How Long Do Transmissions Last? Signs It’s Time to Visit Your Las Vegas Transmission Shop

automatic car transmission

When your vehicle’s transmission starts to give you trouble, it can be a scary experience. With the transmission being such an essential system, you’ll want to get your vehicle into a transmission shop as soon as possible. Often, having transmission service right away prevents a more extensive transmission repair.

Though a transmission that’s well cared for can last up to 300,000 miles, some things can go wrong. Here at Tire Works Total Car Care in Las Vegas, we work on transmissions daily. We’ve compiled a list of some of the most common signs it’s time to visit your Las Vegas transmission shop. Get ready to shift into high gear as we go over the ups and downs of transmission care.

1. Difficulty Shifting Between Gears

The first indicator is a rough shift. As you accelerate, the transmission should change gears smoothly to accommodate and protect the engine. The transition between gears shouldn’t be difficult whether your vehicle has a manual or automatic transmission.

If the transmission fails to shift between gears or has a tough time shifting, it could mean one of the gears isn’t properly aligned, or the transmission oil isn’t lubricating correctly. The clutch will likely be the problem if you’re driving a manual.

There are several reasons your car or truck may have difficulty shifting between gears. Though it could just need a transmission fluid change, it could also require a more intensive transmission repair. That’s why it’s important to get into a transmission shop at the first sign that something isn’t working as it should.

2. Transmission Gears Slipping

Gear slipping, which happens when the gears are too slippery and cannot hold contact, can be a jarring experience. This slickness on the gears is typically because of low transmission fluid levels, which leads to overheating. When the gears overheat, they won’t interlock as efficiently, causing them to slip.

If the gears fail to keep track of gear shifts, they could suddenly slip to a lower gear. In the worst-case scenario, the gears will slip from drive to neutral, which could cause significant damage to your car or truck.

Some of the signs of slipping gears are:

  • Lurching while driving
  • Slow or delayed acceleration
  • Revving or chugging of the engine
  • Grinding or whining noises

Any of the signs above could indicate a problem that needs attention from a transmission shop. When you bring your vehicle into Tire Works Total Car Care, we can check the fluid levels and quickly diagnose the problem.

3. Abnormal Noises

Often, a strange noise from your car or truck is a good sign that there’s something not quite right. A whirring, grinding, or squealing noise from the engine could signal that the gears are out of sync or slipping. These sounds shouldn’t be happening in a healthy transmission and indicate serious problems.

Loud whining sounds when you accelerate may be because the gears are colliding and running their teeth against each other. Not only can this cause significant damage to the engine, but also to the gears themselves. When a transmission malfunction like this goes unchecked, it could cause irreparable damage to the engine.

You should take it seriously if you hear an ominous sound when you accelerate or are in neutral.

4. Burning Smell

Anytime a burning odor comes from your vehicle, it’s not good. There are several potential sources of a burning smell, but one possibility is that the transmission fluid is breaking down. When it’s time for a transmission fluid change, the gears in the transmission aren’t properly lubricated or cooled.

When the transmission fluid breaks down from time and use, it won’t protect the transmission effectively, which could cause it to overheat and, in extreme cases, cause an electrical fire. If the heat gets to the point of burning wires, it could be a potentially dangerous situation.

As we have locations in and around Las Vegas, we’re no strangers to the threat of heat. However, your vehicle shouldn’t operate at the extreme internal temperatures caused by overheating. Anytime you smell burning from the engine, you should schedule an appointment with a transmission shop.

5. Skipping or Shaking

Next on our list of signs of transmission trouble is shaking or skipping. Shaking can be the sign of a serious problem, whether you’re driving or your vehicle is idling. The transmission is a complicated and delicate instrument in your vehicle. If there are slight particle imperfections in the transmission fluid, it can cause what’s known as a transmission shudder.

Though more minor issues cause it, a transmission shudder can lead to significant problems down the road. If the shaking goes for a while without transmission service, it could lead to severe damage to the transmission system and a more costly repair. It’s far better to get a rattling or shaking checked out by a professional mechanic than to let the issue progress.

If you need a transmission shop in Las Vegas, we can quickly determine the cause of the issue and perform any transmission repair you may need. Tire Works Total Car Care is your home for all things automotive.

6. Check Engine Light Is On

Fortunately, modern vehicles are proficient in telling you something isn’t operating correctly. One way that your vehicle makes you aware of an issue is through the dashboard warning lights. The check engine light or transmission light can denote several different problems. It could indicate low transmission fluid levels, loose components, or another issue.

When the check engine light turns on, there’s no need to panic. Our crew of ASE-certified technicians can identify the issue and recommend the services or repairs your vehicle may need. When you choose Tire Works Total Car Care for your transmission shop in Las Vegas, we can turn a bad day into a great auto care experience.

7. Fluid Issues

Any fluid leaking from your vehicle indicates that something isn’t functioning correctly. Luckily, it’s easy to identify transmission fluid leaks. Transmission fluid has a distinct sweet-smelling odor and is typically red. You should expect a transmission leak to come from your vehicle’s center and pool just behind the front tires.

Unlike engine oil, transmission fluid is typically only low if there’s a leak somewhere in the system. If your vehicle is experiencing some of the symptoms of low transmission fluid, you can check the levels before scheduling an appointment for transmission service.

To check the transmission fluid level, you’ll need to check the transmission dipstick, which is separate from the engine oil dipstick. First, locate the transmission dipstick while idling the vehicle and wipe it clean. Then, reinsert it into its place and remove it to see the accurate fluid level. If the transmission fluid is lower than the marker, you should take your vehicle to a transmission shop to have the transmission fluid flushed.

Make Us Your Transmission Shop in Las Vegas

As experts in all things automotive, the Tire Works Total Car Care crew is more than capable of handling any transmission service you may need. If you see any of the signs above, schedule an appointment and let us keep your vehicle’s transmission running smoothly.

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