Most people only care about saving money after the fact, in this case, once a transmission is kaput and repair or replacement is necessary. But if you’re a smart person, and we hope you are, you should be preventing problems from happening and doing everything you can to get the most miles out of your transmission. What’s better? Having a transmission that only lasts 60,000 miles because it develops problems OR having a transmission that lasts 120,000 miles because you took care of it properly? Obviously the latter, because repair or replacement isn’t cheap, and proper transmission maintenance isn’t difficult nor does it cost much. So here are 5 simple tips to extend the life of your transmission.
An automatic transmission has a lot of parts to it, and it’s not an easy thing to understand at first. The main components of an automatic transmission include the torque converter, planetary gearset, pump, clutches, bands, sensors, valve body, and last but not least is the transmission fluid, otherwise known as ATF. All the parts of a transmission are crucial, and work together to deliver torque to the wheels so you can get from point A to point B. It’s a remarkable piece of machinery, and to better understand how your car works we’ll explain all the parts of a transmission here.
What’s the difference between a transmission flush vs fluid change you ask? And which is the more effective service? Before we explain what the differences are, you should remember that the transmission holds fluid within the transmission pan as well as the torque converter. A good majority is actually inside the torque converter, up to 40% of the total volume. With that said, we will go ahead and explain the differences between a transmission flush vs fluid change.
Automatic transmissions are quite complex compared to their manual counterparts, which is why problems are easier to develop in them. There can be hundreds of individual parts in a transmission, and there are a number of problems that can occur. The most common transmission problems we’ll be addressing include low fluid levels, burnt or ineffective fluid, pesky leaks, annoying transmission slipping, the terrifying check engine light, and issues with shifting gears. These are the kinds of problems you’ll see most often (not to say there aren’t other problems that can occur), and we’ll explain the common symptoms and causes. So without further ado, here is our common transmission problems guide infographic.
The torque converter is the part of your car that handles how much fluid is passed on to the automatic transmission and allows your engine to continue running while at a complete stop. This component is really important, and if it happens to malfunction it could potentially cause erratic behavior such as shuddering and slipping. The difficult thing is though, diagnosing the exact cause of torque converter problems is not easy. There are a ton of potential reasons that could be causing the malfunction, and your torque converter might not be to blame. So today, we will go over common torque converter problems and its causes.
So what’s the difference between a transmission rebuild and a transmission overhaul? Not much, other than they are the same thing. Mechanics will often use these two terms interchangeably, although you may also hear of re-manufactured or re-conditioned transmissions. All in all, they are referring to the same thing: a transmission rebuild. So what is it exactly? It basically refers to taking a transmission apart and building it again from the ground up, replacing the majority of parts in order to restore it to working order. We’ll explain everything in this guide.
Transmission repair is not going to be a cheap fix, and it can cost thousands of dollars depending on how bad the damage is. Small problems are often cheaper to fix while a complete transmission rebuild will cost you a pretty penny, and the reason for this is because isolating the problem is often difficult. The transmission must be removed from the chassis first in order to be taken apart. Then there are tons of internal parts that need to be looked at in order to find the problem, so most of the transmission repair cost will be for the labor, although the cost of parts will also be going into the bill. With that being said, let’s review all the elements of a transmission repair cost.
You know that transmission fluid is important for your car, but what specific type of transmission fluid are you supposed to use? With so many different types on the market, it can be a confusing chore picking the right kind. There are different grades of fluid out there all with different properties and specifications. Although the owner’s manual of the vehicle will give you the most accurate details regarding transmission fluid, we will explain the various types and the general car makes they are used for. So if you’ve ever asked yourself the question, “What transmission fluid do I need?”, look no further because we have the answer.
If you’re looking to rebuild a transmission, transmission rebuild kits are exactly what you want. It doesn’t matter if you have a manual or automatic car, kits can give your car a new life as well as improve performance, so it’s up to you find a high quality kit that has all the parts that you will need. Typical kits come with a variety of parts, which may or may not include bands, seals, steels, clutches, gaskets, O-rings, modulator, filter, bushings, and washers. The biggest and most common problem people have is that they buy cheap kits online that end up missing vital parts that they need to finish the job. Be sure to research everything you will need and purchase accordingly from trustworthy companies.
Transmission slipping can be a major issue, especially for automatic cars and less so for manual transmissions. If your car is showing signs of slipping then you need to get it fixed quick. What can start off as a small problem can easily turn into a bigger issue later on that will cost even more money to fix. Slipping does not necessarily mean that your transmission is near failure but it is signalling that maintenance is heavily required. For automatics there can be many different causes while for manuals the problem is often associated with the clutch. Here are the common causes of a slipping transmission and how to fix it yourself.