Signs Of A Bad Transmission (And Next Steps You Should Take)

A standard car is made up of countless different parts, but few are as important as its transmission.

A car’s transmission is responsible for transferring the right amount of power from the engine to the wheels so your vehicle can travel at the desired speed.

It’s not safe to drive with a transmission that is not working properly, so it’s best to have this repaired as soon as possible.

For this reason, it’s important to learn how to spot the signs of a bad transmission and who you can hold liable for this major car repair.

Signs of A Bad Transmission

1. Fluid Leak

A puddle of liquid in your driveway or garage is one of the most obvious signs of a bad transmission. But, it could be any fluid, so you will need to determine if the leak is coming from your transmission. Lay a piece of cardboard or paper underneath your vehicle so you can catch some of the fluid as it leaks. If the fluid is red or brown, it could be leaking from your transmission.

A transmission that is working properly will never leak, so this is one of the signs that your transmission is going bad.

2. Unusual Sounds or Sensations

Odd sounds and sensations are signs of transmission failure, too. Grinding noises, vibrations, or abrupt transitions from one gear to the next are both signs of a bad manual transmission.

If your car has a faulty automatic transmission, you may start to hear buzzing or humming or feel vibrations as the car shifts gears. A car should run smoothly if the transmission is working properly, so any unusual sounds or sensations could be signs that a transmission is going bad.

3. Shifting Issues

A bad transmission could cause your car to unexpectedly shift back and forth between different gears. A problem with this part could also make it harder to shift into certain gears. Repeatedly jumping gears or refusing to shift to a specific gear are both symptoms of a bad transmission.

Shifting problems are dangerous defects that often lead to vehicle recalls, so it’s important to address these issues immediately.

Who is Liable For A Bad Transmission?

A bad transmission is one of the most common car complaints. If you spot one or more of these signs of your transmission going out, you may be entitled to a full refund or replacement vehicle under your state’s lemon laws.

Bad transmissions are typically covered by new car lemon laws

The new car lemon laws in Pennsylvania, Mayland, New Jersey and New York will likely cover transmission problems as long as the car meets the law’s other conditions.

Certain parts of the transmission are covered by used car lemon laws

Pennsylvania and Maryland do not have used car lemon laws. There are used car lemon laws in New York and New Jersey, and they specify which parts of the transmission are covered.

The New York lemon law covers the transmission case, internal parts, and torque converter.

The New Jersey lemon law covers all internal lubricated parts, transmission mounts, seals and gaskets. It also covers torque converters and vacuum modulators on automatic transmissions.

It specifically excludes a number of manual transmission parts, including:

  • Manual clutch
  • Pressure plate
  • Throw-out bearings
  • Clutch master
  • Slave cylinders

The used car dealer should provide you with a warranty that covers these transmission parts. But, if the dealer fails to provide this warranty, there’s no need to worry if you see signs that your transmission went out. The court ruled in Williams v. Planet Motor Car, Inc. that these parts are still covered by lemon laws even if the used car dealer fails to provide a warranty in writing.

If you are not covered by your state’s lemon law, you could still take legal action under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act. It’s best to speak to an attorney to discuss your legal options if you see signs of transmission problems.

Questions About Transmission Problems or Symptoms?

The experienced team of attorneys at Robison Lemon Law Group is here to answer your questions regarding problems and symptoms of bad transmissions.

To schedule a free consultation, contact us today via email or call us at 844-291-4377.

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