Mechanics

TRANSMISSION IS SLIPPING. WHAT IS MOST LIKELY THE PROBLEM?

2004 Chevrolet Cavalier • 13,700 miles

I had a broken axle seal and it was leaking tranny fluid. That went on for awhile before I got the funds to replace them. But about 5 days before I took it in, the transmission started to slip. I have to accelerate slowly because the RPM's go up higher than normal, and it seems to be having problems going into second gear. It reacts a bit better when the car is warmed up. I was hoping replacing the axle seals would fix the problem, knowing that the fluid wasn't leaking anymore, but it hasn't. I told a co-worker about it and he said his brother had the same problem with his Impala, and in order to fix it, he flushed the fluid and put in a new tranny filter. From what I understand, it's recommended to flush the fluid every 30K miles, but I didn't know that. I got it when it was at 59K and it's at 137K now, and I have never flushed or changed the fluid. What's my best bet? I sure as heck hope I don't have to rebuild the transmission itself, knowing it's a small fortune.
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Aaronbrown
January 1, 2012.



Do you have any codes in the computer?Also did you let the transmission run low on fluid from your leak?Was the fluid ever changed in the 137K?

Saturntech9
Jan 1, 2012.
Nope, no codes. I believe it was running low because it was leaking for some time without my knowledge, and I didn't know how critical it was because my car seemed to be running fine. I don't know the records to the first owner so I'm believed the fluid was never changed at all.

Tiny
Aaronbrown
Jan 1, 2012.
If the fluid has never been changed then the filter could be plugged causing not enough fluid pressure to reach the clutch piston top hold the clutches tight enough to not slip. Or you could have low fluid pressure for some reason causing the clutches to slip. What color is the fluid?Does it smell burnt?Didnt they drain it when they replaced the axle seals?

Saturntech9
Jan 1, 2012.
Okay. I don't know the color of the fluid. I can't check it myself because the car has to be hoisted up and checked from the bottom. I don't know the smell either. I left it to the mechanics to take care of the fluid after they replaced the axle seals. I'm also not sure if they drained it because I don't know if that's part of the process of replacing the seals. And if they didn't drain it, I'm beginning to think (and hoping) that the fluid level is just low, and they didn't fill it.
I'm sorry if I'm not helping much, I don't know a lot about cars.

Tiny
Aaronbrown
Jan 2, 2012.
Usually the fluid gets drained when replacing the axle seals. Find out if they changed the fluid and filter and if so what the condition of the fluid was color smell and debris metal etc?Also if you dont know much about cars then your probably better off taking it in to have it looked at.

Saturntech9
Jan 2, 2012.
Okay, I was thinking about doing that. I've just asked people here and there, and I got mixed opinions and views. Thanks for your help!

Tiny
Aaronbrown
Jan 2, 2012.
Yeah my next step would be see if the fluid was changed then do a line pressure test on the transmission. Keep me posted on what you find.

Saturntech9
Jan 2, 2012.
Okay, will do.

Tiny
Aaronbrown
Jan 2, 2012.
So I took it in to have them check the fluid and they did, checked the pressure and transmission and it turns out, everything is working fine.
I guess I was just not used to it driving normal and thought something was still wrong and was paranoid that something was up with the transmission because it's so expensive.

Tiny
Aaronbrown
Jan 4, 2012.
Glad to hear it turned out to be a happy ending.

Saturntech9
Jan 4, 2012.