Mercon vs Mercon V

Discussion in 'Domestics' started by billj, Feb 23, 2008.

  1. billj

    billj Hero Member

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    I have a 2005 Ford Escape 2.3 litre, 4 cylinder, automatic transmission. The owners manual states to use Mercon in the transmission and the power steering. I went to Advance Auto, they did not have Mercon, but had Multi-Vehicle Automatic Transmission Fluid suitable for transmissions requiring Dexron III and Mercon. I bought this and added a few ounces to the power steering.
    I know that Ford has done something with the licensing with Mercon, and is switching over to Mercon V.
    My questions are this;
    1) Why does my 2005 Escape use Mercon, but my 1999 Ford Ranger, 3.0 litre V6, automatic transmission uses Mercon V (and Mercon in the power steering).
    2) Is it OK to use the Multi-Vehicle ATF in the Escape transmission.
    3) I plan on having the Escape transmission flushed this fall. If I have it flushed at the Ford dealer will they switch over to Mercon V? Also, if I have it flushed at a "Jiffy Lube" :eek: type place what might they use.
    4) I read a bottle of Mercon V at Advance Auto, and it stated that Mercon V could be used as a substitute for Mercon, but the Escape owners manual says not to mix the two.
    5) It it better to use Mercon in the power steering, or actual power steering fluid?
    I know these are a lot of questions, but taking care of a vehicle sure can get confusing.
    Thanks.
     
  2. dmac0923

    dmac0923 Jr. Member

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    always go with what your manual for that specific car requires. even though the escape is an compact SUV, it might have a lighter duty transmission then the ranger. thus the difference in trans fluid.
     
  3. oldtimer53

    oldtimer53 Hero Member

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    Dexron III and Mercon a basically the same spec. Mercon V, however, is slightly thicker and has a different friction additive. The owners manual and the trans dipstick tell the proper choice.
     
  4. billj

    billj Hero Member

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    OK, I have the Mercon, Mercon V, Dexron III differences figured out.
    The only questions left are:
    What is "power steering fluid" made of?
    Are power steering fluids compatible with all ATF fluids?
    Is it better to use ATF fluid in the power steering or power steering fluid.
    If the power steering fluid needs to be topped off, and it is unknown what fluid is in the power steering unit should ATF or power steering fluid be used.
    Thanks, I will making my periodic $ contribution to the site. Thanks for answering all my questions over the years. Your great mechanics have never failed me, I have learned an enormous amount of knowledge about vehicle repair from this site. Kudos.
     
  5. crunch

    crunch wrench

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    Use what the owners manual or good bok calls for.

    Pitch that mult purpose stuff right back at them and aim it right between there eye balls.
    Some parts places are thick headed about wanting to sell the stuff for dexron111 or mercon/dexron applacations.
    But if they get hit between the eyes with a few bottles of it they may wise up. :)

    No one fluid is a fit all deal.

    Dexron 111 is no longer being made.
    And most places have sold out of stock on it.

    But dexron/mercon is still out there.
    Carquest has a good stock of it.
    If you parts place does not have the mercon find a place that does.
    Or go to your dealer and ask for it.
    Good luck
    Crunch
     
  6. wap

    wap GO MOUNTAINEERS

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    All trans fluids are not created equal. Power steering fluids are not the same as transmission fluid, although a common practice is putting trans fluid in power steering systems. Not a good idea. An example of this would be putting ketchup in a mustard bottle because they are both condiments. Putting the right stuff in each system will save a lot of grief/questions later down the road. Most domestic cars with automatic transmissions and power steering all use 'hydraulic' type fluids in both systems, but each different type of fluid contains different 'service pack' additives, hence Mercon-V, Dexron III, ATF4, etc. Some power steering systems use mineral oil. Long story short, use what it calls for. You never go wrong that way. And yes, it can be confusing, so study some before you service your vehicle's fluids.....WAP
     

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