Transmission fluid lubricates all the parts of your vehicle that are in motion. And, just like other automotive fluids, it has an expiry date. Over time, transmission fluid begins to break down due to exposure to heat, usage, and contaminants.
When this happens, it can cause major issues in the way your vehicle runs; erratic shifting, slipping and overheating are just some examples. The question is, how do you know when to change your transmission fluid? Today, the Service Experts at Lexus South Pointe will answer all your transmission fluid questions!
When Should I Change My Transmission Fluid?
There is a lot of misinformation out there when it comes to transmission fluid. Especially when it comes to an appropriate time to change it. In situations like this, it’s always best to listen to the experts. The Automatic Transmission Rebuilders Association (ATRA) recommends changing your transmission fluid every 50,000 km, or two years. However, depending on your driving habits, your transmission fluid may need to be changed more often.
Factors That Increase the Need for More Frequent Fluid Changes:
- Heavy towing
- Stop-and-go driving
- Snow Plowing
- Hot climate
In these types of situations, your transmission fluid is working twice as hard and under more intense temperatures. That means the fluid is breaking down quicker, and as a result, needs to be changed more often.
Your owner’s manual will have a recommended schedule on when to change your transmission fluid. If you have any questions, it is typically the best place to start looking for answers (or you can always call us!).
Why are Regular Transmission Fluid Changes Important?
When your transmission fluid deteriorates, it isn’t able to cool your transmission properly or lubricate your engine’s parts. This can lead to overheating and costly repairs down the road. Regular transmission service is important for keeping the transmission system free from harmful contaminants and chemicals that can damage the engine.
How Do I Check My Transmission Fluid?
If you are unsure about your transmission fluid, try checking it yourself! This can tell you almost everything you need to know about the condition of the fluid and if you need to book a service appointment.
Healthy transmission fluid should be red. If it’s a little dark, don’t worry. This is usually OK. If the fluid looks brown or black (in more extreme cases), you should have your fluid changed as soon as possible. Keep your eyes peeled for any contaminants such as dirt, metal or debris. This might mean the filter needs to be replaced as well as the transmission fluid.
Need Your Fluid Changed?
Beyond expert servicing by our Lexus-trained technicians, the highest-quality overall experience and attention to detail is the standard that each Lexus Guest can expect when they visit a Lexus dealership. We service all makes and models, not just Lexus. If you need your fluid changed, make an appointment today. Our experienced service professionals will perform a detailed inspection on your transmission system and help you avoid any mechanical problem that can lead to serious damages.