Like manual transmissions, the transmission in your automatic car requires tender loving care to keep working reliably and safely. Ignore the need for proper automatic transmission maintenance and expensive transmission repair or replacement costs will be inevitable.
There are several things you will need to do as part of your regular automatic transmission system preventative maintenance. Below are some of the best ways to keep it running smoothly as well as maximise its lifespan.
Check your fluid levels regularly.
Like your car's engine, your automatic transmission is made up of several moving parts that need to be kept properly lubricated to keep the transmission running smoothly. While engine oil provides lubrication in engines, transmissions use transmission fluid to perform that function.
There should be a sufficient amount of automatic transmission fluid (ATF) in your car to ensure reliable transmission performance. A drop in the fluid level below the minimum level will increase internal friction in your transmission, resulting in faster wear of parts, as well as transmission overheating issues.
Make it a habit to check your ATF level on a regular basis. Then, make sure the fluid is changed according to the vehicle manufacturer's instructions. ATF loses its colour and lubricating qualities over time and will need to be changed to keep the transmission in top working shape. To get the most out of your fresh automatic transmission fluid, make sure that the fluid filter is changed along with the oil.
Wait for your car to warm up before driving off.
One of the biggest mistakes people make is to operate their cars on a cold start. Driving off immediately after you start your car can cause internal damage to your transmission problems because the oil won't have time to lubricate the transmission and its parts. Although this problem tends to be most common and severe in cold weather, it can apply to warm-weather driving as well.
Avoid aggressive driving habits.
Manual transmissions generally handle rough-handling better than automatic transmissions. If you're keen on avoiding costly transmission repair issues and maximising the lifespan of your car's automatic transmission, avoid putting the car through its paces, especially on rough terrains.
An automatic transmission is a complex system of parts in which minor issues can rapidly exacerbate into major ones if steps aren't taken to properly look after the transmission. Learn more by contacting a local mechanic that works with automatic transmissions.