How many times have you heard your truck-driving friends say that their transmission died and they need a new one? Transmission problems are often seen as a major ordeal that can only be dealt with by replacing the transmission or perhaps the entire truck. But actually, if you are vigilant, you might be able to notice a transmission problem earlier while you can still do something about it.
Often, a transmission will start leaking fluid, and the leak will go unnoticed for weeks or months. Thus, the transmission operates without enough fluid, and this results in more damage to the transmission, to the point that the truck quits completely. Get into the habit of always checking under your truck after you've parked and then driven off. If you see any dark red fluid, that's transmission fluid. Take your truck to the repair shop ASAP to have the leak fixed and fluid added.
If you are ever driving around and think you may notice a slight burning odor, don't ignore it. Even if the odor seems too faint to be worrisome, it could indicate that something in your transmission is rubbing or overheating. Have it checked out. Continuing to drive could lead to more serious burning odors, and ultimately, a blown transmission.
The truck still shifts, so it's fine, right? Well, not necessarily. If you hear even a tiny grinding noise when the truck shifts, this indicates that your transmission is starting to struggle. The grinding only causes more wear on the transmission, so take care of it now before it gets any worse. (Note that when the grinding is just beginning, you might just feel it in the pedal rather than hearing an actual noise.)
Hesitation tends to be most obvious when you are on a highway. You expect the truck to shift up a gear, but it seems to hesitate and not do so when expected. You might notice this around 55 miles per hour. The truck will eventually shift up in gear, but it will feel as though it shifted late. Hesitation indicates the transmission is not working well, and the next stage will be that it refuses to shift at all.
If you think your truck's transmission might not be working well, don't delay. Head to a truck repair shop, such as FLM Roadside Repair, and you might get away with just needing repairs rather than having to replace the transmission.