Transmission Troubles 101

Automotive Blog

Transmission fluid is required to keep your vehicle's transmission running smoothly. The fluid lubricates the various parts that make up the transmission, which is the system that makes the wheels move together at the right speed to power the vehicle. The transmission shifts gears, much like the lever on your bicycle allows you to switch gears or "speeds." While the system normally functions fine, problems can arise that may cause your vehicle to no longer move entirely or have difficulty moving properly.

A transmission system has lots of little parts, but these components make up the majority of it:

Bellhousing: This is the outer covering, usually bell-shaped, that houses your vehicle's flywheel and torque converter or clutch.

Gears: This is a system of toothed plates that interlock with one another to power the vehicle either forward or in reverse. These gears are moved either by pushing in the clutch and manually shifting or moving the gear selector from "Park" to "Drive" or "Reverse" with the selector lever on automatic transmissions.

Transmission Fluid: This is the oil or lubricant that keeps the parts able to freely move. It is typically a bright red color.

Transmission Filter: The filter keeps the transmission fluid clean by filtering out any impurities, such as corroded metal flakes.

Whether your vehicle won't go at all or just struggles with getting up to speed, the issues are basically the same.

Is There Adequate Transmission Fluid?

The transmission system doesn't go through a lot of transmission fluid, but older vehicles may lose it from a leak somewhere in the system. You'll want to check your transmission fluid a few times per year or every time you change your oil, usually every 3 months or 5,000–10,000 miles depending on your vehicle manufacturer's specifications. Without the proper fluid level, the vehicle will struggle to shift gears.

Do You Have A Transmission Fluid Leak?

The transmission is a closed system, meaning you shouldn't have to replace large amounts of fluid. If you are consistently having to add fluid, you likely have a leak somewhere in the system. The only areas there can be a transmission leak are where the radiator and transmission cooler meet, where the selector rod meets the transmission, from the transition drain hole, or at the base of the filler tube.

If you find you are having issues with your transmission, take your vehicle to a transmission shop immediately to prevent any major and costly damage. 


22 November 2016

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