How to Maintain Your Car's Transmission

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How to Maintain Your CarTransmission is the part of a car that transmits the engine's power to the wheels. This power allows the car to move forward or backward. A car's transmission must be properly maintained for the car to operate correctly. If the car's transmission is not properly serviced, it may become damaged, resulting in high repair bills. To properly maintain a car's transmission, a car owner should become familiar with the different types of transmissions and how they operate. The different transmission components, including transmission fluid, transmission filter, and CV joints, should be examined frequently and replaced when needed. A car's transmission should also be routinely serviced by a qualified mechanic, who can examine the transmission parts that are not replaceable by the car owner.

eBay offers a wide variety of affordable transmission supplies and replacement parts to help you maintain your car's transmission. Owners can also pick up supplies at local automotive stores, or they can find professional help at local repair shops.

Types of Car Transmissions

The two main types of car transmissions are automatic and manual transmissions. Manual transmissions are very common in cars in the UK. They require more complex operating procedures by the car owner. Automatic and manual transmissions can be either front-wheel drive or rear-wheel drive transmissions.

Automatic Transmission

An automatic transmission automatically changes the gears and speeds without the car owner manually shifting the gears to change the car's speed. When a car's engine starts, the transmission's torque converter provides the appropriate gears for the various speeds. The converter changes the gears as the car's speed increases or decreases. Most automatic transmissions generally have up to four gears. The various gear and speed commands are relayed through the valve body attached to the transmission. When the car owner moves a lever vertically into the drive position, the transmission automatically relays the commands through the valve body to the gears to adjust the car's speed. As the car increases speed, the gears shift to comply with commands from the valve body.

Manual Transmission

A manual transmission is the oldest type of car transmission. It is also known as a 5-speed transmission or stick shift. The car owner must manually shift the gears using a foot-operated clutch and a hand-operated gear stick as he or she increases or decreases the car's speed. The correct operation of the manual transmission depends largely on the car owner's experience with using a manual transmission. Inexperience can wear down a manual transmission's parts, leading to replacement of those parts more frequently. Manual transmissions generally offer more gears than automatic transmissions. They are also easier to repair and provide better fuel mileage. 

Front-Wheel Drive

Most new cars are equipped with front-wheel drive. Front-wheel drive is a type of transmission configuration that directs the car engine's power to the front wheels of the car. Because the transmission's shaft, which is attached to the engine, only needs to go a short distance to connect to the front wheels of the car, this type of transmission layout costs less to assemble than rear-wheel drive transmissions. It also provides better gas mileage and traction in bad weather.

Rear-Wheel Drive

Rear-wheel drive is a type of transmission configuration that directs the car engine's power to the rear wheels of the car. Many older cars have this type of transmission. Because the car's engine is located at the front of the car and the transmission shaft extends from the engine to the rear wheels, it increases the overall weight of the car. This type of assembly is more expensive, but the car repairs are usually less expensive than with front-wheel drive transmissions.

Transmission Maintenance

To properly maintain a car's transmission, it is important to schedule routine tune ups to inspect and replace any faulty parts that could lead to high car repair bills. These parts might include the clutch and gear stick. A car owner can also perform preventative maintenance by replacing the transmission fluid and transmission filter periodically to help maintain a car's transmission. If the car's transmission begins shifting erratically, jerking, or making strange noises or vibrations, these could be indications of serious transmission problems. 

Transmission Fluid

Transmission fluid, also known as gearbox oil, lubricates the different transmission parts to allow the transmission to operate properly. If the transmission fluid is too low due to leaks or an incorrect type of transmission fluid is used, the transmission parts cannot be lubricated correctly. Without proper lubrication, the gears cannot shift correctly, and the transmission may fail, leading to high transmission repair bills. If too much transmission fluid is used, the fluid burns up and also leaves the transmission parts without lubrication. Transmission fluid also becomes contaminated over time and must be routinely changed. Faulty solenoid sensors can also output incorrect fluid level readings, affecting the transmission. 

