How to Remove a Transmission

by John Stevens J.D.

As with most other car repairs, the majority of the cost to rebuild and replace a transmission is due to the labor involved. By removing the transmission yourself and taking the transmission to the repair shop, you can realize a significant savings. Thankfully, removing a transmission is a relatively straightforward task. This article will explain how to remove a transmission.

Raise the vehicle with a jack and support the vehicle with safety stands.

Disconnect the negative battery cable from the battery terminal with a wrench. The negative battery terminal is marked with a "---" symbol. Disconnect the positive battery cable from the positive battery terminal. The positive battery terminal is marked with a "+" symbol.

Remove the starter. The starter is accessible from under the vehicle and sits between the engine and the transmission. The starter is usually held in place with two bolts, which must first be removed with a wrench.

Disconnect the driveshaft from the back of the transmission. First, remove the driveshaft from the differential. The driveshaft is secured to the differential with two U-bolts. Two nuts hold each U-bolt in place. Remove the nuts, then pull the driveshaft away from the differential. Second, simply pull the driveshaft away from the transmission, and the driveshaft will slide out of the rear of the transmission.

Disconnect the speedometer cable and shift linkage from the driver's side of the transmission. The speedometer cable can be disconnected by turning the nut at the end of the cable with a wrench. The shift linkage is secured to the side of the transmission with a nut and a bolt. Remove the nut with a wrench, then push the bolt out from the linkage.

Remove the transmission-to-flywheel bolts. These bolts can be accessed from underneath the vehicle. It will be necessary to manually turn the crankshaft pulley a little at a time with a wrench to expose all of the bolts.

Remove the bolts that attach the transmission's bell housing to the cylinder block.

Place a jack with a wood block on top of the jack underneath the transmission's pan. Raise the jack until the wood block rests against the transmission. This wood block will be necessary to support the weight of the transmission when it is removed.

Remove the transmission's crossmember. The crossmember sits beneath the transmission and attaches to the frame of the vehicle. Generally, the crossmember is attached to the body with two long bolts, which can be removed with a wrench.

Slide the transmission away from the engine slowly to complete the removal.

Items you will need

About the Author

John Stevens has been a writer for various websites since 2008. He holds an Associate of Science in administration of justice from Riverside Community College, a Bachelor of Arts in criminal justice from California State University, San Bernardino, and a Juris Doctor from Whittier Law School. Stevens is a lawyer and licensed real-estate broker.

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