Signs of Low Transmission Fluid

A close up of a transmission fluid change at our Toyota dealer in Manchester NH.

Transmission fluid is unlike motor oil, which requires the regular change and the occasional top-off. The transmission is one of several integral systems for your vehicle to operate and its fluid level should remain consistent for the lifespan of the car.

At Ira Toyota of Manchester, we wanted to guide you through the warning signs of low transmission fluid—so you can stay on the road instead of the shop. Drivers near the Amherst, Manchester, and Derry areas should continue reading to learn when it may be time to have your transmission inspected.

1. Noises

If your transmission is working properly, you shouldn’t hear any noise while you’re driving as it should transition smoothly. Not only do unusual sounds differ between brands and models but they also depend on the type of transmission. Manual transmissions often make a loud clunking or grinding noise when you shift gears, while an automatic sounds like it’s whining or humming.

Noises could indicate that the fluid level is getting low, but you most likely won’t be able to diagnose the problem yourself. It’s recommended to have the issue checked out by a certified technician promptly to prevent labor-intensive repairs.

2. Burning Smell

Any foul smell coming from your car should direct you to your nearest service center. There are several reasons that a burning smell may start to come from your car and one of those is the occurrence of overheated transmission fluid. This sign can be an indication of a low fluid level.

When a transmission is too hot, higher friction between components occurs, which inevitably causes gunk to build up and corrode the transmission. If left in this condition, the transmission will ultimately damage itself enough to become non-functional.

3. Transmission Leaks

Transmission fluid leak Signs of Low Transmission Fluid

The fluid within your car’s transmission housing is its only source of lubrication and acts as a cleaning and conditioning agent for the surrounding transmission seals. Leaks are a common cause of transmission problems, so if you notice a red fluid underneath of your vehicle, then it almost certainly lost transmission fluid.

We suggest that you contact your authorized dealer to have the transmission inspected. The repair could be an easy swap of a failed gasket or hose. However, without service, a transmission that is leaking fluid will only continue to worsen as the fluid level drops.

4. Slipping Gears

A healthy transmission will shift between gears smoothly and there won’t be any slippage. Low fluid levels can cause gears to miss, which will result in a grinding sensation. The occasional slipped gear might seem like a small issue at first, but it’s always a good idea to have the transmission looked at when this occurs to avoid costly repairs in the future.

Contact Your Local Transmission Technicians at Ira Toyota of Manchester to Learn More!

We hope that our comprehensive guide will help you if any of the above symptoms arise. Don’t hesitate to give us a call and schedule a service appointment if you think that your vehicle might be low on transmission fluid. Of course, we at Ira Toyota of Manchester are here to help you with your routine maintenance whenever you need it.

We’re pleased to serve drivers around the Amherst, Manchester, and Derry areas. Schedule service for more help!

Contact Service

Please don't hesitate to direct your service questions to us! Fill out the simple form below and our technicians will get back to you.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.