How long can you ignore transmission issues? In short, it depends. The length of time a driver can ignore transmission issues depends on the issue itself. Some minor transmission issues are virtually unnoticeable for a long period of time. In other instances, a transmission will completely fail if a symptom is not addressed immediately.
However, the length of time in which a driver can ignore their transmission issue is irrelevant. As transmission experts, we know from experience that ignoring transmission issues results in intensified transmission damage and higher repair costs.
The Benefit of OBD-II Connectors
Transmission repair should happen after a single problem is identified. If you own a vehicle purchased after 1996, recognizing a transmission issue is a bit easier. Vehicles manufactured after 1996 are legally required to have OBD-II (on-board diagnostics II) connectors. An OBD-II is essentially a computer connected to a vehicle’s Check Engine light; the computer monitors emissions, speed, mileage, and a variety of other data. A 16-pin port attached under the dashboard on the driver’s side allows mechanics to use a tool to read error codes. Thus, when the Check Engine light flares to life, it is easy to bring your vehicle to a specialty shop and determine the issue. Don’t ignore the issue until your vehicle fails. The OBD-II provides an easy way to identify potential transmission problems and get them rectified immediately.
Why Should You Take Your Transmission In Right Away?
Your undiagnosed issue may be an electrical problem. For example, a gear-ratio code normally indicates a problem with one gear. However, multiple gear ratio codes could point to an electrical failure. If this is the case, the electrical issue can be quickly resolved. However, gear-ratio issues which start from electrical issues that go unchecked can turn into major parts failure. Even in an operational vehicle, a minor failure should be brought in for an inspection.
Soft Part Failure
If a soft part of a transmission fails, repair is relatively inexpensive and economical. Typically, the transmission is still operational. However, if the soft part failure is ignored, the damage will eventually extend to hard parts – or even the entire transmission. For example, if a seal (soft part) fails, transmission fluid is released, lowering the fluid levels and potentially resulting in expensive damage.
Burnt Transmission Fluid
We often observe burnt transmission fluid in higher mileage vehicles. This is because transmission fluid gradually grows older and, if it isn’t consistently changed, burns. Burnt fluid implies an internal parts failure is present. The transmission may be functional but it’s hanging on to its last threads. As time goes on, more parts will fail. The fluid is filled with debris and can no longer manager temperature fluctuations.
How Can You Extend the Life of Your Transmission?
Get Service Done Immediately
It is possible to avoid burning your transmission fluid and, as a result, extending the life of your transmission! How? Get service done on your new vehicle. Even if your vehicle has 10,000 miles, changing your transmission fluid regularly will greatly extend the longevity of your transmission. This summer, our experts at Advanced Transmission Center replaced a transmission with only had 38,000 miles on their vehicle. Waiting to reach 100,000 or 150,000 miles before getting transmission fluid flush is an unnecessary risk. In fact, credible transmission repair shops will not service transmissions beyond 100,000 miles. Why? Because putting new fluid into a transmission’s system at 100,000 is aggressive, often causing additional problems unless it is part of a regularly scheduled maintenance schedule.
OEM standards are good practice at sea level (i.e. in some regions), but we do not all operate in Houston. OEM standards are insufficient for proper vehicle maintenance in the Denver area. Colorado driving conditions demand heightened vehicle care. We hope Advanced Transmission will be on your list as a trustworthy, reputable transmission shop, dedicated to your best interest. Don’t wait until it’s too late to give us a visit.
As transmission repair experts, we know what’s best for your vehicle. As honest specialists, we know how to provide top-quality workmanship and quality service. Contact us with any questions using our online form or visit one of our two locations! We look forward to serving you.
Southwest Metro Denver (Lakewood/Littleton): Call (303) 922-4102
Northwest Metro Denver (Westminster): Call (303) 421-4140