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1955 Cadillac transmission questions


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I have some questions regarding the 1955 Cadillac Hydramatic transmission. The shifting is a little bit rough when I depress the acceleration pedal just a bit to pick up speed. When I depress the pedal more, the shifting is smooth. Is this normal ? And : How to check the automatic oil level ? The shop manual says, that the engine has to run 2 minutes or so in “N”. The level at the dip stick should be at mark “full”. But : The shop manual says nothing about if the fluid should be warm, hot or can be cold. I replaced the fluid and filled up with cold transmission to level “full”. Now I am thinking if it could be, that it is now overfilled when the fluid is really hot after or trip of 100 miles and the fluid starts to foam and that this the reason is why the shifting is hard as described above.

Could someone help me please ?

Kind regards


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  • 3 months later...


I am a bit surprised no one has answered your question. On behalf of all, I apologize for the tardiness.

The answer to your question is that <span style="font-style: italic">all</span> automatic transmissions, not just Cadillacs, are properly checked for fluid level with the fluid warm. This is because the fluid does expand when heated.

Dave Yaros

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  • 2 weeks later...
Guest rickomo1

I am not real good with the hydramatic trans but on almost all older auto transmissions you do not want to fill it full when cold as if its too full the pressure will build too much and in some instances will blow a seal, not hard to fix but easier to avoid. as for smoothness i cant answer that one.

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