Most Common Reasons Why a Transmission Slips

Updated on January 8, 2017
eddiecarrara profile image

Eddie spent 33 years in the automotive business with Honda. He is an ASE Certified Master Technician and has bruised knuckles to prove it.

We all know what an automatic transmission is, basically—very basically, at least—so I'm not going to bore you with the details about how it converts power from your engine into power at the wheels. But you should know that the process involves plenty of hydraulic fluid as well as gears and clutches.

If you don't know why your car’s transmission is slipping, I just might have the answer, though you may not want to hear what I have to say.

The cause of a slipping transmission will depend on the type of transmission you have in your vehicle. There are three types of transmissions: automatic, standard (or “manual”), and CVT (continuously variable transmission). I will discuss the two most common types, automatic and standard.

Why Is My Automatic Transmission Slipping?

If you have an automatic transmission and it "slips" while you are driving it—that is, the car engine revs without the power going to the wheels—the most common cause (though not the only possible cause) is low transmission fluid. If the slipping is caused by low fluid, it will get worse as the transmission gets hotter.

Why Is My Manual Transmission Slipping?

A standard (“manual”) transmission uses fluid too, but leaks aren’t a common issue; a standard transmission could lose all its fluid and never slip at all, though eventually it would lock up while driving down the road. If you have a standard transmission, and it’s slipping—the engine revs but it doesn’t transmit power to the wheels—the problem is usually in the clutch.

Further down in the article I discuss how to diagnose this problem.

Sounds Like Low Transmission Fluid to Me

If Your Automatic Transmission Is Low on Fluid

The next question is, why? Probably because you have a leak. Maybe you have noticed red transmission fluid in your driveway or your parking spot at work, but it didn’t occur to you that it came from your car. The cause of your leak is probably a failure of one of the seals that keep the oil inside the transmission (though there are other places the transmission might leak). How many seals the transmission has depends on whether you have a front-wheel-drive, four-wheel-drive, or rear-wheel-drive car.

If you do have a seal that is leaking, and you catch it in time before it damages your transmission, there’s a chance it might be relatively cheap to repair. Seals themselves are not expensive parts, but depending on where they are located, it might take a lot of labor to replace them.

Transmission Axle Seal: A Common Site for Leaks

Click thumbnail to view full-size
An axle seal might cost you about $20. It's the labor that kills you. An axle seal that is not leaking fluid.Axle seal inside the transmission, with the axle removed.A typical axle seal leak.This axle seal is just starting to leak.A great view of the axle going into the transmission. You can see the transmission fluid starting to leak down the transmission case.
An axle seal might cost you about $20. It's the labor that kills you.
An axle seal might cost you about $20. It's the labor that kills you. | Source
An axle seal that is not leaking fluid.
An axle seal that is not leaking fluid.
Axle seal inside the transmission, with the axle removed.
Axle seal inside the transmission, with the axle removed.
A typical axle seal leak.
A typical axle seal leak.
This axle seal is just starting to leak.
This axle seal is just starting to leak.
A great view of the axle going into the transmission. You can see the transmission fluid starting to leak down the transmission case.
A great view of the axle going into the transmission. You can see the transmission fluid starting to leak down the transmission case.

If you have the leak checked out by your mechanic, and he tells you it’s just your axle seal, it could just cost you for a couple hours of labor, and you could be back on the road in a few hours if the parts are readily available. Axle seal failures are common, and the dealer will usually have those seals in stock. But if it's your input shaft seal, plan on leaving your car for a day or two, and expect the labor cost to be upwards of eight to ten hours.

Input Shaft Seal: Another Site for Leaks

Leaking input shaft seal.
Leaking input shaft seal.

This photo shows an input shaft seal leak. To replace this seal, the transmission needs to be removed from the car; this job can get costly.

Be sure to check your owner's manual on how to check your transmission fluid.
Be sure to check your owner's manual on how to check your transmission fluid.
Typically you fill the transmission through the dipstick tube, using a small funnel.
Typically you fill the transmission through the dipstick tube, using a small funnel.

Checking and Topping Off Automatic Transmission Fluid to Prevent Slipping

If your transmission is leaking, you will want to fix it. Meanwhile, if you must drive a car with a leaking transmission, you should top off the fluid.

Check your owner’s manual to see exactly how you should check your transmission fluid level. Some manufacturers will want you to check the transmission fluid level when the engine is warmed up and running with the transmission in park, other manufacturers like Honda will have you check it with the engine warmed up but not running. So be sure to read your owner's manual, DON'T GUESS!

