How Do I Know What Transmission I Have?

By Mister Transmission

Did you know that no one component in your car has more going on inside it than your transmission?

Modern vehicle transmissions use a combination of sophisticated hydraulics and computer-controlled electronic components to transfer engine power to the driveshaft and wheels, and most modern drivers remain blissfully unaware of these complex systems until something goes awry.

Without a doubt, your vehicle’s transmission is the most complicated and least understood system in your car or truck, so it is little wonder that the majority of car questions—and repair service calls—have to do with transmission systems.

Have you ever wondered what kind of transmission your car or truck has under the hood? If so, you’re either in need of a repair due to transmission problems, such as high engine revs and transmission slipping, or you’re just curious about what goes on under the hood. In either case, Mister Transmission is here to help!

Read on to learn how to identify what type of transmission you’ve got under the hood, or call (800)-373-8432 to locate a Mister Transmission technician near you.

Transmission system basics: The different types of transmissions

Knowing your vehicle’s transmission type is essential to optimize upkeep and reduce service costs, but this is often easier said than done without the experienced eye of a transmission specialist.

Today there are over 200 transmission types on the road, and some car models may well have three or four types based on the engine size. To complicate matters further, some car manufacturers will even change the types or designs of transmissions on different car models from year to year. Even worse is if the transmission has been changed since the car was originally made—this can be a serious source of confusion for drivers and inexperienced transmission technicians.

This might sound a little overwhelming, but don’t worry—your local Mister Transmission is here to help.

Is my transmission manual or automatic?

Before you can determine your transmission specifications, you’ll need to know the basics. For starters, is your vehicle transmission manual or automatic?

Vehicles with manual transmission use a clutch to connect and disconnect the transmission to the engine, which is controlled manually through a foot pedal next to the brake pedal. Thus, identifying a manual transmission is easy: if you must shift gears yourself, and there’s a clutch pedal protruding from the floorboards, you have a manual transmission.

Conversely, if you only have to place your car into drive or reverse to make it move, and there is no clutch pedal, you know your vehicle uses an automatic transmission.

4 ways to identify your vehicle’s transmission system

At this point, you’re ready to dig deeper into your transmission systems specifications. If you’re not ready to book a free road test and multicheck with a Mister Transmission near you, you can check the following places for clues:

1.   The owner’s manual

A great place to start is to locate your vehicle’s owner’s manual. In many cases, the manual may indicate what type of transmission you have, or else it may refer to both a manual and standard transmission option.

2.   Placard on the driver’s side door

Open the driver’s side door and look for a white placard with small black lettering. This card contains specific details about the year the car was made, its transmission, engine specifications and other details.

To determine what type of transmission system you have under the hood, write down the code that appears underneath or beside the “TR” symbol. Once you have this code handy, call your local Mister Transmission and our technicians will look up your system specifications.

3.   Oil pan

Some transmission systems can be identified by the shape of the oil pan alone. If your vehicle has an irregular shape, you likely have a manual transmission.

To locate the oil pan, take a peek under your vehicle.

Get more help identifying your vehicle’s transmission system: Call Mister Transmission

If none of these options work, write down your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) and contact your local Mister Transmission. Our technicians will look up your vehicle’s transmission system specifications with a few quick keystrokes.

Alternatively, you can visit your local Mister Transmission for a full inspection. A certified mechanic will identify your vehicle’s transmission system, then provide whatever repair, maintenance or part replacement services may be required, without you having to make a separate outing.

For your convenience, we offer:

To book a free road test and multi check, you can:

Is my car automatic or CVT?

Looking at buying or leasing a vehicle and want to know if you should opt for one with an automatic transmission or a CVT? Do you have a CVT and aren’t sure how to care for it?

A CVT vehicle is better than the average automatic transmission vehicle. CVTs operate more smoothly than other automatic transmissions and we can expect to see more vehicles utilise CVTs. Read More

Are automatic and manual transmissions the same?

Is there a way to definitively say that manual transmissions have the advantage over automatic transmissions or vice versa?

There are a few qualities of a manual transmission vehicle that are superior to those of an automatic transmission. For one, manual transmissions are usually cheaper to buy than automatic transmission vehicles. Read More

What is the most common transmission type?

