How Exactly Does an Automatic Transmission Work?10.12.2012
Your transmission box takes power from your engine and delivers that power to the rest of your vehicle. Manual transmission vehicles require the driver to physically assist with this distribution of power. Automatic transmission vehicles, on the other hand, perform these gear changes on their own. Read over this summary to learn how the automatic transmission supports the rest of your vehicle.
Transmission Basics: A transmission is essentially a gear box, a complex set of interlocking gears that is built to transfer physical energy to the drivetrain. In other words, the transmission is what controls the rotation of your car’s wheels. However, whereas manual transmissions are fairly straightforward components, automatic transmissions are extremely complex. Since automatic transmissions are so complex and delicate, make sure to have all of your transmission repairs performed by a professional.
Planetary Gears: The main mechanism used to switch the gears in an automatic transmission is called a planetary gear system. The system uses one central “sun” gear and several nearby “planet” gears to achieve various rotational speeds. Fans of manual transmissions once passed on automatics for their lack of versatility. However, new and improved planetary gears are paving the way for seven-speed and eight-speed automatic transmissions that offer improved fuel economy and greater performance capabilities.
- Torque Converter: The torque converter is the final piece in the automatic transmission puzzle. Manual transmissions use a clutch to keep the engine running while the driver chooses a new gear. Automatic transmissions, on the other hand, have a torque converter in place of a clutch. This device maintains safe rotations in your engine and allows for seamless transition between gears while driving. Again, because of the complexity of the torque converter, only a professional auto repair technician should work on your vehicle’s automatic transmission.
You can count on Bucaro Brothers Auto Care for reliable repairs in the Chicago, IL area. Give us a call today if your transmission is giving you trouble. Dial (773) 570-4541 immediately if you experience shifting gears, an unresponsive gear box, or any other sign of a failing transmission.