What You Need To Know About Transmission Flush

We've said it before, and we’ll say it again. A contaminated, dirty system isn’t just bad form, it can cause early wear and tear, preventable maintenance issues, and system failure. It’s the single most preventable source of additional cost and trouble for anyone who has invested in equipment, machinery, or a service fleet.

In a recent blog, we covered the serious problems caused by contamination of oils and lubricants. Today we’re talking about cleanliness again, but this time we’ll specifically cover transmission issues. Do you know the basics of transmission maintenance, and when to do a system flush versus when to add fluid?

Before we get started, we want to remind you that we always recommend that you call in an expert if you’re not sure what the best practices are to maintain a piece of costly equipment, or to determine best practices for a fleet. As a leading commercial fuel and lubricants supplier in California, the team at Greg’s Petroleum Service can provide advice and support based on your individual needs.

Why Your Machine Needs Clean Transmission Fluid, and When to Flush

As you know, your transmission is responsible for the performance of the gears, clutches, and bearings of your truck, machine, or heavy equipment.

A contaminated transmission system, then, can lead to the inability to shift gears properly, grinding, and even system failure. Contamination is caused (in general) by wind, condensation, routine use, and water.

You can’t really control weather conditions. But routine use can be just as significant a factor. The high heat generated – even under “normal,” or not necessarily extreme conditions – will, over time, break down transmission fluid and leave the system vulnerable to contaminants that build up into sludge and clogging debris in the system.

When that happens, the contaminants aren’t cleared as the (old) fluid circulates through the system or carried along properly to be trapped in the filter. Instead, the contaminants lodge in the narrow fluid passages inside the valve body, where they get trapped and lead to system issues – such as poor gear shifting.

One thing you can do is regularly add a transmission flush additive to help clear debris and sludge. Check your equipment manual for recommendations on the timeline and be sure to be proactive.

But, old dirty transmission fluid, even with regular maintenance, is still carrying debris and isn’t as good for your equipment as new, clean transmission fluid. However, a full transmission flush can be expensive and may even dislodge debris (if the system is super dirty) to cause clogging.

So, what to do? Hopefully, you’re reading this at a time when you can put a maintenance plan in place BEFORE you have a problem.

We recommend you have a good maintenance plan in place to monitor the quality of your transmission fluid and to add cleaning chemicals when necessary. We also recommend using VPS Chemicals, such as those carried by Greg’s Petroleum Service, with higher cleanliness standards.

Remember, we’re here to help! Feel free to call us with questions or to review your individual equipment and circumstances. The right team can not only help with repairs but can provide a service plan to help you prevent issues down the line.

That’s exactly what we do here at Greg's Petroleum Service. Not only are we a trusted fuel fleet service supplier in California, but we also provide expert advice, a variety of automotive chemicals for maintenance, food grade oils and lubricants, and so much more.

Please don’t hesitate to reach out to learn more, or if there’s something we can do for you.