Tag Archives: Transmission Maintenance

What is the Torque Converter and Why is It Causing Me So Many Problems?

What is the Torque Converter and Why is It Causing Me So Many Problems?

If you’ve done any cursory research on transmissions and how they work you may have come across the torque converter. Indeed, if you’ve ever looked up common transmission problems, you will no doubt have seen the torque converter mentioned. What is this mystery component of the transmission? And why is it causing you so many gosh darn problems?

The Torque Converter

The torque converter is a type of fluid coupling. What is a fluid coupling? A fluid coupling, also known as a hydraulic coupling, is a device used to transmit rotating mechanical power. It is an alternative to a mechanical clutch. So, the torque converter is one of these and it transfers rotating power generated by the engine to a rotating driven load. In an automatic transmission vehicle, the torque converter connects the power source to the load. The torque converter is typically located between the engine’s flexplate and the transmission. For a manual transmission vehicle, the equivalent component would be the mechanical clutch.

The main characteristic of a torque converter is its ability to multiply torque. This is key. Simple fluid coupling can match rotational speed but cannot multiply torque. As a result, using a torque converter allows for more power. Some torque converters are also equipped with a “lockup” mechanism. A lockup rigidly binds the engine to the transmission when their speeds are nearly equal in order to avoid slippage and a resulting loss of efficiency.

Torque Converter Problems

The torque converter can be involved in a lot of transmission problems. It’s not that these devices are poorly designed, they’re just so integral to the function of the transmission that if something goes wrong, it is probably affected. As an illustration of this, it is standard procedure to replace the torque converter in transmission overhauls. Transmission overhauls, which are also known as transmission rebuilds, involve removing the transmission from the chassis, taking it apart piece by piece, inspecting every piece, cleaning the ones that are still good and replacing the damaged ones. But good technicians don’t take chances on torque converters, they just replace them.

Symptoms Of Torque Converter Problems

Torque converters aren’t always the cause of your transmission problems. In fact, they’re rarely the cause. But they are almost always affected by any problem that your transmission does have. The takeaway from all this: torque converter problems rarely occur in isolation. If you have a problem with your torque converter, you probably have a problem with your transmission more broadly, and should bring your vehicle into a transmission shop for inspection. But how can you know if you have an issue with your torque converter? Well, some of the symptoms of torque converter problems are:

  • Overheating
  • Slipping
  • Shuddering
  • Dirty transmission fluid
  • High stall speeds
  • Strange noises, such as humming, whirring, or clunking

Mister Transmission

At Mister Transmission we have replaced hundreds, if not thousands, of torque converters and we can replace yours too, if necessary. Not sure if your torque converter is the problem? Don’t worry, our Mister Transmission Multi-Check Inspection is bound to find out if there is a problem with your torque converter or any other part of your transmission. To learn more about torque converters or our services, please contact us.

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The 3 Types of Transmissions: Manual, Automatic, and CVT

The 3 Types of Transmissions: Manual, Automatic, and CVT

If you know anything about transmissions, you probably know that there are different types of transmission. You almost certainly will have heard about manual and automatic transmissions. You may not have heard of CVT transmissions, however. When buying or leasing a new or used vehicle, one of the things you should definitely consider is the transmission. But why type of transmission is better for you? Just what are the differences between a manual and automatic transmission? And what’s the deal with this mysterious third type of transmission?

The Manual Transmission

The transmission is the part of your vehicle that transfers the power generated by your engine to the axles, which turn the wheels, which makes your vehicle go. As you can see, it’s pretty important. But not all transmissions are the same. There are three basic types of transmission. The original type of transmission is the manual transmission.

The manual transmission, which is also known as a “standard transmission” or a “stick shift”, is a type of transmission that utilizes a driver-operated clutch to regulate torque transfer from the engine to the transmission. The clutch is typically engaged or disengaged by a foot pedal or hand lever. Because they are the simplest, mechanically speaking, of the three types of transmissions, they also often have the longest lives, because there is less to go wrong. They also often offer the best fuel economy and manual transmission vehicles are typically a bit cheaper. Some drivers even enjoy driving them more.

 The Automatic Transmission

Manual transmissions are mechanically simpler, but they are more complex to use. Many drivers either don’t know how to drive a manual transmission or do not like the extra work involved. For such drivers, the best type of transmission is an automatic transmission. This type of transmission can automatically change gear ratios as the vehicle moves, meaning the driver does not have to shift gears manually.

Controlling a vehicle at low speeds is typically easier with an automatic transmission rather than a manual, because of a side effect of the clutchless fluid-coupling design called “creep” that causes the car to want to move while in a driving gear, even at idle. Fun fact: the automatic transmission was invented by Alfred Horner Munro of Regina, Saskatchewan, in 1921.

