Mechanics

THE AUTOMATIC TRANSMISSION NOT SHIFTING HIGHER THAN THE SECOND GEAR IF THE FUEL TANK IS CLOSE TO EMPTY

2003 Honda Civic

Hello, what could possibly be wrong if the automatic transmission refuses to go higher than the second gear if the fuel tank is close to empty? The problem does not occur if the tank is full.
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Annikave
July 6, 2012.



That is very odd. The only thing I can think of is that fuel injected motors do not run well when low on fuel. There may be some issue with the transmission like it is low on oil or slipping clutch packs and the shift solenoid won't put it in gear.
Check the fluid level.
Also, try to shift it manually and see what happens.
Then take it and get the trouble codes pulled. Any Advance Auto or Auto Zone will do this ofr free.

Thank you, I will try to do what you suggested!

Tiny
Annikave
Jul 8, 2012.
Let me know how it goes.

I showed the car to a couple of shops. No error codes came up, even when the green light next to D was blinking on the board. And then it also started slipping when the gas tank was not empty. Some suspected the solenoid but others were sure it is not a solenoid problem. The consensus was at the end that it is just the general wear and tear and eventually the transmission has to be replaced but the new fluid could help to get more mileage out. So I flushed the transmission, new oil and everything, and it was slipping a couple of times after that, and now (two weeks have passed) it has been ok, knock on the wood.

Thank you for your advice, the fluid change seemed to help for now!

Tiny
Annikave
Jul 24, 2012.
If no codes came up it is a mechanical problem. The solenoids can have mechanical issues. But more than likely the torque converter clutch pack or shifting clutch pack is no good and you need a rebuild.