Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350!

Posted by: LC4RN8

Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/09/11 08:01 PM

That's right - I just did a drain and fill on a friend's Hyundai XG350L with the five-speed auto. It specs Hyundai's SP-III fluid, but that stuff costs $gold around here so I bought some Valvoline Maxlife Dex/Merc and put that in instead.

It shifts like absolute butter now! It's unbeleivably smooth. I didn't think a simple drain/fill could have such an impact!

Some notes:
-These transmissions are super easy to work on. Has a drain plug on the bottom (imagine that!)
-The fluid that came out was dark brown and very little smell to it.
-Drain/fill replaces about 5.5 qts. Total capacity is 9 qts.


The car has 85k on it. Fluid might have been changed around 30K by the dealer. Assuming the previous fill of SPIII was run between 55k and 85k do you think I should wait a day or two and do another drain/fill or could it be left for 15k or so?

Thanks.
Posted by: glum

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/09/11 08:09 PM

I use MaxLife DEX/MERC in my 2008 Sonata. Much, much cheaper than SP-III (if you use a good AAP coupon code, you get it for not much over $3/qt), and it's far better than SP-III besides.

With my Sonata, I did a few drain/fills, a day or so apart. Knowing it had SP-III in there made me all the more eager to replace it. But that's me.
Posted by: Rand

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/09/11 08:12 PM

I wont mention any horror stories about clutch material melting etc.

SPIII discolors very easy and fast. its about 6$/qt here.
Hyundai also specifically tests the fluid before any warranty work.

That being all said. My elantra touring had the drain too. it was good for 3qt of 8.5 (going from memory)

also from what I've heard
ATF +3 is much closer to SPIII than merc/dex as far as fluid properties
(atf +4 superceded atf +3 )
Posted by: caravanmike

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/09/11 08:16 PM

i am using maxlife in a 04 santa fe. shifts like butter. btw even know the maxlife bottle says merc/dex it is a highly friction modified fluid (just like spIII)
Posted by: BigBuck

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/09/11 08:22 PM

Glad to hear about the happy transmission! Does that one have a magnetic plug like my sonata did?

Have any of you guys used the ATF +4 in your Hyundai? Do you recommend it? I have castrol import in now but I'm due for a new fluid change soon.
Posted by: glum

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/09/11 08:23 PM

Originally Posted By: Rand
I wont mention any horror stories about clutch material melting etc.

Is that because you don't have any?

Originally Posted By: Rand
Hyundai also specifically tests the fluid before any warranty work.

And they've denied warranty claims after finding MaxLife in there?

Originally Posted By: Rand
also from what I've heard
ATF +3 is much closer to SPIII than merc/dex as far as fluid properties

You heard this where?
Posted by: Rand

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/09/11 08:34 PM

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Posted by: Rand

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/09/11 08:43 PM

your post seems kinda combative Glum... hope you are having a Great day.
1)No. never changed my transmission fluid.
2)Yes
3)My memory is failing me on this one.. but SPIII and ATF +3 are both highly friction modified fluids more so than the original dexron 3/mercon.

The original specs for mercon and mercon V were not interchangeable but now they are met with the same fluid that meets 10 other specs too....

A final note: I'm not saying maxlife atf makes the transmission die. I was saying if it dies with it in it..Hyundai is notorious for denying warranty claims anyway they can. They DO perform testing on the fluid if the transmission fails before any repair work is done.


The whole atf horror story was a joke.. as the internet is full of them. Personally I'm not brave enough to void my warranty by using non spec fluid. Even if the factory fluid is mediocre.
Posted by: glum

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/09/11 09:07 PM

I wasn't being (intentionally) combative; I just wanted clarity on allusions to AT failure and warranty claim denials. I personally have not heard any specific (and believable) reports of MaxLife DEX/MERC causing lubrication-related AT failures or warranty denials. When you said "I wont mention any horror stories about clutch material melting etc." it seemed as if you had heard of MaxLife causing AT damage...
Posted by: Spazdog

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/09/11 09:13 PM

Agree on the easy to service.

Drain plug and spin on filter. thumbsup

I drove my mother in law's XG300 back to back with a Diamante' and the transmission was the big difference. The XG is sooooo much smoother.

