Transmission Troubles: To Rebuild, Replace or Repair?

Transmission Troubles Car Maintenance Braking-Performance
Image Credit : | Transmission Troubles: To Rebuild, Replace or Repair? | Most automatic transmissions have a life of around seven years, but there will be various times when repairs or maintenance work is required. The right course of action to take will depend on the problem that needs fixing. The cost of the work will vary depending on which option you choose with some being more costly than others. Perhaps the best option available is replacing the transmission with a brand new one but these are not available for replacements. 

There are benefits and downsides to all of the remaining available options, so in this article, we will focus on the most common procedures to help you decide which one is best for you.


The most common course of action to take if a transmission has an issue is to rebuild it. To do this, the transmission is taken apart. Each separate part is closely inspected, any broken or worn elements are replaced and then the transmission is reassembled. All of this must be done by a professional mechanic. It can be very useful to talk to your mechanic as they often have good tips for increasing the lifespan of your vehicle’s parts. Jack McGill from says that one way to make your transmission last longer is to always use your emergency brake if parked on an incline. This is because not using the emergency brake will put a lot of stress on the park mechanism inside your transmission. 

Whenever you go to a shop to have a part repaired or replaced, ask the mechanic if they have any advice about that part. All replacement parts, as well as the reassembly, are done to factory settings, so in theory, the transmission should be as good as new. Some other terms that mean the same as rebuild are overhaul, refurbish and recondition, but all are identical procedures done by a professional mechanic.


As mentioned above, it is not possible to purchase a brand new transmission as a replacement for your vehicle, but it is possible to purchase a used transmission. These are often salvaged from vehicles that have been involved in insurance write-offs and are usually a much cheaper option than a transmission rebuild. One potential downside is that you may need to take out a new warranty for the replacement transmission as it may have limited time left or have already expired. 


The last option available to you is simply having the transmission repaired. Damaged or non-functioning parts are removed and replaced without a total disassembly and reassembly. This can be a good choice when there are just leaks or seals on the outside of the transmission that needs attention as the car has a lot of miles on the clock. A transmission repair is usually the cheapest option available, but there are some downsides. The main drawback of doing a transmission repair is that the warranty will only cover the new replacement parts and not any later issues that may occur with other elements of the transmission.

There are many factors when considering which type of transmission repair or maintenance is best for you. Seek professional guidance from a trusted mechanic and they will be able to tell you which of the procedures we have explained here are the best course of action for your damaged transmission.

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