Should I do this service when it's recommended?
Yes, definitely, regardless of whether you have a manual or an automatic transmission.
Manual: Most manufacturers recommend that manual transmission fluid is changed each 30,000 to 60,000 miles. Under heavy duty use, some manufacturers suggest changing the transmission fluid every 15,000 miles.
Automatic: Service intervals for an automatic transmission vary from every 30,000 miles to never. The typical service interval is 60,000 to 100,000 miles. Changing it more often
does no harm.
How much is a rebuilt Transmission?
The price varies depending on the make, model, and year of the vehicle. It also depends on the amount of damage done to the transmission. The best way to find out the cost is to bring it in for a FREE transmission performance check and computer diagnostic. You’ll find out right away from us how to repair your transmission properly.
How often should I service my transmission?
The recommendation for the fluid service can vary for different vehicle manufacturers. On average, it is recommended to do it every 15,000 miles or once a year. Bring your vehicle in and let us check for leaks and other issues that may arise.
My car isn’t driving right and my check engine light is on, is it my transmission?
If a check engine light or MIL (Malfunction Indicator Lamp) comes on, this means the vehicle onboard computer senses an abnormal range reading from something on the vehicle. This signal could be anything, not just the transmission. To find out if it is the transmission, call us and bring your vehicle in for a
transmission computer diagnostic. We will be able to tell you exactly what is going on with your car.
How can I make my transmission last longer?
To make the transmission last longer, don’t ignore it. Check the transmission fluid level and condition periodically and repair any leaks or problems right away. That way, there won’t be any future damage. The most important thing is to service the transmission on a regular basis. If the vehicle is used for towing, hauling, commercial usage, or in high ambient temperatures, use an auxiliary cooler to help it last longer.
How long should an automatic transmission last?
The answer to this question is difficult. The miles on a vehicle and the years of use vary greatly on failed transmissions, but there isn’t a positive connection between this being the main cause of the transmission failure. It’s not that miles and age are not a factor - they are to a certain degree. The biggest factor in the life of your transmission is the amount of service it receives and how gently or aggressively the vehicle is driven. Aggressive driving habits are most likely the single greatest cause of most transmission failures.
I only have a leak, how much will that cost?
There are many places that a transmission can leak. The pump, governor cover, speedometer, output seal, axle seals, servo covers, filler tube, pan gasket, throttle cable, side cover, cooler lines, shift lever seals, and electrical connectors can all leak. And where you see the fluid may not be the source of the leak. Some leaks are easy to fix, others much more difficult, and may involve removal of the transmission from the vehicle. So, we can't give you a quote without a thorough examination, which is done at no charge.
My transmission is leaking, can I drive it?
Another good question that we are asked frequently. It shows the owner of the vehicle doesn't want to risk doing more damage and raising the repair cost. A lot depends on the rate of fluid loss. If it's a small leak, and you are very diligent about keeping the fluid level at the proper level, it's okay to drive it in to get it looked at. It the fluid is pouring out, don't drive it. If you have one of many vehicles not equipped with a dipstick, you can't check it. If the unit exhibits any abnormal operation, then the internal damage is occurring, and a minor leak can result in a major bill if not corrected promptly.
I don't see a dipstick. How can I check the fluid level?
Many GM vehicles, some Fords, some Japanese and most European vehicles are not equipped with a dipstick. While the procedures on how to check the fluid level vary, most require that the vehicle is put on a vehicle lift in order to access the level control plug. So you can't check it yourself, but we can do it for you. Stop in at one of our location, we can help you.
Should I have my transmission flushed?
A flush consists of attaching a machine to the transmission, removing the fluid, and replacing it with new fluid. Unless the pan is removed, the filter isn't changed. You can't do any of the internal adjustments. This is usually done at a facility that has little or no knowledge about transmissions. Flushing can also backwash contaminants into places in the transmission where they can do damage to clutches and seals.
We recommend a fluid service as an alternative. As a part of this service, we first perform a FREE diagnostic to be sure that the transmission is healthy enough to be serviced without introducing new problems. If everything is okay, we perform the service. This involves removing the pan, inspecting and cleaning the pan. The fluid is fully drained, and the filter is changed. Any internal adjustments that can be made while the pan is off are made. The pan is replaced with a new pan gasket, and new fluid is installed. On vehicles not equipped with a transmission pan, the plug is removed and replaced. Then the new fluid is added. On these vehicles, the filter cannot be accessed without transmission disassembly. Most Hondas and some other vehicles are built without a transmission pan.
