10 Ways to Care for Your Automatic Transmission

By Mister Transmission

Avoid costly transmission repairs. Read Mister Transmission’s 10 tips for keeping a car with an automatic transmission in good condition

Depending on the type of vehicle you drive and its age, transmission repairs can be costly. Sometimes it’s impossible to avoid having a transmission repair specialist service your vehicle particularly if you’re subjected to a total breakdown.

But there are things you can do to extend the life of your automatic transmission and prevent transmission failure. Read our checklist of top 10 transmission maintenance tips:

1. Check your transmission fluid periodically. On many cars, light trucks, and SUVs, checking the transmission fluid is as easy as checking the oil: with the engine idling, pull out the dipstick, wipe it off, insert it again, wait, then pull it out to get an accurate reading. If the fluid level is low, you may have a leak. The fluid itself should be a bright red colour, clear, and it should smell sweet. If it’s murky, dark coloured, or smells like rotting fish take it to a transmission repair specialist to look things over.

2. Use the right type of transmission fluid. Always consult your vehicle’s owner’s manual to determine what type of transmission fluid you should use. If after doing so you’re still not sure, pop in to a Mister Transmission and ask a professional.

3. Have your engine’s cooling system serviced. Your vehicle’s cooling system helps prevent the engine from overheating. But did you know it also ensures the transmission fluid pumping through the gearbox is cooled too? It’s more likely you’ll need a transmission repair before your engine completely overheats. Make sure your cooling system is in optimal condition.

4. Get your transmission flushed regularly. Changing the transmission fluid in your car is best left to a professional. Consult your car’s owner’s manual, but in general, get your vehicle’s transmission flushed once a year. How long the transmission fluid in your car will last depends on the vehicle’s operating temperature and how much driving you do.

5. Don’t change gears while your car is moving. Bring your vehicle to a complete stop before changing gears from ‘drive’ to ‘reverse’ or vice-versa. Failing to do so simply puts strain on your transmission and after awhile it can lead to a serious problem.

6. Let your car warm up before you drive. Who among us has hopped into the driver’s seat, started the engine, put the car in drive and motored away? (Full disclosure: I’m as guilty as you are) Always allow your engine a few minutes to warm up before you begin to drive, especially during the winter months.

7. Don’t drive on a spare tire for an extended period of time. Mismatched tire sizes, or driving with a small spare tire over a long period of time is a no-no. Not only will it do damage to other parts of your vehicle such as ruin the wheel alignment, after a while it puts unnecessary strain on the transmission.

8. Regularly change the transmission filter. That’s right: your car’s automatic transmission may have a filter, and it needs to be changed from time to time. Whether or not you’re driving a car that has a transmission filter depends entirely on the make and model. Most newer vehicles don’t have a transmission filter but those that do should be changed each time you get your transmission flushed.

9. Avoid using your vehicle for towing. Using your car to tow heavy loads, particularly in hot temperatures, can cause the transmission fluid to oxidize or burn, and in turn, do a lot of damage to the transmission.

10. Have your transmission inspected annually. Having a certified transmission repair specialist conduct a diagnostic check of your transmission for leaks and other abnormalities at least once a year, as well as checking the transmission fluid’s level, colour, and smell periodically is smart preventative maintenance.

If you are in the Weston neighbourhood in northeast Toronto near the Humber River, or driving on Black Creek Drive south of Highway 401 and are experiencing transmission troubles or suspect you are, call us now at 416-249-1300, or visit us at 1677 Jane Street in North York. Stranded roadside because of a breakdown? Our tow truck is standing by. Our certified transmission repair specialists will get your car back on the road again quickly.

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Customer Reviews
Fantastic, Professional and Honest Service,...
John Ferrara
Fantastic, Professional and Honest Service, you will find no better than Dan and Lorenzo. I highly recommend them for all your Transmission and Axle needs.
Date: October 21, 2020
Website: Google
I received prompt and friendly...
Troy Russell
I received prompt and friendly service and my transmission was fixed at a fair price. Thank-you.
Date: October 21, 2020
Website: Google
Denise and Shawn went above...
Richard Marcotte
Denise and Shawn went above and beyond to help us out. Our transmission died on the 401 and they had us repaired in a day.
Date: October 20, 2020
Website: Google
I baught a lemon and...
Adam Jess
I baught a lemon and they helped me get back on the road as quick as possible without killing my wallet. Will be a repeat customer 👌
Date: October 19, 2020
Website: Google
Excellent service. Dealt with Ray...
Avps Delivery
Excellent service. Dealt with Ray for a long time!Honest shop.
Date: October 19, 2020
Website: Google
Great to deal with and...
Mark Shipley
Great to deal with and straight forward to the point
Date: October 18, 2020
Website: Google
Guss is really nice guy...
Kumar V
Guss is really nice guy explaining what’s going on with our vehicle in detail. On time service with quality. Keep up the good work team.
Date: October 17, 2020
Website: Google
Friendly and timely service
Phil Jaman
Friendly and timely service
Date: October 16, 2020
Website: Google
I know didly-squat about cars...
Sierra Johnston
I know didly-squat about cars and had a transmission issue, so I brought it here.Eric diagnosed the issue and could have easily just fixed it and taken my money, but instead he referred me back to Ford because he knew the repair for my particular issue was included in an extended warranty. I got the repairs done for free the following day and Eric didn't charge me a dime for his time or diagnostic.I highly recommend Mister Transmission even without having got my repairs done here- they really do care about their customers.
Date: October 16, 2020
Website: Google
They were great he was...
Let's Check
They were great he was even able to get me the transmission I was looking for the same day don't waste your time looking around Steve's the guy you want!
Date: October 14, 2020
Website: Google
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