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Let's say you are thinking of getting a car cheap due to it having a spotty automatic transmission. How difficult / expensive would it typically be to get a low mileage second hand transmission from a wreak and have it swapped it in?

For example, a 99 Mazda 626?

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    You need to be more specific with regards to which vehicle you're talking about. The ease/expense will depend on the vehicle in question, so the answers to the question in its present form are likely to be subjective – Zaid Jul 6 '15 at 20:12
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If you are talking about just replacing with a remanufactured or brand new tranny, that in itself is not too difficult, provided you have proper jacking equipment. Preferred would be a special tranny jack but I have heard of people using a regular trolley jack with a tranny adapter. In either case, the critical component is a 4-pointed fork on which you rest the heavy gearbox, which a regular jack doesn't have.

Once you have taken the old gearbox out, you can either take it to a tranny shop to have them rebuild it or try to rebuild it yourself, which of course adds significant complexity. I have heard that shops charge a lot of money to just take it down and reinstall it so you may want to perform just that part and have a professional do the tedious work for you.

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  • I was thinking more along the lines of buying a low mileage used tranny from a wreaking yard and having someone put it in for me. – Robert S. Barnes Jul 6 '15 at 20:19
  • that involves only the easier scenario described in my answer – amphibient Jul 6 '15 at 20:21
  • @amphibient being a 626 which is a FWD car, it will probably involve dropping the subframe as well to remove it, so he'll more than likely want an engine hoist to support the engine while doing that. – Chris Jul 7 '15 at 1:56

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