If your transmission fluid level is low and not showing on the dipstick, add transmission fluid--the proper transmission fluid. Each car manufacturer uses a specific fluid. If you use the wrong fluid, you could damage your transmission internally, so again, check your owner's manual. Fill it to the top line on the dipstick and then drive it to your mechanic.

Note: Sometimes when an automatic transmission is low on fluid and you top it off, air pockets develop inside the transmission that keep the fluid from getting to all the parts of the mechanism. After adding the fluid, I suggest that while the car is running, you move the shift lever through the different gears on the shifter selector, and then check the fluid again. Running the shifter through the gears redirects the fluid to different parts of the transmission and removes the air pockets. You may have to do this procedure several times, or even drive the car around the block, and then recheck the fluid level.

Note: I do not recommend using additives that are supposed to stop leaks; they can plug up the transmission. Use the automatic transmission fluid your car manufacturer makes.

How to Check Your Transmission Fluid

Other Fluids That Leak From Cars

If you are concerned about other fluids besides automatic transmission fluid that seem to be coming out of your car, here's some useful advice.

Clutch disc and pressure plate. The clutch looks like it blew apart. If you ride your clutch it may look like this.
Clutch disc and pressure plate. The clutch looks like it blew apart. If you ride your clutch it may look like this.

Common Cause of Manual Transmission Slippage: Worn-Out Clutch

If you think your clutch is starting to slip, you can try a stall test. Put your car in third gear and try starting off like you would normally, as if you were in first gear. If your clutch is working properly, letting the clutch out all the way should stall the car. If, however, the clutch is slipping, the engine RPMs will rise, the car will slowly start rolling, and you will have a smell like burning paper coming from the engine compartment. When a clutch starts slipping you will smell it. It’s like the smell of overheated brakes.

There are many reasons why a clutch would slip, but the most common reason is that the clutch is worn out. A clutch disc can last anywhere from 20,000 to 200,000 miles—it all depends on the way you drive—but like a brake pad, it’s a consumable item, and will be used up eventually, leaving the parts grinding metal-on-metal. If the clutch disc is worn out, you need to replace it, generally also along with the clutch plate and one or two bearings. If you don't replace a worn clutch in time, you might have to replace the flywheel (the big chunk of metal next to it) as well.

Riding your clutch—that is, leaving your foot on the clutch pedal when you aren’t using it—can really eat up a clutch disc fast, especially if you drive in hilly areas. Just being a newbie and learning to use a clutch for the first time can cause a lot of wear and tear. Learning to drive on a standard transmission can end up costing you money if you don't get the hang of it quickly.

Then again, clutches slip for reasons not related to wear and tear or abuse. If your input shaft seal is leaking gear oil onto the clutch disc, this could very well cause a slipping clutch. Another common reason for a slipping clutch is a faulty or damaged pressure plate. The pressure plate is operated by a high-tension spring. If for some reason the pressure is not distributed evenly over the clutch disc, the clutch will start to slip.

Blown Clutch: It's Completely Worn Out

I Appreciate Your Questions!

There are many possible reasons for a slipping transmission and I could not cover all of them above. If you have any questions just leave them in the comment box below. If you find this article useful, do share it on Facebook or Twitter (see buttons at top of page).

Questions & Answers

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    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      3 days ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Cris,

      Are you sure the jerk isn't from the motor instead of the transmission? A skip in the engine can feel just like a problem with the transmission.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      3 days ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Osec :)

      Is the check engine light on or any other warning lights on?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      3 days ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Rock,

      I'm not sure if that transmission will bolt up, you'll need to call a salvage yard, they will have that information. You could check the second gear shift solenoid operation, if it's not working, that is most likely the problem. Is there a second gear shift solenoid on the 97 you could try?

    • profile image

      Rocky 

      4 days ago

      My 1995 nissan altima acts like it is in neutuel when it goes into second gear it is a automatic transmission i have a 1997 transmission will it bolt up or is it just my sylonoid clogged up it only does it in second gear

    • profile image

      Osec 

      4 days ago

      Hi Eddie thank you for the article,

      I have 2006 Nissan Tidda after changing transmission fluid and filter, I change injector, I change fuel filter and my mechanic confirmed that the spark plug and coils are ok but my car still rav especially in the morning until the engine is warm and it goes on and off like that for the whole day. its really draining my pocket, what else can be done to solve this problem.

