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Silverado 2500hd 6l90e transmission service

2003silverado
Explorer II
Explorer II
Looking for advice on doing a pan drop and filter replacement on my 2012 Silverado 2500hd with the 6.0 gas and 6l90e transmission. My main question is does the exhaust pipe need to be lowered to completely remove the pan? The only videos I see on the net are half ton silverados where the exhaust pipe needs to be lowered. On my 2500hd the exhaust pipe does indeed run below the pan, but it appears to have enough clearance to work it off, but I know looks can be deceiving.

Anybody here ever done this to a similar model year truck to give advice?

Thanks!
16 REPLIES 16

Dave_H_M
Explorer
Explorer
Gasser

blofgren
Explorer
Explorer
I realize that the 4L60E hasn't been used in trucks for years, but it is still a PITA to service. My 2001 does have a drain plug, thankfully, but it is still terrible to get the pan off.

It sounds like GM has made things better... 🙂
2013 Ram 3500 Megacab DRW Laramie 4x4, 6.7L Cummins, G56, 3.73, Maximum Steel, black lthr, B&W RVK3670 hitch, Retrax, Linex, and a bunch of options incl. cargo camera
2008 Corsair Excella Platinum 34.5 CKTS fifth wheel with winter package & disc brakes

ls1mike
Explorer II
Explorer II
Dave H M wrote:
Wow all this info about servicing the trans and at such close intervals (like 15000 miles) just blew me away.

I yanked out the ops manual on the 2012 F 250 and it specifies the first change at 90K. If it is good enough for Henry, it is good enough for me. :h

However I concede that if you don't wear out the drain plug or the pan bolts it won't hurt s thing. :W


The Allison with Duramax is 97,500 miles. My Malibu is 60,000. I did the truck at 32,000 because I had time. The Caprice which was supposed to be a police car with a 6L80E has an interval of 100,000 or 45,000 for severe, which would have been police service. I did it at 45,000 because it is Cammed and Stalled. The 6L90E used in only 2500HD and 3500HD has a 45,000 service as it assumed you will be using the severe service interval. It has no external filter like the Allison, so you should change it more frequently.

Is your truck a diesel?
Mike
2024 Chevy 2500HD 6.6 gas/Allison
2012 Passport 3220 BHWE
Me, the Wife, two little ones and two dogs.

Grit_dog
Nomad III
Nomad III
Dave H M wrote:
Wow all this info about servicing the trans and at such close intervals (like 15000 miles) just blew me away.

I yanked out the ops manual on the 2012 F 250 and it specifies the first change at 90K. If it is good enough for Henry, it is good enough for me. :h

However I concede that if you don't wear out the drain plug or the pan bolts it won't hurt s thing. :W


15k isn't a service interval, it's just someone who has too much extra time (and ATF apparently) on their hands.
2016 Ram 2500, MotorOps.ca EFIlive tuned, 5” turbo back, 6" lift on 37s
2017 Heartland Torque T29 - Sold.
Couple of Arctic Fox TCs - Sold

Dave_H_M
Explorer
Explorer
Wow all this info about servicing the trans and at such close intervals (like 15000 miles) just blew me away.

I yanked out the ops manual on the 2012 F 250 and it specifies the first change at 90K. If it is good enough for Henry, it is good enough for me. :h

However I concede that if you don't wear out the drain plug or the pan bolts it won't hurt s thing. :W

ls1mike
Explorer II
Explorer II
JIMNLIN wrote:
mike wrote:
That was my point. the 2001 had a 4L60E, the new 1/2 tons do not have a 6L90E that is 3/4 ton and up. You have a 6L80E.

My bad....your correct. The 2016 1500 chevy has the 6L80E tranny....and is a ***** to drop the pan even though it has a built in notch on the pans bottom for that purpose. Terrible GM engineering on that part. ...so says one chevy dealer tranny mechanic.


The half tons have always been a PITA. I don't know why they didn't put a drain plug in them. Really they should have put the 90E in the half ton would have worth an extra 500 bucks at purcahse.

My 2014 Caprice has an 80E. No dipstick, this has to be up to temp running and level then you pull a plug on the pan and fluid should dribble out, that means it is full. I just pull the cooler line pump out and add then check it. Lots of cars are like that now. It is just a PITA. I am glad that my truck is easy.

My wife's 15 Malibu has no serviceable filter you have to split the case, but is has a drain plug and fill hole with a dipstick so it isn't horrible. This transmission is decent, developed by both Ford and GM. It is in a TON of cars/Small SUVS and has a low failure rate.
Mike
2024 Chevy 2500HD 6.6 gas/Allison
2012 Passport 3220 BHWE
Me, the Wife, two little ones and two dogs.

