Q: Slow rough shifting in auto transmission

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The automatic transmission in my 2011 Chevrolet Cruze has been having a really hard time shifting lately. From a stop, it also takes a while to get into first gear. This car has just under 18,000 miles on it, so it's a huge problem and I'm very disappointed! Can the transmission be serviced in any way to fix the problem or will it need to be replaced?

I can understand the disappointment with how your transmission is shifting, especially since a slipping transmission can make it very difficult to drive and potentially become a safety hazard. The maintenance schedule for your Cruze recommends having the transmission fluid changed at 50,000 miles. However, the symptoms you are describing indicate that you may have low and/or dirty transmission fluid that will have to be looked at earlier. If your fluid is low or dirty, this is likely the cause of the undesired shifting and having your transmission fluid replaced should improve your transmission’s performance. I would recommend having the transmission inspected by a certified professional. Once inspected, the mechanic will be able to tell you if the transmission needs to be fully serviced. If shifting concerns continue to persist after the transmission service, then it’s likely there is a problem inside the transmission. If this is the case, a teardown of the transmission is required to determine what is failing internally.

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