

Regular maintenance on your Subaru Legacy ensures the longevity and performance of your vehicle. One critical aspect is changing the transmission fluid, which can seem daunting.

This step-by-step guide aims to simplify the process, walking you through the essential steps to change the transmission fluid in your Subaru Legacy.

Gather Required Tools And Materials

Before starting the process, assemble all the necessary tools and materials to ensure a smooth workflow. You will need:

  • Transmission fluid – specific type recommended by Subaru
  • Drain pan – to catch the old fluid
  • Funnel – for adding new fluid
  • Sockets and wrench set
  • Torque wrench
  • Ramps or jack stands – to elevate the vehicle
  • Gloves and safety glasses – for protection
  • Optional: Transmission fluid filter – if applicable

Prepare The Vehicle

Ensure your Legacy is on a level surface. Use ramps or jack stands to elevate the vehicle safely. Make certain the car is stable before proceeding to prevent any accidents.

Drain Old Transmission Fluid

  1. Position your drain pan under the transmission drain plug.
  2. Use the appropriate socket to carefully remove the drain plug.
  3. Allow the old fluid to drain completely into the pan.
  4. Once drained, replace and tighten the drain plug with your torque wrench to the specified torque from the vehicle manual.

Replace Transmission Fluid Filter (if Applicable)

Some Subaru Legacy models may have an external transmission fluid filter. If your model has one, it’s best to replace it during the fluid change. Unscrew the old filter, drench the new filter’s seal in clean fluid, and screw it into place. Ensure it’s secure but do not over-tighten.

Refill With New Transmission Fluid

Using your funnel, pour the new transmission fluid into the fill plug, located either on the top-side of the transmission or via the dipstick tube, depending on the model. Refer to the Subaru Legacy’s manual for the required amount and specifications of the fluid.

Check Fluid Levels And Test Drive

After replacing the fluid and filter, it’s time to check fluid levels. Start the engine and let it warm up to operating temperature. With the car still running, check the level and add more fluid if needed.

Next, take your Legacy for a test drive to circulate the new fluid. After the test drive, inspect the fluid level again and adjust if necessary.

Tips And Precautions

Maintaining the transmission fluid in your Subaru Legacy is critical to the longevity and performance of the vehicle.

Undertaking this task requires a set of tips and precautions to ensure the procedure goes smoothly while avoiding potential issues that may arise during the process.

Paying close attention to these guidelines can mean the difference between a well-executed fluid change and an expensive transmission repair. Let’s delve into the important considerations to bear in mind.

Use The Correct Transmission Fluid

Your Subaru Legacy demands specific transmission fluid to function at its best. Using the incorrect type can lead to inefficient operation, damage to the transmission, and voided warranties.

Always consult the vehicle’s manual or contact the dealership to confirm the suitable fluid for your model and year. The choice between synthetic and conventional fluids can significantly impact your Legacy’s transmission life and performance.

Follow The Manufacturer’s Recommendations

Sticking to the manufacturer’s guidelines is key. Subaru provides detailed recommendations on service intervals, fluid types, and the necessary quantity for a complete change. Deviating from these can risk the transmission’s health.

Refer to your Legacy’s owner manual for the specific mileage intervals between fluid changes, often determined by your driving conditions and habits.

Dispose Of Old Fluid Properly

Environmental responsibility is non-negotiable when dealing with used transmission fluid. This substance is harmful and must not be disposed of carelessly.

After draining, transport the old fluid to an authorized recycling center or auto shop that accepts used fluids. They have the means to dispose of it in a manner that safeguards the environment and adheres to local disposal regulations.

Seek Professional Help If Unsure

If there’s any hesitation or uncertainty about changing the transmission fluid yourself, seeking professional help is the best course of action.

Mechanics are well-versed in handling different vehicle models and will have the tools and expertise required to change the fluid efficiently and safely.

This step ensures your car’s transmission remains in optimal condition and helps to avoid any costly mistakes that could arise from inexperience.

Frequently Asked Questions

When Should I Change The Transmission Fluid In My Subaru Legacy?

Change the transmission fluid in your Subaru Legacy every 30,000 to 60,000 miles. Consult your owner’s manual or mechanic for specific intervals.

How Much Is Transmission Fluid Change Subaru Legacy?

The cost of a transmission fluid change for a Subaru Legacy typically ranges from $80 to $250. Prices may vary based on location and service center.

Can I Change Automatic Transmission Fluid Myself?

Yes, you can change automatic transmission fluid yourself. Ensure you have the correct type of fluid, a proper toolkit, and follow your vehicle’s service manual. Always dispose of old fluid responsibly.

How Do You Check The Transmission Fluid On A Subaru Legacy?

To check transmission fluid on a Subaru Legacy, start the engine and let it warm up. Shift through all gears, then pull out the dipstick, wipe it clean, reinsert and pull out again to check the fluid level.


Changing the transmission fluid in your Subaru Legacy is a vital maintenance step. By following the outlined steps, you ensure smooth operation and extend your vehicle’s lifespan.

Remember, regular transmission care is key to reliable performance. Keep your Subaru running effortlessly with fresh fluid and happy motoring ahead!