Transmission Oil Leaks

How to Fix a Transmission Oil Leak

Transmission oil leaks can be scary. Scary, as in: how much is this going to cost? Will my transmission need to be replaced? Will I end up stranded on the side of the road? Should I just give up and buy a new car?

Never fear. In most cases, an automatic transmission oil leak can be fixed easily and cheaply.

Identifying a Transmission Oil Leak

There are a number of things on your car that can leak: motor oil, power steering fluid, and coolant are common examples. So, before you start trying to fix a transmission oil leak, you need to make sure that the leak is actually coming from the transmission.

One way to identify oil leaks is to look at the color of the oil on the ground. Automatic transmission fluid is usually a red or reddish-brown color. It can tend more towards brown as the oil gets older, especially if it’s become scorched (which can be caused by your car overheating) or dirty. Since motor oil is also brown, you’ll need to confirm whether the transmission is leaking by looking at the transmission oil level. Transmissions don’t “use” oil (the way some engines do); they can only lose oil. So if it’s low, you know there’s a leak.

Can I Just Ignore a Transmission Oil Leak?

In an automatic transmission, the oil is essential. It not only lubricates the gears and prevents them from wearing out; it actually forms part of the linkage that transfers power between the engine and the gears (similar to the function of a clutch in a manual transmission). In other words, if the fluid level gets too low, your automatic transmission won’t work at all. Your car won’t move, and will become little more than a very heavy and expensive paperweight.

At that point, you’d likely have to replace the transmission, which typically costs a few thousand dollars. (You read that correctly.)

So you could ignore it, but there would be consequences to that. The better option is to take care of the problem as soon as possible.

How to Fix a Transmission Leak

Most automatic transmission fluid leaks occur in the seals or gaskets – the soft parts of the transmission, which over time can dry out and harden.

So, one option is to replace the faulty gasket or seal. Though the gasket or seal itself may not cost very much, it takes a lot of work to install it. The labor costs for such a repair are usually a couple of hundred bucks. That’s far better than ignoring it and having to replace the whole transmission, but there’s an easier and even less expensive way to handle the problem.

Tranny Honey (yup, that’s its name) is an automatic transmission fluid treatment that’s designed to automatically stop transmission leaks. Besides stopping leaks, it also conditions old transmission fluid and smooths rough shifting. It costs just a few dollars, and more importantly, it’s so easy that anyone can use it: just pour it into the transmission.

We’re not saying it’s magic. As with any leak stopper, it may not work on some leaks, especially big ones. But it works in most cases, and since it can save you hundreds or even thousands of dollars in repair costs, it’s definitely worth giving a try.

You can find Tranny Honey in these stores.

Transmission Treatment with Leak Stopper