How to Check Your Transmission Fluid

TransmissionYour transmission is one of the most important systems in your vehicle. It controls all your gear shifts and helps you accelerate. Just like any other part of your car, it needs maintenance to stay in top shape. One of the most important things you can do for your transmission is regularly check its fluid.

To help drivers in Gulfport, Long Beach, and Biloxi keep shifting effectively, Pat Peck Honda looks at how to check your transmission fluid.

What Does Transmission Fluid Do?

Transmission fluid lubricates and cools all the parts inside your transmission. Whether you drive a manual or an automatic transmission, there’s lots of mechanical parts inside working to change your gears.

Machinery can generate lots of heat. That can lead to the parts overheating and wearing down over time. By effectively cooling and lubricating these parts, your transmission will be able to properly change gears and help your car keep going.

After enough time and miles though, your transmission fluid starts to become less effective. By checking your fluid every so often, you’ll know if you’re low and need to add more or if you’re driving with old, overworked fluid that needs to be replaced.

How to Check Your Transmission Fluid

Dip Stick

Checking an automatic transmission is easy. All you need to do is find somewhere flat to park your car and grab a paper towel or rag. By following these steps you’ll know in as little as five minutes if you’re low on transmission fluid and what condition the fluid is in.

  1. Find Level Ground –Since you’ll be checking how much transmission fluid you have, you’ll want to park your car on a level surface to get an accurate reading.
  2. Let the Engine Warm Up –Turn the engine on and let it warm up. You’ll want to leave it on while you’re checking since the point is to see what condition the transmission fluid is in while you’re driving
  3. Find the Dipstick –With the engine still running, pop the hood and locate the dipstick. There’s also a dipstick to check your engine oil, but the transmission one should be smaller and usually located next to the transmission.
  4. Pull the Dipstick Out –Remove the dipstick and wipe it off with a towel or rag. Be careful when you do this because the fluid may be hot. Once you’ve wiped off all the transmission fluid, reinsert the dipstick all the way back into the transmission.
  5. Check Your Levels –Now pull the dipstick out again. On the bottom you should see some markings to represent high and low. If your levels are low, or your fluid looks dark brown or black, you should schedule service to have a technician add fresh, new transmission fluid.

These simple steps only apply to an automatic transmission. A manual transmission can only be checked from underneath the car. It’s a good idea to have a technician do this for you at a service center where they can safely elevate the vehicle.

Transmission Service near Gulfport, Long Beach, and Biloxi

Visit Pat Peck Honda to learn more about how to check your transmission fluid, or have a trained technician check your manual transmission for you. Our service center has an experienced team who can take care of all your transmission issues, from refilling your fluid to repairs.

Schedule service with us online if you’ve noticed any signs of transmission trouble like gear slipping, or you’re low on fluid.