Shifting roughly

I’ve been experiencing a “catching” or “pausing” type feel when my automatic transmission starts off and moves from 1st to 2nd gear. Am afraid it means I’m going to have to have a whole new transmission! (Like another woman at work recently, $3500!) Which I can NOT possibly afford right now with going in for spine surgery. HOPING it’s just needing a transmission fluid change or flush, which is WAY over due, since I don’t even know when last time it was ever done. 110,000 miles on an '97 Infiniti I30 - Don’t know if I’m safe being a female going into just any run of the mill auto repair location, since I’ve experienced how they seem to like to target us as gullible, and say all sorts of things are damaged or need replacing because they think they can make a easy buck! PLEASE help me out with some Guru advise!!! Don’t have my Dad or a husband around to help out with these type things, and know women can get ripped at auto places, as they peg you as soon as you walk in! A total crock, but happens way too often (I’m SURE you’re aware of!) REALLY need help, being a single female and MUST have my auto to make it to work each day!! Really would like to be proactive, and not end up on side of the road with my transmission croaked completely! :open_mouth: I’d be ever so grateful for some advise on what to do, or might actually be wrong! Thank you much!

Sandy in Memphis

Well heres what you DONT want to do. Do not take it to a large chain type transmission shop AAMCO…etc. First things first, check the fluid level and condition. Your car needs to be on a level surface, the engine and trans needs to be at full operating temperature (Driven for about 30 min). Low or high fluid level will cause transmission shifting malfunctions so it could be just a simple thing like this. Pull the dipstick and check the level. Also look at the color of the fluid (Should be a light pink color) If the level is low, top it off. If this cures the problem, take it to a small transmission shop and have the transmission serviced. Fluid and filter NOT a flush. If the fluid level is good or the problem still exists then you need to get it to a transmission shop for a diagnostic. Is the check engine light on at all??


THANK YOU MUCH, Transman!! I will follow your advise as try to check my fluid level once I can drive again. I guess Coleman Transmissions is what you call a “large chain shop?” They do diagnostics I know.

I don’t understand your comment about being proactive. You’ve ignored the relatively inexpensive regular maintenance, which very possibly caused a problem that will cost you a ton of money. That’s not being proactive in my book.

I suggest you catch up on any other overdue maintenance before you’re shopping for a new engine next.