The Importance of Transmission Fluid

Understanding the Importance of Transmission Fluid

Most people in the United States drive vehicles with an automatic transmission.  Do you understand how your automatic transmission works? If you do, you understand how amazing (and important) this piece of automotive machinery truly is. If not, here is a quick review of how an automatic
transmission works.

A Brief Explanation of the Automatic Transmission

We know that the engine provides the power for your vehicle by creating rotational energy. That rotational energy needs to be transferred to the wheels to move the vehicle. Your car’s drivetrain handles this transfer of power. The automatic transmission is a critical part of the drivetrain. The transmission regulates the consistent energy created by the engine using an intricate system of gears. The gears allow power from the engine to be increased or tempered using the concept of gear ratios. In basic terms- The transmission allows your vehicle’s engine to spin at an optimal rate while directing the perfect amount of power to your wheels during both braking and acceleration.

What Is Automatic Transmission Fluid and How Does It Work?

Known to be one of the most essential and most complex fluids in your vehicle, automatic transmission fluid is often overlooked during vehicle maintenance. Unlike a manual transmission, which uses lever, linkages, and gears to shift gears and operate the transmission, automatic transmissions rely on transmission fluid to assist with these functions.

A cylindrical shaped pump, called a torque converter, pulls transmission fluid into it, spins it, and distributes the fluid throughout the inner housing. As the fluid is distributed at a high force, it develops pressure. Once it reaches the ideal pressure, the transmission fluid leaves the torque converter and flows into the main part of the transmission where the gears are located. In addition to providing pressure, called fluid force, to the transmission, it also acts as a coolant and lubrication for the linkages and gears.

Transmission fluids flow along channels that run throughout the transmission, cooling and lubricating the critical components. The transmission fluid must hold up to extreme wear and both high and low temperatures to perform properly. When transmission fluid begins to break down, it fails to protect the critical components of a transmission.

All Automatic Transmission Fluids (ATF) Are Not Created Equal

Most ATFs offered on the market today are a mix of semi-synthetic or full synthetic base oils. The goal is to provide a longer fluid life so that they are more protective and require less frequent servicing. This is accomplished with multi-functional additives that work to assist the base oils with performance and longevity. Ingredients that slow down corrosion and oxidation and protect seals and other transmission components while they actively clean the transmission for many thousands of miles are added to premium ATFs. ATF conditioners, like MOC ATF Supplement, contain a specially formulated and tested additive package that fortifies and extends the service life of automatic transmission fluid.

Servicing Your Transmission

Most service facilities recommend a transmission service every 30,000 miles. Traditional service methods leave a large percentage of old depleted fluid in the system after the service. This can contaminate the new fluid being added. For best results, and to ensure that fluid is exchanged from all areas of the transmission, most professional technicians recommend a complete fluid exchange. The old fluid and deposits are then extracted from the entire transmission system. Simultaneously, new ATF is added to the system and an ATF Supplement is installed to fortify the new fluid against premature breakdown and oxidation.

For more information about which premium transmission products to use, visit this link.

Watch this quick video to learn more about this→  Automatic Transmission Fluid Exchange

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