Tips for Checking a Used Car Transmission

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Tips for Checking a Used Car Transmission

When you buy a used car, you should learn as much as you can about its mechanical health. The more you learn about the vehicle’s major components, the more secure you can feel in your decision. Discover these tips for checking a used car transmission.

Operate in All Gear Settings

The transmission is your central gear-changing mechanism. It stands to reason that any problems with any gear indicate an underlying transmission issue. Before you drive a used car off the lot, make sure you operate it in all the gear settings. If you’re buying a manual transmission vehicle, you may not get a chance to get up to highway speeds before purchasing. Be sure to do so soon after signing so you can return with a complaint within a reasonable time.

Explore Various Terrains

Like driving in all gears, this test aims to examine a transmission’s health in practice. Explore various terrain types, including uphill areas. The way your transmission behaves on uphill segments will show you its strength and capacity for gear changing. If you have an all-wheel-drive or four-wheel-drive, you should try off-roading at a local park or wooded area and see how the transmission behaves during advanced maneuvers.

Get Under the Hood

The final piece of the puzzle is visually inspecting the transmission itself. While you may not have the chance to do this before buying a used car, you should see what the transmission is like at home. Open up the transmission housing and see what the fluid looks like before a drive and immediately after. If you notice any fragments of dirt or metal in the viscous liquid, you may have a problem.

You should also test the transmission valve body to ensure the smaller mechanisms behave properly. Without cooperation from the tiniest components, the transmission will fail and cost you big. Don’t let too much time pass before inspecting the transmission parts under your car.

Remember these tips for checking a used car transmission as you purchase a used car. No matter what concession you make with your vehicle preferences, you shouldn’t give up any ground about the transmission. With due diligence, you can ensure a safe, operable transmission that will last you for many years to come.