7 Symptoms of Transmission Trouble

Taking care of your car is much like taking care of your body. If you’re sick, you visit a doctor. And when you notice that your car is acting up, you take it to an expert.

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Sometimes identifying the exact problem isn’t always so easy for either. But just like your symptoms indicate where you’re hurting, your car has signs that help diagnose just where it hurts, too.

These 7 symptoms are classics of transmission problems:


Whining and Clunking

This may see fairly obvious, but those are often the symptoms we ignore the most. When your car starts making noises it shouldn’t be making, it’s time to get it checked out. You’ll probably hear a humming or buzzing coming from your transmission. When this happens, don’t wait to bring it in. Fix it as soon as possible before any further damage occurs.


Lack of Response

Your transmission was designed so that you can switch gears instantaneously. So when there is a delayed response and it doesn’t immediately do what you want it to, you guessed it. It’s time for a check up.


Burning Smell

The smell of something burning is never a good sign when it’s coming from your car. The cause could be any number of things, but it’s most commonly the overheating of the transmission fluid.Don’t panic when this happens, just get it checked out as soon as possible.


Leaking Fluid

Fluid where it shouldn’t be is one of the easiest symptoms to spot. The best way to find where the leak is coming from is to lay down a few pieces of cardboard when the car is parked. Then slide out the pieces to to see just where your car is leaking. Be sure to share this information with the mechanic or service professional when you take it in to be resolved.


Grinding Gears

This symptom manifests itself differently for manual and automatic transmissions. For manual transmissions, when you change gears and you hear or feel a sense of grinding; it may mean that you have just worn out the clutch and you need to replace it. But it can also mean that one of the transmission’s synchronizers is worn out and damaged. For automatic transmissions, a rough shift rather than an unnoticeable one could be caused by a few things. Take it into a professional to diagnose.


Noisy in Neutral

A bumping sound doesn’t necessarily evoke signs of caution or trouble, unless it happens when your car is in neutral. Don’t worry though; this problem can sometimes be easily fixed by replacing the transmission fluid. If however, you continue to hear noises coming from your transmission while it’s in neutral, take it in to see what’s up.


Dashboard Lights

“SERVICE ENGINE SOON.” Aren’t those the last words you want to see when you get into your car? This sign on your dashboard could mean all sorts of things and should definitely not be ignored. There are sensors placed throughout your car’s engine that can pick up the slightest of problems. Don’t procrastinate when you see this, get your car inspected as soon as you can.

Identifying certain problems with your car isn’t always the easiest thing to do. Remember, if you hear or feel something that you think is abnormal; don’t wait to see if the problem goes away. Make sure to get your car checked out before any further damage occurs. Not only will it save you time and trouble, it could save you and others from a disaster on the road.

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