Servicing Tips - Transmission
Gear Up: Transmission Service at Oil Changers
The transmission system in your vehicle allows you to change gears. Lower gears are power gears. They get your vehicle moving and get it up hills. Higher gears get the vehicle up to speed and get it rolling faster. If you have a standard transmission, then you have to do the work of shifting gears yourself. But with an automatic transmission, the vehicle shifts gears on its own. It automatically starts out in low gear and automatically shifts to high gears as it gets rolling. Again, it will automatically shift to a lower gear to climb hills or when you need a burst of speed.
How does it know when to change gears? Today’s automatic transmissions are computer-controlled. The computer gathers information about what the vehicle is doing, and changes the gears as needed.
Automatic transmissions are becoming more sophisticated all the time. More gears, or “speeds” are being added. Almost all vehicles have four at least speeds. Five or six is common. Some auto makers are even increasing to seven or eight – up to ten. Adding gears has a lot of advantages for vehicle owners: it improves gas mileage and increases performance.
But there is a drawback for drivers: more gears equals more parts and a more complex transmission system. Plus, all those parts need to fit into the same space as older, less complex transmissions. This means that today’s transmissions are engineered to much tighter tolerances. In other words, they demand meticulous care from motorists. Transmissions are designed for durability. But that durability can be compromised if they aren’t given proper care.
That’s why changing transmission fluid is such an important part of preventive maintenance for vehicle owners. Transmission fluid lubricates the transmission and keeps it in good working order. But if the fluid runs low, transmission parts will wear out quickly or suffer costly damage due to increased friction. The transmission can even fail.
Dirty transmission fluid can clog the small passageways in the transmission, blocking lubricant from reaching all of its parts. Again, this can lead to increased wear, damage or failure.
New transmissions aren’t cheap. Repairing them isn’t cheap either. But changing transmission fluid is fairly inexpensive for motorists at Oil Changers. That’s why responsible car care includes maintenance on the transmission system at Oil Changers. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that periodic fluid changes aren’t just good auto advice, they actually pay for themselves by preventing costly transmission repairs.
A Cool and Smooth Transmission
When it comes to preventive maintenance on our vehicles, most of us vehicle owners remember to get our oil changed. But Oil Changers services that occur at longer intervals — like transmission service — sometimes get overlooked. Yet transmission service is a key part of car care for vehicle owners. A poorly maintained transmission will diminish fuel economy and lead to costly repairs.
The transmission transfers power from the engine to the drive wheels. When it’s clean and well - lubricated, it gives maximum fuel efficiency. But when it gets dirty or worn down, your fuel economy will suffer. Your transmission relies on transmission fluid to keep everything running well.
Transmission fluid has two jobs: to cool and lubricate the transmission. The transmission operates at high temperatures. It can get 100-150°F degrees hotter inside your transmission than inside your engine. Transmission fluid transfers some of the heat away from the transmission. Transmissions work hard. Their parts need constant lubrication to prevent excessive wear and keep them running smoothly for motorists.
The constant shifting and movement of gears inside the transmission cause bits of the gears and clutch material to wear off. These bits of detrimental grit get into the transmission fluid. This grit increases friction inside the transmission and causes even more wear – it’s like liquid sandpaper. Also, the high temperatures inside the transmission cause the transmission fluid to break down over time, making it a less effective lubricant. The fluid can actually become sludgy, which can gradually plug up the maze of passages inside the transmission. Gradually, the transmission loses efficiency and stops operating smoothly. Eventually, the transmission will be damaged or fail altogether.
This is why the transmission fluid must be changed periodically. Your owner’s manual will give you a recommended time schedule for this vital service. Or, you can meet with your Fast & Friendly Oil Changers service advisor. Generally, the interval is around (80,000 km). But the interval for your Cars may be shorter or longer.
Of course, if you give your transmission a real workout, you’re going to have to change the fluid more often than the car maker recommends. If you drive in hot, dusty New Zealand conditions, if you tow a trailer around, if you haul heavy loads or if you do a lot of stop-and-go driving, then you need to change transmission fluid more often. Also, if you demand frequent bursts of speed from your engine — especially shooting away from stops — your transmission is working harder and will need more frequent care. Check your owner’s manual for the “severe conditions” service interval.
