Transmission Shifting Hard From 1st To 2nd Gear

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Transmission Shifting Hard From 1st To 2nd Gear

One of the nightmares of many car owners is transmission problems. It’s expensive to repair. If you take long before fixing it, it may cause engine damage. The hard shift is a common transmission problem. Is, your transmission shifting hard from 1st to 2nd gear, the solution is to call the mechanic to fix it. Delay to deal with a faulty transmission will result in a replacement of the whole transmission system, which is very costly. Also, you don’t want to risk causing an accident while driving a car with transmission issues. So, how will you know that the car has such issues? Check the symptoms below.

The Symptoms of Transmission Problems

Once you see these symptoms, visit the nearest transmission repair shop immediately. You don’t expect the problem to auto-correct. If anything, it can only get worse. The symptoms include;

1. Noise When In Neutral

Is your car producing a whining or groaning sound when in neutral? The worn-out gear teeth or bearing could be the cause of the noise. Once you hear the unusual noise, it could be a sign that you have a transmission problem. Visit your mechanic immediately

2. A Smell Of A Burning Transmission Fluid

Usually, the hot transmission fluid should produce a smell of burning rubber. If it starts producing a smell of burning transmission fluid, then there is a problem. The chances are high that the fluid is dirty and requires immediate replacement lest it damages the engine. It’s also possible that your fluid is leaking and dripping on the engine. There are several reasons why leakage may occur. Among them includes loose bolts and pans, poorly secured drain plugs, and cracked pans and gaskets, among other reasons. Other than adding the fuel, identify the cause, and fix the issue. 

3. Slipping Gears

Another symptom of a transmission problem is a slipping gear. Your gears shouldn’t change on their own. They have to wait for you to change from one to the other. Suppose the gear keeps on slipping, that’s a symptom of a transmission problem. Slipping gears indicate that the bands are either worn out or are broken. 

4. Check Light Engine On

When the check engine light is on and stays on, you need to consult your mechanic. That could be an indication that your car has transmission problems. If your car is new, the extra-sensitive sensors should notify you once you get the transmission problems. 

5. Car Shakes During Shift Change

Usually, you should have a smooth gear shift when the transmission is functioning properly. But if it has issues, it will be hard to shift, or the car will shake or jerk when shifting the gears. For the automatic transmission shifts hard from 1st to 2nd gear could indicate two things; Low transmission fluid or the fluid is old, and you are supposed to change it. 

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Hard Shifting

Having known the causes of transmission problems, let’s focus on hard shifting. The symptoms of hard shifting include;

a. Dark/Discolored Fluid

Follow the manufacturer’s recommendation on how often you need to change the fluid. If it becomes dark or looks discolored, it’s an indication that the transmission has abnormal wear and tear could be the clutch or the band has a problem. Change the oil fluid once you see this symptom. 

b. Noisy Pump

Another symptom of a hard shift from 1st to 2nd gear automatic is the strange noise in the pump. The pump may be clogged, resulting in unusual high pressure. 

c. Transmission Jerk When Shifting

If you experience transmission jerk when shifting, the reason could be a bad sensor or even shift solenoid. Get the mechanic to fix the problem.

Also read: My Car Won’t Reverse But Will Go Forward

What Are the Reasons for Hard Shifting? 

1. Worn Out Transmission

It’s the worst-case scenario. The reason being, you may have to replace the entire transmission system, which is very expensive. In this case, the bands and clutches are worn out; their surface becomes smooth, making it hard to change the gear. To avoid misdiagnosis, seek professional help, and also find a second opinion. 

2. Old/Wrong Transmission Fluid

Using wrong or old transmission fluid causes excess friction. In return, you will experience hard shifting. The wrong fluid can also cause low friction hence sloppy shifting. So always use the right fluid and replace it when necessary. 

3. Low Fluid Levels

The fluid lubricates things and provides hydraulic pressure that moves the clutches and bands that facilitates shifting. So, what happens once the fluid levels lower? There will be no proper lubrication, and the pressure will be low. As a result, you will experience lubrication problems. 

4. Sensor Problems

The modern vehicle contains sensors that control the shifting of your car. If the sensor receives slow or wrong signals, you will experience hard shifting. 

5. Vacuum Problems

Once the vacuum codes clog, bend, or disconnect, they affect transmission pressure. As a result, you will experience rough shifting. 

6. Cold Weather

The cold weather affects the fluids that contain temperature variant flow properties. The fluid thickens and results in poor transmission.

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What is The Solution?

If your transmission has small cracks and leaks the BlueDevil transmission sealer can help to rectify the problem and restore the transmission system back to normal. Though it’s important to allow experts to check the transmission problem, diagnose the cause, and fix it.


Since the transmission problem is expensive to fix, don’t wait for it to worsen. Immediately you get the first symptoms, call your mechanic immediately to take a look. Never assume that you know what the cause is until your mechanic confirms. If he recommends, a transmission system replacement, you should consider getting a second opinion from another professional mechanic.

That will avoid misdiagnosis that may cause you to incur unnecessary costs. It’s good to know the causes of the transmission problems and the hard shifting. Treating the cause will prevent you from getting such problems. The solution to the transmission problems is with your mechanic. There are products such as BlueDevil transmission sealer that helps to seal cracks and leaks in your system. But it’s good to seek advice first from professionals.

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