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Leaked Some Trany Fluid while driving, now Trans Slips

This is a discussion on Leaked Some Trany Fluid while driving, now Trans Slips within the Automatic Transmission forums, part of the Drivetrain category; While I was driving my WS6 across town a leak developed in the line to my tranny cooler and I ...

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    Leaked Some Trany Fluid while driving, now Trans Slips

    While I was driving my WS6 across town a leak developed in the line to my tranny cooler and I lost about 1 quart of fluid. I noticed something was wrong when the tranny started to rev higher than normal before engaging the next gear.
    As soon as I noticed this I started looking for the problem, fixed the leak, and refilled the trans fluid to a proper level. But the car is still having the same difficulty.

    Can anyone more familiar with automatic transmissions tell me what I am likely looking at for damage? A full rebuild would be a catastrophy for my budget at the moment, so my fingers are crossed hoping this is something specific that won't require disassembling the entire unit to fix.

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    Smiles for 9.5 Years cammed goat's Avatar
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    I know there are additives that could be poured into the trans to keep it from slipping. How long did you drive with the missing quart? Hopefully you didn't damage a clutch or a band.

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    From the time I first noticed the tranny acting up, to the time I reached the nearest available fluid, was probably about 7-10 miles. During which time I tried to take it easy on the car by lifting off the throttle when it was about to shift, to keep the over reving to a minimum. But now that the tranny is refilled, there is absolutely no change in behavior....perhaps by the time I noticed anything was wrong, the damage was already done.


    Anyway, I was reading up on the 4l60e and I came across one article that claims that driving even a single mile, while as little as 1/2 quart low on fluid, WILL absolutely cause damage to this transmission because of "pressure spikes" that can break internal parts or blow out seals. But having never torn into a transmission before, I really don't have any idea what seals that article could have been talking about.

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    LSX whore allbaugh_04's Avatar
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    What was your procedure to refill it?

    Are you checking it while the car is running etc.? Still might be a little bit low, needs to be exactly full, not too much, not too little.

    I'd check the level again.

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    The level is definetly good now, I just rechecked a 3rd time, and its still right on the money...while hot, while running, after taking a short drive thought all the gears, reverse included, while on level ground. I even insisted on the Dex III that the manual calls for, even though the parts guy was telling me that its outdated and I should just use the more commonly available "new formula" (whatever he meant by that ... is there a Dex IV, now or something??)

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    LSX whore allbaugh_04's Avatar
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    Yea, that kind of fluid shouldn't matter.

    So it's still hesitating to shift just like before? How bad is it?

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    It feels like an extra second or slightly over and probably better than an extra 1000rpm when making the 1-2 shift while driving very gently. The 1-2 usually seems to be worse than the 2-3. Not sure about the 3-4, I really can't get enough speed up for that one while circling my block, after refilling the fluid.

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    LSX whore allbaugh_04's Avatar
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    Could be damaged...I'm no expert.

    No codes I'm guessing?

  9. #9
    Dex 3 isnt outdated so dont worry about that. Its just that gm switched over to dex 6. I know this because when I did my stall I went to gm to get new fluid. They told me they dont carry that anymore and its all dex 6 now. So thats what I used.

    As for the trans slipping I would originally say its because you lost fluid. I have been .5 qrt low before and ended up bouncing the limiter at wot.
    BUT if your sure that the fluid is correct then who knows.
    I will tell you one thing though. When I did my yank ss3600 I under filled it by like 5 qts. I drove it for 10 miles at full operating temp. It was even sizzling and gurgling. The converter was slipping and loose as hell but I didnt know if it was normal because it was first time driving a high stall tc.
    I brought the fluid to the correct level and the trans has been fine. I put 10k miles on it with maybe 50 track passes. Still fine.
    I have a hard time believing your trans got damaged by driving across town only .5 qrt low.
    Last edited by senicalj4579; 10-21-2011 at 09:13 PM.

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