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Home  >  Products & Services  >  Motorsports & Aftermarket  >  Support Center  >  FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Ford Shelby GT500

What type of fluid does TREMEC recommended?

Why use automatic transmission fluid in a manual gearbox?

Why not use a synthetic fluid?

Why not use gear oil in one of your transmissions?

How much "power" can each of your transmissions handle?

Which of your transmissions can handle the most "power"?

How does a manual transmission work?

Which clutches do you recommend for your various transmission models?

Is it true that modern automatic transmissions are just as efficient as manuals?

Does TREMEC offer an automatic transmission? Why not?

Does TREMEC offer transmissions for front-wheel-drive sport compact applications?

Does TREMEC produce performance differentials, lockers, or axles?

Is it true that TREMEC also manufacturers transmissions and components for commercial trucks and agricultural equipment?

Which TREMEC Transmission will work best in my application?

Which of your transmissions offers the best gains in fuel economy?

I'm not too worried about fuel economy, so why should I care about overdrive?

I currently have an automatic, but would like to convert to a manual. Do you guys make conversion kits?

Is it true that your transmissions will bolt up directly to my GM 'Muncie' or Ford 'Toploader' bellhousing?

Which TREMEC Transmission is best for drag racing?

Which TREMEC Transmission is best for road racing?

Can I buy a transmission or component directly from TREMEC?

Does TREMEC offer sponsorships for racers and/or builders?

How do I locate the nearest TREMEC distributor or authorized reseller?

Who do I contact in the event that I have problem with a TREMEC Transmission?

Where are TREMEC Transmissions made?

Which is best for me, a 5-speed or 6-speed?

What parts/tools do I need to install one of your transmissions in my car?

My transmission makes a loud 'whining' sound in reverse. Is this normal?

What is the warranty on a TREMEC Transmission?

How do I set driveline angles and why are they important?

How do I index the bellhousing, and why is it important?

My transmission is hard to shift. What should I do?

My transmission grinds when I attempt to change gears. What does this mean?

My vehicle has a vibration that didn't exist prior to the installation of your transmission. Is there something wrong with the unit? How do I fix it?

 

Q: What type of fluid does TREMEC recommended?

A: For all TKO 5-speed models, TREMEC recommends GM Synchromesh (GM Part # 12345349). For all other aftermarket models we recommend Dexron III ATF.

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Q: Why use automatic transmission fluid in a manual gearbox?

A: Automatic transmission fluids provide the necessary protection and lubrication, while still allowing the synchronizer to function at its best.

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Q: Why not use a synthetic fluid?

A: Some brands of synthetic fluid contain powerful detergents and additives that can prove harmful to your transmission's synchronizers. While many synthetic fluids perform very well, in most cases, we do not recommend their use. Furthermore, they may void your warranty. For peace of mind, remember that TREMEC conducts all of its OEM validation testing using conventional fluids without issue.

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Q: Why not use gear oil in one of your transmissions?

A: A hypoid gear oil by design does not allow mechanical surfaces to make contact with one another. A synchronizer relies on friction (much like your car's brakes) to do its job. Thus, gear oil in a synchronized transmission can be a bad combination, potentially causing a variety of shift quality issues. Furthermore, many gear oils contain sulfur additives that can damage friction materials.

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Q: How much "power" can each of your transmissions handle?

A: For specific Torque Capacity ratings, please visit the web page that corresponds with the product you are interested in using. For further information, please feel free to contact our customer service department using the information found in the Contact Us link. And remember, transmission ratings are dependant on torque, not horsepower.

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Q: Which of your transmissions can handle the most "power"?

A: Our T-56 Magnum 6-speed is rated to accept as much as 700-lb. ft. of sustained torque in a vehicle weighing as much as 4,500 lbs. However, in a case where warranty considerations are not as great of a concern, it is important to note that TREMEC Transmissions can often handle substantially more power if the user practices common sense and understands the failure conditions of a given driveline part. For example: A four-thousand-pound-plus car launching at high rpm on drag slicks is more likely to cause a failure than a lighter weight, smaller displacement, street car on aggressive street radials.

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Q: How does a manual transmission work?

A: We could explain it, but this video will probably make it easier: http://www.howstuffworks.com/transmission.htm

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Q: Which clutches do you recommend for your various transmission models?

A: TREMEC does not manufacturer or officially endorse any clutch manufacturer. Therefore, this is typically a question best handled by a sales/technical representative from your preferred brand of clutch, or authorized TREMEC distributor. We will say, however, that TREMEC users should be aware of the effects that an overly-aggressive clutch can have on drivability and longevity of the product.

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Q: Is it true that modern automatic transmissions are just as efficient as manuals?

A: No. Although OEM's routinely try to make the case that because of modern computer controls, automatics are just as efficient as manuals, the truth is that no fluid-driven conventional automatic can achieve the same level of efficiency as one of our manual transmissions. Computer controls act merely to help keep an inefficient system at the peak of its efficiency. Automatics must 'launch' with an open or unlocked torque converter. Meaning that at every start, automatics are at their most inefficient state. At constant speeds one can more accurately compare the two, but when the same ratios are considered, manuals are always more efficient.

