Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Slow slipping transmission, how much longer will it last?

asked by on

At only 31,000 miles, the automatic transmission in my 2011 Chevrolet Malibu is starting to die out on me. When you shift into drive, it takes a noticeable amount of time for it to do anything. Then, every shift seems like a huge effort. I'm worried that the transmission will need to be replaced and I'll be stuck with the bill. It's very disappointing, as I wanted a more reliable car! Any advice on troubleshooting before it gets to that point?

A: If you are out of warranty, you'll need...

If you are out of warranty, you'll need to have your vehicle checked for problems with a qualified technician such as YourMechanic. They can come to your home or office, perform a road test, check your transmission for mechanical or electrical issues, and service the transmission if issues are found. I've read that even a fluid service change can fix issues of slipping with the Malibu transmission. There are a few factors that may be contributing to your problem as well. One issue may be that an aftermarket adapter might have been left attached to the car's computer access test port. This has caused problems with the way the vehicle runs and shifts. If an aftermarket adapter is in place, disconnect it to see if it fixes the problem. If you are losing reverse, or if the higher gears are slipping, it may be caused by a broken 3-5 wave plate. The entire transmission need to flushed out and the damaged parts need to be replaced. Another possible issue could be a brake light switch malfunction which causes the brake lights to work intermittently and at other times stay on. For this issue, a wiring harness repair is needed. This is a recall that may affect the transmission's shifting. My recommendation would be to contact YourMechanic for a thorough diagnostic check before any major damage is caused by the slipping and slow up-shifts.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Save up to 30%

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Motor not starting

If your Ford 150 will not crank, there can be a a few different reasons that could cause this result. Diagnosing the same problem on a newly swapped engine can add additional possible reasons due to additional variables, such as...

Q: Transmission slipping while downshifting

The shifting may be normal, but there is a software update to change the shifting strategy. Take the vehicle to a dealer and they can update the software for you. If you are out of warranty, then there may be...

Q: steering completely broke driving down the road

This sounds a lot like the steering shaft snapped and is no longer connected to the steering rack. You can check this by looking underneath the dash up above the gas and brake pedal (you can't miss the steering shaft)...

Related articles

How to Renew Your Car Registration in Oklahoma(DELETED)
Having your car registered with the Oklahoma Tax Commission is an important part of driving legally in this state. You will need to do this within 30 days of moving to Oklahoma...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.