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Transmission - Lost Top Gear

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Transmission - Lost Top Gear

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Old 09-12-2018, 04:41 PM
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Transmission - Lost Top Gear

2010 HHR LT, 2.4, 167,000 miles

I was cruising along the interstate, and suddenly, the vehicle jerked and it went into neutral. Shifted to neutral and pulled off the highway. Upon discovering I had 1st and 2nd, I drove it to the nearest transmission shop with a top speed of 40-45 to keep the RPMs high, but not die on the road.

The balance shaft oil seal had been leaking, and the shop said it had blown out (oil was all over the engine compartment). The tranny shop fixed that before they could drive it. I do not know what they did about reading codes, or if they disconnected the battery.

Their credibility went down a little the first day. I dropped it off after closing and called first thing in the morning (I have never been in the shop before). They said they would roll it in the garage and call me back at 9 am. At noon, I called and they had not done anything (not an open bay). They called me at 4:30 about the oil seal.

Upon making it driveable, they tool it for a spin. The only code was P0700. They said they were sure it was an issue inside the tranny and a complete rebuild was $2250. "It could be less if we do not have to do everything." That was 2:30 on day 2.

I asked if they checked the electrical and if there was any way it could be that. They assured me they had all the tools and have been doing this for 25 years, etc. I still wondered, myself, if oil got into the connector on the tranny causing it to short or something.

1. Does all this sound trustworthy to you?
2. Should I rebuild or go buy one from a junkyard and put it in myself? I have done this with other vehicles in the past and this transmission looks light by comparison. If so, what mileage are these typically failing at?

BTW, I did the tranny fluid on this about every 30,000 since I bought it (at 75,000 mi).

Suggestions?

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Old 09-12-2018, 06:06 PM
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P0700 code just tells you the TCM isn’t communicating with the transmission, yes it could be a loose wire , a ground wire, loose fuse box halves. If you’re able you can check all that yourself and even swap the transmission with a good used one. Let’s face it, a 2,200 to 3,000.00 dollar investment is not going to be a good return when you sell it or trade it in. The transmissions are fairly easy to work on


https://www.obd-codes.com/p0700
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Old 09-12-2018, 06:48 PM
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Thatís what I was leaning towards.
  1. are there any good guides for a tranny swap or rebuild?
  2. Normally a tranny is just pull bolts. There arenít any special tools for a swap, right?
  3. how many miles on a used tranny is too many?
  4. would you get a new torque converter for good measure while you are in there?
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Old 09-12-2018, 07:05 PM
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I’d use the torque converter that came with the donor car. I’d say less then 125,000 miles, the less the better. No special tools to replace but some are required for a rebuild.
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Old 09-12-2018, 08:06 PM
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Originally Posted by hwmonkey View Post

BTW, I did the tranny fluid on this about every 30,000 since I bought it (at 75,000 mi).

Suggestions?
Did you flush or just drain & new filter?
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Old 09-12-2018, 09:47 PM
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Sounds like a solenoid to me. If there is a Po700 showing they should be able to get more specifics from a freeze frame.
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Old 09-12-2018, 09:53 PM
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Originally Posted by RJ_RS_SS_350 View Post
Did you flush or just drain & new filter?
drain and new filter each time
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Old 09-12-2018, 09:56 PM
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Originally Posted by donbrew View Post
Sounds like a solenoid to me. If there is a Po700 showing they should be able to get more specifics from a freeze frame.
I was expecting more from the shop. I think it is something related to the 2/3 solenoid. Definitely will study the manual on this. Even oil on a wire seems like it would throw off the resistance enough to cause a solenoid to not fire (at least in the old school days).
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Old 09-13-2018, 06:43 AM
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X2 on a solenoid . If you can change a wheel hub, axle, and strut, you can change the solenoids yourself. Clearly ,they are not a competent shop as to get the ACTUAL code from the TCM you need a dealer level scan tool. When these carsd have transmission issues its 9/10 one of the two shift solenoids. The part itself is cheap but labor is not as essentially you have to pull everything in the drivers side wheel well out of the way to take the transmission cover off. Its a pain, but not as bad as you think. The solenoid just have an electrical connection and pop right out. The fluid is rarely an issue as it is just hydraulic fluid, which doesn't really "break down." I would rescue the car and call around and maybe find someone who is experienced in this or if you have some time do it yourself. Dont get ripped off! People see our cars as an older throw away car so instead of proper diagnosis they want to squeeze as much money out of you as possible
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Old 09-13-2018, 12:29 PM
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Will any 4T45E fit or must I pay attention to year and motor?
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