Automatic Transmission Service and Maintenance

Automatic Transmission Fluid Check

If you want to know what your fluid condition is like you can remove the dipstick with the engine turned off. You can look at the color of the fluid and if you want you can smell it. Wipe the stick on a white towel. You will

Transmission Dipstick Handle is Red
Transmission Dipstick Color is Red

usually notice some dark residue on the towel that comes off the stick. This is not uncommon.

What do you notice about the fluid and the residue on the towel? Was the fluid red in color or more of a brown? Did the fluid smell burnt? If you hold the towel in the sun light was there a glimmer from metal flakes on the towel? Automatic transmissions need regular service and maintenance.

The fluid should be red in color, not smell burnt and you should see no metal flakes on the towel.

Automatic Transmission Fluid on Towel
Automatic Transmission Fluid on towel.

Here is a great video about maintenance for your automatic transmission. Here are a few items to keep in mind regarding your transmission:

  • Avoid excess heat to extend transmission life
  • Don’t tow in overdrive unless your vehicle manual says it is ok
  • Install an auxiliary cooler if towing
  • Keep it serviced at recommended intervals
  • Be sure to use the correct fluid and fill to the proper level

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