Engines are becoming more powerful and fuel-efficient every year. They’re the powerhouse, and people take great pains to keep them going. At Zumbrota Bearing and Gear, we see customers come in all the time looking for various replacement parts. They change the oil, filters, spark plugs, and check the fluids because they don’t want their cars to fail.

But what about the transmission? Without it, none of the power from the engine can get to the wheels. Yet people seldom think about transmissions. They require very little maintenance, and quietly go about propelling cars and trucks down the road for years, even decades, with little more than a fluid change. But, as reliable as transmissions are, they don’t last forever.

Like most things mechanical, when they fail, they often give some indication there is a problem before they completely break down and need to be replaced. Here are some signs to watch for if you suspect there may be a problem with the transmission in your car or truck.

  • •Take note of anything that has changed or doesn’t seem normal.
  • •The transmission won’t go into gear easily or shift properly.
  • •When in neutral, the transmission makes any sort of noise while the vehicle is idling.
  • •When driving, the transmission comes out of gear for no apparent reason.
  • •In a manual transmission, the clutch doesn’t disengage when pressed, making it impossible to shift gears.
  • •Pay attention to any puddles under your car or truck. If the leak is transmission fluid there is a problem that needs to be identified. Low transmission fluid in either a manual or automatic transmission can lead to serious problems.
  • •Check engine light is on. The check engine light is an indicator of a wide range of problems, including a malfunction in the transmission.
  • •Grinding when you attempt to shift gears, or shaking once you accelerate after changing gears.
  • •Clunking sound when you shift gears in a manual transmission, or a whining sound with an automatic.
  • •Lack of response when accelerating; when you press down on the accelerator, the engine revs, but you don’t speed up.
  • •Transmission fluid has a burnt smell. This is an indication that the transmission has overheated for some reason and there may be a potentially serious problem.

As with anything mechanical, pay attention to changes in the sounds, smells, and feel of what your vehicle is doing. When you notice a small change or problem, look into it. Having problems checked out early can be like money in the bank.

When you do experience a manual transmission failure, and replacement bearings or gears are called for, Zumbrota Bearing and Gear can supply what you need. We not only provide gears and bearings of all kinds, but our team of technicians can rebuild and update your manual transmissions. At Zumbrota Bearing and Gear, quality is our first priority. No part or assembly leaves our facility until it has been thoroughly inspected and bench tested. We specialize in bearings, gears, manual transmissions, differentials, and transfer cases. Contact us today to learn more.