JIMNLIN
Explorer
Explorer
mike wrote:
That was my point. the 2001 had a 4L60E, the new 1/2 tons do not have a 6L90E that is 3/4 ton and up. You have a 6L80E.

My bad....your correct. The 2016 1500 chevy has the 6L80E tranny....and is a ***** to drop the pan even though it has a built in notch on the pans bottom for that purpose. Terrible GM engineering on that part. ...so says one chevy dealer tranny mechanic.
"good judgment comes from experience, and a lot of that comes from bad judgment" ............ Will Rogers

'03 2500 QC Dodge/Cummins HO 3.73 6 speed manual Jacobs Westach
'97 Park Avanue 28' 5er 11200 two slides

ls1mike
Explorer II
Explorer II
2003silverado wrote:
My truck does have the crossover pipe below the transmission pan, but with the shape of the pan it had enough clearance to sneak the pan forward and then down.


You already do the service? It is pretty easy on the 3/4 ton and up 6L90E.
Mike
2024 Chevy 2500HD 6.6 gas/Allison
2012 Passport 3220 BHWE
Me, the Wife, two little ones and two dogs.

ls1mike
Explorer II
Explorer II
JIMNLIN wrote:
ls1mike wrote:
blofgren wrote:
I'm glad to hear they improved this. I had to drop the exhaust on my 2001 Yukon and it was still a major PITA to get the pan to clear. :M


Half ton vs 3/4-1 ton. 4L60E vs 6L90E. Nothing is shared between them.

LOL..1500 GM trucks haven't used the old 4L60E tranny in years. The wifes 2016 1500 chevy 5.3 has the 6L90E tranny.
I asked my chevy dealer to change fluid and filter in the L90E in the wifes truck. At 49k miles they recommended a tranny flush now and a filter change at 75k miles due to this trucks usage.
If your 2500 doesn't have the cross over pipe under the pan why wouldn't it be a straight drop like older GM trucks.


That was my point. the 2001 had a 4L60E, the new 1/2 tons do not have a 6L90E that is 3/4 ton and up. You have a 6L80E. Which is similar but has a different torque convertor, a few less clutches and is close to an inch and 1/2 shorter than the 6L90E. The current 90E 14 and up has a drain plug.
Mike
2024 Chevy 2500HD 6.6 gas/Allison
2012 Passport 3220 BHWE
Me, the Wife, two little ones and two dogs.

2003silverado
Explorer II
Explorer II
My truck does have the crossover pipe below the transmission pan, but with the shape of the pan it had enough clearance to sneak the pan forward and then down.

JIMNLIN
Explorer
Explorer
ls1mike wrote:
blofgren wrote:
I'm glad to hear they improved this. I had to drop the exhaust on my 2001 Yukon and it was still a major PITA to get the pan to clear. :M


Half ton vs 3/4-1 ton. 4L60E vs 6L90E. Nothing is shared between them.

LOL..1500 GM trucks haven't used the old 4L60E tranny in years. The wifes 2016 1500 chevy 5.3 has the 6L90E tranny.
I asked my chevy dealer to change fluid and filter in the L90E in the wifes truck. At 49k miles they recommended a tranny flush now and a filter change at 75k miles due to this trucks usage.
If your 2500 doesn't have the cross over pipe under the pan why wouldn't it be a straight drop like older GM trucks.
"good judgment comes from experience, and a lot of that comes from bad judgment" ............ Will Rogers

'03 2500 QC Dodge/Cummins HO 3.73 6 speed manual Jacobs Westach
'97 Park Avanue 28' 5er 11200 two slides

ls1mike
Explorer II
Explorer II
blofgren wrote:
I'm glad to hear they improved this. I had to drop the exhaust on my 2001 Yukon and it was still a major PITA to get the pan to clear. :M


Half ton vs 3/4-1 ton. 4L60E vs 6L90E. Nothing is shared between them.
Mike
2024 Chevy 2500HD 6.6 gas/Allison
2012 Passport 3220 BHWE
Me, the Wife, two little ones and two dogs.

blofgren
Explorer
Explorer
I'm glad to hear they improved this. I had to drop the exhaust on my 2001 Yukon and it was still a major PITA to get the pan to clear. :M
2013 Ram 3500 Megacab DRW Laramie 4x4, 6.7L Cummins, G56, 3.73, Maximum Steel, black lthr, B&W RVK3670 hitch, Retrax, Linex, and a bunch of options incl. cargo camera
2008 Corsair Excella Platinum 34.5 CKTS fifth wheel with winter package & disc brakes

2003silverado
Explorer II
Explorer II
Thanks for the help. I'm going to put a drain plug in the pan so I can do the service like you are. Planning to drain the fluid every 15k miles and every other time change the filter.