    • profile image

      Cris Backer 

      9 days ago

      I have a 2001 xj Classic. When I change from R to D or P to D my car slightly jerks 95% of the time. Also when I’m picking up speed it will feel like it’s slightly jerk when picking up speed

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      9 days ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Anthony,

      It sounds like the transmission is on it last leg. It may be time to either upgrade the car or the transmission.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      9 days ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Susan,

      It sounds like you may be having transmission problems. If you live near a Honda Dealer, I recommend either having them replace the transmission fluid or buy some Honda transmission fluid and change it yourself just to see if there is any improvement. Let me know what happens, thanks.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      9 days ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Zoe,

      It sounds like your clutch is slipping, so either your clutch disc is out of life or you have some type of fluid leaking on the clutch disc causing it to slip. Is there any unusual smells after driving it like burnt paper or anything?

    • profile image

      Zoë White 

      12 days ago

      Hey! I drive a manual Ford Focus ‘01. Lately when I’ve been shifting up, it seems my rpms will drop after the shift but when the gas pedal is then depressed again, the rpms jump straight back up and the car doesn’t accelerate until I release gas pedal. I then have to slowly press down on the gas pedal and lightly pump it before fully stepping on the pedal, for the car to register the shift change, so that I can accelerate up to the next gear change. What could be the problem?

    • profile image

      Susan Bachle 

      13 days ago

      Hi just bought a 2004 Honda Accord automatic 170km on it. It was my first day on the road with this car and upon acceleration I feel a jerk going into 1st gear. Going into second gear the rpm dial accelerates as it is supposed to do but then once in second gear the rpm guage accelerates for a split second on its own but not because I am pushing the gas pedal any harder this went on all day. If I take off very very slowly from a stop sign it does not jerk. I also noticed when I had parked today that the RPM went down to half way between 0 and 1. The car was going to stall so I gave it some gas and it continued to run. Also I felt twice today while driving that around 50 to 60 km p/h a sudden shake in the whole vehicle so I let off the gas and it was fine. Any thoughts? Thank you

    • profile image

      Anthony 

      2 weeks ago

      I have a 1995 3000 gt sl starts up drives but when shifting seems like it revs up and i come to a stop put it in reverse it drives or revs again i drive it in 2 and its alright 90% and the 10% it rolls to a stop stays running just gas it and it revs up i just changed trans fluid and added 3 quarts any idea ?? It smokes a lil smells like gas

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      2 weeks ago from New Hampshire

      Sorry so late on my reply Cristina. The noise you're describing is usually cause by either a torque converter or transmission pump, both are internal and the transmission needs to be removed to inspect, but you may be able to find an Aamco transmission shop that can do some external testing first.

    • profile image

      Cristina 

      3 weeks ago

      Hi, I have a GMC Sierra 2500HD with an Allison 1000 6 speed tranny. A few days ago while slowing down to come to a stop my tranny started making whirring noises and I had to put it in neutral to bring it to a stop. I turned off my truck and let it sit for about 10 minutes. I started it back up and it ran fine the rest of the way home, about 2 miles. When I got home I followed my owners manuels way to check the tranny fluid and it was a little low. So I completely changed the fluid and the filter. Now when I try to run it, it operates fine for about 3-4 miles, goes through all the gears fine with no noises, then when slowing down it will begin making the odd noise again, except in neutral and reverse. Reverse still working perfectly every time.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 weeks ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Randallalt,

      Does the truck move in reverse at all ? Any abnormal noises?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      8 weeks ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Chad,

      If you're ambitious you could try locating all the test ports on the transmission and blowing a little light compressed air into each, you may have some debris clogging the passageways inside the transmission. If this helps, try changing the transmission fluid to remove the debris, and use Genuine Honda Fluid if possible, it makes a world of difference.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      8 weeks ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Michael,

      Are you sure it's not a skip in the engine? An aged spark plug or spark plug wire can have the same feeling, it will skip only under a load like going up a hill or heavy acceleration. Let me know, thanks.

    • profile image

      Michael 

      2 months ago

      I have a 99 Toyota 4Runner that feels like it is slipping in 4th gear uphill at 45 miles an hour around 2500 rpm. Only happens uphill.

