Your transmission is one of the most important systems within your vehicle, since it is directly connected to the engine and is what allows your vehicle to change gears and alter its speed. Any sort of malfunction or damage to your transmission can thus have huge implications for the integrity and performance of your engine. Understanding some of the warning signs associated with a failing transmission can help you determine when you need to get in touch with a professional mechanic before the transmission has the chance to damage your engine.
Leaking Transmission Fluid
One of the first and most easily noticeable signs of transmission damage is if you notice that transmission fluid is leaking out of your vehicle. Transmission fluid will have an orange or red hue to it, with older fluid taking a darker shade due to dissolved dirt and other debris. You can blot leaking fluid up from under your car with a clean rag to determine its color. Fortunately, sometimes transmission fluid leaks are simply holes in hoses or gaskets connected to the transmission instead of actual damage to the mechanical structure of the transmission, but you should have a professional take a look at your system anyway to be sure and to make any necessary repairs, as a lack of an adequate amount of transmission fluid can make it harder or even impossible for your transmission to switch gears.
Shaking While Shifting
Another clear indication that there is something wrong with your vehicle's transmission is if you find that your car vibrates violently while you are shifting gears. This can be caused by low amounts of transmission fluid, as mentioned above, but can also be because of worn-out gears or an aging and deteriorating clutch, both of which may require for certain parts or even your entire transmission system to be replaced.
Unintentional Gear Changes
Finally, one of the last and most serious signs of transmission issues is if you find that your vehicle will shift upwards or downwards seemingly at random. This will effectively mean that your engine is receiving too much power or not enough power for the speed that it is traveling at, which can be caused by a lack of fluid, damaged gears, or a worn-out transmission fluid pump. In any case, unintentional gear changes can severely stress your engine and make other mechanical issues much more likely, and can also increase the risk of an accident since your speed will be unpredictable and inconsistent as well.
Contact a local company for more information about transmission repair.