Transmission problems??

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What are the signs of impending transmission problems?


Sluggish shifting. Taking increasingly longer times to shift into first gear or reverse.

Shaky or erratic shifting. If your car is having difficulty shifting into specific gears, you hear noises with shifting, or if you feel “slipping” when shifting gears, it is time to have your transmission checked out.

Noise with shifting. Hearing a high pitch “whine” or “banging” during the shifting process.

RPM’s “flare” when shifting. If you notice the RPM’s increasing dramatically before the car shifts, the vehicle may be having trouble shifting.

Towing heavy loads or lots of mountain driving can take a toll on your transmission. Even if there are no signs of transmission trouble, transmission fluid should be flushed more frequently (every 15,000 miles).

Check Engine Light is lit on your dash. Never ignore your Check Engine Light (or, heaven forbid, put a piece of duct tape over it!). Your Check Engine Light is your car’s way of telling you there is a problem that needs attention, which can include your transmission and a lot more.

Cherry red fluid puddle under your car (although some vehicles have different color fluids these days). Since the transmission system is a closed system, there should not be any fluid escaping.

Your vehicle’s transmission is critical in transferring power from the engine to the drive train, therefore making your car move. It allows acceleration and deceleration, and changes power from forward to reverse.

Maintenance of the transmission includes changing the transmission fluid and transmission filter (if applicable) periodically. Usually this should be done every 30,000 miles, but check your Owner’s Manual for your particular manufacturer’s recommendations.

Since repairing or replacing your vehicle’s transmission can cost a few thousand dollars, replacing your transmission fluid is money well spent to keep your transmission properly lubricated and to prevent premature wear and overheating. If you often tow boats or motor homes, flush the fluid more frequently.

Many different components work toward making your transmission work correctly. If any one of these components fail, they may be able to be repaired or replaced.  Involved components may include the speed sensors, transmission valve bodies, and transmission computer controls. Or the entire transmission may need to be overhauled or replaced.

As the primary driver of your own vehicle, you will be the first to notice any changes in your car’s sounds and “feel” when driving. Relaying these changes to the Service Advisor when you drop off your car will help steer the technician in the right direction to find the problem.

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