Mechanics

TRANSMISSION IS STUCK IN PARK

1997 Mazda Protege

Transmission problem
1997 Mazda Protege 4 cyl Front Wheel Drive Automatic 105000 miles

I have a 1997 Protege LX 1.5 w/auto trans. Here's the story - I parked the car in June, it worked just fine. I go to start it up a month or so later and it starts very hard. The alternator had seized up completely and pulled the belt off. Ok, minor problem. Until I try to drive it into my garage. It's stuck in park. I tore apart the console around the shift lever, pushed on the override switch to no avail. It feels like an interlock of some sort isn't releasing, it doesn't feel like there's a tranny problem. We tried rocking it and hitting the brakes etc, it made zero difference. I installed a new alternator and fired it up - no difference. I have no idea where to go with it at this point, I have an unusable car sitting in the driveway and winter is coming. I'd be happy to even take it somewhere for repair. But I can't! Any ideas are appreciated - thanks
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Soytnly
September 25, 2010.



Hi soytnly, Welcome to 2carpros and TY for the donation

At the shift lock actuator under console base of shifter-check for power at the green and yellow wire on the actuator while brake is applied power here and still don't want to come out of park-replace the actuator

Rasmataz
Sep 25, 2010.
Here's the latest: I pulled the shifter unit out and found that the brake actuator lever was seized up, not sure why. I ended up breaking it off so that the shifter would work. This car isn't worth much and I just need to get it into gear to get it out of my driveway, I don't want to put much into it at this point. I reinstalled the shifter, and it still wouldn't shift. I disconnected the shifter cable at the tranny end, and the cable would then move freely. Which tells me that there's something in the tranny that's broken or possibly something to do with an interlock? I'm ready to just donate the car, it seems that there were two problems and one of them has been solved. Would disconnecting the brake actuator prevent the actual tranny from going into gear? The actuator is still plugged in and you can hear it cycling when you step on the brake. Am I missing anything?

Tiny
Soytnly
Oct 6, 2010.
The brake actuator purposes is just to take it out of park it shouldn't prevent you from shifting to any gears. Can you manually shift into gears at the transmission?

Rasmataz
Oct 6, 2010.
I'll try again when I get home tonight but I tried it once and that pivot arm seems to be pretty solid. The cable and shifter now move freely which is what makes me think the tranny might have a major problem.

Tiny
Soytnly
Oct 6, 2010.
So I was able to move the shifter arm on the transmission using a big ratchet. I reconnected the shifter cable and was able to get it into gear, barely. It was very stiff and the cable is out of adjustment of course. At least I was able to move the car out of the prime spot in my driveway after four months. The car has always been a stiff shifter, I suppose there's something going on in the tranny.

Tiny
Soytnly
Oct 6, 2010.
Have you checked the transmission fluid condition and level. It shoudn't shift that hard sounds internal-binding

Rasmataz
Oct 7, 2010.