One way a car owner can maintain a car's transmission is to replace the transmission fluid and solenoid sensor when needed. If the car owner notices a low transmission fluid level, he or she should also examine the car for possible transmission leaks. Transmission fluid is usually a red colour. If there is red fluid underneath the car, it is probably a transmission leak. The leak must be fixed by a qualified mechanic. If no leak is evident, the car owner should routinely check the transmission fluid level at least twice a year and add fluid for an automatic transmission at least every 96,000 to 160,000 km and for a manual transmission at least every 48,000 to 96,000 km. A car owner can examine the transmission fluid dipstick to check the transmission fluid level. If the fluid is low or a dark colour, it is time for the transmission fluid to be replaced.

Transmission Filter

The transmission filter is the part of the transmission that filters the transmission fluid before it lubricates the transmission parts. Many transmission problems can be fixed by changing the transmission filter. The transmission filter removes contaminants, such as metal shavings, before the fluid is used for lubrication. If the filter becomes clogged with metal shavings, the filter's effectiveness is reduced. Contamination reduces lubrication, and this causes wear on the transmission parts. This shortens the life of the transmission parts and can lead to high repair bills or possibly replacing the transmission. A car owner can maintain a car's transmission by replacing the transmission filter every 48,000 km or when the transmission fluid is replaced. Many times the transmission fluid and filter can be purchased as a bundle. A car owner should consult the car's manual to find the correct type of transmission filter for replacement.

CV Joints

Front-wheel drive transmissions use inner and outer CV joints that contain gears for the transmission. These gears are contained within a boot that lubricates the joints and keeps them working properly. Although replacing the CV joints is the job of a qualified mechanic, the car owner can examine the joints for leaks and cracks that could lead to a broken CV boot. The car owner can also maintain proper fluid levels and help prevent fluid contamination. These procedures help maintain the car's transmission.

The following table examines some common transmission problems and solutions. These problems include issues related to transmission fluid, transmission filter, and CV joints.

Transmission Part

Transmission Problem


Transmission Fluid

Erratic shifting





Replace every 96,000 to 160,000 km for automatic transmissions

Replace every 48,000 to 96,000 km for manual transmissions

Transmission Filter

Inadequate lubrication

Noisy gears

Metal shavings in fluid

Replace every 48,000 km

CV Joints


Cracks in the CV boot

Examine CV boots for leaks and cracks periodically

The table above examines common transmission problems. It also explains how the car owner can perform preventative maintenance to avert high transmission repair bills.

Finding Supplies and Parts to Maintain Your Car's Transmission on eBay

eBay offers a wide selection of transmission supplies and parts to help maintain a car's transmission. The various options include transmission fluid, transmission filters, transmission fluid and filter bundles, gearbox parts, CV joints, and differentials. To search for parts and supplies on eBay, the buyer can use a combination of keywords and categories. To use keywords, the buyer simply goes to the eBay home page and types in keywords like 'transmission fluid' into the search bar and then selects the 'Search' button. This action takes the buyer to a page of listings for transmission fluid. The buyer can read the different listings or look at the categories that contain transmission fluid. Transmission fluid may be listed in more than one category.

The buyer can also look at the seller's profile to determine if the seller is an eBay top-rated seller. eBay top-rated sellers have been given high ratings by previous buyers in the areas of quality customer service and delivery. eBay offers quality transmission parts and supplies for any type of car.


A car's engine relies on the transmission to relay the engine's power to the car's wheels. The transmission relies on specific parts, such as the transmission fluid, transmission filter, and CV joints, to work properly. If these parts do not work correctly, transmission failure occurs, and the car is not driveable. To maintain a car's transmission, the car owner should routinely inspect the transmission for leaks and replace the transmission fluid if needed. The car owner should also replace a clogged transmission filter and cracked CV joints to keep the transmission running smoothly and to avoid high transmission repair bills. Preventative maintenance and regular tune ups can lengthen the life of the car.

eBay offers affordable transmission parts for automatic, manual, front-wheel drive, and rear-wheel drive transmissions. It also offers parts that may not be found at regular automotive stores. The parts include many popular brands of transmission parts that are compatible with different makes and models of cars. The wide selection of transmission parts allows a car owner to properly maintain a car's transmission.

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