Your vehicle’s powertrain consists of two very important components — the engine and the transmission. You probably already know the proper maintenance steps needed for maintaining your engine, but if you’re here that means you need a quick overview on how to maintain your transmission.
Change Your Transmission Fluid
Although it doesn’t need to be changed nearly as often as the oil in your engine, the fluid in your transmission does have an expiration date. Manufacturer recommendations for when to change your transmission fluid vary from model to model. Many modern vehicles have intervals that stretch as long as 100,000 miles. It’s a good idea to have your fluids checked every time you get an oil change.
Get a Transmission Flush Only When Recommended
When you have your transmission fluid checked, your technician may suggest one of three things.
- Topping off the fluid – This is only necessary when the transmission levels are a little low.
- Transmission fluid change – Similar to an oil change, your technician will drain the old transmission fluid and add new fluid. Follow the factory recommended intervals for changing your transmission fluid.
- Transmission flush – A transmission flush is commonly recommended for vehicles with automatic transmissions, which are most vehicles these days. power flushing your transmission dislodges sludge and grime that can clog the system.
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How to Tell Your Transmission Fluid Needs to Be Changed
It can be difficult to tell when it’s time to change your transmission fluid. In fact, it might require the assistance of a trained professional. However, there are some general indications.
- You’ve passed the factory recommended interval.
- You can hear the transmission whining.
- You can feel the gears slipping between shifts. This is most noticeable when you are going up or down steep inclines.
- You hear a grinding noise coming from your transmission.
- You can’t go in reverse gear.
- The engine is running hot
If you notice any of these signs that it is time for a transmission fluid change, schedule an appointment with the Huber Motor Cars service center in Fredericksburg, VA.