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Q: Does TREMEC offer an automatic transmission? Why not?

A: TREMEC does not offer an automatic transmission because that is not our business. We are a gear and shaft manufacturer with extensive range in applications that require such technology. TREMEC has developed many other advanced transmission and component technologies (such as automated manual transmissions), but they often are not relevant or practical in the automotive aftermarket arena.

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Q: Does TREMEC offer transmissions for front-wheel-drive sport compact applications?

A: We're sorry, but no. All TREMEC Transmissions are designed for rear-wheel-drive applications. Limited offerings for the four-wheel-drive light truck market are also available.

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Q: Does TREMEC produce performance differentials, lockers, or axles?

A: No. In regards to its aftermarket business, TREMEC is strictly a manufacturer of manual transmission assemblies and select related components (i.e. slip yokes, offset shifters, etc.).

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Q: Is it true that TREMEC also manufacturers transmissions and components for commercial trucks and agricultural equipment?

A: Yes, TREMEC can provide transmissions for medium and heavy trucks up to Class 8, and manufacturers a variety of specialty components sold under both the TREMEC and SPICER brand names. For further information contact a member of our sales staff using the information found on the Contact Us page or follow this link to our corporate site: www.ttcautomotive.com

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Q: Which TREMEC Transmission will work best in my application?

A: TREMEC offers a variety of high-performance 'street-oriented' products to serve the general automotive enthusiast and sportsman racing communities. As a manufacturer we offer limited application and racing support, but do have many distributors in place to address such needs. For help finding the appropriate distributor, please use our Distributor Search function, or contact us using the information on the Contact Us page.

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Q: Which of your transmissions offers the best gains in fuel economy?

A: Both the TREMEC T-56 and T-56 Magnum offer optional double overdrive ratios as deep as .50:1, for a 50-percent reduction in RPM in sixth gear (similar to a late-model Corvette). However, it is important to consider that the rest of your powertrain combination must 'agree' with such a deep overdrive ratio before making a decision on what to purchase. For example, if you have an aggressive cam profile that doesn't effectively operate until 2,500 RPM or higher, and a .50:1 sixth gear allows your car to turn 1,500 RPM at 65 MPH, then you may need to go over 80 MPH just to use sixth gear without lugging and sputtering! In such an instance we would recommend an overdrive ratio of .63 or higher (numerically), which can be found in any one of the TREMEC five and six speed models. These ratios are most common in the automotive community and would be similar to what you might find in a factory 5-speed equipped car.

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Q: I'm not too worried about fuel economy, so why should I care about overdrive?

A: The overdrive feature of a TREMEC Transmission provides many benefits beyond exceptional fuel savings. First, the significant drop in RPM during highway use will greatly extend engine and accessory life. Second, cruising will be more pleasurable as cabin noise will be substantially reduced. Lastly, you'll never have to watch the competition blow past you on the highway because you're out of RPM ever again!

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Q: I currently have an automatic, but would like to convert to a manual. Do you guys make conversion kits?

A: No, but many of our distributors do. To locate the distributor that best suits your needs please refer to our Distributor Search feature, or contact our customer service team using the information found on the Contact Us page.

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Q: Is it true that your transmissions will bolt up directly to my GM 'Muncie' or Ford 'Toploader' bellhousing?

A: Yes. In the case of GM applications, any TREMEC Transmission labeled simply as "GM" or "GM Aftermarket", is intended to bolt directly to a GM/Muncie-style bellhousing. The same is also true of "Ford" or "Ford Aftermarket" models and Toploader bellhousings. However, this does not always take into account other variables such as pilot depth, the length and spline count of the input shaft, etc. For information regarding a specific application it is usually best to consult one of our distributors or contact our customer service team prior to making a purchase.

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Q: Which TREMEC Transmission is best for drag racing?

A: The TREMEC TKO 5-speed is often the preferred choice of many hardcore sportsman drag racers and weekend warriors due to its high strength to weight ratio. In the case of a weekend warrior, the TKO offers durability at the track, while still proving exceptionally civil and fuel efficient for on-highway use. For more 'race-only' applications, the TKO is also ideal platform for race modifications, with a proven track record to support it. However, be aware that modified/altered products are not covered under warranty. See our Limited Warranty page.

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Q: Which TREMEC Transmission is best for road racing?

A: Again, the TREMEC TKO 5-speed is often the preferred choice of many weekend club racers due to its high strength to weight ratio, as well as, the fact that it can be had with an aggressive 0.82:1 overdrive ratio for exceptional pulling power down long straight-a-ways. Conversely, the if you have the room in your budget and weight is not dominant concern, the T-56 Magnum offers similar features, but with an additional overdrive for on-highway use, as well as, higher RPM shift capabilities and increased torque capacity.

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Q: Can I buy a transmission or component directly from TREMEC?

