A transmission is only as good as its owner, and the rigors that they put it through. There are a few things that you can do to prolong the life of your transmission.
- Change the fluid when the manufacturer suggests that you should. It is easy to open up the hood, check the dipstick, see that the fluid is pink and call it a day. This fluid has much longer life than your oil, and is operating at almost as high of a temperature.
- If you’ve been operating under conditions that are considered harsh, change it more often. Even if it’s not time, if the fluid is looking rough just change it.
- Not all manufacturers suggest draining all of the fluid at one time. In fact, many now suggest draining out a few quarts and filling it back up. There may have been some truth to people claiming that their transmission was ruined after they changed the fluid. It can be jarring to it, so figure out just what the manufacturer wants.
- Get the lead out of your foot. All things being equal, the transmission that is driven gentler is going to last longer. There is no disputing it. That is why a lot of car makers have gone to the “fly by wire” throttle application. This saves your drivetrain from your heavy foot by subtly smoothing out your throttle curve. You can do that yourself by pretending there is an egg between your foot and the gas peddle. This method will also increase your fuel mileage.
- The conditions you drive in matter. If you are using your car as an Uber Taxi, courrier service, towing or other heavy duty condition it going to wear out a lot faster.
If you follow these rules it’ll help you get the most out of your automatic transmission.