In automobiles with automatic transmissions, the torque converter is important.

If you want a comfortable and smooth ride, it must be in excellent operating condition.

You’re in trouble if it doesn’t work.

The rotational power produced by the rotating driving force of the vehicle is converted to mechanical power by the torque converter, which is a fluid or hydraulic connection.

In automobiles with automatic transmissions, the torque converter replaces the mechanical clutch disc, plate, and fork.

Typically, the torque converter is located between the engine flexplate and the gearbox.

You will understand the different components of the torque converter after reading this post, as well as the signs of a malfunctioning torque converter and how to repair torque converter issues on your own.

A defective torque converter will be distinguishable from a bad gearbox.

Parts For Torque Converters

Every car with an automatic gearbox features a four-part torque converter.

  • Stator: The torque converter’s reel conductor is known as the stator. It is the torque converter’s mind. The stator controls fluid flow within the converter and controls how much torque is amplified by the converter. A one-way clutch within the converter aids in moving the fluid through it.
  • Impeller pump: When working on an industrial torque converter, one item to check first should be the impeller pump. A centrifugal pump-like impeller pump is used by the torque converter. The impeller pump is designed to circulate fluid in a revolving pattern, exactly like the centrifugal pump. The vacuum created by the impeller pump draws fluids toward the center of the pump, where they circulate through converters outside the wall before being expelled.
  • Turbine: The impeller pump’s released fluid enters the turbine’s blades. The gearbox’s internal components are linked to the turbine, which also spins the transmission and powers the wheels.
  • Clutch: In high gears, the clutch is utilized to lock up the gearbox and stop it from sliding. Modern clutch converters often have a clutch. They are often referred to as friction clutches.
  • The transmission fluid: Although the transmission fluid is not a component of the torque converter, it is essential for hydraulic connection, smooth starts, and engine stall prevention when the gears are disengaged. Fortunately, if your torque converter breaks, you won’t need to worry about rebuilding or replacing your complete automatic gearbox. You can repair or replace the torque converter as a single item since it is a self-contained component.

Symptoms and Signs of a Faulty Torque Converter

Problems with a bad or failing torque converter are often mistaken for gearbox issues.

As a consequence, repairing or rebuilding a gearbox will cost thousands of dollars for automobile owners.

They could be unaware that their torque converter, which is less important than the gearbox itself, is the source of the problems.

The car engine must do more tasks to maintain the same engine speed if the torque converter malfunctions.

The engine will need to turn more often per minute, which will lower fluid pressure and fuel efficiency.

In the worst case, the system would generate additional heat, which can affect other parts.

Let’s briefly review the warning indications of a failing torque converter.

#1. Gearshift Issues

You probably have a bad torque converter if your gear shifts seem mushy or sluggish.

Lower pressure production is mostly to blame for this.

You may encounter a rough and unusual gear change rather than a smooth and crisp transmission shift.

Raising the torque converter output pressure by increasing engine RPM is the greatest approach to attain that sharp and smooth gear.

#2. Vehicle Speed Issues

The torque converter may abruptly raise or decrease the vehicle’s speed as a consequence of irregular torque converter output pressure.

Because of the fluctuating fluid pressure at such time, the throttle will begin to malfunction.

Don’t drive your car until it is fixed since it may be risky to do so at this point.

Before checking the torque converter, you could sense a shudder, but don’t forget to contact your professional to check the gearbox mounts and adjust them if necessary.

#3. Shuddering

It’s likely that you have torque converter issues if your automobile shakes or rattles when traveling between 30 and 45 mph.

You may be able to detect the vibration since it may feel like a rough road while you’re driving on it.

The trembling sensation won’t last all the time.

Usually, it occurs and vanishes without warning.

Once you see it for the first time, you should contact your technician to have your transmission checked.

#4. Slipping Transmission

Because it can’t effectively handle fluid, a bad torque converter will quickly make itself known.

