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How to Check Transmission Fluid

Wondering how to check transmission fluid? This question, along with “how often do you check your transmission fluid?”, is a very common one among Fremont and Dublin car owners. Typically, you should check the main fluid levels of your vehicle every month. That includes checking not only your transmission fluid, but also the power steering fluid, engine oil, and brake fluid. It is also a good idea to review your owner’s manual for a specific maintenance schedule, as the needs of one vehicle may differ from another.

Transmission Fluid Basics

The transmission is one of the most complex components of your vehicle. Read up on these helpful tips to get to know it better:

  • Not all transmission fluids are the same, so be sure to refer to your owner’s manual for a recommendation.
  • Checking the fluid on a manual transmission will require the use of a jack to access a plug beneath the car. For most Livermore-area manual drivers, a visit to a service center will be more convenient.
  • If your vehicle seems hesitant to shift, you could be low on transmission fluid. However, it could also be a more serious problem, so consider scheduling service.
  • Replace your transmission fluid every 50,000 to 100,000 miles. Consider your driving habits and refer to your owner’s manual for a personalized, model-specific interval recommendation.

How to Check Transmission Fluid, Step by Step

Learning how to check transmission fluid on a regular basis is important. Thankfully, it’s also very simple!

  1. Turn the engine on for a few minutes and ensure the car is in park.
  2. Find the transmission fluid dipstick, typically located to the right of the oil dipstick.
  3. Remove the dipstick and touch the fluid; its color should be almost clear, with a slightly pink hue. If it gives off a burnt smell or looks dirty, it is time for a replacement.
  4. Wipe off the dipstick, then insert it back into the vehicle and remove it again and check the level. If it’s under the “Full” line, you’ll need to top off the fluid.
  5. Use a funnel to bring the fluid level up to the correct line.

Service Your Vehicle at Lexus of Pleasanton

Whether you’re wondering “how often do you check your transmission fluid?” or you have another car care question you’d like to ask, Lexus of Pleasanton is here to help! Contact us today to start a conversation, or refer to our online service information center for more helpful tips and advice.

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