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Who Buys Cars With Transmission Problems?

When it comes to selling a car with transmission problems, many owners find themselves wondering who would be interested in purchasing such a vehicle. Surprisingly, there are specific companies and individuals actively seeking cars with bad transmissions.

Auto Repair Shops:
Auto repair shops often look for cars with transmission issues as they have the expertise and resources to repair or salvage them. These establishments can either restore the vehicles to their former glory or use them for spare parts to help other car owners in need.
Car Enthusiasts:
Car enthusiasts or mechanics who enjoy working on vehicles may see a car with a bad transmission as an exciting project. They appreciate the challenge of fixing and restoring these cars, whether it's for their personal collection or to sell them to other enthusiasts.
Used Car Dealerships:
Used car dealerships may be interested in purchasing cars with transmission problems if they have skilled technicians who can repair the issue cost-effectively. These dealerships may refurbish the vehicles and offer them for sale in their inventory, targeting customers looking for more affordable options or DIY enthusiasts who want a fixer-upper.
Scrapyards or Junkyards:
Scrapyards or junkyards buy damaged cars for their valuable components, including transmissions. They salvage these parts, selling them to individuals or repair shops in need of affordable replacements. Selling your car to a scrapyard ensures that it will be responsibly recycled and repurposed.

If you have a car with a bad transmission and are looking for a hassle-free solution, consider getting a cash offer from CarBrain. CarBrain is a reputable company specializing in buying problematic cars, including those with transmission issues. With a simple and streamlined process, we make selling your car quick and easy.

What Is A Car Worth With A Bad Transmission?

If your car is worth $10,000 before your transmission troubles and transmission repairs are around $2,000, expect to lose about double the cost of the repairs – your car is probably worth around $5,000 to $6,000.

Keep in mind, however, that your vehicle’s value could be even lower due to damage and the car’s overall condition.

Sell Car With Bad Transmission

When it comes to selling cars with transmission problems, various companies and individuals are interested in purchasing them for various reasons. From auto repair shops to car enthusiasts and used car dealerships, these entities recognize the value of these vehicles and have the resources to handle the necessary repairs or repurpose them for spare parts.

CarBrain specializes in all kinds of less-than-perfect cars, including those with bad transmission symptoms, signs of a bad transmission, or even transmission failure, junk carsdamaged cars, and cars for scrap. We make it easy to sell a car with a bad transmission, and we're always looking to trade in cars with bad transmissions.

Request an online quote for your vehicle. You’ll receive a guaranteed offer for your car in as-is condition.

Like the offer? Accept it and get paid in just 24 to 48 hours. We’ll even pick up your car from wherever it is at no cost to you.

Selling A Car With Transmission Issues

Your transmission is an integral facet of your car’s entire operation. Because of this, a faulty or broken transmission severely hinders a vehicle’s performance and, in turn, its value.

In order to protect your car’s value, you want to be on the lookout for the first symptoms of transmission problems.

If you're looking to sell your junk car with its bad transmission, you can calculate the value online pretty quickly.

Otherwise, read on to see your options and see how you can maximize the value of your vehicle with a bad transmission.

Signs A Car Has Transmission Problems

Do you know the signs of a transmission problem? They can vary depending on what’s happening with your car.

Several common symptoms of transmission problems are:

  • Shift flaring. It feels like a sudden and unexpected engine rev-up when your transmission changes gears. This is often caused by worn clutches or fluid pressure problems.

  • Burnt transmission fluid smell. When clutches burn out or there are internal friction issues in the transmission, the fluid emits a pungent charred scent.

  • Slipping gears. As you drive, your engine RPMs are going up quickly but your speed is barely increasing. Or, you might inexplicably start slowing down.

  • Clunking, rattling, or whistling noise underneath. Something’s loose in the tranny – it could be anything.

  • Delayed gear engagement. You shift into drive and hit the gas, but nothing happens for a few seconds. It finally slams into gear. It’s usually a fluid pressure problem inside or low transmission fluid.

Signs of Transmission Failure 

Most transmission problems can be repaired, despite the high costs of transmission repair and replacement.

Even transmission cooler hoses or a transmission pan gasket can be several hundred dollars to fix up.

