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13 Sep 2007 | Text and photos by Jegan Das Haridas | Category: Car Maintenance Advice

How to avoid unnecessary damage to your car's automatic transmission and upkeep it?

A cross section of an automatic transmission.

The automatic transmission is easily one of the most expensive part of a car to fix. Therefore, it is important to learn about maintenance tips for your transmission as well as ways to spot any minor problem before they result in total breakdown.

What damages the transmission

Transmission complications occur when there is overheating. This is so because at a high temperature, the transmission fluid will lose its original characteristics and oxidize, leaving deposits inside the transmission. At such high temperature, the gaskets and rubber seals inside the transmission will harden faster, thus a leak is very probable.

How to maintain the transmission

Regularly check your parking lot for leaks. A leak can be the first sign of your car breaking down.
Check the transmission fluid level regularly. A low level might be due to leaks.
Change the transmission fluid after approximately every 10,000km, before it becomes dark or dirty.
Try not to use a different transmission fluid as specified in the owner's manual.
Refrain from changing gear while the car is moving. (From Drive motion to Reverse motion)
Continuously driving the car at high rpm may damage the transmission.
If your car is a front wheel drive, try to tow the car on the front and let the rear wheels roll.
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