Repairing Your Car

Servicing The Automatic Transmission In Your Car Or Truck

It doesn't matter if you drive a couple miles a day or a couple hundred, there are parts of your car or truck that will require service at specific intervals. In many cases, these service intervals are set to specific mileage numbers on your car so the time between them may be different for different drivers. One thing often overlooked when it comes to regular service is the automatic transmission but it needs to be serviced just like every other part of your car or truck.

Automatic Transmissions And Their Function

The automatic transmission in your car or truck uses fluid and pressure to function properly. The fluid is pumped through the transmission by a pump the is connected to the torque converter at the front of the case. The pressure applied to the clutch bands inside the case allow the car to move and as you slow down, the pressure drops allowing the clutch bands to loosen and the transmission to slip a little. Without pressure in the system, the transmission would not work properly.

Changing The Transmission Fluid

The fluid inside the transmission is a heavy, oil-like liquid that has a specific weight and viscosity to make it work properly. When the fluid gets old, it can start to break down and become thin. The thin oil may not build up enough pressure for the parts inside the transmission to work properly. Changing this fluid or oil on the recommended interval can help but if you are using your car or truck for things like towing a trailer or hauling heavy loads, it may need to be changed sooner than later. Check the fluid level using the dipstick for the transmission under the hood and if it is dark brown or black in color or has a burnt odor to it, it should be changed.

Changing The Filter

There is a filter that is located inside the transmission oil pan on most automatic transmissions that should not be overlooked. If the transmission fluid is in need of a change, the filter is more than likely in need of one too. Changing the filter involves removing the transmission oil pan to access it so a kit with a new gasket, filter, and oil pick up are required when changing the fluid.  If you are going to do the work yourself, you can get these kits at most auto parts stores but if you are not familiar with the transmission, it might be best to take your car or truck in for transmission service.

Signs Of Damage Or Wear

The transmission is going to have some wear and tear over time but if you remove the oil pan and find a large amount of sand-like material in it, the transmission may be wearing faster than it should. That sand-like material is clutch band material and large amounts of it indicate that the bands are wearing prematurely. If this is the case, the transmission may need an overhaul soon so have it checked out by a transmission shop right away.

Contact a service, like Action Transmission & Total Car Care, for more help.