Could it be the transmission?

November and December are so busy for everyone. Who has time for car trouble? Even though you’re busy, ignoring issues with your car could be very costly and even more time-consuming if you wait. Take time now to make sure your vehicle is running properly so you save yourself a headache down the road, especially if there’s a problem with your transmission.

Your vehicle’s transmission transmits power from the engine to the wheels. In short, your transmission makes your car go! That’s why many technicians believe that the transmission is the most important thing to care for in your car. Here are some early warning signs of transmission trouble:

Slippery gears
Even if you’ve never experienced a slipped gear, it’s pretty easy to figure out that it’s happening. Imagine driving along and suddenly putting your car in neutral and pushing the gas. The engine revs and nothing happens. With a slipped gear, you may experience this, followed by a sudden lurching as the gear catches and your car begins to roll again. Usually this means your transmission fluid is low, which could be caused by a leak or neglecting to keep the fluid reservoir filled.

Shifting issues
If you drive a manual transmission and have problems shifting gears, this is a dead giveaway you’re having issues with your transmission. If you drive an automatic and notice your car shifting either too early or too late, this is also a sign your transmission could be full of dirt and other gunk and needs to be flushed.

Momentary stalling or surging
Neither of these are normal. If your car starts lurching forward or suddenly slowing for no reason while driving, it’s time to have a mechanic take a look at your transmission.

If you think you have an issue with your transmission, start by checking your transmission fuel level.
It’s pretty easy to determine if you need a transmission flush or a topping off of transmission fluid just by popping your hood and checking the level that’s in your reservoir. Your transmission will have a dipstick similar to your oil dipstick that you can check in the same way. Just remember the following:

  • Make sure your engine’s warm and your car is on. Also, make sure your emergency brake is engaged.
  • Transmission fluid should be clear or pinkish. If not, it’s time for a flush.
  • If the level doesn’t reach the dipstick’s FULL line, add more.
  • If your car’s experiencing transmission issues, get to a shop as soon as possible. The longer you delay, the more damage you could be doing to your car by ignoring the problem.

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