Good to know I have the other choices in ATF
Posted by: Rand

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/10/11 10:10 AM

Originally Posted By: glum
I wasn't being (intentionally) combative; I just wanted clarity on allusions to AT failure and warranty claim denials. I personally have not heard any specific (and believable) reports of MaxLife DEX/MERC causing lubrication-related AT failures or warranty denials. When you said "I wont mention any horror stories about clutch material melting etc." it seemed as if you had heard of MaxLife causing AT damage...


I know it sounds unbelieveable, but they actually denied a claim on a 5 year old sonata when I was there getting my winter tires rebalanced. From what I could hear from the screaming across the room.. lube stop had done a transmission flush with something other than spIII.


My hyundai was totalled with 20k miles on it by a kid texting... so I never had to make the choice.
Posted by: RPMster

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/10/11 07:07 PM

I've never had to jump through hoops to get warranty work done on a Hyundai vehicle. Any carmaker will require the dealer to check the condition of the fluid before approving any warranty work on a transmission. If the fluid condition looks bad or even borderline, it opens the door for more questions such as "when and where did you have the fluid changed."

If a multi-vehicle ATF is used which lists the required spec (such as SP-III), then there is no arguement from the carmaker regarding the fluid used, since the fluid was tested and approved by its manufacturer for the spec required by the particular vehicle in question. On the other hand, if the transmission was serviced at a quickie lube that uses non-spec fluids and a friction-modifier-in-a-bottle which supposedly converts the fluid to other specs, there could be some difficulties in getting the work covered under warranty. Hyundai (along with other carmakers) specifically states in the owner's manual not to use engine/transmission addives in the owner's manual.
Posted by: Rand

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/10/11 07:08 PM

The only fluid thats approved is SPIII

all other fluids are "exceeds spec" not approved for by the manufacturer.
Posted by: Spazdog

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/10/11 08:20 PM

We couldn't get Hyundai to honor the 10 year/100,000 mile warranty when the catalytic converter melted down on the 2001 XG300 earlier this year. (my mother-in-law makes very short trips very slowly...the XG only has about 45,000 miles)

I don't think using MaxLife ATF is going to change their minds and the warranty is surely expired by now.
Posted by: The_Eric

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/10/11 09:33 PM

As a side note, our local NAPA rep brought by some Eneos oil products. One of them is was SP III ATF. Not to be confused with other multi-purpose ATFs, this was strictly for transmissions requiring SP III. He said it would cost about 4.00/qt. Maybe a viable option for those still under warranty?
Posted by: RPMster

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/10/11 10:16 PM

Originally Posted By: Rand
The only fluid thats approved is SPIII

all other fluids are "exceeds spec" not approved for by the manufacturer.


Thanks for clarifying that crackmeup
Posted by: RPMster

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/10/11 10:30 PM

Originally Posted By: Spazdog
We couldn't get Hyundai to honor the 10 year/100,000 mile warranty when the catalytic converter melted down on the 2001 XG300 earlier this year. (my mother-in-law makes very short trips very slowly...the XG only has about 45,000 miles)

I don't think using MaxLife ATF is going to change their minds and the warranty is surely expired by now.


The 10/100 Hyundai warranty only applies to engine, engine accessories, and transmission. Catalytic converters are covered by the Federal Emission Defect & Performance Warranty, which is good for 8 years or 80K miles - whichever comes first. But don't let me rain on the parade. Carry on.
Posted by: hemitom

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/11/11 07:08 AM

I am using maxlife in a kia spectra , no comparison maxlife is better in everyway. I think most failures after a change are pre existing problems that were just waiting to happen. And using a non manufacture fluid is a easy way out for the car company . Its up to you to battle them over warranty issue's
Posted by: semaj281

Re: Used Maxlife in a Hyundai XG350! - 08/19/11 12:16 AM

Originally Posted By: Rand
your post seems kinda combative Glum... hope you are having a Great day.
1)No. never changed my transmission fluid.
2)Yes
3)My memory is failing me on this one.. but SPIII and ATF +3 are both highly friction modified fluids more so than the original dexron 3/mercon.


Originally Posted By: glum
I wasn't being (intentionally) combative; I just wanted clarity on allusions to AT failure and warranty claim denials. I personally have not heard any specific (and believable) reports of MaxLife DEX/MERC causing lubrication-related AT failures or warranty denials. When you said "I wont mention any horror stories about clutch material melting etc." it seemed as if you had heard of MaxLife causing AT damage...


So can anyone else verify the fact that ATF +3/+4 is similar to SPIII?