How to Check Your Transmission Fluid | Cornerstone Auto

Mechanic pouring transmission fluid into a funnel

Knowing how to check your transmission fluid on a regular basis is an important step in preventing issues with your vehicle before they lead to costly repairs. This is actually quite a simple task you can perform on your own by following the steps below. Cornerstone Auto is your source for service tips and tricks.



  1. Turn the car on. When you check the transmission fluid, the engine should be warmed up beforehand.
  2. Locate the transmission fluid dipstick. You will find it is located to the right of the oil dipstick in front-wheel drive cars. If you are unable to locate it, consult your owner’s manual.
  3. Remove the dipstick and touch the fluid, moving it around between your thumb and forefinger. Transmission fluid should be almost clear with a pink tint. If you notice that it is contaminated with a lot of dirt and debris or it has a burned smell, bring it by the Cornerstone Auto service center to have it replaced.
  4. Use a rag to wipe off the dipstick. Then insert it back into the vehicle. Pull it out again and check the level. If it’s under the “Full” marking, add enough transmission fluid so that it reaches the optimal level.
  5. Use a funnel to bring the fluid level up to the right spot. Be careful to avoid overfilling.

If you have any questions during the process, do not hesitate to reach out to the experts at Cornerstone Auto. We would be glad to assist our neighbors in Monticello and Anoka areas.

How Often Do You Check Your Transmission Fluid?

You should check the main fluid levels of your car monthly. That includes checking your transmission fluid, power steering fluid, and engine oil. Remember to always check your owner’s manual to see if there are different recommendations from the manufacturer.

Transmission Fluid Basics

Your transmission is one of the most complex parts of your vehicle. Keep these tips in mind before checking your transmission fluid:

  • Not all transmission fluid is the same. You will notice that there are different types of recent models, manual transmissions, and automatic transmissions. Before refilling the transmission fluid, see what is recommended in your owner’s manual.
  • Checking the fluid on a manual transmission will usually require a jack to access a plug located beneath the car. Because of this, it is often more convenient for Ramsey drivers to leave this task to the professionals at the Cornerstone Auto service center.
  • If your vehicle hesitates before shifting gears, it might be due to low transmission fluid. However, it could be a sign of a more serious problem. Check the fluid level first, but if it’s fine, schedule service with us today.
  • You’ll want to replace your transmission fluid every 50,000 to 100,000 miles. This interval can vary based on your driving habits, type of transmission, and other factors. Once again, see what your owner’s manual has to say about when the transmission fluid in your vehicle should be replaced.

Learn More About How to Check Your Transmission Fluid at Cornerstone Auto

If you have additional questions about how to check your transmission fluid or other service-related questions like how long does an oil change take, you can always contact the team at Cornerstone Auto.

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Cornerstone Auto

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17219 Highway 10 NW Elk River, MN

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