How to Check Transmission Fluid

May 1, 2020 | By Mister Transmission

How to Check Transmission Fluid

Regular checking of your transmission fluid is a vital practice to keep up the health of your transmission. Regular transmission fluid checks could save you a lot of money in the long run. But how do you do it?

Not every transmission problem is caused by a problem with the transmission fluid. However, pretty much any transmission problem could be caused by a problem with the transmission fluid.

Your transmission fluid is vital to the health of your transmission. It’s lubricant, it’s coolant, it’s the lifeblood of the transmission. You need to make sure you have enough of it and you need to make sure it’s in good condition. If not, you need to top it up and/or bring your vehicle into a transmission shop to find out the root of the problem.

Now that we’ve established the importance of transmission fluid, you need to know how to check it. You should check your transmission fluid about once a month or whenever you suspect a problem. Here’s how to check your transmission fluid:

  • Step One: Shift your vehicle into neutral or park and put the parking brake on; let your engine run. The engine has to be warm, so don’t turn it off. Pull out your dipstick. Don’t confuse the transmission fluid dipstick for the oil dipstick. In an inline engine, the transmission fluid dipstick is further in, closer to the body of the vehicle. In a front-wheel drive vehicle, it is on the driver’s side. Check your manufacturer’s booklet to find out exactly where your transmission fluid dipstick is.
  • Step Two: Check the fluid. Insert your dipstick into the fluid and then remove it. Look to see if it comes up to “full” line on the dipstick. If not, use a funnel to top up your transmission fluid. Do not overfill it. Keep the engine running for this. If you find you have to add fluid every time you check it, something is wrong. Bring your vehicle in for inspection.
  • Step Three: Touch your finger to the fluid on the dipstick and rub the fluid between your finger and thumb. Good transmission fluid is mostly clear with a reddish tint and neutral odour. Dark coloured or foul-smelling fluid is bad. These qualities indicate a problem with your transmission. Do not ignore these impurities. Bringing in your vehicle now could save you from paying thousands of dollars later for a transmission overhaul.
  • Step Four: Wipe the dipstick with a clean, lint-free rag. Congratulations, you’re done! You just checked your own transmission fluid.
  • Step Five: Most newer vehicles do not have an accessible dipstick in this case you need to bring your vehicle in to a transmission service centre for an inspection.

Mister Transmission

To learn more about transmission fluid or to have your transmission fluid inspected or flushed out, please get in touch with us at Mister Transmission today.

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Good and friendly and reliable...
Albert Wilton
Good and friendly and reliable people and they work hard to get your vehicle doneService: Transmission
Date: July 25, 2021
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Thank you, Mister Transmission! After...
Christy McMurray
Thank you, Mister Transmission! After taking my vehicle to the dealership where I bought it, and paying $150 for them to tell me what I already told them was wrong, the Dealer gave me a quote of $6,500 to replace my 9 year old transmission with a factory rebuilt one, because it couldn't be fixed or rebuilt by them. Thankfully I called Mister Transmission and Chris knew exactly what the issue was, how to fix it, and it only cost me $385 for everything and it was fixed in a day. I am so grateful that Chris and Dawn run an honest operation and provide genuinely great service. Thanks again!
Date: July 25, 2021
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Cambridge Mister Transmission was awesome....
Sarah MacArthur
Cambridge Mister Transmission was awesome. We ended up having a small issue but they still took the time to show me where on my vehicle the problems were and fully explain the possible issues. They were prompt in getting back to me the following day and I had my vehicle back in no time. Chris and Nick were amazing and the office is so clean and pleasant. Great customer service!
Date: July 24, 2021
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Great service , friendly and...
John Neven
Great service , friendly and very knowledgeable.Excellent work
Date: July 23, 2021
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Mazda 3 AT light came...
Chris Elmquist
Mazda 3 AT light came on one with some bad noises and clunking. Dealer said need a new transmission for only $4400. Took it to this and a quick check they determined it needed new TCM which is very common on the mazdas. They took care of it and even did a bunch of extra work fixing a wiring harness all for the cost of the TCM . cannot say enough about how we were treated by Chris and Dawn. Would recommend them. FIRST CLASS!!!!!
Date: July 23, 2021
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Workers are very nice and...
Ely Bolivar
Workers are very nice and explain thing clearly. Also they have an option to finance your repairs.
Date: July 22, 2021
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They assessed the problem quickly,...
Colleen H
They assessed the problem quickly, quoted a good price, provided fast service, in a no-pressure, friendly manner. I've been telling everybodyService: Transmission
Date: July 20, 2021
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I took my differentials down...
Kieran Massicotte
I took my differentials down to get rebuilt and Steve was very professional and the total was 200 bucks cheaper than the quoted price and there was a few things during the whole process that didn’t go as planned as I had brought all the bearings parts and some bearings were the wrong ones and I had brought 4.88s to put in end they would not work and before continuing with anything Steve would call and double check to let you know what needs to be done and get the ok from me first before they would continue overall amazing place Steve and the guys were awesome and the work was done perfect and the diffs have never been more smooth highly recommend.
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Excellent customer service.Service: Transmission
Eduardo Vieira
Excellent customer service.Service: Transmission
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Thank you Kyle and the...
Roman Danko
Thank you Kyle and the Mr. Transmission team for very professional and friendly customer service and repair. I definitelly recommend their services.Service: Transmission
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