We like to think of cars simply. They get us from one destination to another, just by the turn of a key and four wheels. But cars are actually quite complex road vehicles, with components that come together in ways you never knew!

When it comes to the nitty-gritty about cars and how they work, the transmission has got to be the most important part. Think of a car transmission as the powerhouse of the engine.

If you’ve been wanting answers to the question, “What does a transmission do?” you’re in luck! Continue reading to learn more.


Cars 101: A Lesson in Transmissions

Before you learn all about the function of a car transmission, you have to know what it is. So strap in and get comfortable for the ride!

A car transmission comes in two types: automatic and manual. An automatic transmission does the work itself, while a manual requires the driver to do the work during the time the car is in motion.

In our modernized and technologically advanced era, most of the cars we see or drive have automatic transmissions.

That means manual transmission cars are dying out – slowly but very surely. Since 1980, the production of manual transmissions in new vehicles has declined by a whopping 33.3 percent.

So… What Does a Transmission Do?

Simply stated, the transmission in a car makes use of the engine’s torque in order to change gears and give the vehicle power. Regardless of whether it’s manual or automatic, this is solely what a transmission does.

However, there are some differences between the two that make them unique and true to what they do. Keep reading to learn about what distinguishes a manual from an automatic transmission.

Manual Transmission

You know by this point that it’s becoming increasingly difficult to find manual transmission cars – but they are still out there, and a lot of people like to keep their old school wits about them! If your manual transmission has busted out and needs a replacement, you could check from Sir Car Part as they still sell used transmissions in good condition.

Manual transmission cars, also known as “standards” or “stickshifts”, have a gear shifter and a clutch pedal. Stickshift drivers choose the correct gear to engage and disengage the clutch.

Every time the driver shifts gears, the clutch must be pushed to eliminate the delivery of power between the engine and transmission.

But when pressure is withdrawn from the clutch pedal, power is then transported between the engine and transmission.

With so many things to think about regarding manual cars, it’s easy to skip over the thought of transmission repair. Since many older vehicles are standards, a lot of things can go wrong – especially with the transmission.

Do you own a stickshift that needs major car repair? Check out this service, specializing in manual and automatic transmission repair.

Automatic Transmission

Now comes the easy stuff, because automatic transmissions are… automatic, meaning you don’t have to do the work.

The same process for a manual transmission occurs for an automatic one, but the car itself does not have a clutch or physical gear shifter. Instead, automatic transmission cars rely on what’s called a torque converter.

Torque converters carry the torque (potential energy) from the engine to the rotating load (the car). In simpler terms, torque converters are what make cars with automatic transmissions able to move.

Transmission Talk Made Simple

At the beginning of this article, you might have let out a sigh and thought you’d never find an answer to the question, “What does a transmission do?”. But now that you’re here, you know everything about transmissions and more!

From manual to automatic transmissions and even some important information tucked between, we hope you have learned a lot. Now you can help out someone else who is struggling by making transmission talk simple.

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