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It's an unavoidable truth: if you drive your vehicle long enough, eventually it will need transmission service. The transmission is a complex set of parts that endures plenty of heat and stress, year after year - and over time, some or all of the parts simply wear out, and a trusted auto repair shop will need to repair or rebuild the transmission.
The good news is that in many cases, you won't need an entirely new transmission. In fact, your car will usually let you know when it's time for transmission service, and if you take it to the mechanic at the first sign of trouble, your chances are good that only minor repairs will be needed. Here are some key symptoms to look for.
1. Trouble "getting into gear"
Do you feel the car hesitate when you put it into gear? Or do you have to try several times to get the car into gear? These are definite signs of transmission trouble. If you experience them, it's time to have the car checked.
2. Jerking or lurching when shifting
If you start feeling a sudden jerk when the car shifts gears, it's a sign of worn transmission parts. (Not to mention it can be quite disconcerting.)
3. Random shifting or falling out of gear
If you feel the car changing gears for no apparent reason, or if it falls out of gear while you're driving, these are definite signs of trouble, and can even pose a safety threat because you have less control of your car. Take the car in to your auto repair center as soon as possible.
4. Leaking transmission fluid
You can tell transmission fluid by its red appearance. If it shows up on your garage floor or driveway, you need to repair the leak as soon as possible. It's not a sure sign the transmission is failing, but neglecting to repair the leak increases the likelihood of failure.
5. "Burnt" transmission fluid
In normal circumstances, transmission fluid is bright red and clear, with a "sweet" smell. If it turns dark and/or smells burnt, it means the transmission isn't working correctly, nor is the fluid protecting the transmission properly.
6. Clunks, buzzes, whining noises
A worn transmission sometimes produces unusual noises, often described as whines, clunks or buzzes (most frequently when the car is in neutral). Obviously, odd noises can point to many things, not just the transmission, but at any rate, it's time to have the car looked at.
7. Shaking, shimmying, grinding
Sometimes with a worn automatic transmission, you may feel a shaking or shimmying as the car shifts gears. In manual transmissions, this usually translates to a grinding noise. This often means the clutch is wearing out, and repairing the clutch right away can prevent further damage from occurring.
Remember, if your vehicle shows any of these symptoms, taking it to the shop right away may keep damage to a minimum and limit the amount you spend on transmission repairs. For reliable auto services and repairs in Austin, trust the professionals at All Tune and Lube. They are a locally owned repair center employing only ASE-certified mechanics, and they've built a reputation around great service at affordable rates. For a free quote on transmission service or other automotive repair needs, they can be reached at (512) 836-6724.
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