Certified Transmission - Transletter ®

December 11, 2012

Less Time Spent Diagnosing

Written by Richard Middleton

Recently, we sold a 4L60E to a neighboring shop. They installed it, but then they brought it back to us due to a P0753 shift solenoid A code. It would reoccur consistently and almost immediately when driving. However, the transmission would NOT go to failsafe mode (this is a key point).

November 07, 2012

Explorer In A Bind

Written by Chris Adams, Lead Diagnostician

We recently had a 2002 Ford Explorer come into our shop with a shifting complaint. The customer had noticed that it slipped or felt bumpy when under a fairly hard acceleration.

Our initial inspection consists of a road test to verify customer concern, computer scan for trouble codes and a visual inspection. On the road test, I felt what the customer was describing; it actually felt kind of like an abrupt engine misfire, something like you would feel with a manual transmission car or a misfire when TCC was applied.

October 10, 2012

Included in the Quote

Written by Jody Carnahan

Previously, fellow technician Jim Stokes provided some insight on problems that can occur both during and after a transmission installation. In this article, I would like to focus on some install issues that you should be aware of prior to selling a transmission repair. They involve additional work that may need to be done after the transmission has been repaired, and possibly requiring a sublet to another shop, or even taking it to the OE dealer.

As most people in our industry already know, the vehicles that are visiting our shops today are very complex. They are equipped with many computer controls that require multiple control units for each specific system within the vehicle. Prior to quoting or making a sale on an overhaul or a remanufactured transmission, the shop owner and/or service writer needs to know what additional work may be required to complete the job.

September 07, 2012

Why Should I Pay For Diagnosis?

Written by Randy Peterson - Diagnostician

This month's star is a 2003 Lincoln LS, packing a 3.9L V8 and a 5R55S.

This vehicle came into our shop with a laundry list of codes, no power, and it couldn’t shift. I scanned for codes and found P0715, 717, 718, 731, 732, 733, 734, 745, and P2106. As you can see it, had turbine speed sensor codes, gear ratio codes, pressure control fault and a forced limited power from the TAC.

August 02, 2012

Top 10 Install Problems - Part 2

Written by Jim Stokes - Warranty Technician

Jim has held many titles in his 12 years at Certified Transmission.  He’s been a service writer, diagnostician, helped run Certified shops, and has now been a part of the warranty team for almost 10 years.

Our company sells hundreds of wholesale carry-out units, as well as performing thousands of in-house installations.  Our talented team of technical advisers provides guidance for both types of installs, and we’ve found a number of common issues that installers face on a daily basis. In Part 2 of this series, we will be exploring the remaining 6 top install problems we encounter.

June 21, 2012

Top 10 Install Problems - Part 1

Written by Jim Stokes - Warranty Technician

Jim has held many titles in his 12 years at Certified Transmission.  He’s been a service writer, diagnostician, helped run Certified shops, and has now been a part of the warranty team for almost 10 years.

Our company sells hundreds of wholesale carry-out units, as well as performing thousands of in-house installations.  Our talented team of technical advisers provides guidance for both types of installs, and we’ve found a number of common issues that installers face on a daily basis. In this two-part series, we will be exploring the top 10 install problems we encounter.

May 07, 2012

The Tale of Two Hyundais

Written by Chris Adams, Diagnostician

We recently received a call from one of our wholesale customers that had purchased a carry out transmission for a 2005 Hyundai Santa Fe. The vehicle had been out for a few months and was returned to the installer with a complaint of slipping shifts. Our customer had driven the vehicle and verified the complaint, removed the transmission and called us to send a replacement. With the transmission already removed, there wasn't much we could check, so we sent out a replacement.

April 09, 2012

Old Guy, Old Problem…..Young Guy, Old Problem

Written by Dave Miles - Director of Engineering
As the Director of Engineering at Certified Transmission, I seldom get to contribute to a shop related article. Most of the time I'm relegated to calling our store guys and asking them if they have any articles that they want to submit or playing editor to the ones that they send in.

March 13, 2012

Quit Dimpling Those Converters

Written by Steve Logeman - Technical Director

This all started with me looking at multiple converter failures. They were due to the converter bolts damaging the backs on Toyota A245E/A246E transmissions that attach to the 1.8L engine. Oddly, we also see this in other Toyota applications, maybe more so than other vehicle manufactures.

February 08, 2012

Once Again, Not the Transmission

Written by Mike Steen - Technical Director

It’s very easy to get steered in the wrong direction when diagnosing a transmission complaint. There are so many sensors and components that can cause transmission-like symptoms that it’s easy to assume you’ve got transmission problems, no questions asked. From a customer’s perspective, they see what they assume to be a huge repair, and they’re convinced it’s going to cost them an arm and a leg. Of course, when it turns out to be something else, you get the opportunity to be a hero and gain a customer for life.

January 16, 2012

All Plugged Up

Written by Jody Carnahan and Dave Wilkes of Wilkes Transmission

We recently attended the EXPO in Vegas and like all others, you always meet up with other ATRA members wanting to talk shop. On this occasion I had the pleasure of meeting Dave Wilkes of Dave Wilkes Transmissions. We started talking shop (when we were actually supposed to be relaxing at the cocktail reception) but you know that’s never going to happen when one you bring up a problem with a vehicle that they recently had in the shop and like all technicians, I wanted to listen.

In this particular situation, Dave was working on a 2001 BMW 740i with a 5HP24 transmission. The vehicle originally came in with a complaint of leaking out of the front. The unit was very low on fluid, was slipping and the fluid was burnt. They recommended that the transmission be overhauled because of the above conditions and the mileage on the unit. Everything went normal with the rebuild and the customer left with a good working unit.

December 07, 2011

Understanding the AW 55- 50 Neutral Control

Written by Jerry Huerter - Diagnostician at Overland Park, KS

We recently had a 2001 Volvo S60 come into or shop with a smoked AW 55-50 transmission that needed to be replaced.

The AW 55-50 transmission has a feature that Volvo calls “Neutral Control”. What it “Neutral Control” and what is its function? To tell you the truth, I wasn’t really sure, but below is what I was able to both find and figure out about it.

November 03, 2011

Sometimes Lucky is Better than Good

Written by Dana Deeke - Diagnostician at Lincoln NE

I had a mid-90’s Dodge Caravan come into the shop with the complaint of a rough noise/feel when driving above 45-50 miles per hour. The van had been into a couple of other local shops to try to find the noise with no success and the customer was getting frustrated.

As normal, I started with a road test to see if I could duplicate the Customer complaint. Sure enough, upon reaching 45 miles per hour the van started to make a low, growling sound and you could feel a little vibration thru the steering wheel. It was time to get the van inside and do a visual inspection.

October 24, 2011

Hot Off the Wire

Written by Dave Finley - Diagnostician at Bellevue NE

My first appointment of the day was a customer with a 2001 PT Cruiser.  Their complaint was, “It feels like all the gears are slipping, and a light is on in the gauge panel.”

I started my evaluation with a fluid check and pulled the codes.  The fluid level was normal, and the code I got back was a P0750 - solenoid error in the TCM.  There were no ECM codes.

After clearing the code I started my test drive. The transmission preformed well, but I did experience what felt like a slight engine stumble when going up hills. It was intermittent, but it did occur twice during the drive. The check engine light also came back on.

October 14, 2011

Simple Wire Problems

Written by Chris Foster - Topeka Store Manager
A few weeks back, we had a customer come to the shop and say “Hi! I was sent here by so-and-so, and he said you would be able to fix my car, because he does not have time to figure it out”. “Well I am always up for a challenge, what is going on with it?” We then got into a discussion of how long he has been working on the car, and how everything "works great”. She then explained to me that the dealer looked at it and said it was going to be $XXX to fix it, and she just didn’t think they were right because “everything works ok… It is just the ALL WHEEL DRIVE DISABLED light is on, and nobody can find out what is wrong with it”. “Sure” I said, “leave it with me and I’ll see what I can do.”

August 01, 2011

Chrysler Transmission Range Sensor

Written by Mike Steen - Technical Director
The Transmission Range Sensor (TRS) has 3 primary functions:

1. Provide a PARK/NEUTRAL start signal to the engine controller and the starter relay.

2. Turn the Back-up lamps on when the transmission is in REVERSE and the engine (ignition) is on.

3. Provide a transmission range signal to the instrument cluster.

This relatively simple sensor has caused us problems over the years.

July 01, 2011

Cooler By-Pass

Written by Mike Steen - Technical Director
External cooler by-pass valves are becoming more and more popular it seems. There are also many different variations of these by-pass valves. It’s important that you check the cooler lines and cooler closely to see if the vehicle your working on has one of these by-pass valves. In most cases they can be removed and cleaned.

Most all automatic transmissions incorporate some sort of by-pass in case the cooler becomes restricted, but they are typically found inside the unit.

June 01, 2011

Verify the Systems Before Condemning the Transmission

Written by Randy Peterson - Diagnostician
A few months ago a customer brought in a 2003 Dodge 1500 Pickup with a 5.7 Hemi and 545RFE transmission. The check Engine lamp was on and the truck would not accelerate from a stop unless you put the transmission in second gear. I started the preliminary check procedure by checking the fluid. It was full, not in great shape but no burnt odor. Next, I scanned for diagnostic trouble codes. The ECM stored a couple EVAP codes and the TCM had a P2706 – MS (multi-select) Solenoid Circuit. Oddly enough it did not have a P0700 (Trans Control System Malfunction) stored in the ECM. This vehicle utilizes an ECM and separate TCM. After a short road test the customer’s concerns were confirmed. I cleared the DTC and road tested it again to see if the code reset and it did. Further diagnostics were required. The vehicle owner authorized the diagnostics, and we began the process.

May 01, 2011

Solenoid Operating Pressures

Written by Jim Richardson - Technical Director

With the quantity and price of solenoids becoming a substantial additional investment in the price of a transmission reman, testing and reclaiming the solenoids has become mandatory.

Every once in a while you run across a scenario that has you scratching your head. This was one of those units.

Our warranty dept. received a call from one of our retail locations. They had a 2002 Volkswagen Jetta with the O9A transaxle. The unit had been out approximately 300 miles and came back because of a no reverse complaint. All the external checks that could potentially inhibit reverse were investigated, everything was working properly. It was determined the unit would have to come out for further evaluation.

April 01, 2011

Manual Transmission Fails due to Hydraulic Error

Written by Steve Logeman, Technical Director

Huh? NV4500 manual transmission fails in the field because of a hydraulic issue? You’re probably saying to yourself “This guys wacked or drinking his lunch if you know what I mean.” There’s nothing hydraulic about a NV4500 5spd manual transmission.

This all starts with a 2002 GMC 2500 with a complaint of sticks in fifth gear. Customer states that this has happened to him half a dozen times since the transmission was installed 2000 miles ago and to make matters worse the technician at our shop couldnot duplicate the complaint.

This struck me as very odd complaint for this type of transmission. Over the years there has been a lot issues with fifth gear and the nut that retains it on the shaft but I do not recall that it ever made the transmission stuck in fifth. No fifth, pops out fifth, hard to engage reverse; these are typical complaints of this unit.