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Automatic Transmission - Not shifting to 3rd gear

This is a discussion on Automatic Transmission - Not shifting to 3rd gear within the Automatic Transmission forums, part of the Drivetrain category; All of a sudden my 99 trans am did not want to go pass 20 mph or second gear. Drove ...

  1. #1
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    99 Trans Am

    Unhappy Automatic Transmission - Not shifting to 3rd gear

    All of a sudden my 99 trans am did not want to go pass 20 mph or second gear. Drove it to the dealership the next day. A day later, they call me back that it's my automatic transmission that has gone bad, and that I need another one. I asked how they had determined that, and service manager said that their tech drove it and car didn't want to go on 3rd gear. (I already knew that) He then asked me if I still wanted them to "open" the transmission from the bottom to check things out. Are they supposed to check some other parts first before jumping into telling me that I need a new or rebuilt transmission?

    Are there solenoids that they need to check first? Please advise. Thanks.

  2. #2
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    pajeff02's Avatar
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    Black & Blue
    '02 WS.6 / '07 Suburban

    Take it to someone who actually wants to work on it rather than sell you another transmission. However, if it ends up being toast, I still have the transmission from our car awaiting a new home...

    FBJ is our transmission guru on here - he'll pop in at some point and have a say on this.

  3. #3
    Former Mopar Man 2002ssslp's Avatar
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    02 Camaro SS, 04 GTO

    I don't ever recommend bringing our cars to a dealership. They work on book time and they get extra compensation for bill generation. Most of all, dealer mechanics are not mechanics at all. They are parts changers. Prior to the mid 80's a mechanic would and could rebuild anything from a wheel cylinder, alternator, starter and yes transmissions. Now they take a guess and start throwing new parts into you car until they fix the problem. All this and then they charge 140.00 per hour to play mechanic.
    I know a thing or two about transmissions and without seeing or driving the car I will "guess" it is a solenoid pack for 2 to 3 gear shifts. The dealer has a scanner and should have done that first. Beware the dealers and find yourself a garage with a solid reputation.
    BTW. I'm not a hater, my neighbor is an A-Tech for a dealership and I hear the stories all the time.
    My ride is a 2002 Camaro SS SLP #3296 with 30k, LTH, 3" Y, CME, Frost tune, K&N, ported TB, Blackwing lid, Bellows, MSD, Denso Iridium, and 85mm MAF, Bilsteins, Eibach springs, SLP strut brace, Adj. Panhard, TA Girdle, UMI, Pro 5.0, Nitto NT555
    My wife has a 2004 GTO with the rare SAP, 18" wheels, K&N Cold Air System, MSD, Ported TB, Frost tune, Denso Iridium, Flowmaster cat-back, 3200 Yank, 75k

  4. #4
    Moderator 35th-ANV-SS's Avatar
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    02 35th LE Camaro SS

    Agree. How many miles are on the current transmission?
    It's on jackstands.

  5. #5
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    99 Trans Am

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  6. #6
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    99 Trans Am

    I talked to service manager and I told him that before thinking of putting in a transmission that they needed to be sure that it wasn't the solenoids. He told me that they had tested each of the solenoids with the scanner and they could hear each "clicking" or working.

    I then talked to a man who I know through work who used to work for a dealership as a certified technician for over 10 years to get his opinion. He said that when he used to work for dealership that he would plug in scanner and lift vehicle. Standing under vehicle he would then test each solenoid with the scanner and listening with a mechanics stethoscope. He would listen as he tested each solenoid working or clicking.

    I went back to dealership and talked to service manager and told him that I wanted to make sure they did test the solenoids and again he told me yes. In the conversation I asked him if they lifted the car and listened from the bottom. Service manager told me that they didn't lift the vehicle because from the top of the vehicle they can hear the solenoid clicking.

    The next day they took off the pan and service manager texted me a picture of the burned fluid on the bottom with what he called burned carbon fibers from gears. There was NO metal shaving though.

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