Tag Archives: transmission oil change

Do You Need to Change Transmission Oil?

Do You Need to Change Transmission Oil?

We tend to hear quite a bit about transmission fluid. And rightfully so; transmission fluid is the lifeblood of your transmission. Your automatic transmission, that is. Manual transmissions are a bit different. Manual transmission fluid is most commonly called “transmission oil”, but different types of manual transmissions require different types of lubricants. Ultimately, the question is, if you drive a vehicle with a manual transmission, do you have to change the oil inside? If so, how often?

Manual transmissions

Most motorists understand that there are two types of transmissions in an internal combustion engine vehicle. Well, there are actually more if you count the less common types, such as continuously variable transmissions (CVT), but we won’t get into that here. Let’s just stick with the two basic types of transmissions: manual and automatic. What are the key differences between the two?

Manual transmissions require the driver to put in a little more work when driving. A manual transmission allows the driver to physically shift the vehicle into different gears using a clutch pedal and gear shift. In order to move the automobile forward and to increase speed, the driver must manually shift gears. An automatic transmission, however, does the grunt work for the driver, changing gears fluidly as the driver pushes on the accelerator.

Manual transmissions are more labour intensive in terms of actually driving. It’s largely for that reason that automatic transmissions are more common in Canada. But there are benefits to manual transmissions. For one, vehicles with a manual transmission tend to be less expensive than their automatic counterparts. Second, they usually get better fuel economy, too. Lastly, some drivers prefer manual transmissions because they enjoy having more control over their vehicle. However, if you’re not used to manual transmissions, they can be a bit confusing. For example, what do you do with the transmission oil?

Transmission oil

Both automatic and manual transmissions require lubrication, but manual transmissions typically don’t use transmission fluid. Manual transmissions can use regular motor oil or heavyweight hypoid gear oil. As ever, you should always check the auto manufacturer’s booklet that came with your vehicle to see which type of transmission oil they recommend for your manual transmission. And to see how often they recommend changing your transmission oil.

Transmission oil change

So, do you need to change transmission oil? The answer is, yes, you do. Just like automatic transmission fluid, manual transmission oil must be changed periodically to ensure that your transmission runs smoothly. Most manufacturers recommend that manual transmission oil be changed on a slightly more frequent schedule than automatic transmission fluid. Manual transmission oil should be changed, roughly, every 50 000-95 000 kilometers. That’s a big range, so it depends on the age of your transmission and how you use your vehicle, eg: city vs. country driving; is yours a work vehicle that you use for tasks such as towing, etc.

Get in touch

If you would like some insight into how often you should change your transmission oil for your specific vehicle, or if you know you’re due for a transmission oil change now, please contact Mister Transmission. We can let you know if you need a transmission oil change and can do it for you.


What is a Transmission Oil Change?

What is a Transmission Oil Change?

When doing some online research about transmissions you might come across some terms and some ideas with which you are not familiar with. There are automatic transmissions and manual transmissions. Do you know the difference? There is transmission fluid and there is transmission oil? Are they different? Does transmission fluid need to be changed? Does transmission oil need to be changed? Well, don’t worry, this article will try to answer some of those questions.

Automatic vs. Manual Transmissions

A manual transmission requires more work from the driver. A manual transmission needs the driver to physically shift the vehicle into different gears, using a clutch pedal and shift knob. In order to move the vehicle forward and reach higher speeds, the driver must manually shift gears to get to the desired speed. An automatic transmission, on the other hand, does all the grunt work for you, changing gears fluidly as you push on the gas pedal.

Both automatic and manual transmissions have their pros and cons. Automatic transmissions are easier to use but manual transmissions give the driver more control of the vehicle. Vehicles with manual transmissions are more likely to be cheaper and there is some evidence to suggest that they are more fuel efficient. And the reason for going over automatic and manual transmissions will become clear soon.

Transmission Fluid

Transmission fluid allows the transmission to work. Transmission fluid works as a lubricant for the parts within your transmission. Transmission fluid is optimized for the functions of the transmission. These functions include valve operation, brake band friction, and the torque converter. Transmission fluid is required in all automatic transmissions.

Transmission Oil

While all automatic transmission require transmission fluid, this is not true for all manual transmissions. Some manual transmissions do use transmission fluid, but others use gear oil or sometimes engine oil. Sometimes gear oil is called transmission oil. The transmission oil lubricates the manual transmissions and other parts involved.

Transmission oil has a noticeable odour because of its sulfur-bearing anti-wear compounds. These compounds are necessary to reduce high sliding friction by the helical gear cut of the teeth. In a motorcycle in which the clutch is bathed in transmission oil, there is usually nothing separating the lower part of the engine from the transmission, so the same oil lubricates both the engine and transmission.

Transmission Oil Change

The transmission fluid in an automatic transmission will typically need to be changed out every now and then. The same is usually true for transmission oil in manual transmissions. However, speaking very generally, transmission oil changes are needed less frequently than transmission fluid changes. Some auto manufacturers claim that the oil never needs to be changed, as their transmission is a closed circuit. However, the oil might need changing due to other transmission problems, repairs, or leaks. These claims should be treated with a critical eye and you should ask a technician at a transmission shop if your specific vehicle might require a transmission oil change.

 Get in Touch

If you would like to learn more about transmission oil changes, please contact us today.