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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi Guys,

I have an e46 2003 325i auto tranmission

Power steering oil seems low and it has been leaking from the cap.

can I just add power steering fluid to the reservoir or do I have to drain whats inside first?

What confused me is some say use CHF11S some say use ATF Fluid like Castrol ATF+4. I am a bit lost.

I need some guidance please
 

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it says ATF on the cap, fluid is like red-darkish.

I m not sure if its dark because of the dirt. I bought the car at 140K and now its around 155K and I dont think it was ever changed. It s been leaking from the cap, I think an O ring issue but the level is a bit below.

I m not sure if I should just top it up for now. I bought a new reservoir but it will take at least a month to arrive.
 

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Look for a Dex/Merc fluid--believe Dex III is what's spec'd. Find your manual online.

Also, remove the cap and look--there's a small gasket on it you should replace...and also make sure the vent hole is clear. You'll need a knife edge to find and remove your gasket--wait until the new one comes to remove yours

realoem.com for part numbers
newtis.info for what to do with them
fcpeuro is a great online supplier of parts
 

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E30M3 Race F10 535 R1150Rt M Coupe
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They ALL take ATF dex 3, regardless of what the cap states. We all went through this last month. The producer of the reservoirs stopped making ATF caps. Given that all of the newer cars that use the same cap use a different fluid.

Keep in mind that the caps are vented, (the small hole on the side of the cap) and the higher you fill it the more it will vent out and down the sides.

I'm not advocating under-filling but keeping it at the minimum or near it helps mitigate the expansion centric leak.
 

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2004 325i automagic
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it says ATF on the cap, fluid is like red-darkish.

I m not sure if its dark because of the dirt.
I bought the car at 140K and now its around 155K and I dont think it was ever changed. It s been leaking from the cap, I think an O ring issue but the level is a bit below.

I m not sure if I should just top it up for now. I bought a new reservoir but it will take at least a month to arrive.
Yes, dirty atf is no longer a bright reddish/pink. Top it up if the fluid is low on the markings on the cap dipstick, but if the pump is not groaning or whining then you are probably ok level wise. Also, check condition of the two hoses attached to the reservior ... they like to leak at the hose clamps where they attach to the reservior.
 
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