will check engine light come on for transmission, check engine light

Will Check Engine Light Come On For Transmission

The check engine light serves as an enigmatic signal, warning us of potential problems within our beloved vehicles. Will the check engine light come on for transmission?

Yes, the check engine light can illuminate due to transmission issues. When there is an issue in the transmission system, the transmission sensor sends a signal to the car’s computer, triggering the check engine light. Other symptoms of transmission problems include gear refusal, fluid leaks, burning smells, and slipping gears.

After thorough research, I was able to find out how transmission issues cause the check engine light. Then I reset the check engine light on my car on my own.

In this article, I will explain the information I gathered through research and how I reset the check engine light as a step-by-step guide.

How Does Check Engine Light Work?

check engine light, brake light, dashboard meters of a car

In the realm of automotive diagnostics, the operation of the check engine light is rooted in the utilization of input signals by vehicle computers. These signals, sourced from various sensors, are processed by the computer to generate control signals that govern fuel and spark delivery, transmission shifting, and other essential functions.

The car’s computer takes on the responsibility of continuously monitoring all input signals that could potentially impact emissions.

Why Does the Check Engine Light Comes On?

Whenever the computer detects any deviations in the monitored signals that surpass the limits mandated by regulatory authorities, it triggers the illumination of the “Check Engine” light. Furthermore, the computer evaluates whether the identified issue meets the criteria for setting a specific code.

It’s important to note that these codes don’t directly pinpoint the failed part or system; rather, they indicate the part or system affected by the underlying problem. This characteristic of the codes can sometimes lead to confusion rather than providing clear and straightforward guidance.

How do Transmission Problems Cause Check Engine Light?

The car’s main computer always talks with sensors. If there is a problem in the transmission system, the transmission sensor sends a signal to the main computer. Then it makes the check engine light turn on to inform us about the problem.

Other Symptoms of Transmission Problems

Other than the check engine light, here are some other signs of transmission problems.

Refusal to switch gearsThe Vehicle struggles or refuses to change gears
Unusual soundsHumming, whining, or clunking noises
Burning smellA burning odor indicates an overheating transmission or old, burned transmission fluid.
Slipping gearsGears slipping in and out of place, accompanied by engine revving and delayed acceleration.
Noises when in neutralCars with automatic transmissions are more likely to exhibit this symptom.
Leaking fluidIdentification of red, sweet-smelling fluid under the vehicle
Grinding or shakingGrinding or shaking sensation during gear changes is indicative of underlying transmission problems.
UnresponsiveThe vehicle does not respond to gear changes, especially from park to drive
Dragging clutchFailure to disengage the clutch disk, resulting in gear clashes and involuntary movement while shifting.

Let’s dive in deep.

Refusal to Switch Gears

One of the most apparent signs of transmission trouble is when your vehicle refuses or struggles to change gears. This could be due to low or incorrect types of transmission fluid.

Unusual Sounds

Humming, whining, or clunking noises coming from your car are never pleasant. While multiple factors can contribute to these strange sounds, it’s crucial to have them assessed by a professional mechanic to rule out any transmission-related issues.

Burning Smell

If you catch a whiff of a burning odor coming from your car, it’s essential to take immediate action. This smell may indicate that your transmission is overheating or that the fluid has become old and burned.

Slipping Gears

Experiencing gears slipping in and out of place while driving can be both alarming and dangerous. Never ignore this symptom, as driving with a slipping transmission is not recommended. Keep an ear out for the engine revving during gear changes, similar to the sensation of driving on ice.

Additional signs of slipping gears include delayed acceleration, strange noises, and a harsh response while shifting.

Leaking Fluid

oil leak from transmission

Identifying a leaking transmission fluid is relatively straightforward. It’s critical to let your mechanic know if you spot a red, sweet-smelling fluid underneath your car in the garage or parking lot.

Noises When in Neutral

Unusual noises emanating from your vehicle while in neutral can be a clear indication of transmission issues. It could be as simple as needing new transmission fluid, which can be resolved with a professional flush and replacement.

Grinding or Shaking

If you experience grinding or shaking, particularly during gear changes, it’s a cause for concern and likely points to a transmission problem.


When your car fails to respond to gear changes, especially when shifting from park to drive, your transmission likely requires attention.

Dragging Clutch

When the clutch fails to disengage from the flywheel after pressing the pedal, you may have a dragging clutch issue. This problem leads to gear clashes and involuntary movement when shifting gears. Mechanical failure or clutch misplacement are common causes.

How did I Reset the Check Engine Light?

My car had a fluid leak, and that was the reason for the check engine light. I was able to repair the fluid leak with my friend, and I reset the check engine light on my own. I finished the task in this manner.

First, I began by turning off the engine of my car.

Then, I located the ground connection in the engine bay and carefully removed it, placing it in a safe location.

Next, I kept the ground connection disconnected for about one to two minutes to ensure a complete reset of the car’s computer system.

Once I completed the above steps, I started the engine of the car again.

I checked if the check engine light was no longer illuminated. Done! The process was successful!


What happens if you leave the engine light?

When it comes to the check engine light, a crucial rule of thumb is to never continue driving if it starts flashing. This flashing light signifies an emergency, often indicating an engine misfire. Ignoring this warning and continuing to drive can lead to severe consequences, including irreversible damage, especially to the costly catalytic converter.

When the check engine light comes on, what should you check first?

Before considering other causes, it is advisable to check the condition of your gas cap. In numerous vehicles, there is a loose gas cap indicator that activates before the check engine light illuminates. If your gas cap is not securely fastened or if the seal is inadequate, it can lead to vapor leakage within the fuel system, prompting the check engine light to activate.

What are the components of a vehicle transmission system?

The transmission system encompasses several integral components that work together to facilitate power transmission. These components include the clutch, gearbox (also referred to as the transmission), drive shaft or propeller shaft, universal joints, rear axle, as well as wheels and tires.

Each of these components, when connected to the engine, plays a crucial role in the overall process of power transmission, contributing to the seamless functioning of the vehicle.

Can a bad transmission destroy the engine?

If your transmission fluid runs out or if your transmission is not functioning properly, it is essential to address this issue promptly. Continuing to drive under such circumstances can lead to overheating of the engine, which can result in significant damage.

To prevent irreversible and expensive engine damage, it is advisable to seek prompt repairs and resolution for transmission-related problems. Taking timely action can help safeguard the longevity and performance of your engine.


I hope now you understand how the check engine light comes on due to transmission problems. The check engine light serves as a warning sign for various issues detected by the car’s computer, including problems within the transmission system.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *