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I’m concerned my transmission may be going. What are the major signs? And if it’s going, how long do i have until the car is completely dead?

Since you didn’t mention the clutch, I’ll assume it’s an automatic transmission. Rough shifting and slipping out of gear would indicate the transmission has problems. If it slips out of gear the engine will race because there is no load on it. The RPMs will go back to normal when it slides back into gear.

Besides the transmission slipping (i.e. the gear won’t engage and you just rev the engine), one of the biggest tell-tale signs is the presence of a burning odor while you’re driving. If you’re smelling anything like that, chances are the damage has been done.

There’s really no way to tell how much time you may have. Once you start experiencing symptoms, it’s usually too late, unfortunately.

Burnt-smelling, blackened automatic transmission fluid is a pretty sure sign the transmission is a goner.

But how about you tell us about your vehicle and the symptoms you’re having.