    • profile image

      Chad 

      2 months ago

      I have a 1998 Honda accord SIR vtech tip tronic trans. It wouldn't go into gear at all changed sequential solenoid and now I can all gears except reverse, and from 2nd gear upwards its grabbing each gear but before it grabs from 2nd to 3rd and 3rd to 4th gear etc,it slips out of gear and just revs up for a bit and won't change up till I pulse the revs at 4000 to 5000rpm. would you have any ideas on a solution or what I could do to solve the problem plz

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      2 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi J Mora,

      The car sounds nice. It's possible your clutch pack discs are starting to wear and with the added power they are starting to slip.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      2 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Elizabeth,

      It sounds like first gear has a problem. When your gear selector is in second gear, the transmission start out in second and not first. You'll need to have it checked by a transmission specialist.

    • profile image

      elizabeth 

      2 months ago

      i have a 98 saturn automatice when in drive my rpms will fly up to 5000 but when in secon gear my car drives normal

    • profile image

      j mora 

      2 months ago

      i have a 350 mounted to a th350 tranny, at normal driving all is well, motor runs at around 195-200 degrees once warmed up, i have a tranny cooler, when i stand on it after its warmed up and it downshifts to 2nd it feels like it is slipping a little, while the tranny is cold its downshifts hard and plants you in the seat. i have replaced all vacuum lines, i have 18 inches of vacuum at idle at the manifold line leading to the trans. there are no other concerns, i have recently upgraded the fuel and ignition systems and am producing more power than it has had in 20+years. there is less then 100k miles on the trans. summer only street rod originally built in '94.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      3 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Cathy,

      Sounds like maybe your coolant is low causing the idle to be high, or maybe you have a leaking head gasket. I recommend you check the coolant first and let me know what you find, thanks.

    • profile image

      Cathy Piersol 

      3 months ago

      Have 2006 P.T Transmission stocks R PM running high.causes it overheat.Cant drive far.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      3 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Walter,

      I always like to start with the least cost repair attempt before dishing out 1k. Sometimes a new filter and fluid can work wonders. I recommend the filter and fluid change first and let me know how you make out.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      3 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Jess,

      Have you tried taking it to an Aamco or a transmission specialist? They can usually do some test that the average mechanic will not do. The can check the pressures in the transmission and see what's not working properly and possibly find the issue without removing the transmission. Let me know, thanks.

    • profile image

      jess 

      3 months ago

      hi eddie I have 1994 mustang gt 5.0 I do have a small leak on transmission but stick is showing full ..its an automatic transmission when driving it jumps into a lower gear or even no gear ..I have it parked ..can you point me in the right direction on this repair ..because most mechanics want too go with new transmission..and I know this transmission has served me well and worked fine till a couple DAYS AGO..ANY ADVICE WOULD SERVE ME WELL

    • profile image

      Walter 

      3 months ago

      Having BMW e39 touring (A5S 390R Auto)

      AT ransmission issue. Panel got trans.failsafe.prog.After than driving gets horrable.like starting with 4th gear not 1st.someday drives well without error.Some lads says need to change trans fluid,some says needs trans repair around 1k

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      3 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi James,

      Sounds like either a shift solenoid or you have a blown clutch pack at that gear. It most likely will not be an easy fix, but if you tell the seller to have it fixed and it shifts normal, you'll buy it lol. This is probably the reason they are getting rid of the truck.

    • profile image

      James tolbert 

      3 months ago

      2001 jeep GC. 4.0 automatic. Truck gets up to 35mph and then feels like it goes into neutral and wont engage gears rill it gets back under 35mph. If u stay 35 and under it will drive. Can you help explain what it might be and I hope its cheap. Lol. I didn't buy truck yet but it it really nice and only 160000mi so I wanted to buyout if it can be fixed easily. Thanks

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      3 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Jessica,

      It's possible you have an electronic shift valve malfunctioning causing your shift issue.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      3 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Donna,

      I would start by checking the transmission fluid level, it sounds like the pressure is not building as it should inside the transmission. If the fluid level is ok you may have a sticking shift valve or an internal blockage and that would have to be diagnosed a transmission specialist.

    • profile image

      Donna 

      3 months ago

      I have a 1.4sri turbo zafira tourer automatic. When I put my foot down on the throttle, like when pulling out of a junction or going down the slip road onto the motorway. The revs will go upto 6000 but the gear will stick. Only when the revs are released then reapplied the gears will change as normal. Could you please tell me what you think might be causing it I would be very great full

    • profile image

      Jessica Fortunato 

      3 months ago

      About a month ago my gears were slipping, my check engine light would come on and my vsa light would kick on and also have a little triangle with an exclamation point through it. I added transmission fluid and it was fine. A couple days ago my car started slipping gears again, transmission fluid was fine. Made an appt to get it checked and now my car is shifting gears fine again. What could be the cause of this??