A: No, TREMEC does not sell direct to the public.

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Q: Does TREMEC offer sponsorships for racers and/or builders?

A: Yes, in limited amounts, and only after being approved by our motorsports panel. To inquire about sponsorships, please contact us using the information found on the Contact Us page. TREMEC also supports contingency programs within the NMRA & NMCA Drag Racing Series.

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Q: How do I locate the nearest TREMEC distributor or authorized reseller?

A: Please refer to our Distributor Search feature or contact our customer support team using the information found in the Contact Us page.

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Q: Who do I contact in the event that I have problem with a TREMEC Transmission?

A: In many cases, the distributor you originally purchased your transmission from is best equipped to field questions regarding the unit, as well as handle the servicing of that unit. This is due to the fact that many distributors modify our transmissions to meet specific needs or fit specific applications. As an alternative, TREMEC's Michigan-based customer service team is always ready to help, and can be reached using the information found on the Contact Us page.

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Q: Where are TREMEC Transmissions made?

A: TREMEC Transmissions are proudly built in the place where TREMEC was founded: Queretaro, Mexico. Engineering, sales, marketing, human resources, and customer support are located just outside the world's motor capital in Plymouth, Michigan.

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Q: Which is best for me, a 5-speed or 6-speed?

A: There a variety of factors to consider when making this decision. If budget is a major concern, the TKO 5-speed offers strength, versatility, excellent shift quality, and a deep overdrive at a great value. Furthermore, in racing applications, a six-speed offers unnecessary weight gains. Conversely, those who enjoy having the best of the best will appreciate the T-56 Magnum's added refinement over the TKO, additional gear for improved cruising, and increased torque capacity.

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Q: What parts/tools do I need to install one of your transmissions in my car?

A: In most cases installing a TREMEC to replace your factory transmission requires modification to your driveshaft, crossmember, and clutch/bellhousing arrangement amongst other things. However, in many cases the swap can be done with little-to-no specialized tools. Contact a TREMEC customer service agent for help finding a distributor to assist in your installation.

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Q: My transmission makes a loud 'whining' sound in reverse. Is this normal?

A: Yes. Reverse gears in many manual transmissions are of the 'spur' type, or feature straight teeth. By design they are noisier than the helical cut forward gears featured in a TREMEC. Thus, the reason they are not used for forward speeds. Additionally, TREMEC does also produce transmission models with fully synchronized, helical reverse gears.

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Q: What is the warranty on a TREMEC Transmission?

A: TREMEC Transmissions come with an unlimited mileage warranty that lasts 180 days (approximately 6 months) from the original date of purchase. Claims relating to damage incurred while racing, or under similar abusive conditions, will not be covered by the warranty. For specific terms, please click here to visit our Limited Warranty page.

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Q: How do I set driveline angles and why are they important?

A: Having the proper driveline angles (see also pinion angle) is crucial to achieving a safe and vibration-free ride. Furthermore, improper pinion angles can cause accelerated wear on a new transmission. We are currently working on putting together our own online installation guide to address these issues. However in the meantime, there are several articles online that explain the principles of driveline angles and how to properly set them. Here is a link to get you started: http://www.carcraft.com/howto/91758/index.html

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Q: How do I index the bellhousing, and why is it important?

A: To say you have an improperly indexed bellhousing is also to say that your transmission is improperly aligned with the engine in front of it. What this means is that the input shaft is not sitting true into the pilot bearing, which can cause a long list of transmission-related problems; as small as hard shifting or as big as total product failure. We are currently working on putting together our own online installation guide to address these issues. However in the meantime, there are several articles online that explain the principles of driveline angles and how to properly set them. Here is a link to get you started: http://www.carcraft.com/howto/91758/index.html

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Q: My transmission is hard to shift. What should I do?

A: There are a variety of factors that can easily play into poor shift quality. Typically they are related to a clutch or installation issue. We are currently working on an online Troubleshooting Guide to address such issues. In the meantime, please feel free to contact our customer service department using the information found in the Contact Us section.

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Q: My transmission grinds when I attempt to change gears. What does this mean?

A: The 'clashing' or 'grinding' of gears in a synchronized transmission are often related to one of three things: improper clutch actuation or adjustment, worn/damaged synchronizers, or the use of a fluid other than what is recommended by the manufacturer. We are currently working on an online Troubleshooting Guide to address such issues. In the meantime, please feel free to contact our customer service department using the information found in the Contact Us section.

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Q: My vehicle has a vibration that didn't exist prior to the installation of your transmission. Is there something wrong with the unit? How do I fix it?

A: In nearly all cases (we don't claim to have never had an issue), vibrations are the result of an oversight made during the installation. Issues such as improper driveline angles, improperly indexed bellhousings, and/or issues related to the crossmember or transmission mount can wreak havoc on an otherwise clean installation. We are currently working on an online Troubleshooting Guide to address such issues. In the meantime, please feel free to contact our customer service department using the information found in the Contact Us section.

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