Automatic transmissions are built to make driving a lot easier. However, when they aren’t working properly, automatic transmissions can be extremely frustrating. A slipping transmission is undeniably a nuisance, but it can also lead to further complications if left untreated. Luckily, it’s also a relatively easy fix. If you feel like your car jerks or you hear a clunking sound when you’re shifting gears, there are a few simple ways to get things back in working order. Continue reading below to find out how to deal with your hard shifting automatic transmission and stop it from happening in the future! If you’re looking for a quick solution to any problem you have when shifting gears, try BlueDevil Transmission Sealer. Our expertly crafted solution is designed to restore seals and gaskets to their factory condition without putting your car in the shop!
Fixing a Hard Shifting Transmission
If you’re experiencing any of the following symptoms, it might be worth taking a look at your transmission:
- Dark or discolored fluid
- Strange Noises
- Erratic shifting or hard to shift gears
- Low fluid level
Transmission fluid, like your engine oil, gets dirty over time from wear and foreign matter. If your transmission fluid is getting dark more quickly than usual it could indicate that there is an abnormal amount of wear happening in your transmission. This accelerated erosion could be due to a bearing going bad or a clutch/band on it’s last leg If you find dark fluid, consider changing your transmission fluid more often than your owner’s manual recommends.
The noisiest part of your transmission is actually the fluid pump. The fluid pump is what creates the high pressures in your transmission that affects the shifts can get noisy much like your power steering pump if fluid gets low or dirty. The pump can also get noisy if the pump is failing or if there is a clog somewhere in the system causing unusually high pressures. If you’ve got a noisy pump, try changing the fluid and listen for the sounds to change. Another noise to listen for is a bad bearing. Much like a bad wheel bearing, bad transmission bearings can cause humming and vibrations that change with vehicle speed or gear changes.
Transmission Jerks When Shifting
If your vehicle has a hard time shifting gears, jerks when shifting, or otherwise shifts in ways you don’t expect (especially from first to second or second to third), it could indicate something is either wearing out or starting to fail. In today’s computer-controlled transmissions, an erratic shift could also be due to a bad sensor or shift solenoid. These types of problems can often be checked using a transmission or factory scan tool that can check pressures and solenoid operation when plugged into your car..
Why Your Transmission Is Hard Shifting and What to Do
Hard shifting is a common problem with automatic transmissions. There could be a few different causes at the root of the issue, however. Each requires slightly different solutions.
- A Worn-Out Transmission
- Old/Wrong Transmission Fluid
- Low Fluid Levels
- Faulty Torque Converter
Your Transmission Is Worn-Out
Worst case scenario, your transmission may simply be worn out. The bands and clutches that cause gear changes wear down over time. As a result, their surfaces become smooth and no longer hold things together. Unfortunately, you’ll have to remove your transmission to test this. At that point, you might as well replace your transmission.
Transmission repairs can be very costly. Be sure to completely diagnose the symptoms of your problem before you take your car in for a transmission service. It’s also always useful to get a second opinion before you get major work done.
Old Transmission Fluid
Another thing that may cause a hard shifting automatic transmission is old, incorrect, or worn out transmission fluid. The materials used to build a transmission are chosen due to the way they interact with the transmission fluid. The wrong materials and fluids together will cause too much friction, resulting in hard shifts. It could also cause low friction and sloppy shifts.
Over time your transmission fluid will lose some of its lubrication and friction modifying properties. As these properties change, so will the shifting in your transmission. Lead to the problem you’re having.
Low Fluid Levels
Lastly, a low transmission fluid level might be the cause of your hard shifting automatic transmission. Besides lubricating things, the fluid in your transmission provides hydraulic pressure to move the clutches and bands responsible for facilitating shifts. If you’ve got a low fluid level due to a leak, it can create a low pressure situation and lead to shifting problems.
If you find a low fluid level in your transmission make sure to top it off with the manufacturer’s recommended type of transmission fluid, or you could end up right where you started. Also, adding BlueDevil Transmission Sealer with your fluid will restore the seals and gaskets in your transmission to stop any leaks and prevent low transmission fluid levels from occurring again.
Faulty Torque Converter
A torque converter may also be the root problem for why your car is slipping. This part connects the car’s engine to the transmission serving the same purpose as a clutch in a manual transmission car. You may be having torque converter issues if your car’s transmission begins to slip, which means that the fluid is not being managed correctly. A bad torque converter can cause a similar feeling as slipping gears.
Fix Your Hard Shifting Automatic Transmission With BlueDevil Transmission Sealer
If you notice slipping when you are shifting gears, it may not always require expensive maintenance. BlueDevil Transmission Sealer is designed to restore small cracks and leaks in your transmission with almost no effort from you. All you have to do is add our sealer to your transmission fluid, and your car will be back to its old self without ever seeing time in the shop.
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transmission_slipping.jpg – By Loraks – Licensed by Getty Images – Original Link