How to Maintain a Transmission and Prevent Costly Repairs

On a Mission to Save Your Transmission

Without a properly functioning transmission, your vehicle isn’t going to go very far.  As the name implies, this major component, mounted directed to the engine, converts and transmits energy produced by the engine to power that moves the wheels.  The transmission’s gearbox allows for use of the gear and ratio appropriate for the speed of the car to be engaged either manually by the driver or automatically, depending upon the type transmission your automobile has.  Transmission repairs can be costly, so it is important to properly maintain this important unit.  Our technicians at Integrity Automotive in Williamstown, Maryland, have experience with both kinds of transmissions.  We’re here to help you take care of your transmission so that you can avoid many expensive repairs.

Manual 

With a manual transmission, the driver presses in the clutch and shifts the transmission from one gear to another using a shifter inside the vehicle.  There are a few things you can do to help this type of transmission last longer and avoid the need for untimely repairs.  First, keep your coolant topped off and your vehicle’s cooling system properly maintained.  Yes, the cooling system.  That’s important because the cooling system removes heat from the transmission fluid as it travels through the gearbox.  Second, keep your transmission fluid full and clean.  This fluid should be reddish in color, yet translucent.  If it is dark, you can’t see through it at all, or it smells bad, you need to take it to a transmission repair specialist.  Also, if you find that the fluid level is low, you could have a leak.  Consult your owner’s manual or one of our technicians to be sure you use the correct fluid type.  It’s a good idea to have us inspect your transmission about once per year.  Depending upon your driving habits, allowing us to flush your transmission annually can head off potential problems.  Additionally, protect your transmission by driving sensibly.  Don’t keep your foot on the clutch when you’re not engaging it, and don’t downshift in place of braking.

Automatic 

Most cars sold in the United States today have automatic transmissions.  In fact, only 41 of the 327 new car models (13%) sold here are offered with the optional manual transmission.  Thus, chances are you need to keep an automatic transmission, one that functions without the driver engaging the clutch and shifting gears, in good working order.  This can be done by monitoring the fluid level, changing the fluid/flushing the transmission annually, and servicing the cooling system as described for a manual transmission.  However, certain model automatics also have a transmission fluid filter that will need to be changed periodically.  Further, driving habits are important in automatic transmission autos, as well.  Do not change gear settings (drive to reverse, drive to park, etc.) while the vehicle is still moving.  Let your car warm-up before moving, and do not use it for towing.  Towing can cause the transmission to overheat, burning the fluid and potentially causing damage.  Finally, do not use different size tires, including running a small, temporary spare long-term.  This disrupts wheel alignment and strains the transmission.

Maintaining the Integrity of Your Transmission 

We are Integrity Automotive of Williamstown, New Jersey.  We take pride in the integrity of our work and our ethics, and we want to help you maintain the integrity of your car’s transmission.

Written by Integrity Automotive

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