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6 Signs of Transmission Failure

Taking care of your car is a lot like taking care of your pet or even yourself. If you begin noticing smaller signs that something is not right and beyond your capacity to remedy, expert attention will prevent a world of heartache in the future.

Knowing how to properly identify and locate an error in your car’s systems can take years of training and education. But, noticing a small problem is a lot easier. Following are a few tell-tale signs that your car’s transmission will need service.

1. Delayed or Interrupted Response

Your transmission should smoothly shift from gear to gear without delay. If you feel the timing in you’re the way your car shifts from gear to gear, you know something isn’t right. Time to get your car professionally serviced.

2. Smell of Smoke

If you see or smell smoke coming from the engine of your car, the threat is serious and you should shut down your vehicle and seek a mechanical expert if you can’t immediately locate the issue and establish there is no threat. There are many things that can overheat but if it is the transmission that is burning you could be looking at very costly repair work.

3. Fluid Discharges

Keep an eye on your regular parking spaces for signs that your car could be leaking fluids. IF you suspect your car is leaking, you can determine exactly what is leaking and from where by placing a sheet of cardboard under the parked car. You can then remove the cardboard and have a closer look at what is leaking.

Transmission fluid will be a slick reddish fluid and most often dripping around the front or middle of the car. If your transmission fluid smells burnt, it is due to be changed.

4. Grinding Gears

Train your ears to detect the grinding of gears. In a manual transmission this symptom may be noticed when you shift from one gear to another. This could mean that the clutch is no longer functioning properly and needs to be serviced. In automatic transmission, grinding from the transmission could be caused by a variety of issues. In any case, it will be important to get your car serviced before more damage is done

5. Odd Sounds

One of the most obvious signs of error in a smoothly functioning machine is odd sounds coming from the moving parts. One of the primary services you can give your car is being that listening ear that detects small anomalies before they become a big problem. The transmission may begin making an odd humming or buzzing sound that is an indication that attention is needed to avoid further damage. If your transmission begins making noise while in neutral, it could be a sign that you need to add more transmission fluid.

6. Dashboard Lights

The “SERVICE ENGINE SOON” notice is not the most welcome news in the world, but it is fairly important in the broad scheme of things. That notice could indicate any number of issues which could be simple or very serious. The sooner the engine is serviced the sooner the mystery will be resolved and the better your car’s chances of achieving longevity or at least a good asking price on resale.


Imminent transmission failure is a threat to the very functionality of your car, but it can be avoided. If you stay alert to the signs of potential transmission failure and provide speedy service your transmission will work well and last a long time.

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