Our Carlsen Subaru Service Center Is Also A Transmission Shop In Redwood City, CA

Signs that Something May Be Wrong with Your Transmission - Service Questions Answered by the pros at Carlsen Subaru

May 17, 2019

Whether you enjoy the benefits of a Subaru CVT transmission, a manual transmission like what's in the Subaru WRX, or any other kind of automotive transmission, it helps to know a few things about it. So, what is a transmission? This is a complex piece of mechanical engineering that transmits the power from your vehicle's engine to the wheels by adjusting gear ratios. If you think of changing gears on a mountain bike, you have an idea of what the transmission in your car is doing except that power is provided by the engine and not your legs.

While modern transmissions like the Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) found in many of today's Subaru vehicles are extremely reliable, there are still several problems that can come up with transmissions on older vehicles. Below, we look at six of these. If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment, give our authorized service center a call at Carlsen Subaru or contact us easily online.

 Closeup of worn clutch disc missing a spring

6. The Car Shakes Or Shudders

This is more likely in vehicles equipped with a manual transmission, and it's a common sign that the clutch needs to be replaced. Sometimes, simply adjusting the clutch is all that's needed, and that won't cost much. However, if the clutch does need to be replaced, it's a big job and the parts can be pricey.

In vehicles with an automatic transmission, instead of a shaking or shuddering, you're more likely to notice a lurch after a delay before the car shifts. There are a variety of things that can cause this, so it's probably best to find a factory authorized transmission shop like what's in our service center at Carlsen Subaru.

Smoke and vapor on black background

5. Do You Smell Something Burning After Driving Around?

A burning smell from your vehicle is never a good thing. It could be caused by a wide range of things, including a transmission that has a problem. You see, whether you have a manual or automatic transmission, it contains a special fluid that helps the gears stay cool and lubricated. If this fluid breaks down, or if there isn't enough fluid, it can begin to burn from the heat. Even if the burning smell isn't coming from your transmission, it's important to have the matter addressed right away.

4. Strange Sounds Are Coming From Under Your Car

Strange sounds from your car are another thing that you don't want to ignore. They're typically a symptom of real problems that could end up leaving you stranded. The odd noises we typically hear from problematic transmissions including grinding, whining, clunking, humming, or even a whirring sound. Whatever it is, it's likely a sound that will catch your attention as new and concerning. It's hard to say what exactly is causing the noise until a factory-trained technician can get a better look at the vehicle. However, one thing is for sure. If you hear a new and troubling sound from under your car, get it checked out right away before the problem becomes worse and more expensive to fix.

Clutch disc, pressure plate, and throw out bearing on white background.

3. It May Be Time For A New Clutch

This is something that generally applies to vehicles with a manual transmission, but automatics like the Subaru CVT transmission also contain clutches. When the clutch in a manual transmission goes out, the first symptom you might notice is reduced acceleration upon shifting gears. If you can no longer get the stick shift in gear, there's a good chance that the clutch and other components will need to be replaced by an authorized transmission shop.

2. Does It Seem Like The Transmission Needs Time To Think About Shifting?

If so, you probably have an automatic transmission that's due for a visit to the shop. There are a variety of reasons that you may notice a longer delay before the transmission shifts. The important thing is not to ignore it and keep driving. We call this a transmission that's slipping, and the problem will only get worse (and more expensive to repair) if it's not addressed right away. If a slipping transmission is caught early, fixing it may simply be a matter of adding fluid.

1. Make Sure Your Transmission Fluid Is Fresh & Topped Off

This is the single most important thing when it comes to keeping your car's transmission working as it should. Like all automotive fluids, what's in your transmission will wear down and need to be replaced. The fluid is a key part of how most automatic transmissions hydraulically change gears, but the fluid is also responsible for keeping everything cool and lubricated. Expired transmission fluid can cause problems shifting and temperatures inside the transmission can rise to dangerous levels.

You'll also want to make sure that the transmission fluid is always at the full level. Most vehicles have a dipstick for the transmission that's similar to the engine oil dipstick. However, not all vehicles have this handy dipstick for the transmission. If you're not sure about the level and quality of your transmission fluid, stop by our service center to have the experts take a look at Carlsen Subaru.

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Carlsen Subaru

480 Veterans Blvd
Directions Redwood City, CA 94063

  • Sales: 650-365-6390
  • Service : 650-365-6390
  • Parts: 650-365-6390
  1. Carlsen Subaru

    480 Veterans Blvd
    Redwood City, CA 94063

    • Sales: (888) 520-5916

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