What to Consider When Buying a Transmission

March 11, 2019 | By Mister Transmission

Sticky Situation - Buying A Transmission

If you are asking yourself, “Should I buy a used transmission?” then you’re probably in one of the stickiest situations in which you can be with regards to your transmission. If you are considering buying a used transmission then it follows that there is something significantly wrong with your current transmission. You don’t replace a perfectly good transmission, afterall. Replacing a transmission is a major task. It takes a significant amount of time and money; often more than other types of transmission repairs. And of course, such transmission problems rarely come at convenient times What should you do if you find yourself in such a situation? Should you buy a used transmission?

The Transmission

Much like we see a vehicle and refer to it as “the car”, when we refer to “the transmission”, we’re also referring to a piece of machinery that is comprised of many smaller parts and components. A lot of transmission repair has to do with these parts. There are a number of parts that are accessible while the transmission remains within the body of the vehicle. These are called “accessible parts” and if the problem with your transmission is found to be with one of these parts, then the transmission repair will be a relatively simple matter.

Transmission Overhauls

Other times, you may not be so lucky. There are many parts of transmission that are inaccessible. They require that the transmission be removed from the chassis in order to access them. If the problem is suspected to be with one of these parts, or otherwise if the problem remains unknown, then the transmission will have to come out. This is a bigger procedure. If you are unluckier still, the problem with your transmission might remain a mystery. Now we’re talking about a transmission overhaul.

A Transmission overhaul, which is also called “rebuilding a transmission”, involves the disassembly of the transmission piece by piece. Every part is inspected for wear and damage, then it is cleaned in a special solution, or replaced with another part. Parts with friction surfaces, such as bands and clutches, are replaced as are all seals and gaskets. The torque converter is also replaced, typically with a remanufactured one. The rebuilt unit is then put back into your vehicle.

Used Transmissions

Above is one option you have when your current transmission is completely damaged or the problem part(s) cannot quite be located. The other option is to simply buy a used transmission and swap it in for your damaged one. These used transmissions are usually rebuilt transmissions themselves. This might seem like the simpler, perhaps faster, and therefore the better option. But this is not necessarily so.

At Mister Transmission, we often caution our clients against opting to buy a used transmission. Used transmissions frequently have questionable histories and can create a whole new set of problems. “New transmissions”, on the other hand, are typically aftermarket transmissions billed as new, but which are in fact rebuilt transmissions with new parts. Obviously, every vehicle, every person, and every situation are different, so what might be the best choice for others may not be the best choice for you. But you should at least be wary of used transmissions.

Contact Us

If you would like to learn more about used transmissions, please contact us today.

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