I just want the lowest price I can get.
Consider some other things first. Is the work recommended necessary? Does the facility have the necessary expertise? Will they use quality parts in the repair? Will they omit necessary steps or procedures in the repair? Do they offer a good warranty and will they honor it? Will they still be in business to handle warranty issues?
After these issues have been considered, look at cost. The facility needs to charge enough to do a quality job. It's unwise to pay too much, but worse to pay too little.
Beware of low-ball prices. If a price is much lower than everybody else, they're either using junk parts, or you're going to pay more than you think. You'll get a lot of low-ball prices quoted as "base price" plus "hard parts," often telling you that you may not need any hard parts. In reality, you can't do a quality job without hard parts, unless the job really wasn't needed in the first place.
I have a problem, and I want to change the fluid to fix it.
Changing the fluid and filter is a periodic maintenance service that rarely, if ever, fix a problem. In the process, much of the evidence leading to identifying the cause of the problem is lost. Any material in the pan is cleaned out, which is important information in identifying the type of internal problem that may exist.
How long will it take to repair my transmission?
Often, a minor repair can be performed the same day or two days. More major repairs involving the removal and repair of the transmission may take two or three days, or more, depending on the availability of parts and complexity of the transmission.
What if I want a new transmission?
It is highly unlikely that you would need a new transmission, even if one were available. Generally, even the dealers only sell rebuilt transmissions, though sometimes they refer to them (often incorrectly) as "new." Of the 300 to 500 parts inside an automatic transmission, some will be able to be reused without risk. That saving is passed on to you. We find it much more inexpensive to rebuild the transmission than to replace it.
How long will the diagnostics take?
Generally, we will spend between 2 and 4 hours on your vehicle, at no charge. Our diagnostics are much more thorough. Other shops will "diagnose" your vehicle in less than an hour. But there is no way it can be as thorough or conclusive as what we do. They are more likely to condemn your transmission based on a brief diagnostic, while our thorough evaluation is likely to identify the real cause of the problem.
Why does transmission repair cost so much?
There’s no doubt about it: Transmission repairs can be expensive. But it’s not so much money when you consider what’s involved in the repairs. Today’s automatic transmissions consist of hundreds of individual components. During a major repair, each one is removed, cleaned, and inspected to exacting tolerances. Any worn or damaged parts are repaired or replaced. Then each part is put together into one of many subassemblies. Each subassembly must be adjusted and tested for proper operation. Then the subassemblies must be assembled into the transmission case, where the adjustment and testing procedure begin all over again. Finally, once the transmission is completely assembled, it has to be reinstalled. If that’s not enough to justify the cost, there’s something else to consider: Virtually all of today’s automatic transmissions are computer controlled. Which means that the transmission’s ability to operate depends on much more than the condition of the transmission itself? Engine problems now can have a dramatic effect on how the transmission operates. All of which boils down to one, inescapable conclusion: Sure, transmission work can be expensive… but, dollar for dollar, it’s one of the best values around.
Why can't you give me a price over the phone?
20-or-so years ago, there were only maybe a dozen different transmissions on the road. Every transmission repair shop had a good stock of rebuilt units on hand. There were almost no updates necessary, and even if something unusual failed, most shops had a good supply of used parts on hand to replace it. Today there are more than ten times that many transmissions in use, with new ones showing up all the time. Many of those transmissions have several different variations or calibrations, with as many as a dozen modifications necessary. What’s more, today’s transmissions are computer controlled, which means even though your transmission may not be working properly, there’s a good chance the root cause of the problem doesn’t have anything to do with the transmission itself. To provide you with an accurate assessment of your transmission’s condition and give you an honest estimate for repairs, technicians must perform a series of rigorous tests. They must identify which transmission is in your car, and which version of that transmission it is. Then they have to identify the specific problem and isolate whether it’s the transmission or the computer system. Finally, they have to determine the likely causes for the problem, based on a logical diagnostic process. Once they have that information, the shop is able to give you a more accurate explanation of your car’s condition and put together an accurate estimate of the costs to repair it. There’s just no way to do all that over the phone