 The CVT – Continuously Variable Transmission

The continuously variable transmission (CVT), also known as a shiftless transmission, is a variant of the automatic transmission that can change seamlessly through a continuous range of effective gear ratios as opposed to a fixed number of gear ratios. The CVT’s belt-driven design offers approximately 88% efficiency, which is lower than that of a manual transmission, but this can be offset by lower production cost and by enabling the engine to run at its most efficient speed for a range of output speeds.

Contact Us

If you would like to learn more about the three types of transmission and what goes into the service, maintenance, and repair of your type of transmission, please get in touch with us and we can tell you everything you need to know.

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10 Maintenance Tips to Care for Your Transmission

10 Maintenance Tips to Care for Your Transmission

Transmission maintenance is the single most important factor in lengthening the life of your transmission. Like most things in life, if you don’t take care of your transmission, it won’t last very long. But how do you get the most out of your transmission? How can you keep it performing at peak efficiency? Here are 10 transmission maintenance tips.

  • Regularly Check your Transmission Fluid

Transmission fluid is the lifeblood of the automatic transmission. Without transmission fluid, your transmission won’t work. There is no transmission problem that can’t be caused or at least worsened by insufficient levels of transmission fluid. In order to maintain a working transmission, it must be well lubricated, so get that dipstick out every month or two and check your transmission fluid.

  • Check your Transmission Oil

A big manual transmission maintenance routine will be to check your transmission oil. Fluid is for automatic transmissions, manual transmissions typically use transmission oil. The same principle applies.

  • Transmission Fluid Quality

It’s not just about quantity with transmission fluid. Good transmission maintenance means checking for fluid quality, too. Damaged transmission fluid can be a sign that something is wrong within your transmission and it can cause more problems itself. Damaged transmission fluid is often opaque, rather than the clear-ish red colour it should be, and it sometimes smells foul.

  • Service your Transmission Fluid

If your transmission fluid is damaged, it should be serviced. Even if it doesn’t seem that damaged. Transmission fluid should be serviced at regular intervals. Maybe. Some auto manufacturers claim that their transmission fluid never needs to be serviced. These claims should be treated skeptically. Talk to your technician about if and when your transmission fluid should be changed.

  • Look for Problems

A big part of transmission maintenance is looking for problems before they become big problems. For example, look for transmission fluid under your parked vehicle now and then. Any  leaks will have to be re-sealed.

  • Listen for Problems

Some problems can be heard rather than seen. Listen for whining when your vehicle is in neutral or clunking and banging when you shift gears. These are sounds of trouble.

  • Feel for Problems

The aforementioned sounds are often accompanied by things you can feel. If your transmission grinds or clunks when you shift gears, you have a transmission problem.

  • Don’t Procrastinate!

We cannot stress this enough. When you see that transmission fluid on your driveway, when you hear that whining in neutral, or when you feel those gears grinding, take your vehicle into a mister transmission for a free Multi-Check Inspection. The longer you wait, the worse the problem can get.

  • Be Proactive, Not Reactive

Better than waiting for something to go wrong, bring your vehicle into a mister transmission shop for regular transmission maintenance. That’s the difference between transmission maintenance and repair. Transmission technicians can spot problems better than you can. Coming in for routine transmission maintenance means you can nip those small problems in the bud and increase your chances of avoiding major transmission repairs.

  • Choose the Right Transmission Shop

Your transmission maintenance is only as good as the transmission shop who performs it. At Mister Transmission, we pride ourselves on our transmission maintenance. The Mister Transmission Multi-Check Inspection is the most comprehensive transmission maintenance you will find. To learn more about transmission maintenance, please contact us.

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4 Services You Can Receive at a Transmission Shop

4 Services You Can Receive at a Transmission Shop

Regular visits to a transmission shop are crucial to the long term viability of your vehicle. At first glance, you might think it is odd that there are entire shops dedicated to only one component of a vehicle. But when you think about it – the transmission is the most complex part of your vehicle, especially with the evolution of transmission technology used in today’s vehicles.

Far from being just one component, the transmission is actually a collection of different parts working in unison to make your automobile go. Your transmission is what transfers power from your engine to your wheels. Without a working transmission, you’re not going anywhere. And because there are so many different parts within the transmission, it needs special attention. Transmission shops not only fix broken transmissions, but they can also service and maintain those transmissions, ensuring years of smooth sailing…well, actually driving, but you get the point. Here are four services you can receive at a transmission shop.