The most common type of transmission that is available in vehicles today is the automatic transmission.

Designers spent decades perfecting the modern automatic transmission. Here we offer a brief introduction and overview of automatic transmission history. Read More

What is the most common type of transmission?

Cars are continuously evolving, improving, and becoming more efficient. That goes for the transmission as well.

From starting with manual transmissions, to the introduction of automatic transmissions in 1939 – learn about the evolution of the modern transmission. Read More

How do you know if a car is automatic or manual?

A lot of new drivers, and even some experienced ones, don’t actually know what kind of transmission they drive.

If you’re one of these people, you should know so you can take care of it better. So, let’s figure it out. What transmission do you have? Read More

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Customer Reviews
I took my car for...
Brianne Miller
I took my car for repair. I had a transmission issue or so I thought and they ended up diagnosing my car and said it was an engine misfire not transmission problem really honest place they were professional and great customer service, didnt even charge me a diagnostic fee even provided me with shuttle their and back, I highly recommend Dan and this Mr transmission location
Date: June 2, 2023
Website: Google
Although it was an expensive...
Wing Chan
Although it was an expensive repair for my old work truck, but I do appreciate Ray and his team for kindness and considerate.
Date: June 2, 2023
Website: Google
My old car, a 2013...
Hugh Clark
My old car, a 2013 Dodge Charger developed a mid-shift that only happened when the car was cold and it was shifting up into 3rd or 4th gear for the first time each day - it would stumble badly, but then it would be fine for the rest of the day. My regular garage specifically recommended I go to this Mr. Transmission, so there I went. If they would have told me that it would be 5,000 for a rebuild I would have said “Ok”. But they diagnosed this car over a couple of cold cycle mornings and said “you may as well just drive it as long as you can put up with a minor mis-shift, otherwise you would be wasting your money to rebuild it”. So that’s what I did - I drove it for 18 months and it never got any worse and I ended up getting a great trade value for it. These guys are honest and have my deepest respect.
Date: June 1, 2023
Website: Google
Lorenzo and his team understand...
LCol.Márk Tóth
Lorenzo and his team understand the word...its a work related truck they work amazingly fast and my transmission ready to go the next 400.000km
Date: June 1, 2023
Website: Google
After taking my car to...
Daniel Martin
After taking my car to the dealership, they told me there was a problem with the transmission that would cost me thousands of dollars. I decided to get a second opinion and went to Mr. T and, for my surprise, they told me the issue was something totally diferent related to the wheel hubs!. So not only did they fix my car problems but also saved me a lot of money. George is a very nice person, humble and very professional. Thanks a lot..!
Date: June 1, 2023
Website: Google
They replaced the PTU fluid...
Phil Davies
They replaced the PTU fluid on my Edge ST & were very professional, honest & explained everything very clearly. I would totally recommend them. Very, very happy.Thanks for the great work 👏👍
Date: May 31, 2023
Website: Google
My transmission was making a...
Dave Worden
My transmission was making a funny noise so I brought it in to have it checked out. Frank took the time to take me in the truck for a test drive for probably 25 minutes to try to get the transmission to make the same noises, which it finally did. In the end he suggested I bring it to the dealership due to some computer errors he was getting (rather than charge me to start trying to fix a problem that could be a computer software issue ) and he didn't charge me anything for all the time he took. Great honest service. I will definitely use them in the future if I have transmission issues.
Date: May 31, 2023
Website: Google
Trevor was absolutely amazing. He...
Mary-Anne Lightfoot
Trevor was absolutely amazing. He looked at my sons car and determined that it needed a new transmission. We took a few days coming to get it and when we finally came to pick it up I realized I would need to take it to the wreckers and I didn’t have a ride. Trevor not only got my son top dollar at the wreckers but he added enough transmission fluid to get me over there and then came and picked me up …all for free. The world would be a better place with more people like Trevor! I highly recommend this business
Date: May 31, 2023
Website: Google
Great service
Great service
Date: May 30, 2023
Website: Google
Friendly service, fair pricing
Troy Prentice
Friendly service, fair pricing
Date: May 30, 2023
Website: Google
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