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Sorento CRDi Ex, Porsche 928S, Fiat Ducato X250
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Discussion Starter #1
Except for a few broken hose clamps years ago, the Sorento behaves impeccably. Even the original battery hasn't been replaced.

So one tends to forget it still needs some maintenance. I read the driver's manual and saw they expect me to change the front and rear gearbox oil every 30 or 40.000 km.

Is that correct? The last car needing fresh gearbox oil every now and then was the Russian Moskovich my wife drove in the 60's.:confused:

It seems like a nasty job for which you need pressurized oil from a thin hose or tube because there is no room for a can or bottle there.
 

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Mine 2007 Accord EX-L, Hers 2004 Sorento LX 3.5L
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While I have no idea if KIA recommends this to be done every 30-40K (I just got my 2004 Sorento yesterday). Most North American vehicles require the differential oil to be changed every 90-100K. I recall this service interval from working in a lube shop when I was still going to school.

30-40K seems like a pretty short life span to me though.

The tool you are looking for is called a suction gun. Looks very much like a grease gun (a bit different). You put the hose into the oil and suck it into the gun. Then put the hose into the gear case fill hole and squirt the oil in. You would need to look at how much room you have. You could just put a hole in the bottle cap and fix a rubber tube in there (epoxy it in place) and squeeze the bottle to get the oil into the case. (a cap with a hole/couple feet of tubing and some epoxy is fairly cost effective).

Anyhow, if it is a fluid, the detergents and additives will eventually break down and you will need to replace it ($20 of oil is a lot less costly than a differential change). If you can absorb the cost, find the equivalent oil in a Synthetic based product vs. Petroleum based. They tend to last longer and flow better but they do cost more...

Good luck on your oil change if you tackle it yourself. It's a messy job but on the scale of difficulty... I would say it is a "Novice DIY". Just get a manual so that you know which plugs to pull.
 

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03'VW Passat - mine | 03'Sorento EX 4X4 - hers
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Actually 100K miles is for transfer case. For front and rear differentials oil change every 30-40K miles.
 

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Mine 2007 Accord EX-L, Hers 2004 Sorento LX 3.5L
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Actually 100K miles is for transfer case. For front and rear differentials oil change every 30-40K miles.
Still trying to download the Service Manual from the Sticky section...:(

Offhand, do you know the intervals for the Automatic and Manual Transmissions?
 

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03'VW Passat - mine | 03'Sorento EX 4X4 - hers
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For 4AT transmission is says inspect, I change every 30-40K. Dexron III is not that expensive.

You know what - you were right. According to maint schedule transfer case oil is every 30K. now I don't remember why 100K stuck in my head.
 

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03'VW Passat - mine | 03'Sorento EX 4X4 - hers
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Looks like manual trans. every 60K.
 

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2006 Kia Sorento 3.5 5sp Auto
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Front and rear diff
To replace was actually pretty easy for me. The oil that i purchased came in an easy pour bottle. It was a 1 liter bottle and had a very long spout that you put in the hole.

Transfer case - yes you do need a suction gun. Purchased one for $20 or so from amazon.

With the rear diff, make sure you raise the back end of the car. Here is the official details on the diffs
"When topping-off or inspecting the rear differential
fluid level on 2WD and 4WD Sorento models, it is
necessary to position the rear wheels at least 8 inches
higher than the front wheels. This procedure is
required to ensure that the rear axle housing is filled
with the specified volume of gear oil (1.6L or 54 oz.).
Failure to elevate the rear of the vehicle will result in
a low fluid level and may cause insufficient lubrication
of the rear differential and rear wheel bearings.
The front differential on 4WD models can be inspected
and filled to the specified capacity (1.3L or 44 oz.)
when the vehicle is at a level condition.
Please note that the Sorento front and rear differential
housings are factory-filled with gear oil containing
molybdenum disulfide and graphite. These additives
cause the lubricant to have a gray-black color, as
opposed to the amber color of conventional gear oils
that do not contain these additives."
 

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Sorento CRDi Ex, Porsche 928S, Fiat Ducato X250
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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks very much for this useful info. I never would have guessed the rear axle must be lifted.
According to the manual the transfer case needs no oil changes at all, just an occasional inspection. The automatic gearbox should get new liquid around 100K, but I think it can wait until the color changes.
 

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Mine 2007 Accord EX-L, Hers 2004 Sorento LX 3.5L
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Using an owners manual I found online...

http://www.kia.ca/content/owners/ownersmanual/2004_sorento_owners_manual_en.pdf

Engine oil - 6000km
Coolant - 48000km
Fuel Filter - 48000km
Air Cleaner - 48000km
Spark Plugs - 96000km
Transfer Case - 96000km
Front & Rear Differentials - 36000km
Brake/Clutch - 60000km
Manual Transaxle - 96000km
Automatic Transaxle - 48000km
U-joints and hinges/latches lubricated every 12000km
 

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Mine 2007 Accord EX-L, Hers 2004 Sorento LX 3.5L
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Ouch, while I am all for basic maintenance... Changing transfer case oil every 24,000 km down in the US vs. 96,000 km here in Canada... Not to menion a timing belt that is only good for 64,000 km? That all seems a little excessive :huh: I wonder how KIA justified that???
 

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Sorento CRDi Ex, Porsche 928S, Fiat Ducato X250
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Discussion Starter #12
What complicates things further is the fact that the driver manual mentions all kinds of equipment that may (or may not) be installed. Sometimes it's obvious, like manual or automatic a/c or leather upholstery, but does my car have limited slip differentials or not?
The manual specifies different lubricants. SAE 90 for std ones, 85W90 for the other.
 

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Mine 2007 Accord EX-L, Hers 2004 Sorento LX 3.5L
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Lift the rear of the vehicle up and put it on jack stands (for safety) and put the transmission in neutral. Go and turn a rear wheel by hand. If the other wheel turns in the same direction, you have a limited slip differential. If the other wheel turns in the opposite direction, you have an open differential.
 

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2006 Kia Sorento 3.5 5sp Auto
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With the transfer case, its actually pretty hard to simply check it.
No dipstick or anything like that.
But it is very easy to replace it, and takes Dex3 i believe which is a very cheap and easy to get oil. So i would just replace.

And with the diff oil, a non LSD diff can take a LSD diff oil, but not the other way around.
So i just bought some LSD diff oil and used it in both diffs.
 

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2009 Sportage, 98 Sportage, 2012 Tata Xenon, 1944 Jeep
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Yes I did the same thing, saves buying two different oils. Penrite 85w-140 EP Limslip. Slightly heavier than the recommended I know

(1) It gets hot in Queensland, and we have long summers, and drive long distances, so thicker oil = better protection

(2) I've used this oil in different 4WD's for years (including my Sportage) with good results. Nissan actually recommend it over their factory lubricant for LSD's

I know mine has an LSD - spins both back wheels on our long and muddy driveway when it's wet!
Ouch, while I am all for basic maintenance... Changing transfer case oil every 24,000 km down in the US vs. 96,000 km here in Canada... Not to menion a timing belt that is only good for 64,000 km? That all seems a little excessive I wonder how KIA justified that???
Interesting, in AUS the Kia recommended interval is 100,000 Km for the TB, and never (ie no change for the TC and Auto)!. I changed my TC at 120,000 when I bought the car, and the auto a little bit later, and it was black, not actually dirty, the oil had just gone very dark, presumeably from heat over 7 years. The auto fluid was also dark but thankfully clear. The auto shifted much better after the
change! I think that no change intervals are simply designed to lower capped cost servicing costs for dealers, they surely can'y be good for components.
 
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