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 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.
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.
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