It’s no secret that your transmission is an important part of how your car operates. The gears in your transmission take the power from the motor and convert it into the driving force for your car. That means your transmission is always hard at work helping you get where you want to go.
Those gears aren’t just simply sitting in the transmission waiting to be called on to work, they are sitting in a pool of fluid that helps keep them lubricated for when you need them. This fluid keeps your gears cool and helps your transmission operate properly without damaging itself.
Transmission fluid is extremely important to the life of your car, and that means changing it at the proper times. So, when should you change your transmission fluid? Here are 5 signs that it might be time.
1 – Distance
The typical mile marker for a transmission fluid change is around 45,000km to 80,000km. That means you won’t have to worry about changing the fluid right away, but you need to be aware of the distance between each change.
Generally, the first change will happen closer to the 80,000km mark, and all the others should be around the 45,000km mark afterward. So what happens if you don’t change it? Well, you might end up not being able to later on down the road. If you take your car to 120,000km without a transmission fluid change, chances are you are better off keeping the fluid you already have. The fluid could be holding your transmission together due to metal shavings being in the transmission fluid without being changed. While shavings are a normal part of transmission wear-and-tear, too much could result in the transmission failing from a transmission fluid change.
If you have hit your mile marker, it’s time to schedule an appointment with your local transmission specialist. Click the button below to set up an appointment with Pro-Tech Transmissions.
2 – Don’t Grind My Gears
If you drive a manual car, you never want to hear a grinding noise when you shift. It’s just not a good sign. A grind from your transmission could mean a number of things from low transmission fluid to the destruction of part of your transmission.
No matter what it means for your transmission, it’s time to get your car to the shop. Sometimes, grinds can be fixed with a simple transmission fluid change, but you never know. A transmission specialty shop, like Pro-Tech Transmissions, would be able to let you know what you really need to keep that transmission going.
3 – What’s That Smell?
Transmission fluid has a distinct smell, especially when it’s burning. There is a truly sweet smell that is emitted from your engine bay when transmission fluid starts burning, and that smell will make its way into the cabin of the car. If you smell that sweet burning smell, you aren’t smelling the sweet taste of victory, you’re smelling transmission fluid.
4 – The Ol’ Dusty Trail
Do you drive on dusty or unpaved roads a lot? Did you know that can affect the life of your transmission fluid? Dust is so fine that it can sneak its way through cracks, seals, and tiny openings anywhere on the transmission. That means if you spend a lot of time driving on dirt roads, you need to get your transmission fluid checked. If you aren’t careful, those fine dust particles can ruin the quality of your transmission fluid and clog your transmission mission fluid filter. When the quality of the fluid is compromised, it’s more likely that your transmission can start overheating.
5 – Stop-and-Go Hauling
Stop-and-Go traffic can cause a further breakdown of your transmission fluid. The constant strain of stop-and-go can lead to higher operating temperatures due to higher levels of stress. That means the more you are stuck in stop-and-go traffic, the more pressure you put on your transmission fluid.
Hauling does the same thing to the transmission fluid. The added force of the extra weight can take its toll on the fluid and cause it to break down faster.
If you are doing both of these, it’s important to get regular transmission fluid changes.
Don’t Drop Your Transmission, Change Your Transmission Fluid
It’s very easy to forget about your transmission fluid and neglect the changes altogether. This will lead to a shorter life for your transmission in general. If you forget the initial change, you could end up stuck with the same fluid until the transmission dies. Things could be worse if you are out hauling and your bad transmission fluid comes back to bite you on the open road.
If you need help with your transmission, you can always reach out to your friendly neighbourhood transmission specialists at Pro-Tech Transmissions.