  • Transmission Maintenance and Service

Just as you see your doctor for regular check-ups, even when you don’t feel that anything is wrong, it’s important to bring your vehicle in regularly just to make sure everything is working right with your transmission. At Mister Transmission, we pride ourselves on our 21-point multi-check inspection, which is bound to determine if there is anything wrong with your transmission.

The Mister Transmission multi-check Inspection includes:

  • A Fluid Check
  • A Road Test
  • A Lift Inspection/Diagnosis
  • A Pan Examination

To learn more about Mister Transmission’s multi-check inspection, please click here. 

  • Transmission Repair

Transmissions have changed a lot over the years. The technology and mechanics involved in a transmission has advanced a lot over the years and transmission shops have had to keep up with these advances. Repairing transmissions canbean incredibly technical process and it is best left to technicians who specialize in working with transmissions.

Sometimes all that is needed is a minor adjustment or an in-car repair. The repair could be a computerized one or something physical, like an adjustment to the throttle cable. For transmission fluid leaks, re-seal jobs are required. And sometimes parts will need to be replaced. If the part is accessible, it can be replaced with the vehicle intact. But sometimes the problem can be so hidden that the entire transmission needs to be disassembled and inspected. This is known as complete overhaul. 

  • High Performance Transmissions

Some specialty vehicles require high performance transmissions. Such vehicles include muscle cars, custom rods, sport tuners, and race vehicles. You cannot get these high performance transmissions worked on at any old auto body shop. You need a transmission shop. 

  • Technological Diagnostics

Good transmission shops will have access to cutting edge diagnostic equipment, allowing them to figure out just what’s going on inside your transmission. Today’s vehicles come equipped with complex computer systems. Transmission shops have technology that can interface with your automobile’s on-board computer systems to discover your specific transmission problems. By “talking” to your vehicle’s computer, the technician can access a code that indicates where the problem lies. After this, the vehicle is taken for a test drive to monitor the vehicle’s behaviour in real-time. 

Get in Touch

If you would like to learn more about the services you can receive at a Mister Transmission shop, please contact us today.

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4 Things to Know About Transmission Maintenance

4 Things to Know About Transmission Maintenance

Your transmission is one of the most important components of your vehicle. It’s so important that if your transmission is not working, your vehicle simply won’t move. The transmission itself, however, is anything but simple. Manual or automatic, a transmission is an intricate collection of parts and equipment that must work in harmony with one another to allow the energy generated by your engine to get to your wheels. Because the transmission is so important and so complex, we thought it would be helpful to explain some of the basics about how to care and maintain your transmission. Here are four things you should know about transmission maintenance.

  • Transmission fluid levels

Transmission fluid is the lifeblood of the transmission. Without transmission fluid, your transmission (and therefore, your vehicle) won’t work. And there is no transmission problem that cannot be caused or worsened by a lack of transmission fluid. That’s why it’s important to keep an adequate level of transmission fluid in your vehicle. You should check your fluid level with a dipstick at least once a year, especially if you suspect your transmission is having problems. Topping up your fluid is easy enough to do. You can do it yourself or bring it into your local Mister Transmission and we can do it for you.

  • Changing transmission fluid

It’s not just the quantity of transmission fluid that is important; the quality of the fluid is also key. Sometimes transmission maintenance means changing or flushing your transmission fluid. Fluid can become burned or degraded and this can cause your transmission to have problems. Normally, transmission fluid is clear with a reddish hue. However, damaged transmission fluid is often discoloured and can have an unpleasant odour. If this is the case for you, you may need to flush your transmission fluid. This can be done at home with certain transmissions, but it can be quite difficult. It might be best to bring it in and have a technician do it for you.

  • Listen to your transmission

A big part of transmission maintenance is just paying attention and being aware of your vehicle’s performance. A troubled transmission will often tell you it’s having a problem; you just have to listen to it. Is your transmission making odd whirring or loud clunking noises? Is it noisy even when it’s in neutral? This could indicate a transmission problem, and you should bring it in to one of our shops for a free multi-check and diagnosis.

  • Transmission inspection

There are some aspects of transmission maintenance that even the most accomplished auto enthusiasts can’t do at home. A big part of transmission maintenance is giving the transmission a thorough inspection from time to time. For this, you need the expertise and the equipment of professional technicians.

Mister Transmission offers a complete multi-check inspection. As part of this inspection we will perform the following four tests:  A fluid check, a road test, a lift inspection/diagnosis, and a pan examination. These four tests will reveal what, if any, problems your transmission has. At the first sign of trouble, it’s never a bad idea to bring your vehicle in for regular transmission maintenance or get a free inspection. You don’t have to wait for something to go wrong.

Get in touch

If you would like to learn more about transmission maintenance, or if you would like to bring your vehicle in for transmission maintenance, please get in touch with us today.

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