Saturday, December 16, 2017 Detailed Auto Topics
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Many folks come in for transmission repair, and do not have automatic transmission problems. On modern vehicles, many things that feel like a transmission problem are not.

A modern automatic transmission can give symptoms caused by other components. The article, "How much is a rebuilt transmission," explains how this can be a big issue. An unscrupulous operator might easily take advantage of folks who think they have a transmission problem.

A few things often mistaken as transmission problems

  • My engine races when I’m driving.
    Often we find the problem is a sticking fan clutch.  This makes the engine sound like it is racing.  The sound is the fan, spinning much faster than normal.

  • The vehicle does not accelerate. 
    Reduced fuel flow, from a bad fuel pump or a plugged fuel filter will greatly reduce power.  Many times a plugged catalytic converter or an engine misfire is the problem.

  • The transmission wont shift to the next gear. 
    Shift points are normally controlled by outside sensors.  Erratic shifting is many times an electrical problem, outside of the transmission.

  • The vehicle surges or bucks.
    Surging and bucking is almost always an engine running problem. An engine miss may not feel like an engine problem on newer vehicles.

  • The vehicle moves forward in neutral. 
    A shifter linkage problem is the most common cause for this symptom.  The shift indicator is often pointing at the wrong gear.

  • There is a vibration at 65 mph.
    Vibrations are far more often a wheel/tire or driveshaft type issue and not a transmission problem.

  • I was told there is a code that says the transmission is bad.
    There is no code that says a transmission is bad. Instead a transmission code is an interpretation of a problem. Often a bad sensor, loose wire or even an engine running problem can set a transmission code.

This is where a full service shop, like AGCO Automotive can come to your assistance. In every case, AGCO is capable of correctly diagnosing and repairing the actual problem. Just as often actual transmission problems may also misinterpreted.

Actual symptoms

Leaking fluid is a problem

  • The vehicle will not move in one or more gears.

  • The transmission fluid is black, smells burned or is milky in color.

  • The transmission shifts hard or bangs into gears. This can also be an engine running problem.

  • There are strange noises from the transmission area, particularly if they change when changing gears.

  • The transmission is actually slipping. This means the tachometer rises and the vehicle does not accelerate.

In any of these cases it is best to quit driving the vehicle and bring it in immediately. A minor problem, such as low fluid from a leak, can turn into a major issue in minutes. Don’t take chances, tow the vehicle to a trusted shop, that can diagnose and repair the problem, no matter what the cause.





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