Before you change automatic transmission fluid, here are things you should know

In other to keep your car healthy, you have to make sure to change automatic transmission fluid at the right time and in the right way!

As a car driver, you probably know the importance of the automatic transmission fluid. Transmission fluid is a lubricant, cleaner and coolant for a car. It circulates via the different components of a car to lessen friction between them while collecting debris or waste which is capable of causing damage as they pass through the entire system. In other to keep your car healthy, the oil for the automatic gearbox needs to be changed regularly. And before you change automatic transmission fluid, there are some things would like you to know. Here they are.

A car parking on the side of the street

The tranmission fluid change is vital to your healthy automatic vehicles

Things to know when you change automatic transmission fluid 

1. The color is red

A healthy transmission fluid is bright red in color and also smells sweet. The transmission fluid should be changed when you notice the color turning smoky dark, with a burnt odor.

The oil dipstick is handy. You can use it to ascertain the color and also know the liquid level. If the fluid level is low, it is time to fill it up of course.

Fresh vs old transmission fluid

If the fluid has lost its initial bright red color, it's time for a transmission fluid change

2. You should always flush the transmission fluid to remove sediments

The transmission fluid changes as a result of heat, dirt and metal shavings gathered over time. So before you fill up a fresh fluid, the chambers should be flushed to prevent accumulated sediments (gotten from the old burnt oil) from flowing through the entire system. These sediments are capable of damaging some car components.

>>> Also check out: Engine flush – Is it good or bad for your engine?

3. The torque converter should be cleaned too

It's common knowledge that the transmission pan should be cleaned and the filter replaced, but a novice won't remember cleaning the torque converter. The torque converter houses half of the contaminants and burnt transmission fluid. It definitely needs to be thoroughly cleaned up, not leaving out the clutch drums and valve body. This is to make sure you get maximum satisfaction from changing the transmission gearbox oil.

The car's torque converter

Many amateurs forget to take care of their torque converters

4. Always seal the pan properly

If you notice the pan's bolts have dimples around it, use a hammer to flatten them. This is to prevent the pan gasket from leaking soon. A gasket sealant or adhesive can be used, to protect the pan gasket. Stay away from silicone sealant because it will break off later and then clog up the pump intake.

How often should the transmission fluid be changed?

Changing the automatic transmission fluid regularly extends your car's lifespan. Car experts say the transmission fluid should be changed every 30,000 miles or 30 months if you want better results. And again, that it depends on your driving habits together with other factors like towing heavy loads, regular stop-and-go driving or if you reside in a hot climatic region. The best recommendation comes from checking your owner’s manual.

Check out how to change transmission fluid

Jane Osuagwu

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