There are some car problems that may seem like they require transmission repair but don’t. Typically, the signs of transmission problems include: gears won’t shift, gears slip out of place, bumpiness in neutral, grinding gears, shaking car, burning smells, and dripping reddish puddles under the car.
These are all indicators of transmission issues but they are not necessarily from the transmission, which is why it’s important to go get a diagnosis from a transmission repair specialist who really knows what they’re doing.
Otherwise, you might get charged to fix something that didn’t need fixing in the first place. However, it is possible for an issue to turn into a transmission problem if not fixed in time.
These are car repairs that are possible to be misdiagnosed as the transmission but are actually something else.
Cars have an internal computer to identify technical issues, monitor emissions, fuel-economy, provide safety features, etc. When the computer malfunctions, it can provide incorrect errors or fail to provide an error message at all.
Often, the Check Engine Light will pop up when the computer identifies an issue with your car but many people choose to ignore it. What could’ve been a simple issue can over time turn into a transmission problem because it was ignored. Make sure that your car computer gets checked when you go in for car repairs and maintenance.
Trouble Shifting Gears
Struggling to shift gears is usually a good indicator of transmission problems but there are actually a handful of other reasons why this is happening. For the most part, anything that affects the engine performance will lead to trouble shifting gears in your car. A clogged catalytic converter makes the engine work harder, which in turn makes it difficult to shift the transmission.
In regards to air, a bad O2 sensor or dirty mass air flow sensor will also cause the gears to stick. If the fuel system is too full or low or if the fuel filter or fuel injection system is dirty, these will also mess with the gears. In addition, the car engine will hesitate while trying to accelerate because of blocked air and fuel filters, even making a popping sound.
Shaking & Bumping
If you’re wondering why your ride is so bumpy or shaky, it could be from your transmission, or it could be as simple as a broken engine or transmission mount, which are easy fixes. However, it could also be from the cylinder misfiring. It’s better to get a diagnostic here than to assume it’s just a broken mount.
Burning smells are usually bad no matter if it’s coming from your car or from your apple pie in the oven. This can be from an oil leak, which usually would occur after an oil change or damage to the compartment. It could be a general fluid leak dripping onto the engine itself and burning up. If it were from the transmission, it would have a sweeter burnt smell.
If your car is making nerve-wracking sounds, it could be your transmission or the engine. If the transmission is the culprit, then you’d hear a whining, humming, or clunking sound that lasts. If it’s the engine, then it would be a whirring, hissing, or backfire sound that happens here and there.