Automatic-Transmission Shift Conditions

4 Signs Your Automatic Transmission Needs Service

Transmissions are just about the trickiest part of a vehicle. Issues range from needing fluid to needing major work. Luckily, they give us quite a few signs that something is going wrong, and it’s good to learn what those are. Below are a few examples from customers who have experienced problems, and what they said about it.

1. When I put my car into “Drive” from “Reverse,” it doesn’t immediately respond.

It may be “delayed engagement” and simply put, your transmission and engine aren’t communicating in order to make the wheels go. You’ll probably notice it more often after first starting your car in the morning, or even in cold temperatures, but it can happen at any time. We experience this in our area more because of the severely cold temperatures.

If it takes more than two seconds for your car to respond to any shift, it’s time to bring it in for service.

2. When I press on the gas, the engine revs but my car doesn’t go faster.

It could mean your transmission gears are slipping. Symptoms could include the car “jumping” or “jolting” after the engine revs, or you see really high RPMs on the dashboard (above 3,500). This can be a relatively easy issue to fix if you get it diagnosed immediately; any delay, though, will result in major repair costs.

3. When I try to accelerate, there is a shudder before my speed increases.

Any motion or sound during a shift is not a good sign. It may mean your transmission is having problems shifting, unable to smoothly move from one gear to the next. You might just need a fluid change, or something more complicated is happening.

4. Sometimes when I am driving, it’s like my car loses power as if I’m driving in neutral.

Needless to say, this is very dangerous. It may be something we call “Neutralizing,” where the transmission acts like you just set it in neutral while driving. It’s definitely worth bringing it in and having us look at it. You don’t want to end up experiencing this issue when power to your engine is really needed.

If any of these sound familiar to you, it’s time to bring your car in for a diagnosis. We’ll take an in-depth look and let you know what we find and what we need to do to fix it.

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