Though Lexus vehicles are typically known for their reliability and style, a potential issue that many Lexus vehicles face is drivetrain failure. For your convenience, we compiled a list of the most common signs and symptoms of drivetrain failure you should look for if you suspect a problem. Also, we will discuss some underlying causes and what to do when it happens to your Lexus.
Symptoms of Drivetrain Failure
There are many different ways that drivetrain failure can present itself. While you will still be able to operate your vehicle while experiencing some of these symptoms, they’re a sign that something is seriously wrong with your vehicle and you should have it inspected by a professional mechanic as soon as possible.
Unfortunately, in most cases, these symptoms will not be enough for you to know for certain what the problem is. Many different car malfunctions can cause similar symptoms. That’s why it’s so important that you get your car checked by a professional as soon as you notice something that seems off. Professionals who know the Lexus brand have the tools necessary to properly inspect and diagnose problems so a plan of action can be discussed with you.
- Strange noises. Specifically, clunking or grinding noises that occur when you attempt to shift gears could be a sign of either a problem with the transmission or with the drivetrain.
- Intense shaking. Going along with the previous point, when there are grinding and clunking noises, you are also likely to experience shaking. In the case of the drivetrain, intense vibrations felt underneath the vehicle could be caused by U-joints that have worn and loosened over time, causing the shaking to occur.
- Leaking transmission fluid. While the drivetrain and the transmission are different parts of the engine, they are very closely connected. So, when the drivetrain is shaking and bumping around, it can damage the transmission, leading to fluid leaking out.
- Slow or delayed acceleration. The drivetrain is what passes the power from the engines to the wheels and allows them to turn and move. So if your car doesn’t seem to be able to produce the same horsepower as you demand, it could be because of a failing drivetrain.
- The drivetrain warning light. Some cars may have an indicator on the dashboard that will turn on to alert the driver when there is a problem with the drivetrain. Similar to the check-engine light, this is called the drivetrain warning light. If your vehicle has one and you see it come on, you should not ignore it.
Causes of Drivetrain Failure
One of the most common causes of drivetrain malfunctions is faulty or loosening U-joints. Short for universal joints, U-joints are small pieces of metal that connect the driveshaft to the differential. In some cases, it connects two drivetrains. They are what allow the drivetrain to move around and do its job.
However, as these little pieces loosen, the tightly-woven web that makes up the inside of your car’s systems starts to fall apart, and the drivetrain can move around more than it should. This leads to the grinding and clunking noises we talked about earlier.
Another cause of drivetrain failure is transmission problems and transmission leaks. While drivetrain problems can lead to transmission leaks, they can also be caused by transmission leaks. The purpose of transmission fluid is to make sure that all the parts of the transmission are kept lubricated so that they can run smoothly. If the fluid is leaking, these parts aren’t getting enough lubrication, which means that they can start grinding against each other, becoming damaged.
What to Do When Faced with Drivetrain Failure in Your Lexus
The best place to go when you think you might have a drivetrain problem is Encore Motorcars. We are conveniently located for customers in Bradenton, Ellenton, Nokomis, Osprey, Parrish, Venice, Lakewood Ranch, Longboat Key, Siesta Key, University Park, and Sarasota, Florida.
No matter what trouble you’re having with your Lexus, be it drivetrain issues or not, we hope you’ll come to visit us. Contact us today to set up an appointment and to learn more about our services. We look forward to meeting you and becoming your service center for all your car care and maintenance needs.
* Lexus Car image credit goes to: Alexander Shapovalov.