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Hello All - This is my first posting on the forum.
Got my wife a used (45,000 miles) 2008 Mazda 3 last month. It has automatic trans.
Today I thought I'd look underneath to make sure I know where the oil drain plug is located for future oil changes.
After removing the undercovering, I noted 2 drain plugs and I'm not really sure which one is the engine oil drain plug. I suspect that one may be the transmission.
One is on the right side (driver's side). It is in a black-looking pan.
The other is closer toward the center of the car and is screwed into a silver (alluminum) casting.
My gut tells me that the one on the right (passengers side) is the transmission, as it appears that a lever of some kind goes into it.
I bought a CD "service manual" - which is terrible as it doesn't have photographs. I understand that Chilton or Haynes has not published anything for the 2008's.
Thanks for any help you can provide.
Oh - one more thing; I noticed an oil filter within easy reach, however it looks like a ordinary oil filter (it has a NAPA name on it). I thought this car had a "replaceable filter cartridge system, so was puzzled to see what looks like a screw-on filter. Any thoughts on if this might be an ordinary filter?
it should be the aluminum pan, with the plug pointing to the rear of the car. I haven't looked at mine, but with the under engine plastic cover in place i'm not sure if you can see the transmission drain... though the oil drain is definitely visible.
you can also look here - http://www.mazda3club.com/showthread.php?t=53521 = oil change picture thread, though it is only instructions, no pics.
Dave '07 M3 GT, manual, - black
Adders: backup sensors, current limited hi-beams (for long life), Fog light on with running lights (t=44332 PAGE2), low beam aiming switch adjustment (t=47722), dash squeak reduction, badges removed, door bumpers removed, auto up/down windows, under seat subwoofer, True hidden hitch (t=53213), rear camber fix (t=53425)
Info / help: outside running lights only as DRL (t=54453)
link example http://www.mazda3club.com/showthread.php?t=54453
Thanks DJS. Sounds like the oil drain plug is on the "left" side when looking at the front of the car. So it must be the trans. drain plug on the right. And you are correct, I cannot see the trans. plug with the shroud in place - but I can see the oil drain plug near the back end of the shroud. Appreciate your help..!!!