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      3 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Vijay,

      It sounds to me like your losing pressure inside the transmission because of a bad transmission solenoid or a blockage. You could try flushing the transmission with a flush machine or change your fluid several time to see if the problem clears up. How does your tramisssion fluid look? How is the fluid level?

    • profile image

      Vijay 

      3 months ago

      Sir I have 2004 honda city, it drive smoothly but after 10 or 20 k.m drive one's stops shift to any gear then the car doesn't moving forward but reverse still moving. Wait to 20 to 30 minutes car will go smoothly.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi KC,

      How does the engine run? Do you think it's a problem with a clogged catalytic converter?

    • profile image

      KC 

      4 months ago

      Hi Eddie,

      My automatic car will go through the gears fine but after a few minutes and usually when in the higher gears when I try to go faster (push peddle down) it seems to lose speed. It will usually go into fourth and stay there for a long time but when it does go to higher gears it still has no power. what could this be?

      Thanks

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Eloise,

      Manual or automatic transmission?

    • profile image

      Eloise Mayonr 

      4 months ago

      What is wrong when I am having touble getting my car to change gears?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Linda,

      If the leak is bad enough to continuously have low transmission fluid, then yes. When the fluid is low the transmission will slip, so keep it topped off and don't drive it, you don't want to get stranded. Keep me posted on how you make out. I wonder if the mechanic needed to remove one of the hoses to perform the transmission flush? If so, did they cause the problem?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Bylor44,

      You're in a tough situation, the mechanic will need to verify the problem first, check for any stored temporary codes and check all your fluid levels and condition. If the mechanic can't reproduce the problem and there are no codes stored the mechanic can only go by your description of the problem and check for any service bulletins on the issue. Hope this helps.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Shawn,

      Are there any warning lights on? Shift solenoids work only one gear each, you have several that control the complete operation and if one is not doing it's job it will usually set a code in the computer. Changing the fluid may help but the problem is only during one shift and that seems to very specific like a solenoid or clutch pack issue.

    • profile image

      Shawn Christ 

      4 months ago

      Hi Eddie. Have a question on a jeep liberty 3.7 v6 auto transmission. Here in the last week or so ive noticed a slip or hesitation when going into second gear.Only in second. I feel like it would be a shift solenoid but wouldnt that happen on all gears not just one? Checked fluids they are fine. My only other thought would be a full filter/fluid replacement. Any directions would be great. Thanks.

    • profile image

      bylor44@yahoo.com 

      4 months ago

      I have a 2015 328 i BMW that is under extended warranty. In the last 6 months when I started the car that was parked it did not move when I put it in reverse or drive until after many trys it finally did go into gear and move fine. No lights go on when this happened. It would happen a few months apart so i"d forget since its seldom used by me. Only 20 thousand mies and only goes to BMW.. I'm bring it back this time and telling them the situation. In the past when a car I have is under warranty there is nothing serious wrong until its run out and then they finally find the problem and I pay plenty. Fact is I don't trust dealerships anymore. I think its the transmission but if they BS me I need info to hold my ground and insist they fix it Remember it doesn't do this all the time so it may run beautiful when they test it. Please help me.

    • profile image

      Linda 

      4 months ago

      Ok so I have a 2002 GMC Envoy I bought a few weeks ago. It needed a new radiator, so we had one installed by a friend. I had lube express do a oil change, filters, and they talked me into a tranny flush. Anyhow it wasnt leaking fluids. Yesterday I was close to my home, and it kept slippping badly. I went to Auto zone where they said the transmission fluid was very low. They put a half a gallon in it, I proceeded 1 min up the rd to Lube express, and told them my tranny fluid had all drained out. Mind you we were smelling cat piss, but no leaks outside or in, and no lights coming up on dash. They told me a hose was busted, now Im thinking did the guy who put my radiator in do it? I dont know, have no idea about vegicles. Next I drove next door to the garage, they put it up, and said 2 hoses are cracked. Lube plus had filled it, but it’s leaking out when I drive. They did the changing of the gears, and said I should be ok until Thursday when they can fix the hoses, just keep making sure the tranny fluid is goid. Now it’s not slipping as bad, but it’s still slipping, enough that I dont want to drive it. Will the hose fix, fix the slipping problem is my question

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Danny,

      Did you change the pressure plate at the same time? Do you smell clutch disc burning when this happens?

