Regularly changing the transmission fluid protects the transmission from wear, damage and breakdown, and extends transmission life.
The transmission is a very complicated, important and expensive part of your vehicle.
Transmission fluid lubricates all of the moving parts inside your transmission. In an automatic transmission, this fluid also serves as a coolant and transmits power from the engine to the transmission. Transmission fluid degrades and breaks down with use. It also becomes contaminated with worn metal shavings from the transmission, all of which can shorten the transmission’s life. During transmission service old fluid is removed and the transmission is flushed to remove any debris. The result of ignoring a transmission service light could be very costly repairs.
Another important fluid to replace is in the transfer case. This is a special gearbox on AWD and 4WD vehicles. If you are having problems shifting in and out of 4WD you may need a transfer case service.
Within modern manual and automatic transmission systems you will find intricate moving parts including a number of interconnected gears, input and output shafts, and either a clutch in a manual transmission system, or a torque converter in an automatic transmission system.
In a manual transmission the driver uses a clutch and gear shifter to manually change the gears of the vehicle as the rpms of the vehicle increase. In an automatic transmission a system of planetary gears automatically shifts through gears as a vehicle accelerates and decelerates.
By shifting between bigger/taller and smaller/shorter gears as a vehicle accelerates and decelerates, the transmission keeps the right amount of power (torque) flowing back and forth between the vehicle wheels and the engine.
Inside both manual and automatic transmissions you will find transmission fluid. This transmission gear fluid is especially important in automatic transmission vehicles where pressurized transmission fluid is needed to hydraulically pressurize and shift gears automatically. A manual transmission is manually operated by the driver using a stick shift (gear selector) and clutch.
In manual transmission vehicles the clutch and gears are manually moved by the driver of the car. In automatic transmission vehicles, this movement happens from a hydraulic system that is powered by the force of pressurized transmission fluid moving through the transmission system. So, in addition to cooling the transmission and preventing internal gears from grinding, the transmission fluid in automatic transmission vehicles also powers the transmission.
Because automatic transmission systems generate a lot of friction and heat with regular use, the fluid in automatic transmission vehicles will naturally breakdown and dissipate over time. For this reason, owners of most automatic transmission vehicles should check their trans fluid levels regularly to make sure fluid levels are not low.
Like manual transmission owners, automatic transmission owners should also keep an eye out for fluid contamination caused by wearing gears, and leaks. Stop on by your nearest Castrol Premium Lube Express for a technician to check your transmission fluid levels and inspect to see if your vehicle needs a transmission fluid exchange services.
* NOTE: Some transmissions require a specialized fluid. There may be an extra charge for the use of specialty transmission fluids.
|Service Recommendation||Service Takes|
|Every 3 years/36,000 miles||15 to 30 Minutes|
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