Low acceleration will come from either too much or too little fluid entering the gearbox, which can cause gear slippage.

Additionally, the fuel efficiency will be reduced.

The transmission fluid might also degrade.

Every time you have transmission slippage, you should always check your transmission fluid.

#5. Rattling Or Whining Sounds

Every automobile makes some kind of noise.

You may detect whether anything is wrong with your automobile after a lengthy trip by paying attention to the sounds it makes.

Similar to when a power steering pump has little to no fluid in it, a failing torque converter in a car may make a wailing or whining noise similar to one.

While the clutch mechanism in the torque converter malfunctions, you’ll hear a whining or rattling sound that may not be audible when the vehicle is in park.

You know you have torque converter issues if the whining sounds becomes louder as you shift gearbox ratios.

So, what ultimately leads to a torque converter failing? Many things may cause a torque converter to malfunction.

Excessive friction, which may be brought on by a broken torque converter needle bearing, may lead to torque converter failure.

Additionally, a poor clutch solenoid and faulty seals may be to blame.

#6. Overheating

Some vehicles include a transmission temperature indicator that alerts the driver if the transmission is becoming too hot.

You can notice that your automobile starts performing strangely, shifts difficult or doesn’t shift at all when the transmission temperature rises over the recommended operating temperature.

It may be anything wrong with your torque converter when two problems coexist.

The torque converter’s inability to effectively transmit power from the engine to the gearbox is the apparent meaning of a transmission overheating.

#7. Transmission Fluid That’s Been Tainted

The torque converter needs high-quality transmission fluid to function correctly since it is a hydraulic and fluid coupling.

Imagine that the transmission fluid becomes tainted.

Anything that makes use of the fluid will be somewhat impacted.

The likelihood that you have a malfunctioning or subpar torque converter increases if you also detect that your gearbox fluid is polluted.

#8. Leaking Fluid

There is a probability that you have broken torque converter seals if you see fluid pouring from between the gearbox and the engine.

The torque converter seals might get compromised by a number of sources and start to leak.

The torque converter isn’t maintaining the proper quantity of transmission needed to transmit power from the engine to the gearbox when you have fluid leaks.

Long-term effects of this will harm the engine and gearbox.

How To Address Issues With Torque Converters

Your complete gearbox must be disassembled in order to replace or rebuild the torque converter in order to resolve a poor torque converter issue.

There are, however, tried-and-true simple remedies that you may use to address transmission issues.

  • What to do if your transmission is trembling and slipping: The first thing you want to do when you notice this is to check the level of your transmission fluid. Until you check your fluid level, you probably won’t be able to tell whether the slippage or shuddering is related to your torque. Please be aware that trembling and slippage are often caused by inadequate or the incorrect kind of transmission fluid.
  • What you should do to address overheating and fluid leaks: Fluid leaks often lead to low transmission fluid levels, which may cause overheating. In addition to overheating, low fluid levels may also contribute to trembling and slippage. To solve this issue, you must identify the cause of the fluid leak (typically a broken seal) and replace it.
  • What to do if your fluid is contaminated: Grit and filth in your transmission fluid are a warning of a more serious problem with the gearbox or torque converter, which you should never overlook. This indicates that anything is out of alignment, and you should either follow the instructions below or call your technician.

In general, the steps below describe what you should do on your own as soon as you realize that anything is out of place.

You are aware that the torque converter is a complicated machine, and that when it breaks down, you must remove it, empty the fluid, rebuild it, or replace it entirely.

Without having to remove the torque converter, you may use this approach to quickly remedy your torque converter issues.

Items Required

  • Hydraulic jack, floor
  • Jack postures
  • Rolling blocks
  • Funnel
  • Spanner wrench
  • The fabled quick shiver cure
  • Transaxle fluid
  • Catchpan for oil
  • Lay-board mechanic
  • With ratchets

Step 1. Lift and pack the park:

Place the car on a flat, firm surface.

Blocking off the wheels will allow you to swiftly raise the automobile and get underneath it.

