Understanding Transmission Repair
How Does a Transmission Work?
Barring a rather technical analysis of the inner workings of this complicated piece of machinery, it will suffice most car owners to understand that a transmission helps a driver shift between gears in automatic vehicles. This will cause a decrease in the revolutions per minute (RPM's). The intended outcome is the same as it is for the manual car; transmissions allow the engine to efficiently operate in a narrow range of internal speeds and to provide different output speeds. This enables a car to accelerate when needed without the internal mechanisms being forced to operate at dangerously fast rates.
The main purposes of a transmission are:
- To allow the engine to operate at the optimum internal speed.
- To help better use the torque of the engine to produce faster and variable driving speeds.
- To keep the number of RPM's low and thus prevent damage to internal parts.
Most consumers are neither mechanics nor do they necessarily understand the intricacies involved in the internal workings of these dynamic and essential mechanisms. Therefore, using a trained mechanic when seeking transmission service or repair is essential.
The Steps Involved in Determining the Need for Transmission Repair
The first step is by observing the transition between gears. Sluggish changes, a "clunking" sound, brown smoke emitting from the exhaust pipe or a vehicle accelerating without automatically changing gears can all signal a problem.
Sometimes, a simple flush may be needed. This involves releasing the fluid from the lower reservoir while replacing it simultaneously at the top. This is an exacting process and is often used if the liquid appears overly viscous or dark in colour. If this still does not solve the problem, a more extensive examination is necessary.
A mechanic will then perform a visual inspection. He will look for leaks, physical damage or metal shavings in the fluid, all of which may point to the need for the unit to be rebuilt or replaced.
Rebuilding a transmission can be the option of choice for those with older model vehicles whereas a car under warranty may qualify for an entirely new replacement. Obviously, the owner may incur a substantially hefty bill for a rebuilt transmission.
To summarize - Steps involved with diagnosing and correcting a transmission problem include:
- Determining if there are noticeable problems when changing gears.
- Looking for visual issues such as discoloured fluid or brownish smoke.
- Performing a transmission flush.
- Determining whether any leaks may be present.
- Deciding whether to replace or rebuild an existing unit based on the above criteria.
Only a qualified transmission repair service should be used in either case, so it is therefore important to mention a few key variables to consider when choosing such a technician.
Is their work baked up by an ironclad guarantee? This is important as to determine whether the repair or replacement has been successful can take a considerable amount of time. Most companies will offer at least a 10,000 mile warranty on a new or reconstructed transmission.
The cost is another critical variable. This can be a complicated and lobar intensive process, thus the owner will be charged for the number of hours as well as the cost of the parts. Before choosing any car service, it should be first determined how much will be charged on an hourly basis.
Make certain that a simple fluid change is not all that is necessary. Some garages may recommend a complete overhaul when less work is needed. It is for this reason that the vehicle owner should ask for the opinion of several knowledgeable mechanics before committing to a larger job.
To summarize - Three main factors to consider for Transmission repairs:
- Is a substantial guarantee on parts and labour offered?
- How much will the entire job cost?
- Make certain that the amount of work recommended is confirmed by a number of shops.