How to Check Your Transmission Fluid

Checking your transmission fluid on a regular basis is an important maintenance task that helps prevent major issues down the road. Unsure how to check your transmission fluid? Follow these steps from Dundee Ford:

  1. Turn your car on to warm up the engine.
  2. Locate the transmission fluid dipstick. It will be to the right of the oil dipstick on most front-wheel-drive cars. If you have trouble finding it, consult your owner's manual for guidance.
  3. Once located, remove the dipstick and touch the fluid. It should be clear with a pink hue. If it is a different color or emits a burnt smell, then bring your car to the Dundee Ford Service Center for replacement fluid.
  4. Wipe off the dipstick with a rag, and return it into the vehicle. Remove it again and check the transmission fluid level. More fluid is needed when it hits below the "Full" mark.
  5. Add more fluid using a funnel, being careful not to overfill it.

If you encounter any trouble or are confused about what you find, don't hesitate to reach out to Dundee Ford, serving customers from Elgin and beyond.

How Often Do You Check Your Transmission Fluid?

Try to check your vehicle's main fluids on a monthly basis. These fluids include:

  • Transmission fluid
  • Power steering fluid
  • Engine oil

Your owner's manual will have the most accurate information about maintenance for your specific vehicle.

About Transmission Fluid

The transmission is considered one of your vehicle's most complex parts. Make sure you understand your transmission and transmission fluid before you check its levels. Keep the following in mind:

  • There is no catch-all transmission fluid. Recent models require a different type of transmission fluid than vehicles with a manual transmission, and cars with automatic transmissions also need something different. Your owner's manual will indicate the specific transmission fluid that your car needs.
  • The process of checking fluid on a manual transmission is a bit more involved. You will need a jack in order to access a plug located underneath your car. Most customers will find it more convenient to travel from the Crystal Lake area to Dundee Ford to have our certified technicians handle it.
  • Hesitation before shifting gears may indicate that your vehicle is low on transmission fluid. It could also be a sign of a more serious problem. Check your transmission fluid first, and if levels are normal, schedule service with Dundee Ford today.
  • Transmission fluid needs to be replaced every 50,000 to 100,000 miles. Actual mileage depends on the type of transmission you have, your driving habits, and other factors. Again, check your owner's manual for specifics.

Get More DIY Service Advice at Dundee Ford!

Dundee Ford is here to help all Algonquin-area drivers with any questions they may have about vehicle maintenance and service. Get in touch with our experts today, and don't hesitate to bring your vehicle to our Service Center located near St. Charles!

  
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