‘I’m a mechanic – never do five things in an automatic car’

The popular online mechanic Scotty Kilmer has advised drivers of automatic cars on how to stay out of trouble and avoid costly repairs.

Scotty, who has been a mechanic for over 55 years, regularly posts videos to his YouTube channel on how drivers can get the most out of their cars.

In one of his most popular videos, Scotty explained that all owners of a vehicle with an automatic gearbox should be mindful about changing the transmission fluid regularly.

He said: “If you have a later model car, don’t listen to this nonsense. This says ‘no need to replace ATF [Automatic Transmission Fluid] under normal driving conditions.

“It’s a bunch of nonsense. I’ve dealt with that in a recent video, it just basically says ‘oh the fluid is good for the lifetime of the transmission’ but then the lifetime of the transmission is less and less and less, because you don’t want dirty fluid in.”

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Scotty added that drivers should change the transmission fluid in their vehicles every 60,000 to 80,000 miles to avoid trouble.

In a bid to improve performance and fuel economy, many automatic transmission systems are complex and can cost a lot of money to replace.

According to Scotty, replacement transmissions for modern automatic cars can cost up to $5,000 (£4,000), meaning it is important to look after them.

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Later in the video, Scotty added that drivers should never change gears from drive to reverse when the vehicle is moving.

He added: “The second thing never to do is never accidentally have your car go from drive into reverse while the car’s moving.

“I’ve had more than one of my customers, teenage kids when they’re learning now to drive and screwing around with their friends, do that, hit it into reverse, and they just destroyed the transmission.”

Finally, Scotty advised drivers to change the gear out of drive if they have stopped while the engine is still running.

He continued: “Now the next thing not to do with an automatic transmission car is leaving it in drive if you’re idling for a really long period of time, because leaving it in drive if you’re idling for a long time, that could lead to overheating of the inside of the transmission.

“If you’re going to be sitting there for a really long time, just shut the car off or at least put it into park, because in park it’s not directly connected, the torque converter isn’t sending a lot of power so it won’t get quite as hot in park as it will in drive.”

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