Is my truck... doomed?
Hey everyone, first post and new here so hi :) I'm not entirely empty handed though, I came with a question... (oh, and please try and work with me, as I'm mostly vehicle illiterate... but I'm learning)
For those more interested in what the autobody guys told me, scroll to the bottom where it's in bold.
The other day my transmission fluid sprang a leak, there's a little rubber tube that was connecting a metal tube to another metal tube. I lost a ton of that tranny fluid and it went everywhere, and thick white smoke was leaving my exhaust (that's what first tipped me off to something being wrong).
I had a guy come along and he helped me figure out what it was, it was about a $3.00 fix for the replacement tube and I filled up the trans fluid again thinking all would be well.
And all WAS well until yesterday when my truck began acting uncharacteristically sluggish and was refusing to accelerate the way I wanted it to. Applying a lot of gas to the peddle did not encourage my truck to accelerate any faster, if anything it only made my RPMs spike.
And at 60 MPH on the highway, my front-right area under the hood began to make a slight squealing sound. I pulled over again and thought that perhaps I didn't put as much trans fluid in as I had thought, so I put more in and figured I'd look for a leak when it was more convenient.
So I got back on the road and after about 20 MPH it started acting sluggish again. I got to 60 again (slowly) and managed to get it to the next town, where I parked it and had it towed to an autobody shop.
The autobody is telling me it's a transmission case problem, where the case is "slipping." The truck is a 2000 Ford Ranger, wrecked once (ironically, a year ago today), and was fixed last November. I wasn't aware that I needed to replace my trans fluid every 30,000 miles (this was a commuter truck), and I'm also told that the P-Gravel in the bed of my truck (used to weight it down under the winter) may also have contributed to this predicament.
They're saying a replacement w/warranty will run me about $3100, and a junkyard job will be about a grand less.
Is there a cheaper workaround than this? Can this slipping he's talking about be corrected with a Chilton's and some Googling? My brother is very good with his car, so I figured I could possibly take it to the auto hobby shop at the base out here with him, lift it up and see what could be done.
Or, is this a lost cause and am I totally up the creek without a paddle?
Thanks for your feedback!