Do you know how to recognize a problem with your automatic vehicle’s transmission? Those who drive an automatic appreciate how, well, automatic the engine truly is. Instead of manually changing gears, the car’s computer system does it all for you. These modern transmissions are great until something goes wrong. Stay on the lookout for these five common automatic transmission problems.
1. Grinding, Shaking, and Vibrating
One allure of an automatic vehicle is a smooth driving experience. It should move in and out of gear with ease. But a failing transmission can turn your gentle commute into a rough ride. Your car might grind, shake, or vibrate as it attempts to change gears. These jerky sensations almost always indicate a serious transmission problem. Drive to a mechanic immediately before you wind up stranded on the highway.
2. Clanking Noises and Other Odd Sounds
Every engine makes noise, but it should never take center stage during a drive. Strange whining, humming, and clanking sounds under the hood usually mean transmission trouble. Best case scenario? You just need to top off the transmission fluid. But if there is damage to internal components, replacing the transmission might be your only option. Instead of playing the guessing game, let a mechanic run diagnostics.
3. Smells Like Burning Rubber or Metal
It doesn’t matter if you drive an older car or a brand-new model. The engine should never emit a burning aroma. But if it does, old, overheated transmission fluid might be to blame. Normally, this fluid has a sweet scent. But it can start to smell burnt as it ages. Changing the fluid is sometimes all it takes to stop this issue.
4. Puddles of Bright Red Fluid
Transmission fluid is bright red. It’s pretty much impossible to mistake it for other liquids. What does it do? This essential fluid lubricates the gears and other components. Without it, the transmission would wear out prematurely. If you notice a telltale red puddle the next time you pull out of a parking spot, you need to check for leaks. Fixing a fluid leak in the early stages will save you from more costly repairs down the road.
5. Check Engine Light Turned On
The “check engine” or “service engine” light warns drivers of a potential problem. Yes, the light could indicate a failing transmission. But don’t assume the worst just yet. A ton of issues can trigger it. Anything from a faulty O2 sensor to a loose gas cap can make the light come on. Regardless, it’s best to let a mechanic make a proper diagnosis.
Transmission Repair When You Need It
Is something amiss with your automatic transmission? The skilled mechanics at Guardian Transmission Repair want to help. We are a family-owned and operated auto shop dedicated to providing honest, trustworthy service. Our team will go above and beyond to get you back on the road again.
A car is only as reliable as its engine. Schedule service with Guardian Transmission Repair if you suspect automatic transmission problems.