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2013 VXL Pepto / Pink Trans fluid


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I was winterizing my VLX today and noticed the pink milkshake fluid in the transmission. I have the 2013 with the 350 monsoon. Unfortunately is is just outside of warranty. I bought the boat used and it has about 200 hrs.

The V-drive fluid was dark red. I have searched several posts about how people speculate that water is getting in via the transmission cooler or some other way.

Does anyone know how to test the transmission cooler for a leak. I read a post from an indmar technician and he thought it was unlikely that water would get in that way. Higher pressure on the oil side would push oil out into the water rather that water in.

Any Ideas on how to trouble shoot? Is there another way water would get in the transmission and not the v-drive?

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I'm not an expert on transmission cooler fluid pressure, but that Indmar tech could be right. In addition, a leak works both ways, I'll bet you would be pumping trans fluid into the water then out the exhaust.

The only other way I can think of that water would get in the trans is though the top (dipstick or vent?). Was you bilge ever very full of water? did you leave your engine cover open in the rain?

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I noticed the exact same thing with my 2010 vlx while changing fluids yesterday. The amount of water that mixed with the atf fluid must have been minute because the level was right on full. To me this would indicate I cat a very small leak. I'm hoping mine came from water in the bilge. Was your fluid level past the full mark?

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  • 1 year later...

As a followup, I removed the transmission cooler, and tested it with compressed air under water to see if I could get bubbles.  I bought some fittings at ace hardware and sealed on end and pumped air in the other.  It didn't leak. It took me about 5 oil changes to get out all the water and I may have another.  Surfing would cause the transmission to slip and the fluid to bubble.  After my most recent flush I was able to surf for hours without any slipping.  I recommend taking your kit/fluid/rags etc to the lake and running the boat for a while, sucking out the fluid and repeating until the water is out. 

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