Common Automatic Transmission Problems

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Cars with an automatic transmission require less effort to drive compared to those with a manual transmission, allowing you to keep your attention focused on the road. On the downside, they have a more complex design and construction, meaning they generally require more complicated repairs than vehicles with manual transmissions.

While automatic transmission trouble often occurs unexpectedly, it helps to know the typical culprits behind this problem. Highlighted below are some common causes of problems with automatic transmissions that require transmission repair.

Low Transmission Fluid Level

All transmissions require a sufficient amount of fluid to run smoothly. Aside from lubricating the moving parts and cooling the transmission system, transmission fluid generates the hydraulic pressure used for transmission engagement and disengagement.

Unfortunately, transmission fluid can leak from your transmission, resulting in a drop in transmission fluid level. When this happens, your automatic transmission will lack enough of the essential working fluid it requires to operate at its peak.

If you see a puddle of reddish-brown fluid underneath your car, you should get your vehicle checked for transmission fluid leaks. Once the leaks have been identified and sealed, the repair process gets completed by replenishing the transmission fluid level.

As you keep tabs on your transmission fluid level, remember that transmission fluid degrades over time and will eventually require a replacement.  

Bad Torque Converter 

Cars with an automatic transmission do not have a clutch. That explains why they do not feature a clutch pedal. Instead, they use a torque converter to transfer the power from the engine to the wheels, allowing you to travel at the speed you want.

Torque converters can fail due to general wear and tear or poor vehicle maintenance, resulting in poor transmission performance. Many factors can contribute to a torque converter failure. However, damaged torque converter seals are the typical culprit. 

Torque converter seal failure leads to transmission fluid leaks, which ultimately hurt transmission performance and can cause transmission damage. Fixing or replacing your vehicle's torque converter may get your transmission system working well again.

Faulty Solenoid

A transmission solenoid is the component of your automatic transmission that controls or regulates fluid flow. A malfunctioning solenoid will hamper the proper flow of fluid throughout your transmission system, resulting in transmission failure and damage.

If you have a bad solenoid, you will experience difficulty changing gears. In most cases, bad solenoids require replacement. The cost of a replacement solenoid varies according to the make and model of the car you drive.

Need automatic transmission repairs for your car? Contact your local auto repair shop to book your appointment.