San Diego Auto Repair

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Finding the cause of your transfer case leak

A transfer case is part of the drivetrain system on vehicles with four-wheel drive. The job of the transfer case is to engage the four-wheel drive when activated and to disengage it when deactivated. It splits the power coming out of the transmission, sending it to the front and rear wheels.The transfer case is located behind the transmission, and it's connected to both the front and rear drive shafts.

Most transfer cases are either chain- or gear-based, requiring a special lubricant called "gear oil". The difference between engine oil and gear oil is the thickness or "viscosity", gear oil being more viscous. This allows a type of lubrication referred to as "bath oiling". The bottom of the internal parts of the transfer case sit inside the gear oil, and, as the gears rotate, the oil sticks to the gears, keeping them well-lubbed.

Problems with your car's transfer case can arise due to a fluid leak. If you are experiencing a bitter smell coming from under the hood of your car, you may have a transfer case leak. Fluid leaks could be due to:

  • loose drain plug(s)
  • seal failure
  • bad bearing(s) inside the case

Without proper lubrication, this may cause irreparable damage to the case's internal parts. So, it's important to bring your car to a local professional so that they can troubleshoot to find the cause of the leak. In the San Diego area, that service shop is Transmasters Transmissions and Auto Care. Located in Miramar, Transmasters' mechanics are ASE-certified and have extensive training and experience when it comes to servicing all domestic, foreign, and European cars.

Repairing your vehicle's transfer case

When you bring your car into Transmasters, they will run a series of diagnostic tests to find the source of the leak. The plugs can be removed and inspected, fluid levels can checked, additional fluid can be added, and then the plugs can be replaced and tightened. If your transfer case continues to leak, the fluid will need to be drained so that mechanics can check for seal failures and possible damage to the case joints.

The service technicians at Transmasters are trained to quickly diagnose and pinpoint solutions to your problem. They will determine if there is a simple solution such as replacing a worn-out plug or whether your transfer case needs to be replaced or rebuilt. At Transmasters, you will be provided with a complete breakdown of the costs of all parts and labor involved in completing the job.

How much will it cost?

At Transmasters, the initial diagnostic process is free. Once the problem is determined, you'll be provided with a detailed vehicle repair quote. Transmasters Transmissions and Auto Care has developed a reputation as one of the best auto repair shops in the San Diego area and is committed to providing the highest quality of service to all customers. Call Transmasters today to schedule an appointment.

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