Car ran out of transmission fluid. What does this mean?

Asked by Jan 15, 2015 at 04:54 PM about the 2002 Nissan Altima 3.5 SE

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

I have a 2002 Nissan Altima. I
noticed a burning smell about a
week ago one day when I got out of
my car but I assumed it was my
brakes because I need them done
really bad. However, yesterday I
drove to school about 20 miles just
fine. When I was trying to leave
school, I noticed that my car would
jerk and eventually when I pushed
the gas, it wouldn't accelerate at all. I
he it towed to a shop and the guy
told me that my transmission needed
to be replaced and quoted me at
$1500. I was able to drive it to my
mother in laws house just fine. It
wasn't jerky or anything and she told
me to take it to another place across
the street. I took it there and they
told me I didn't have a transmission
problem. My car had just ran out of
transmission fluid! They put
transmission fluid in the car and it's
running fine now. I'm confused. How
can a car run out of transmission
fluid and be okay? I feel like an
something is going to pop up. What
can I do?

1 Answer

298,855

Over heating a transmission is not a good thing. The first mechanic was right in suggesting a new trans, but since your car seems to be shifting fine with just new fluid, enjoy it. I'm sure the clutches are worn and maybe burnt, but you might get a few months to years out of the current one.

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