    • profile image

      Danny 

      4 months ago

      I just changed my clutch disk (manual), and I don't think that there's any oil leaking inside, yet my car doesn't react as it used to be. I start my car on steep hill, my RPM goes about 5000 RPM in 1st gear and my car just have a 40km/h power. Before, at 5000 RPM on the same hill I was going at 100km/h. I'm desperate, it's been almost 1 year now that my car does that!

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Eternityksa,

      Have you ever had the transmission serviced? How does the fluid condition look? How is the transmission fluid level?

    • profile image

      eternityksa 

      4 months ago

      I have lexus ES 2011, Auto transmission is having some issues of hanging and then sudden shifting with a slight jerk move from 2nd to 3rd or 4th gear in between 40, sometimes 60 to 65 KM /H, also the RPM needle sometimes slightly go up down kind of shaky movement by himself, any suggestion would be warm welcome :)

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Teresa,

      If the transmission only grinds in third gear, most likely the problem is inside the transmission and not the clutch.

    • profile image

      Teresa lee 

      4 months ago

      How do Ifix this...I have a Mitsubishi Raider grinds in 3rd gear we just replaced the clutch. It worked before we put in new clutch please help with ez fix it was hard to put in clutch...( first time ) .. brother supervised but I'm learning to fix it my self .....thanks tuns

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      4 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Robert,

      I'm not sure what you mean that your clutch pedal moved close to your brake pedal. That sounds like the bushings at the pivot point on the clutch pedal arm is worn or the bracket has broken. I recommend crawling under the dash with a flashlight and checking the clutch/brake pedal bracket for any damage.

    • profile image

      Robert 

      5 months ago

      My clutch moved really close to my brake pedal and has gotten a short travel what can i do

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      5 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Pricilla,

      I'm not sure what is going on with your vehicle but the fluid near the rear axle wouldn't cause your issue, you don't have 4 wheel drive so the only fluid back there is brake fluid and fuel.

    • profile image

      Priscilla 

      5 months ago

      Eddie, no the pedal feels the same whether its normal or acting up. Clutch engages at the top end of half way depressed, if that makes sense, which is about where its always engaged. This stupid issue has now completely burnt out the clutch and since its been sitting unusable ive noticed quite a bit of fluid puddling under the rear end, about where the axle is...

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      5 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Frank,

      You could try a transmission service with a new filter and fluid but it's a shot in the dark.

    • profile image

      Frank 

      5 months ago

      I have a 1992 dodge caravan when I come to a complete stop when I try to go the transmission jerks before it shiftes in gear

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      5 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Ben,

      Did you check the transmission fluid level and condition?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      5 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Michael,

      Does it drive good in the forward gears? Any hesitations or skipping? Any check engine light or other warning lights on?

    • profile image

      Michael 

      5 months ago

      My f150 2005 when I put it in reverse it feels like it slips or shakes.

    • profile image

      Ben 

      5 months ago

      Hi,

      I have a 2005 ford focus that when taking off it lacks power plus rpms will go sky high and car feels like it stops forward motion. If you ease off the gas it will eventually shift gears. Once a bit warmer same type of thing happens except all drive motion stops once 1st is wound out and after a few seconds will slam into next gear and jerking car dramatically. Help please.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      5 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Heather,

      Your shifting issue may be because of low transmission fluid and they don't know how to check it properly. If the car is driving, the axles are installed completely. To check you fluid, park it on level ground, engine off, pull the transmission fluid dipstick and make sure the fluid level is between the crosshatch marks on the dipstick. If it low, use only Honda genuine fluid to top off, and make sure the garage didn't use an aftermarket fluid in your transmission, that would be the cause of your shifting problem as well. Let me know hat you find out, thanks.

    • profile image

      Heather C. 

      5 months ago

      I have a 99 honda accord ex 6 cylinder and it drove great until my axels in front needed replaced! Now ever since its not shifting right and valvoline said all my fluids were good, but wondering if the axles weren't properly put in did be the cause?

    • profile image

      john 

      5 months ago

      Hi Eddie,

      I have not seen a check engine light yet but I will let you know if I see one on the 2004 Honda

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      5 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Eddie,

      It sounds like a shift solenoid is failing, is the check engine light on?

