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Automatic Transmission Rebuild Kits: Overhaul, Master Less Steels, and Master with Steels

Posted by Monte on

In this article, I’m briefly covering different types of Rebuild Kits used for rebuilding automatic transmissions. There are 3 basic types of rebuild kits: Overhaul Kit, Master Less Steels, and Master with Steels.

Before describing the differences between the 3 kits, let’s briefly define a rebuilt transmission. In short, a complete rebuilt transmission includes the disassembly and reassembly of a transmission using new parts (Rebuild Kits), plus replacing any hard parts and the torque converter. The new parts are the ones that come in the Rebuild Kits.

Transmission parts are not designed to last forever. Let’s be realistic, expecting transmission parts to last that long is asking a lot. After normal wear and tear, the parts will simply need to be replaced. Also, design updates to OEM parts occur regularly, and proactive car owners make those changes before they need to.

With that said, a transmission Rebuild Kit will contain the new parts necessary to rebuild the transmission. There are different types of rebuild kits depending on the damaged parts in the transmission. The most basic kit is an Overhaul Kit, which Kit contains all the replacement lip seal, rubber seals, gaskets, sealing rings, and O-rings. These are also referred to as “Paper and Rubber Kits.”

The next level of rebuild kit is the Master Less Steels. The Master Less Steels has the Overhaul Kit and the friction plates (clutches). The friction material may wear on the clutches, and they will need to be removed and replaced. Depending on your application, there are high performance frictions available.

The “biggest” rebuild kit is the Master with Steels. This kit includes the overhaul kit, the frictions, and the Steel Plates. If the friction material on the clutches wears too much, the Steel Plates will burn due to the friction between the metal parts.

There are other parts that may get damaged through normal wear and tear that aren’t included in one of the Rebuild Kits, such as filters, bands, pistons, solenoids, drums, pumps, shafts and planetary sets. These other parts are replaceable, but typically do not come with the Rebuild Kits.

Again, this article is only an overview to the 3 basic types of Rebuild Kits: Overhaul Kit, Master Less Steels, and Master with Steels. Your vehicle’s needs will be unique to your situation, but now you have an idea of the types of new parts each kit contains.

Contact us with any questions. We’re here to help!