Q: Transmission or axle problem?

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At my house, it has been snowing non stop, and have had freezing temperatures. My car was running perfectly fine until I backed out of my driveway the other day, I heard a noise and I thought I had hit my neighbors vehicle but I hadn't, after that, I put it out of park and into drive but I couldn't go anywhere, my car lets me put it into any gear but there is a grinding sound when I try to drive or reverse it and wheels won't move, I have not had any transmission related problems before this and my neighbor who is a mechanic helped tow me parallel to my driveway, and said that my axle may have separated or broke some place. I have not checked the ATF fluid yet, but it is at Les Schwab but I am trying to figure out if it is a transmission or axle problem, I know the two could go hand in hand.

My car has 170000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hi there. Unfortunately, that sound you heard was most likely an internal component that has failed/broken. That doesn’t mean that an axle failure couldn’t be the source, either. This definitely needs to have an inspection to determine what has failed and to what extent the damage has become. I suggest having a qualified technician perform an inspection to avoid replacing unnecessary parts. Your Mechanic has several available technicians that can assist you with a grinding when put into gear inspection.

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