Transmission issue

Tiny
BACKYARDMECH68
  • MEMBER
  • 2004 DODGE CARAVAN
  • 160,000 MILES
Im working on an elderly neighbors 2004 grand caravan. Im the second mech to get ahold of this car. The first mech cleared the codes and told her it needed a new trans. While driving, the trans shifts fine under low acceleration, but under heavy acceleration (highway) it gains speed, but wont shift unless I feather the gas. If I try to accelerate like im going to pass, it drops gears and tacs at 4 grand. It will not rev any higher then 4k. I replaced both vss's, with no change. I've heared it could just need flashed. My neighbor cant affored to just throw money at the car, so I need some help pls.
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Monday, September 19th, 2011 AT 1:51 AM

4 Replies

Tiny
DRCRANKNWRENCH
  • EXPERT
It might need a shift solenoid. It could also be the torque converter or a electronic control unit problem.
The best thing to do would be to go to a dealership, yes they cost more but for trouble codes it is often worth it, and get the code pulled and we can look it up if they won't tell you.
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Monday, September 19th, 2011 AT 4:28 AM
Tiny
BACKYARDMECH68
  • MEMBER
Ok, took it to the dealer, all they did was change fluid/filter, and disconected the battery for 5min. When I asked about flashing the tcm they told me it didnt need flashed, I just need to drive it. I've driven it for about 100miles. It still doesnt want to upshift properly from 2-3. If I let off the gas and reapply, it shifts hard but it does shift. When I try to push the van it shifts into passig gear reves to 4500 with slow acceleration, feather the gas it shifts and accelerates. The dealer was no help in this area.
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Tuesday, September 20th, 2011 AT 11:36 PM
Tiny
DRCRANKNWRENCH
  • EXPERT
Sometimes trannys get finicky like that and giving it gas and letting off gets it too shift. There is a vacuum controlled solenoid on some trannys and around your year of van electroic solenoids were also used. Since they tried re-setting the ECU, I am guessing it is electronic. There is some input from the throttle position senor. So, you can, "Train" it to possibly sift a little better by being more agressive with the thrttle when getting ready to shift into that gear.
I think if there were contamaination or burnt fluid in the tranny, a dealership would probably tell you. So, as long as it does not feel like it is sliping when in gear, just look at fluid every so often to make sure it does not look, "Burmt or Brown". Look at it now to see what it looks like, usually red in cvolor, but just so you know what it looks like when fresh.
I hope this info has helped.
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Wednesday, September 21st, 2011 AT 2:32 PM
Tiny
TKENNEY2ND
  • MEMBER
I'm having the same issue with my 05 grand caravan. I was also getting a catalytic code. I cleaned the throttle body and left the batts disconnected for a while. Seems slightly improved, but problem is definitely still there. I just did a trans service and replaced the solenoid pack. Broke a fitting and haven't run it yet, want to know what you ended up finding on your neighbors.
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Sunday, June 7th, 2015 AT 4:32 PM

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