More involved repairs could easily be $1,500 or more, like replacing a faulty valve body, and we’re not even talking about a transmission rebuild!

Signs of Transmission Failure

Failure to identify symptoms of transmission issues can lead to outright transmission failure. That’s when repair costs grow exponentially. These are a few signs of transmission failure:

  • No gear engagement. Whether it’s drive, reverse, or both, your car won’t go into gear.

  • Huge puddle underneath. We’re talking a gallon of fluid. There could be a hole in the transmission case.

  • Knocking noise that varies by speed. There may be a part inside the transmission that is loose.

For these signs of transmission failure, you’ll probably need either your transmission rebuilt or replaced. That’s going to come with a hefty price tag – expect $2,500 to $6,500, and it could be more.


Our expert evaluators can help you get an accurate estimate for your car's value, FAST!

What Causes Transmission Problems?

What could cause your transmission problems? Often it comes down to three things, all of which are preventable. These include:

  • Lack of proper maintenance. This is the leading cause of transmission problems. Simply following your vehicle’s maintenance schedule will prevent most transmission issues from ever happening.

  • Abuse. Driving a car very hard could cause internal damage in a transmission. The best way to prevent it? Drive responsibly.

  • Fluid leaks. This is an easily-addressed concern. If you see red fluid leaking from the front of your car, get it fixed to avoid some of the most expensive repairs you can imagine.

What to Do With a Car With A Bad Transmission

Fortunately, a car with a bad transmission is still a viable piece of equipment. It still has much of the same options as a car in optimal working condition. Those options are:

  • Sold to a Junkyard

  • Traded into a Dealership

  • Sold to a Private Buyer 

A vehicle with a bad transmission has the additional option of “being repaired.” However, as stated before, transmission repairs can be costly.

While the option to sell your car is on the table, keep in mind that its value is negatively impacted by a bad transmission.

Most buyers will attempt to test-drive your vehicle before committing to a purchase or trade. With a bad transmission, your car is likely to be non-running and, as a result, will grab a lowballed offer from any interested parties.

Unlock the full value of your car, even with transmission problems! Learn how much your car is worth without a working transmission and get the best price possible. Check out our ultimate guide to selling a car with transmission problems now.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Who Buys Cars With Bad Transmissions?

Many dealers and private buyers are looking for damaged cars to purchase. Whether it’s a Ford, Audi, or BMW, there is someone out there looking to buy it, even if it has a broken transmission. There’s a market for cars in every condition.

How Much Is A Car Worth With A Bad Transmission?

It is difficult to accurately determine the value of a car with a damaged transmission. Numerous factors play into the total value of a car including the make, model, year, and mileage. You can utilize websites like to obtain an approximate estimate for your car with mechanical problems.

The cost to repair a transmission is not one anybody wants to pay. It is one of the most expensive parts to fix and, unfortunately, you will not make back the money spent on transmission repair when selling your car. On the bright side, you can still sell your vehicle without repairing its transmission.

Can I Trade In A Car With a Bad Transmission?

Trading in a car with transmission problems is completely possible. Dealerships accept a variety of cars and let drivers trade them in. These are just some of the types of vehicles that can be traded in:

  • Jeep Patriot
  • Chevrolet Impala
  •  Honda Odyssey
  •  Toyota Corolla
  •  Honda Civic
  • Chevy Silverado

While you can trade in a car with a bad transmission, you must keep in mind that it will likely be valued less than the car you are trading it for. As a result, you will have to put more money into the new car because your trade-in wasn’t in drivable condition.

Is It Worth Replacing A Transmission?

You might be searching for cheap transmission repair near you but keep finding the price way too high.It is a crucial component of a vehicle and does not come cheap. A new transmission can cost thousands of dollars.

In addition to the part itself, you have to factor in the transmission replacement labor cost. This price can vary from $500 to $1,500. So, replacing a transmission might not be worth it if the value of your vehicle is less than the total cost of replacement.

How Much Does It Cost To Fix A Transmission?

How much to fix a transmission in your area will vary depending on a few factors. The primary factor will be what is actually wrong with it. Minor issues will cost less to fix than major ones. The time that the mechanic has to spend on the repair will also impact the cost.

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