Transmission fluids vary from vehicle to vehicle, so you’ll also need to check your owner’s manual to know what kind your Cars needs, or communicate with your Fast & Friendly Oil Changers tech.
At Oil Changers, transmission fluid can usually be changed while you wait and is simple and not particularly costly. Compared to the cost of expensive transmission repairs or a new transmission, it’s downright cheap! So take some good auto advice from the team at Oil Changers and take care of your transmission. It will pay you back in improved fuel efficiency and a longer, smoother ride.
The Oil Changers Guide To Caring For Your Transmission
Most cars and trucks have automatic transmissions, yet a lot of motorists only have a fuzzy understanding about what a transmission does and sometimes forget about conducting a transmission oil change. Think back to the last time you rode a bike. You started out in a lower gear and shifted to higher gears as you went faster. Down shift for hills, stuff like that. Think of your legs as the engine – there’s an ideal speed you can pedal and you change gears to leverage the work you’re doing.
Lower gears for power on hills or for starting out. Higher gears for more speed. That’s what the automatic transmission does – it automatically starts in lower gears and shifts up to higher gears to go faster on New Zealand open roads. And automatically shifts back down to climb hills, pass or start up again.
Cars automatic transmissions have certainly gotten more sophisticated in recent years. They have more speeds than before: the base is four speeds, five is very common.
At Oil Changers, we routinely service transmissions with six speeds and several have seven or even eight speeds. As you can imagine, this means more parts. Any they all have to fit into roughly the same space.
Transmissions are computer controlled these days, with some high end transmissions having two or three computers. Transmissions are engineered to last. But they are also engineered to tighter tolerances. If a portion of the transmission is starved for lubrication, it can lead to failure.
Not enough fluid can starve the transmission or dirty transmission fluid can clog small passages in the transmission, then the lubricant is blocked and can’t get to all the parts to protect them, so they wear out prematurely. The technicians at Oil Changers see far too many transmissions that needlessly failed due to neglect.
And, as you can imagine, repairing one of these new transmissions at any Christchurch service center can be quite costly. That’s why auto makers have a schedule for how often you should change the fluid and what type of fluid to use.
It’s really important for motorists to carefully follow the manufacturer’s transmission service schedule.
Let's talk about transmission service. It can be easy to forget about getting your transmission serviced because it doesn't need it very often. It's easy to remember to change the engine oil - you know, every 7,500 - 15,000 kilometers. But proper transmission servicing keeps your car running smoothly and helps you avoid costly repairs down the road.
The transmission undergoes a lot of stress. The grit you see in used transmission fluid is actually bits of metal that wear off the gears in the transmission. In addition to that, the transmission operates at very high temperatures. Usually it's 100 to 150 degrees higher than engine temperatures. Those high temperatures eventually cause the transmission fluid to start to break down and loose efficiency.
As the fluid gets older, it gets gritty and doesn't lubricate and cool the transmission as well - leading to even more wear. The fluid can actually get sludgy and plug up the maze of fluid passages inside the transmission. At best, your transmission won't operate smoothly. At worse, it could lead to costly damage.
When your transmission is running properly, it transfers more power from your engine to the drive wheels, and improves fuel economy. That's why manufacturers recommend changing your transmission fluid at regular intervals. Your owner's manual has a schedule for transmission service and, of course, your service center can tell you what the manufacturer recommends.
Hot and dusty conditions; towing, hauling, stop and go conditions and jack rabbit starts all increase the load on the transmission and its internal temperature. That means you need to change the fluid more often. A good rule of thumb is every 55,000 - 90,000 kilometers or two years. If your manufacturer suggests more frequent intervals or if you're driving under severe service conditions, you will need to change it more often.
Most service centers have the ability to perform a transmission service while you wait and the cost is quite reasonable. It's downright cheap when you think about how much a major transmission repair can cost! Your service technician will know the right type of transmission fluid to use. If it's getting to be time to have your transmission serviced, do your car a favor and have it done. If not this time, then on your next service stop.
Smooth Shifting : Transmission Service
So you have some exciting plans for the weekend. You’re going to take some of your friends out on the boat for some water skiing. Of course, you’ve gotten the boat all ready. And you haven’t forgotten about your tow vehicle. You’ve gassed it up and even vacuumed it out. But you want to make sure that your Cars maintenance is up to date.
Think about it – heavy traffic on the way out of town. There’s hilly terrain as you get to the lake. Some dirt roads – and its going to be pretty hot this weekend. And all the time you’ll be towing around several thousand extra pounds. That all adds up a lot of severe strain on your engine, brakes and transmission.
Let’s just consider the transmission. It’s going to be working overtime, spending more time in lower gears. The internal transmission temperature is going to be much higher than normal. What’s a fun little blast to the local New Zealand lake for you is really severe duty for your transmission.
It’s important to have enough transmission fluid. If it runs low, the transmission will run hotter and won’t have the protection it needs to cope with the added stress of towing. Transmission fluid breaks down and gets dirty over time. Whether you have an automatic or manual transmission, you need to have it serviced at Oil Changers on schedule to make sure it runs efficiently.
An automatic transmission contains a maze of passages through which the fluid has to pass to keep it shifting smoothly. If you neglect transmission service, the passages can get clogged up and you start to have problems.
Neglect your transmission for too long, and it can fail. You really don’t want to pay for a major transmission repair.
This reminds us of how much of our driving around New Zealand, is under severe conditions. Towing or hauling a big load is obvious, but there are lots of other things that constitute severe driving conditions. Things like short trips, driving in very hot or very cold weather. Dusty roads and city driving around New Zealand add to the strain. Basically, any driving that’s not at highway speeds or under ideal conditions.
Call Oil Changers to make an appointment to check your transmission in Christchurch.
375 Main South Rd
Christchurch, New Zealand 8441
Do you have any plans around Christchurch New Zealand for the weekend? Maybe you and some friends and are taking the boat up to the lake. Maybe you'll be having a lot of fun water skiing and doing a little fishing.
You got the boat all ready. It's all gassed up. You packed lots of snacks and the cooler's stocked – ready to go.
How about your tow vehicle? It has plenty of gas and you've even vacuumed it out, but is your auto maintenance up to date?
Stop and think. You'll have some heavy traffic on your way out of town. Hilly terrain as you get to the lake. Some dirt roads – and it may be hot weather. And all the time you're going to be towing around several thousand extra pounds.
That all adds up a lot of severe strain on your engine, brakes and transmission. Your transmission's going to be working overtime, spending more time in lower gears. The internal transmission temperature is going to be much higher than normal. What's a fun little blast to the lake for you is really severe duty for your transmission.
It's important that you have enough transmission fluid. If you're running low, the transmission will run to hot and won't have the protection it needs to cope with the added stress of towing.
And if it's time for a transmission service, you really should have it done at Oil Changers before your trip. Transmission fluid breaks down and gets dirty over time. Whether you have an automatic or manual transmission, you need to have it serviced on schedule to make sure it runs efficiently.
Automatic transmissions contain a maze of passages that the fluid has to pass through to keep it shifting smoothly. If you neglect transmission service, the passages can get clogged up and you start to have problems. Neglect your transmission for too long, and it can fail. Believe us – you don't want to pay for a major transmission repair.
You know, most of us in Christchurch New Zealand do a lot of our driving under severe conditions. Towing or hauling a big load is obvious, but there are lots of other things that constitute severe driving conditions. Things like short trips or driving in very hot or very cold weather. Also, dusty roads, city driving around Christchurch, and basically any driving that's not at highway speeds or under ideal conditions is severe driving. We all need to think about whether or not we need to follow the severe service schedule.
So, consider going in for a full service oil change before you leave for the lake to make sure everything has been looked at. Ask for a trip inspection while you're at it. Your Christchurch New Zealand service technician at Oil Changers can check your belts and hoses and let you know if your brakes are in good shape.
Don't forget the sunscreen. And to thank your Christchurch service technician, how about bringing him back a nice trout?