Don’t forget to use Jack stands to support the vehicle.

Car A vehicle can never be supported by only jacks.

Slide your mechanic’s lay-board beneath the vehicle after grabbing it.

Step 2. Drain the transmission fluid:

To do this, slide underneath the car and unbolt the gearbox sump.

To avoid damaging the garage floor, place the waste oil collecting pan precisely under the gearbox.

After draining, put the liquid in a container and later dispose of it.

Reinstall the sump and tighten it with your hand.

Torque the sump using the correct tool you used before.

Step 3. Add the appropriate fluid to the new transmission:

Get the transmission fluid suggested for your car and fill it up till the standard gauge is reached.

On the transmission dipstick, the recommended transmission fluid for a vehicle is often stated.

Visit your owner’s manual or the manufacturer’s website if you can’t find it on the transmission dipstick.

Step 4. Start the engine after lowering the Jack:

You should now take the Jack stands off and stow the car.

Recheck the transmission fluid’s gauge after starting the engine.

If necessary, add extra liquid.

The next step is taken after the fluid has been gauged.

Step 5. Supplement the transmission fluid with Legend Instant Shudder Fix:

A perfect solution designed specifically to address torque converter issues is Instant Shudder Fix.

Typically, the product is thick and a little challenging to pour into the transmission.

Boil a quart of boiling water and put it in a small basin to make things much simpler.

Put the instant “shiver fix” in the bowl after that, and let it sit there for 5 to 10 minutes.

Locate your car’s gearbox dipstick and pour the quick shudder repair into the fluid after the substance has dissolved into a liquid state.

Reassemble everything, then take a 10- to 15-minute test drive.

Common Torque Converter Problems and Solutions! An Online Video

5 Common Torque Converter Issues and How to Avoid Them! – Summit Racing


What noise does a malfunctioning torque converter make?

Every car creates a sound, that much is certain.

Knowing the sound of your car can help you save money and let you know when anything is wrong.

It will make a strange noise, such as whining or rattling, if the torque converter begins to fail or is entirely destroyed.

Within seconds, the sound will start and then abruptly end.

Will a malfunctioning torque converter produce a code?

The question of whether a malfunctioning torque converter would generate a code has long worried the typical automobile owner.

In forums for cars, this subject has been posed many times.

The check engine light will turn on as a result of a malfunctioning transmission solenoid registering a diagnostic problem code (DTC).

Does a malfunctioning torque converter generate a banging noise?

If you have loose torque converter nuts, a faulty TC will create a strange noise similar to a piston slap or a con-rod knock.

However, the flex plate is only being struck by the torque converter.

If it hasn’t already impacted anything, all that has to be done to stop the noise is tighten the nuts.

A faulty torque converter may harm a gearbox.

Without a doubt.

Poor TC may result in friction damage, transmission fluid degeneration, and overheating.

The gearbox suffers greater harm the more you disregard the torque converter issues.

Last Word

Once you are aware of the indications to look out for, torque converter issues may be avoided.

Fixing the symptoms is crucial when you become aware of them.

Now that you are aware of the reasons of torque converter failure, the signs of a damaged torque converter, and a simple remedy for a failed or subpar torque converter.

Call your technician to undertake the repair if you lack the confidence to complete it yourself.

When compared to the transmission damage it may cause if the torque converter is neglected for a long time, the cost of repair or replacement is rather low.

Therefore, it’s critical to identify and address torque converter issues early on.

Torque converter components

What Causes A Torque Converter To Fail Videos Suggestions From Youtube

Torque Converter Failures Explained. ✔ – TechTrixInfo
Torque Converter Shudder: The Symptom And Fixes – Barbour’s Auto Help

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Written by Bob Matsuoka
Bob Matsuoka is a blogger and founder of RVing Beginner blog. He has been blogging for over five years, writing about his own family’s RV adventures, tips for people who are interested in buying an RV or taking their family on an adventure by RV.