An Automatic transmission is a torque multiplication device that is attached to your vehicle’s engine, which enables your vehicle to shift gears automatically with little or no driver input.
Cars with automatic gear are easy to drive and takes little effort on the part of the driver, unlike manual gears. We have written about 5 things you should not do to cars with automatic gears and other issues like: not servicing gearbox oil at intervals – say, every 6months, using wrong fluids, bad mechanic, bad driving habits or others, can make your gear box go bad, sometimes, earlier than expected. “Age” too can call for a change of gear boxes too.
In most car brands, such as Toyota, Mercedes, Mitsubishi, Opel and so on, once gears begin to fail, like gear lever not shifting, gear staying too long on a particular gear, jerks, or the gear packing up outrightly, the only option you have is to replace your gearbox.
However, in Volvo cars with automatic gears, if your automatic transmission is bad, you can use your car for longer periods, say, up to five years or till you sell the car or change the gear. This is possible if you know how to “prime” the gear. According to Cambridge dictionary, “Prime” is a verb which means to make sometime ready for use. If a faulty gear prevents your car to drive, make jerks as you engage gear, you can just prime the gear and you are good to go.
My friend drives a 2000 Volvo S40 2.0L (turbo) since 10yrs now and had this issue. I drive the car more than he does, so I know – he just that he made me to like Volvos and I now know that Volvos are not bad as people paint it to be. After all, Volvo pioneered, amongst others, the three-point seat belt that all cars use today.
How To Prime Your Volvo Car
In the video below, a Volvo S40 2.0L T was used and it is applicable in other automatic transmission Volvo cars.
Let us assume you wanted to warm up your car in the morning and drive out or you have already driven your car to a place and you tried to engage the gear but you hear a jerk (and this would make the car not move well and it would consume more gas), the gears don’t engage well, just do the following steps to “prime” your gear and you are good to go.
1. Switch off the car and make sure your car gear lever is on “P”.
2. Hold the gear knob, while pressing the gear release button (in Volvo S40 used, it is in from of the gear lever as shown in the video)
3. Engage the gear lever from” P” to the last gear (in S40, the first is “P” and the last is “L”) three times consecutively as shown in the video (not too fast or too slow) and the third time, your gear lever should stop at ” P” where you started.
4. Start the car and engage the gear and it should drive fine. If it doesn’t, try it again.
Note: This tip doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t change your transmission if you can afford it but unlike other cars, you can use it longer before changing.
Also remember to continue to service (transmission fluid) the gear box at intervals, as said above.
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