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Wondering What Causes a Transmission to go Bad?

If your vehicle is starting to have shifting problems, you may be wondering what causes a transmission to go bad. Because of the constant exposure to heat and stress, it is crucial that you keep up with regular transmission service. This will ensure that your vehicle will continue to run smoothly and efficiently because all the various components of the transmission are properly lubricated and in good working condition.

Many people have tight budgets, so if you want to keep your vehicle for very long, be sure to follow the transmission service intervals recommended in your owner’s manual (i.e., between every 60,000 to 100,000 miles). Even though it will be some expense up front, the appropriate transmission service is far less expensive than a transmission repair!

What happens when a transmission fails?

  • Shifting problems.
  • Parts wear out quicker.
  • Transmission Warning light comes on.
  • Transmission failure.

So what causes a transmission to go bad? Here are the most common causes of transmission failure:

  • Low Automatic Transmission Fluid Level — Low fluid level reduces the hydraulic pressure necessary to properly shift and operate the automatic transmission gear sets, which can cause the gears to slip or shift erratically.
  • Dirty Transmission Filter — A dirty and/or clogged filter can impede the normal flow of fluid throughout an automatic transmission and cause it to slip.
  • Worn or Maladjusted Transmission Bands — Worn or damaged bands can allow slack to develop around the transmission gears, a condition that can cause the transmission gears to slip out of place. Transmission bands that are too tight can cause premature gear wear and breakage.
  • Faulty Torque Converter Action — A faulty torque converter seriously impedes automatic transmission fluid pressurization and can cause a transmission to slip by allowing gears to slip out of place or operate erratically.

Wondering what causes a transmission to go bad? Contact our ASE Certified technicians at Dependable Car Care for more information about transmission service and to schedule an appointment. Our auto shop proudly serves residents in the community of Ventura, CA, and the surrounding area.