Automatic transmissions operate on oil, properly called automatic transmission fluid, or ATF for short. Low transmission fluid levels can have a disastrous effect on the automatic transmission operation. In recent years many automobile manufacturers have started to eliminate the automatic transmission fluid dipstick. These transmissions are called sealed units. Automatic transmissions that are considered sealed units require a much more involved process to check the automatic transmission fluid level. The process of checking the transmission fluid level in a sealed transmission often involves computer diagnostic testing. This puts checking the automatic transmission fluid level beyond the capabilities of the average car driver. If your car or truck transmission doesn’t have a dipstick, you should bring your vehicle by Sergeant Clutch Discount Transmission Repair Shop in San Antonio for a FREE Transmission Fluid Level Check.
The best time to have the transmission fluid level checked is at every motor oil change. However if your vehicle doesn’t have a transmission dipstick, you should at least check the transmission fluid level every other motor oil change. The vehicles owners manual should provide a detailed procedure for checking the automatic transmission fluid level.
Sergeant Clutch Discount Transmission Repair Shop 12 Step Procedure To Check Your Automatic Transmission Fluid Level
1. Make sure your automobile is on level ground.
2. Start the engine and leave running.
3. Bring the engine and transmission to normal operating temperature.
4. Hold your foot on the brake, and work the transmission shifter slowly through all the gears.
5. Put the transmission shifter back into park.
6. Set the parking brake.
7. Carefully open and secure the hood.
8. Locate the transmission dipstick the vehicles owners manual should show where the transmission dipstick is located.
9. Remove the transmission dipstick and wipe it off with a clean rag or paper towel.
10. Replace the transmission dipstick all the way back down into the transmission fill tube.
11. Pull the transmission dipstick back out and check the transmission fluid level against the markings on the end of the dipstick.
12. If the transmission fluid level is below the full line on the dipstick add the necessary transmission fluid.
Important Note: Always use the recommended transmission fluid by the manufacturer.
If the transmission requires more than a quart of fluid or is using transmission fluid regularly, take your vehicle in to have the transmission checked for leaks. Front wheel drive transmissions usually have the dipstick on the driver’s side of the vehicle, on either side of the transmission. Rear wheel drive transmissions usually have the dipstick on the passenger’s side of the engine compartment near the back of the engine. Checking the automatic transmission fluid level requires working under the hood of your vehicle with the engine is running. Checking the transmission fluid can be very dangerous if you aren’t sure what you’re doing. Use caution and watch out for moving parts and components such as fan blades, fan belts, pulleys, etc.
FREE Transmission Performance Check