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I have a 99 323iS and the power steering pump is leaking so I need to top it off untill I can bring it into the shop to fix the leak. The owner's manual says to use DexronII ATF . Isn't this automatic transmission fluid? Is that what I am supposed to use? The dealer said that the "special fluid" it needed was like 30 bucks a bottle but the dexron II at auto zone is like 2 dollars. Does anyone know if this is the right stuff? Please help.
 

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Yes, the manual is right. (why don't you trust the manual anyway?)
ATF = Auto Transmission Fluid.
Apprantly they say the ATF last longer and sustain the higher load/harsher environment that in a BMW power steering system.

As long as they are the right grade (Dexron II ATF), you will be fine. Especially it's just a short term thing to get you to the repair shop.
 

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Just a heads up, I dunno if there is a typo in this thread or perhaps this is something that changed for newer cars but I know my manual says to use:

Dexron III ATF

Just double check. There are probably quite a few different grades of this Dexron stuff!
 

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I too am leaking power steering fluid in my 92 325. Looks to be a bad clamp or aging hose. Anyhow, my manual says Dexron II (this is the one in the car) but I picked up some Dexron III to top it off while I repair the leak. I'll try to find a definitive answer before putting it in there, but if someone finds out first f II/III are compatible, even better. All I know is that Dexron II is old school, that was in cars in the 70's/80's. I'm guessing that Dexron III specs are compatible.
 

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BMWCCA 149159
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Hose Clamp Fix

You can fix most all BMW power steering hose leaks b y using a quality clamp at the hose crimp point. After time the hose and clamp age which causes the power steering fluid to leak out. I have done this numerous times on e30's and e36's. Might save you some money as the hose is usually not bad, just the chrimp clamp point....
 

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I plan on replacing the crimp-type clamp with the normal screw-type clamp. A little simple green to clean up the hoses and a quick trip around the block should show me if the leak continues. Strangly enough, my fathers e36 98 M3 has the same leaking issue, but his is very minor. His car hasn't been to a cold climate, so the hoses have been treated better. This leads me to belive it is indeed the clamp. The hoses are a bit pricey, so I'm hoping its the clamp.
 

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Yes, power steering fluid is usually tranny fluid. But don't use power steering fluid in your tranny. There are necessary additives in trans fluid that are not present in p/s fluid. And yes, Dexron III replaces Dexron II; it's backwards compatible.
 
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