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Does Your Check Engine Light Come on for Transmission? Here’s The Cause

Will check engine light come on for transmission

Will the check engine light come on for transmission? The check engine light in a vehicle illuminates for various reasons, ranging from minor to more serious issues.


In certain car makes and models, a flashing check engine light typically indicates a more significant problem with the engine.

Will the Check Engine Light Come on for Transmission?

Transmission problems may also trigger the activation of the check engine light, although they are not always as obvious as other vehicle components. Identifying the exact source of the problem can be challenging for vehicle owners when there is a lack of response from the transmission.

Signs of transmission issues may include unusual noises originating from beneath the vehicle or a lack of response when pressing the accelerator pedal. However, these symptoms could also indicate drivability problems.

If you press the gas pedal and notice that your vehicle fails to respond or move, there is an average probability that there is a drivability issue with the engine’s performance. This can result in a loss of engine power or an unresponsive transmission due to a problem with it.

your vehicle’s automatic transmission lacks its own dashboard warning light, so if there’s an issue, the check engine light might come on.

This serves as just one indication of transmission trouble. Below, we will provide a list of additional signs to look out for because it is crucial to have your transmission serviced at the first sign of trouble to prevent further damage.


Other Check Engine Transmission Issues

Here are other factors that can be the reason your check engine light comes on for transmission

Does Your Check Engine Light Come on for Transmission? Here's The Cause

1. Unusual Jerks Vibrations

Experiencing vibrations or jerking while your vehicle shifts gears is another indication of low transmission fluid. The transmission fluid serves as both a lubricant and a hydraulic fluid, facilitating smooth gear shifts.

If your vehicle shakes or vibrates during gear shifts or when you engage the gears for the first time, it is imperative to have the transmission inspected promptly.

2. Solenoid Control

Even if your fluid levels are adequate, there could still be a concern regarding the proper distribution of fluid within the transmission and its components. This situation might indicate a malfunctioning solenoid, which is responsible for regulating the flow of transmission fluid throughout the system.

The solenoid directs the flow of oil to the appropriate components to facilitate the transmission’s operation. If there are no visible leaks of transmission fluid, a malfunctioning solenoid could be a potential cause of transmission problems.

3. Leakage of Transmission Fluid 

Never should there be a leakage in transmission fluid. If you notice red spots beneath the center of your vehicle, it indicates a transmission leak. Transmission fluid may seep out from the pan gasket or the transmission pan. It can also escape through the seals or the torque converter.

Regardless of the source, transmission fluid should not be leaking from the transmission. If such leakage occurs, it can lead to transmission damage.

4. Issues with Shifting Gear 

When your transmission is deteriorating, your vehicle may exhibit unresponsiveness when attempting to engage gears. Additionally, the transmission might experience difficulties shifting smoothly through the gear cycle or staying engaged in a specific gear.

Whenever the transmission disengages from the gear, power will be lost, and the engine may rev without propelling the vehicle. If you’ve observed any problems with gear shifting in your vehicle, it is crucial to have the transmission checked as soon as possible.

5. Excessive Transmission of Heat

For proper functioning, your transmission requires an optimal operating temperature. If your transmission is running too hot, there are certain warning signs to look out for, such as a burning smell or decreased vehicle performance.

Insufficient transmission fluid circulating through the system can cause a burning odor. Which might lead to a malfunctioning cooling system for the transmission can also lead to overheating.

6. Unusual Sounds

When your transmission encounters difficulties shifting gears, you may notice grinding or squealing noises during the gear shifts.

Furthermore, you should never hear humming noises, particularly when the transmission is in neutral. A clunking sound when engaging gears also indicates that the transmission urgently requires service or repair.

7. Slipping Transmission

If you press the throttle and the engine RPM rises, but your vehicle fails to move, it signifies that your transmission is slipping. The same can be observed when the engine revs while the vehicle is in neutral or when you’re in gear, applying gas, and the vehicle either barely inches forward or remains stationary.


Frequently Asked Questions

1. Will the check engine light come on if there is a transmission problem?

Yes, the engine light can come on if there is a problem with the transmission.

2. What are the common transmission issues that trigger the check engine light?

Common transmission issues that can trigger the check engine light include low fluid levels, solenoid malfunctions, slipping gears, and faulty sensors.

3. Can a minor transmission problem cause the check engine light to come on?

Yes, even minor issues, such as a small fluid leak or a sensor malfunction, can trigger the check engine light.

4. Is it safe to drive with the check engine light on due to a transmission problem?

It is recommended to have the transmission checked as soon as possible when the check engine light comes on to avoid potential damage. Continuing to drive without addressing the issue may result in further complications.

5. Can a loose gas cap cause the check engine light to come on for transmission problems?

No, a loose gas cap rarely triggers the engine light specifically for transmission problems. It is more likely related to an emission control issue.

6. Can a faulty transmission sensor cause the check engine light to illuminate?

Yes, a malfunctioning transmission sensor, such as a speed sensor or temperature sensor, can trigger the engine light to indicate a transmission problem.

7. Will the check engine light reset itself if the transmission issue is resolved?

In some cases, if the underlying transmission problem is fixed, the check engine light may turn off automatically after a certain number of successful driving cycles. However, it is recommended to have it reset by a professional to ensure the issue is resolved.

8. Should I be concerned if the check engine light blinks for a transmission problem?

Yes, if the engine light is blinking specifically for an issue, it indicates a severe problem that requires immediate attention. It is advisable to stop driving and seek professional assistance.

9. Can a malfunctioning transmission cause other warning lights to come on?

Yes, a malfunctioning transmission can sometimes trigger other warning lights, such as the ABS (Anti-lock Braking System) or Traction Control lights, as these systems can be interconnected.

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