What Causes a Transmission to Slip?

Transmission Cross Section Close-Up

If you’ve noticed your transmission slipping while out and about in Grand Island, there may be a number of different factors at play. While many drivers worry about a failing transmission, what causes a transmission to slip can be something as simple as old transmission fluid. These are all something easily solvable by a little maintenance, however, can quickly turn into a major repair if left unchecked. But, your car is a complex machine, and proper diagnosis is key and that is where the team at Midway Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram comes in. In this guide, we go over the major transmission slipping signs and some of the possible culprits.

Transmission Slipping Signs

You might notice your transmission slipping when you’re driving around Hastings and Lexington, but you might notice it while idling as well. Here are some of the key warning signs that indicate it’s time to schedule a service:

  • Engine chugs or revs
  • Acceleration is weak or slow
  • Shifting gears is difficult
  • Strange noises like grinding or whining
  • Strange burning smell
  • Illuminated check engine light

If you’ve never dealt with a transmission slipping, it will feel like your vehicle is slow to respond. It might not change gears like normal, or you might notice unusual sounds as it shifts. These are all transmission slipping signs that you’ll want to tell your technician. A more serious warning sign is unexpected gear shifts. If your car changes gears or “slips” without warning, this means you’ll need to head to the service center as soon as possible.

Reasons Why a Transmission is Slipping

  • Transmission Fluid: Just like your engine needs oil, your transmission requires fluid. Whether your fluid levels are too old or your fluid is contaminated, this is a common cause of transmission slipping.
  • Defective Solenoid: The transmission solenoid is an electro-magnetic component that directs the transmission fluid throughout your car. If the solenoid is damaged or defective, your transmission may not get the fluid it needs– even if your fluid levels are normal.
  • Damaged Transmission Bands: Transmission bands link the gears together, and if the bands wear out, it may cause problems when you try to shift.
  • Clutch Issues: In addition to the transmission bands, the clutch can also malfunction as a result of low transmission fluid. However, this is only an explanation if you have a manual transmission.
  • Worn Gears: No matter how well you maintain your car, transmission gears simply wear out over time and need to be replaced.
  • Torque Converter Problems: The torque converter converts engine power into torque, which is then used by the transmission. This can cause a host of issues: slipping, burning, smoking, jumping gears, or complete blowout.

Trust Midway Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram For Your Service Needs

We’ve gone over what causes a transmission to slip, but if you have any questions, contact us at Midway Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram or schedule a service appointment online and let our team investigate the problem. But don’t worry, you can also browse our selection of service tips for additional ways you can keep your vehicle running smoothly, and even a selection of service specials for additional savings on routine maintenance needs.

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