The automatic transmissions found in cars today are quite complicated. There’s no denying that they are remarkable pieces of equipment, though. Automatic transmissions include hydraulic, mechanical, electrical and computer systems, all running together effectively. The complexities of the transmission virtually go unnoticed until you face a problem. Now, let’s take a look at the basic parts of a transmission.
The basic components of a transmission are the gear, filter, fluid and bell housing. Even though you aren’t shifting gears, this doesn’t mean the transmission doesn’t have any. They are even broken down into planetary and main gears. The next part is the filter. The fluid needs to be clean at all times if you want your car to be able to shift gears properly. This brings us to the next part which is the fluid. This is perhaps the most important part of an automatic transmission. The fluid should be red which makes it easier for you to detect a leak. And lastly, the bell housing which is a cone-shaped metal case which can be seen in the car. In a rear-wheel drive, it is mounted behind the engine and in a front wheel drive, it will be on the side.
The main components of an automatic transmission include:
- Planetary gear sets, mechanical systems which provide a number of forward gear ratios and reverse.
- A hydraulic system that uses special transmission fluid to control clutches and bands that control the gear sets.
- Seals and gaskets for controlling hydraulic fluid flow and to prevent leakages.
- A torque converter that acts just like a clutch so that the vehicle can stop even when in gear with the engine running.
- The modulator cable which monitors throttle position and speed to determine the best time to shift gears.
Apart from the different components of a transmission, you should also be able to spot problems before they become any worse. There are two types of problems you can face with the transmission. Either your car won’t run smoothly or it won’t run at all.
Check the fluid level in your car. It is important to check it every six months. A low fluid level will cause poor shifts and may even lead to damage to the transmission.
Check for leaks under the car constantly. If you find a constant leak of red oil then see whether it’s coming from the power steering or transmission.
Check the air filter to see if it is clogged. This is a vital component of the filter’s performance. Ensure you do this before you think about replacements or rebuilds.
Be sensitive to any noises or vibrations during shifts. Your car should shift quietly and smoothly. If you hear noises during shifts, get it checked right away.
Your owner’s manual will have information regarding recommended intervals for changing the automatic transmission fluid. It can be anywhere between 15000 and 100000 miles. Most experts recommend you change it every 25000 miles just to be safe. And remember, at the end of the day, prevention is always better than cure. So keep the number of an expert in transmission repair Weddington handy at all times.