Q. Why would you want to have your transmission flushed?
Because replacing all the fluid helps you get the most life from your transmission. The torque converter, which has half the fluid, doesn’t have a drain so the old fluid must be replaced by adding new fluid while the motor is running. Flushing with the Pan Off is the most effective way to replace all the fluid hence allowing for longer service intervals.
Q. I’ve been told that having your transmission flushed will cause seals to leak. Is this true?
No. Flushing is simply adding new fluid while the motor is running to circulate out the old fluid. The circulation and pressure is the same as in normal operation. New fluid will not cause seals to leak. The most common reason there are leaks after a service is there was a leak before it was serviced.The fluid level could have been low before the service was done and the transmission was not inspected for leaks. After the service, the trans fluid is full. Some seals will stop leaking when the level gets about a quart low and leak again when the transmission is filled. The transmission needs to have a basic check for leaks when the transmission is being serviced.
Q. I’ve been told having your transmission flushed will loosen particles in the transmission and cause problems. Is this true?
No, not with the pan off flush. The important first step of a flush is to remove the pan & inspect for an indication of excessive wear. Then the pan is cleaned so any contaminants or particles are removed. Flushing the transmission is being done with the normal fluid circulation & pressure. Any particles that are in the transmission fluid are then flushed out by circulating clean fluid with the pan off so new fluid doesn’t mix in the pan. Cleaning the pan and flushing with the pan off will remove material that is in the transmission pan & fluid. This does not happen with the pan on flush.
Q. What about sealed transmissions?
When someone says your transmission is sealed usually means there is not a dipstick to check the level and they don’t know how to check the level. The service operation is still the same and we still do a pan off flush. Checking the fluid level requires the transmission to be at a specific temperature. We check the temp with a scanner. We have to wait for it to cool off if its too hot or wait for it to cool down first. Then the fluid level is checked from under the car. Best to have someone who is knowledgeable check the fluid. Over filling or not filling correctly can cause issues.
Q. How often should I service my transmission?
The frequency will vary depending on the way the vehicle is used and what fluid is used. Every two to three year, 30,000 to 50,000 miles if we are doing our pan off flush is a good rule of thumb if the car is used daily. Because of how cars are driven the mileage will be different. It will be longer intervals with newer synthetic fluid. A commuter might put 20,000 +-miles a year verses a car used locally might have 8-12,000 miles a year but because there is more wear & tear with local driving it should be serviced at a lower mileage.
Q. Does every service facility do the same thing when they service a transmission?
No. Just about every fast lube facility & repair shop offers a transmission service. Usually it is only a pan service or most common a cooler line flush. Very few even do a road test and have little or no experience in transmission repair. This has been written to give you the information to understand all that we do and the questions to ask other shops to find out for yourself.
Q. I’ve been told if I am having problems with my transmission I should have my fluid changed to see if that will help. Is that true?
Servicing the transmission usually will not correct a problem. The most important first step is to have a transmission specialist evaluate the problem. Changing the fluid rarely will fix a problem even though it is a very common recommendation. We will perform a basic check including a scan test to advise you about your problem before we change the fluid in your transmission.