    • profile image

      Eddie 

      5 months ago

      I have a 2004 Honda accord v6 transmission replaced 24k miles ago

      When my daughter derives car at slow speeds (cold) it seems to go into neutral. SHe turns car off and restarts then car drives fine anty thoughts

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      5 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi BobDan,

      If you don't mind driving it like this, you will have a hard time selling it in the future but if it works for you and you don't mind all the lights on, go for it. One thing to think about, if you live in a state with emissions testing it will. probably never pass.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      5 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Mimi,

      Are you sure it's the transmission and not the engine?

    • profile image

      Mimi 

      5 months ago

      Help, I have a 2002 dodge Dakota pickup. When I start to take off it doesn't go fast it hesitates then a couple secs it goes. When I'm at a light or stopped it jerks forward and when I press the gas it wont take off just real slow till a few secs then it goes fast.

    • profile image

      BobDan 

      5 months ago

      I drive a 2003 Acura MDX Touring which has a 2005 engine and transmission installed in it (I bought it fairly used that way). I was usually having transmission issues of which I had previously replaced the gearbox on 4 occassions); leaking seals and bad transmission fluid were among the problems I encountered. I eventually installed a 2007/08 Honda Accord V6 FWD gearbox which of course don't have the VTM-4 system attached to the transmission and fitted perfectly well to the vehicle; I as well got the propeller yanked off.... Pls I would like to know if it was a good decision to have had this type of transmission installed...... Thank you!

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      5 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Bobby,

      Sometimes an engine skip or misfire can cause the same issue. If it was the torque converter it would most likely do it in every gear, but it's hard to say with out driving the vehicle.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      5 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Joey,

      Yep, sounds to me like you're smelling the clutch disk overheating, it usually smells like burning paper.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      5 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Matt,

      Have you checked the transmission fluid level since the repair? It could be low.

    • profile image

      Mathew Williams 

      5 months ago

      Hi mate i have a vz ss 5.7 automatic and after having the trans plate seal and kit done i now am noticing slipping in the transmission what could it be ?

    • profile image

      joey 

      5 months ago

      hello, my 2009 honda civic si is having a problem. the cluch is slipping when warm and it has a very bad smell after driving it, im wanting to say it is the clutch going out

    • profile image

      Bobby 

      5 months ago

      My auto trans will gyrate and bump when under load at any speed. If I let off the gas and re-accelerate, it’s fine. Taking the vehicle out of overdrive solves the issue, but obviously that is not a real solution to the problem. Is my toque converter going bad?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      5 months ago from New Hampshire

      HI Jillian,

      Maybe you don't want to hear my reply lol. Yes it sounds like your transmission has an issue, possible pump problem or torque converter failure. Let me know what you find, thanks.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      5 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Jsaavedra,

      No the oil would not have anything to do with this noise.

      A synthetic blend oil is perfectly find to use, in my opinion using a full synthetic oil has no benefit, even if you have used it since the car was new. I recommend checking the transmission fluid level and the power steering fluid level. The power steering is probably the noise when turning and the grinding noise. Let me know what you find, thanks.

    • profile image

      Jsaavedra 

      6 months ago

      Hi, i have a 2002 acura mdx touring and the car makes a noise when i turn the wheel, and i hear a light grinding noise when i drive, and every now and then the transmission slips while driving, and i have to put it in neutral and back to drive for it to start working again. What could it be? My wife recently had the oil change done and after that is when i noticed the changes, i asked her to see what oil they used and normally my car would take full synthetic and they used a synthetic blend. I drained it and put the correct one but by that time we had already driven a few hundred miles with it.Could this have had anything to do with that?

    • profile image

      Jillian 

      6 months ago

      Hi Eddie, looking for your take on my situation! I have an 07 Gmc Yukon, runs great never had any issues until my fuel pump went out on it 2 weeks ago. My husband replaced it and the vehicle was back to running normal all except a soft clicking noise while it was running and idleing. Before he could get a chance to find the cause of this noise, my car quit working on me on the way home. The best way to describe it was a jerking or vibration when I first put it in reverse that morning. As I continued driving I noticed all of a sudden a lack of power when I was pressing on the gas. The rpm's were going up and my car revved as if everything was fine, but my car slowly came to a stop and eventually I had to pull over. Yukon cranks up fine, shifts into gears fine, but stepping on the gas there is nothing. Does this sound like the transmission has went out? It isnt low on transmission fluid. Thanks, looking forward to hearing your input lol.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      6 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Lawrence,

      Yes, it sounds like maybe either your pressure plate has failed or your friction disc is worn out completely. Keep me posted on what you find, thanks.

