How to Check Transmission Fluids

Transmission fluid is what keeps the parts in a transmission lubricated and cool, so they can do their job. If the fluid goes bad, then the transmission may break down, resulting in a costly replacement.

To prevent this from happening, it’s important to check the transmission fluid. Cars in Lowell, Dracut, or Tewksbury are equipped with either an automatic or manual transmission. The examining process is different for each type of transmission. So, we’ll go over exactly how to check transmission fluids. Read all about them below, and contact us at Ira Toyota of Tewksbury if you have any questions.

How to Check Automatic Transmission Fluids

Transmission Fluids

To check automatic transmission fluid, you’ll want to complete the following steps…

  1. Pull out the dipstick. Put the car in Neutral or Park with the braking on, and keep the car running. You’ll want to make sure the engine is warm when you pull the dipstick out.
  2. Check the fluid. The transmission fluid on the dipstick should be bright red and almost clear. If it looks or smells burnt, or if it has particles in it, then the fluid will need to be changed.
  3. Wipe the dipstick with a clean rag, reinsert it, and pull it out again. If the fluid is completely clear but doesn’t reach the Full line on the dipstick, then more fluid will need to be added.

There’s another line on the dipstick that says Add. If the fluid level is way below that line, then you may have a leak. You can also determine a leak by spotting fluid underneath the car. If you have a leak, you’ll have to get it fixed as soon as possible.

How to Check Manual Transmission Fluids

The process for checking manual transmission fluid is a bit more involved…

  1. Get the vehicle on a lift or use a jack to maintain the car’s level. This is so you can access the fill plug.
  2. Find the fill plug. Refer to your owner’s manual, if you’re not sure what it looks like.
  3. Use an oil pain. The fill plug will be sideways, so no fluid should leak out. However, you’ll still want to set an oil pan to catch any possible leakage.
  4. Remove the fill plug. Use a properly sized socket wrench to do this easily.
  5. Check fluid level. The level should be even with the plug. Stick an object inside the plug to see if you immediately touch the fluid. If not, then more will have to get added.

Replacing Transmission Fluid

Transmission Fluids

Whether you have an automatic or manual transmission, we recommend getting a professional to replace the fluid. Bring it to our service center, where our technicians will handle the job quickly and efficiently.

They’ll determine if you need to add more transmission fluid or completely replace it. Plus, they’ll only use quality transmission fluid. This is so your vehicle will perform well for a long time.

Schedule Service Today

If you need us to check and/or replace transmission fluid, then schedule service at Ira Toyota of Tewksbury. We’ll get you squared away and back on the Lowell, Dracut, and Tewksbury streets as soon as possible.

Don’t wait. Contact us for service today!