Tips

Should I Be Worried About the Color of My Transmission Fluid?

You shouldn’t worry about the color of your transmission fluid because we here at Advanced Automotive will worry about it for you. Unlike your motor oil, which you can check easily, most transmission dipsticks are located underneath your automobile, meaning you’d have to slide underneath it or use a lift to check the transmission fluid. Check your owner’s manual and bring your vehicle in for transmission service when the manufacturer recommends it. We’ll let you know the following after we check the fluid.

It’s Red and You Don’t Need to Worry

Red transmission fluid is new transmission fluid. The fluid is transparent, clean, and ready to do its job. Some fluid is a brighter shade of red than others are, but all transmission fluid that does not need to be changed yet is red and transparent. You can put off a fluid flush and refill.

It’s Light Brown But You Still Don’t Need to Worry

Light brown transmission fluid is getting older but it’s still very much capable of lubricating the transmission parts properly. You can still see through the light brown fluid; it’s just changed from its original red hue. This fluid tells you that you can still wait for a fluid change but not much longer.

It’s Dark Brown – Don’t Worry but Change It

Dark brown fluid still isn’t a cause for worry but you do need to change it. Dark brown fluid is getting old and it’s oxidizing. This means it is not as effective in protecting the transmission parts as red or light brown fluid is. Now is the time for a fluid flush and refill to prevent transmission damage.

It’s Black and You Should Worry

Black fluid is very old, dirty, and has oxidized completely. You cannot see through it and it cannot protect the transmission parts. Rather, it will gunk them up and damage them. An immediate fluid change is called for if your vehicle’s transmission fluid is black and you cannot see through it.

It’s Pink and Now It’s Time to Panic

We won’t paint rainbows and unicorns here: Pink fluid means serious trouble. The fluid changes from red to pink because it’s being diluted by coolant or water. Damage between the transmission and radiator causes this dilution and the repairs are serious and expensive.

Do yourself and your vehicle a favor and bring the automobile into Advanced Automotive in Stanwood, WA, for a transmission service when it’s due. You can set up an appointment by calling 360-502-4606.

Photo by Chat9780 from Getty Images via Canva Pro
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