What is the transmission of a car?

Manual transmission stick

Why does a car need a transmission?

A transmission makes your car move. Yes, the engine has the power and is part of what makes a car move, but the car transmission is the component that makes that power from the engine that makes the car move.

Without a car transmission, it would simply not go anywhere. So, car transmission vs engine, which is more important in making a car go? The car’s engine is its heart. It starts the revolutions needed to generate movement. The transmission is the brain of the car. Using the power from the engine, the transmission decides to make the car move. The engine does the hard work while the transmission does the heavy thinking. With that in mind, they are both important in making a car go.

What are signs of a bad transmission?

Sometimes it isn’t easy to identify what the exact problem is with anything, and a car transmission isn’t any different. It can be harder to pinpoint the problem because some symptoms could be a few different things. Here we share 7 signs car transmission is failing:

  • Clunks and Whines: No, that isn’t the name of a new rock band. This is a fairly apparent sign that something is wrong with your car transmission. It is also one that many people ignore, but they are both sounds that means you need a professional auto mechanic to get your car transmission checked out.
  • Car Isn’t Responding: When you change speeds going down the road, your car transmission is supposed to switch gears (we’re talking about automatic transmission). When it doesn’t, or it is slow to switch gears, schedule an appointment with your mechanic because something isn’t right.
  • Something Burning: Anytime you smell something burning from your car, it isn’t good, even your car transmission should never smell like it is burning or hot. That burning smell could be from anything. If it is coming from the transmission, a mechanic that knows even the simplest car transmission basics can check the transmission fluid. It could simply be the car transmission is low on fluid.  It could also mean the screen is stopped up, but that will take more than a quick check of fluid.  If the fluid is fine, then yes, you need to have the mechanic check your car further.
  • Fluid Leak: If there is car transmission fluid where there shouldn’t be, like on the garage floor, in the driveway, or in your parking space at work, that is the easiest symptom to know something isn’t right. If you suspect your car transmission is leaking, lay a large piece of cardboard under it wherever you park.  When you move it the next day, if there is transmission fluid on the cardboard, you need to have your transmission checked.
  • Gears Grinding: This symptom is different for automatic car transmission and manual car transmission. For an automatic transmission, a rough shift can be several things, so the best thing is to have a professional mechanic check your car transmission. If it is a manual transmission, a grinding sound when changing gears could put it in the wrong gear or could indicate the clutch is wearing out. Or a synchronizer is damaged or worn. Here, a professional auto mechanic can inspect the car transmission and advise you.
  • Neutral Gear Is Noisy: A bumping sound from your car transmission doesn’t suggest caution or trouble unless your car is in neutral gear. Often this problem can be fixed by having the transmission fluid washed out and replaced. If the sound continues, though, you need a mechanic to look at your car.
  • Light on Dashboard: There is no car owner that wants to see the light that says “SERVICE ENGINE SOON” on their car dashboard, but it is there for a reason.  There are several things this can indicate, so you need not ignore it. Procrastination could cost you dearly.

Can I drive my car with a bad transmission?

It isn’t recommended to drive with a bad car transmission, but if you need to drive it far enough to get in a safe place to call a tow truck, by all means you should. However, do not drive it any further than necessary because it can damage the transmission beyond repair and damage other parts to your car too.

What happens to a car when the transmission goes out?

When your car transmission goes out, it affects how your car handles. It will shake and vibrate; the engine will rev up like it is going 100mph but the transmission slips.

transmission gear

Is replacing a transmission worth it?

As far as if your car is worth the expense, that is a personal decision. How old is the car? Is it a special model of a car? Do you still owe on the car? Rebuilding a car transmission extend your car’s lifespan and also has some financial benefits. A car transmission rebuild can cost $2500, which is a lot of money out of pocket but compared to buying a new transmission, it is thousands of dollars cheaper to rebuild. Or if you’re thinking about replacing it with a new car, you’ll be making payments every month, so which is cheaper and easier?

Cars are wonderful things to have, we’re able to come and go, travel the country, and have some independence if we want.  They can also be an expensive nightmare if we don’t take care of them with basic maintenance, like car transmission checkups.  Dial 609-737-7226 today for your car transmission service in Hopewell and Pennington, NJ.