Sensors are transmission control units. They measure the speed of wheels and engine to decide which gear the driver should use. A Transmission system uses input and output sensors. A transmission control unit (TCU) is the device that regulates electronic automatic transmissions. Automatic transmissions use control modules to regulate gear shifting, clutch engagement and speed.
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Sensors relay information to the transmission control modules (TCM) and Power train control module (PCW). Transmission Control Module (TCM) use information from the engine to make decisions making it an essential component when changing speed or gears.
Major Sensors in a Transmission include:
Vehicles Speed sensor
Vehicle Speed sensors basically measure the current speed of the automobile. It sends signals to the TCU Depending on various parameters. The TCU uses the information to determine when the ideal time for the gear shift to take place. If it fails your vehicle’s transmission will make a late shift or completely fail make shift. In fact, an automatic transmission will fail to function if the vehicle speed sensor malfunctions.
Input speed sensor which measures revolutions per minute of the input shaft. The input speed sensor detects when the input shaft is moving and delivers the motion signal to the control modules. Unless there is a slipping problem, if the input shaft is moving the car is supposed to be moving. Transmission output speed sensor measures RPM of output shafts.
Throttle speed sensor (TPS)
TPS is used to measure engine load and determine the suitable time and characteristics to change gear.
Turbine speed sensor (TSS)
TSS is also known as an input speed sensor. It sends frequency signals to the TCU to determine the rotations speed of the torque converter or input shaft. This information is essential in regulating the smooth and effective application of torque converter lockup.
Transmission Fluid Temperature sensor (TFT)
TFT is also referred to as the Transmission Oil temperature. It measures the fluid temperature in the transmission. If the automatic transmission fluid becomes very hot TFT downshift the transmissions.
Transmission range Sensors
Transmission range sensor is also known as the transmission positions sensor. This sensor determines the position of transmission shifter and transmits the information to the PCM.
Brake switch measures the position of the brake pedal. The main function in regards to transmission is to release converter clutch when braking. If the brake switch fails, the torque converter clutch will also fail.
There several other sensors sensor including the turbine shaft sensors, coolant temperature sensors.
Learn more about your vehicle’s transmission: