How to Notice a Failing Gearbox?


Every driver should know the condition of their car, especially the gearbox. This part is crucial in smooth running and turning off the car. And early detection of any faults, like strange sounds, peculiar smell, and weird noises coming from the vehicle, should be enough warning that the car needs servicing.

Ignoring such minor signs may mean preparing for nasty repair bills. Besides, any problem with the gearbox or the transmission can be fatal. So that calls for extra vigilance. Fortunately, this article discusses some of the tips that every driver must watch out for; otherwise, they would have a failing gearbox.

Here are the warning signs of gearbox trouble:

Gear Switch Refusal

Gear lack of response, such as resistance while shifting into proper gear, may indicate transmission trouble. It may sometimes feel like struggles causing a delay when shifting the gears to drive before they properly engage. This often happens in cars with automatic transmissions.

For those vehicles with manual transmission, gear refusal would take the form of disconnection between the actual speed of the car and the revving of the engine. This results in a much lower acceleration than expected. So, suppose the vehicle is experiencing gear falls while driving or shifting. In that case, the chances are high that there is a transmission problem. Therefore, visit the gear shop and specialist for assistance.

Leaking fluids or Low Levels

This is probably the most common symptom of a failing gear. If there are some red fluids under the car, that car probably has some fluid leaking from one of its coolers or the gasket. Use a dipstick, check on the fluid level.

If the fluid level is below the add line of the dipstick, then that’s a reason to add more fluid. But, remember to add the right amount of fluid; use the manufacturer’s manual for more detail on the required fluid level.

Burning Smells and Odors

In most cases, the burning smells would result from a fluid leak. Also, it may be due to low fluid flow to the systems. Meaning that the gearbox does not get enough lubrication thus burns itself up. If that is the case, it’s time to change the transmission fluid.

If there are no mechanical around, please check the car transmission dipstick as indicated in the manufacturers’ manual. But it would be better if the work was handled with a professional mechanic.

Buzzing, Humming, Clunking Noise

Listen to the gearbox. If there appears to be some bumpy noisy transmission, that is a sign of gear damage or a bad bearing. The buzzing sound may also be the result of the low transmission fluid caused by the leak. So taking the car to the gear shop for repair is one of the safest options to help avoid further damages or future accidents.


It can sometimes be challenging to identify what’s wrong with a car, even to the most experienced mechanic. But, on realizing a change in the car’s condition, every driver should visit gear specialists for maintenance and repair of any system transmission failure.

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