How Much Fluid Does a 4l60e Torque Converter Hold? A Full Answer

How much fluid does a 4l60e torque converter hold? Finding the right answer to this question can make you feel difficult.

This is because the proper transmission fluid amount for your engine and vehicle types can vary, depending on some factors.

Thus, identifying your vehicle’s correct fluid may sometimes confuse you.

Yet, this article will help you solve this concern with the best answer for the fluid 4l60e holding.

Also, I provide useful information about the fluid 4l60e, including the full answers to the related questions and a full guide for checking and changing it.

Keep reading for details!

What Is The 4l60e Torque Converter?

how much fluid does a 4l60e torque converter hold

4L60e, related to 4L65E, is a series from General Motors of automatic transmissions, including 1 reverse and 4 forward gears designed for the longitudinal configuration of the engine.

All the 4l60e transmissions come factory fitted with a lockup clutch torque converter. Almost all high-stall, aftermarket, or factory-style converter designs can easily stall.

How Much Fluid Does a 4l60e Torque Converter Hold?

While the 4l60e transmission can hold 12 quarts of fluid in the case of dry transmission fluid (empty), the 4l60e torque converter fluid capacity is only 2 to 3 quarts.

This volume is a stock base with a shallow 12 “torque converter” drive tray. Besides, the liquid capacity can be added from 1 quart or more using the deep pan.

AWhenever I change the transmission fluid, I notice that not all the liquid drips on the pan.

Instead, there will be some remaining in the torque converter. That’s why I have to drain the torque converter once more if I want to completely swap the fluid.

Most passenger cars require 12-16 quarts of transmission fluid. Yet, the amount and type depend on the car model.

Many vehicles, including mine, have a dipstick to check the transmission fluid when you want to flush the torque converter, but some models do not.

You also note that the 4l60e transmission fluid capacity with torque converter will depend on the torque converter’s size. And the torque converter’s size will change the fluid amount.

What Fluid Type Does The 4l60e Torque Converter Use? 

Dex Merc, Dexron 3, or Dexron 6 is the recommended fluid for the 4l60e torque converter.

Since the introduction of Dexron 3, or Dex III, in 1993, it has been the typical fluid type the 4l60e should use.

Yet, Dex III was phased out over time, and GM introduced Dexron 6 (or Dex VI) in 2005.

Dex VI has a better design suitable for newer transmissions and vehicles and can be compatible with Dex III.

Finally, Dex III has become Dex Merc, the modern recommended type of transmission fluid for 4l60e combined with Mercon.

How To Check Automatic 4l60e Transmission Fluid?

how many quarts of atf does a 4l60e take

Identifying the correct 4l60e transmission fluid capacity will be easier when you know how to properly check your automatic 4l60e transmission fluid.

Below are a few quick steps to inspect your 4l60e best.

  1. Pull the dipstick out and start your engine with the parking (emergency) brake applied and the shift lever in Park or Neutral.
  2. Check the automatic 4l60e transmission fluid.
  3. Reinsert and pull out the dipstick one more time after wiping it with a lint-free and clean cloth.

How Can You Change the 4l60e Filter and Transmission Fluid?

Besides checking the exact 4l60 transmission fluid capacity, you must also change its fluid and filter.

Yet, this task can be daunting if you do it for the first time. Below are a few simple steps to help you complete this task better and more effectively.

Raise Your Car Using Jack Stands Or Ramps

To begin this step, always remember safety comes first if you want to do anything beneath your car. So holding the vehicle high enough to repair anything or work underneath is important.

I used ramps to access the work more easily. Putting my vehicle on ramps or a jack stand helped me work better and safer.

Also, you can use jack stands or a floor jack for better maneuver and observation.

Get a cardboard box, a bucket, or something like that for fluid drainage. 

Put it underneath the transmission with the additional tray utilized to capture the old fluid when you start dropping the transmission tray.

Remove the Shifter Linkage Bolts & Transmission Pan

Once under your car; remove the 16x13mm bolts around the pan’s perimeter to start draining the fluid.

You must buy a drain plug to install for your vehicle if it doesn’t have one. The Dorman 216-811 is a good one I want to recommend to you as it is an OEM deep bowl with an integrated drain bowl.

