Home > Get Your Shift Together And Stop Riding Your Clutch


Okay, let’s just admit that automatic transmissions are convenient, especially in city traffic, but when it comes to the pure, unadulterated fun of driving, you just can’t beat a manual transmission. As in all great relationships, you will have to strike a balance in your driving. If you want to keep the pep in your car, you have to know how to take care of your clutch.

riding the clutch in vehicle with manual transmission

Clutch, Shift, Repeat

Remember when you were first learning to drive a manual transmission, the head-banging, stomach-lurching, buckboard ride and stalls from releasing the clutch too soon? Well, too many manual drivers take that to the other extreme, and out of fear of stalling or just bad habit, ride their clutch until it wears out.

What Is the Clutch & Why Should I Care

Simply put, your car’s clutch interrupts the car’s power to the engine long enough for you to switch gears to go faster or slow down. There are many parts to the clutch/transmission system of your vehicle and a well-treated clutch can

Car maintenance isn’t the most fun part of owning a car, but it’s as essential as taking care of your health. If your vehicle isn’t taken care of, it can’t take care of you and getting you to where you need to be. By keeping up with regular maintenance, you can avoid potentially costly issues down the road.

regularly maintained manual transmission in car

Your Car’s Transmission

The transmission of a car works to deliver power to your car’s wheels. It’s the part that helps it go, essentially. You might have an automatic, manual, or one that is continuously variable.

Regular Maintenance

Regular maintenance on your transmission can help prevent more significant problems. For all cars, you should check your fluid levels at least twice a year. This is important because transmission fluid is what lubricates the moving parts of your transmission so that it works to the best of its ability. Depending on how you use your car, fluid will need to be replaced, on average, every 15,000 – 30,000 miles or so. At the same time, you should

After the engine, your transmission is the second most important system, and it’s also a big-ticket item if it needs repairs. In the simplest of terms, your car’s transmission changes the gears of the engine as your car picks up speed and slows down. If the transmission fails, your engine won’t run. This makes it essential to maintain your automatic transmission and keep it in good working order. Check out these tips to maintain your transmission.

automatic transmission functioning properly due to regular maintenance

Tips for Maintaining Your Automatic Transmission

A few small changes in the way you operate your motor vehicle can make a big difference for your transmission.

  1. Routinely check your transmission fluid. Your fluid should be bright red and smell sweet. If it’s a muddy color or smells off, it’s time to get a transmission specialist to take a look at it.
  2. Flush your transmission. Take your car into the shop once a year to have your transmission flushed. If your car overheats or you do a lot of driving, you might consider having it flushed

Keeping your vehicle’s transmission in good condition during the winter months requires a few extra steps as winter weather can take its toll. At Custom Complete Automotive, we want to make sure that you know what tasks are necessary when taking on winter maintenance. Check out these common winter transmission problems and how to properly care for your transmission and vehicle during this winter season.

automatic transmission in good repair due to proper maintenance

Winter Transmission Problems

As temperatures drop, transmission problems can occur as the transmission fluid’s viscosity increases, leading to the inability of a smooth flow in the vehicle’s system. The problems that can arise include:


Transmission slipping occurs when your vehicle is parked and unprotected in freezing temperatures for and extended amount of time, causing the system to freeze and contract. This results in a leaking fuel line and the lowering of line pressure.

Slipping can also take place when the system gets too hot. Stable transmission systems require careful regulation of the pressure levels and fluid levels during weather extremes.

Shifting Problems


Cars with manual transmission systems are engaging and offer some benefits that cars with automatic transmission systems lack. However, they also require regular maintenance of the transmission system to keep the engine running smoothly. Discover these five age-old tips for maintaining your car’s manual transmission system.

vehicle with manual transmission

1. Use the Clutch Carefully

Riding the clutch is a term that refers to pressing down on the clutch while shifting gears. It is often a common habit among new drivers. Riding the clutch strains the engine and gearbox, resulting in engine complications and repair costs down the road.

2. Avoid Downshifting When Slowing Down Your Vehicle

Downshifting refers to the use of transmission gears to slow down the car. It is a convenient alternative to using the brake pedal. However, it strains the gearbox and accelerates the wear and tear of your transmission. As such, it is advisable only to use the brake pedal whenever you need to slow down or come to a stop.

3. Service the Engine Cooling System Regularly

Your car’s engine cooling system cools