    • profile image

      Lawrence barnard 

      6 months ago

      I have a chevy spark 1.3 manual and it's revving high with hardly moving the car but when I put it in gear it doesn't scratch or anything it just doesn't move like expected I set the clutch cable setting and that made a small difference but not much there is no burning smell or any such thing when in operation am I correct to assume I need to change the clutch ?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      6 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Pricilla,

      When this happens does the pedal feel any different? Does the pedal release all the way and spring back up to the top? It's possible your throw-out bearing is hanging up on the shaft or the pressure plate is defective. There is not a whole lot that can cause this issue. Let me know, thanks.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      6 months ago from New Hampshire

      Yes Anthony,

      Shift solenoids can also make a automatic transmission slip if they leak pressure or are not working properly.

    • profile image

      ANTHONY 

      6 months ago

      What about shift pressure solenoids or other solenoids?

    • profile image

      Priscilla 

      6 months ago

      Also, I'm not 100% sure if I'll get a notification that you replied, so if you wouldn't mind emailing your reply to me, just in case I dont, I would appreciate that as well. You seem very knowledgable and I'm very interested in your thoughts. Pris.holm13@gmail.com

    • profile image

      Priscilla 

      6 months ago

      Sorry bout the multiples. So im hoping you can help me, or atleast point me in a useful direction. I have a 94 honda civic ex 5 speed thats having clutch issues. If i drive in normal city street traffic for more than 10 minutes my clutch starts slipping, but on highways no problems until i hit city streets. Also it does this most often when the temperature outside is above 40degrees. Meaning if its 30 degrees or below, I can drive longer before the slipping starts, but above 30 and slippage. I have had the clutch, flywheel, pressure plate, and master and slave hydraulic cylinders replaced professionally, the first time they did all that, the 2nd they claimed they had faulty parts, had had to replace the clutch and flywheel for another customer as well, and replaced mine. That worked for about 2 months I so, then the slipping started again. I really do not want to go back to them, they dont seem to know wth theyre doing, but I like to know which direction to look myself and either do the work or be able to tell a trustworthy mechanic what to look for... any info Wii be MUCH appreciated:)

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      6 months ago from New Hampshire

      You're welcome Yousuf, ask for the transmission 1-2 shift solenoid, they should know what you're talking about :)

    • profile image

      Yousuf Kadeer 

      6 months ago

      Thank you Eddie. Appreciate your help. I hope to find this part as 1-2 solenoid. Is a pressure valve or should i just say transmission solenoid 1-2?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      6 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Greg,

      That sounds like a flow issue inside the transmission. When was the last time the transmission filter was replaced? How is the fluid condition and level?

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      6 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Shannon,

      Are there any lights flashing or just on steady? I think you have an external issue and it may be repairable without removing the transmission.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      6 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Alejandro,

      I don't think the two are related, there's no connection. Are you sure it's not your engine skipping?

    • profile image

      alejandro 

      6 months ago

      I have a 2003 saturn ion it runs fine i do all the service on it but when i flip the switch on the A/C my transmission start to slip and its a af23 aisin transmission

    • profile image

      Shannon 

      6 months ago

      I have a 92 lexus sc400, the transmission was slipping, but when I would stop the car turn off engine and restart it would work. Now it will shift but won't work in reverse or drive?

    • profile image

      Greg 

      6 months ago

      My 89 gmcwith turbo 400 automatic is whining and won’t shift until it is warmed up

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      6 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Yousuf,

      It sounds like you may have a problem with th e1-2 shift solenoid on the out side of the transmission. I recommend having it checked for proper operation.

    • profile image

      Yousuf Kadeer 

      7 months ago

      Hello Mr. Carrara:

      I have a 203 Honda Accord CL7...While on automatic transmission, the car jumps/jerks going from 1st to 2nd gear....but when I use the manual transmission where I have the control to go to the 2nd gear, it is okay...I have already replaced the gear oil. Please advise. Thank you.

    • eddiecarrara profile imageAUTHOR

      Eddie Carrara 

      7 months ago from New Hampshire

      Hi Justbe,

      I think you need to start with replacing the clutch if the rpm's would rise when shifting gears.

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