Depending on the 4l60e trans fluid capacity and its pan type, you can place a direct drain pan beneath the transmission to capture fluid when you start detaching the pan from the transmission system.

It’s best to begin at the front and do your way backward. The pan’s front part can be tilted down to drain more liquid out the front of it on some car and truck models.

Lower the Transmission Pan

As mentioned above, this can be difficult if your vehicle’s transmission pan does not come with a factory-installed drain plug, which most 4L60e do not own.

Therefore, you need to be careful to lower the pan’s front. This allows the inside liquid to drain into the pan.

After you remove the pan, drain the transmission for a few minutes to clean the residual fluid from the transmission filter and valve bodies.

Remove the Filter of the Transmission 

Once you see no fluid drops on the drain pan, you may begin taking out the filter of transmission by twisting and pulling it down so that it comes free.

When pulling out the filter, be aware that the transmission case has a seal inside through which the filter often falls out. So, it’s best to change the seal, but it’s a real hassle to remove.

I usually just leave it on because the new filter I installed fits properly with the old seal.

Check the Pan

In this step, put everything, including the gasket, filter, and pan, into the transmission. Before replacing the old tray and filter, clean the magnet and the tray inside.

If the transmission is functioning fine, don’t worry if the magnets are dirty.

Yet, if you note that your tray seems metallic and the magnets have metal bits, you can get trouble with that.

These metal bits are not supposed to appear inside the broadcast tray, so clean them carefully.


Once you have determined that the drive tray is clean and free of any suspect items, place it back together. Besides, you should use a seal for the filter inside the housing.

Should you take out the seal, it’s honestly great, but removing them is a real hassle, as mentioned.

In addition, if you notice the old seal still keeps the pan tight, it’s totally okay to put the new filter of transmission in with the old seal.

Add Fluid and Inspect Levels

When everything has been reassembled and the pan bolts have been tightened to the right specification, you can refill the transmission with proper transmission fluid capacity 4l60e.

4-5 quarts for a “shallow” pan and 5-6 quarts for a deep pan are suitable choices. Yet, add 3-4 quarts first, then start your car.

If you can’t spot any transmission fluid on the dipstick, add about 1 quart more until you see liquid on it.

If you see the proper fluid amount on the dipstick, get in your car and shift the gear up a few times to allow the fluid to pass through the system without hassle, then continue checking the level one more time.

Besides, inspecting the transmission fluid is best if your engine is warm (but not overheating), so it’s best to take a short test drive before checking it again.


4l60e fluid capacity without torque converter

How Much Transmission Fluid To Put In The 4l60e When Installing The Torque Converter?

How many quarts of ATF does a 4l60e take? When you install the converter to the transmission, fill the converter with about 1 quart of ATF (or automatic transmission fluid).

After transmission installation, fill the transmission with 4 quarts of ATF. Next, start your engine and quickly add another 2 quarts.

Then, you just need to fill the transmission with the additional fluid.

What Is The Best Transmission Fluid For The 4l60e Torque Converter?

Dexron 6 (or Dex VI) or Dexron 3 (Dex III) is the best transmission fluid for torque converter 4l60e.

How Often Should I Change Or Service The Fluid In My 4l60e?

You should replace or service the fluid every 30,000 to 50,000 miles to ensure the proper trans fluid capacity 4l60e. Yet, this replacement also depends on the transmission’s condition and use.

I changed my transmission fluid every 30,000 miles when my SUV suddenly stopped and got heated up.

What Happens When I Overfill My 4l60e?

Don’t worry if your 4l60e gets overfilled. In some cases, 0.5 to 1 quart of extra fluid doesn’t hurt much, notably for performance applications.

Yet, overfilling the 4l60e can cause several things, such as leaky fluid, frothy fluid with inconsistent pump activity, or excessive pressures on the transmission.


Now, you’ve got the best answer to the question, how much fluid does a 4l60e torque converter hold? Normally, a dry transmission can hold 12 quarts, while a torque converter’s capacity is only 2-3 quarts.

But this fluid amount also depends on various factors, such as the transmission’s size or type.

Besides, knowing how to properly check and change the automatic transmission fluid is necessary to keep the 4l60e transmission fluid stable and maintain the torque converter’s best performance.

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