Automatic transmission problems

Tiny
MAZDA_DRIVER
  • MEMBER
  • 2006 MAZDA 6
  • 55,000 MILES
Hi,

I recently encountered ATX problems.

1. I start the car after at least 10 hours in the parking lot. Engine is cold. ATX is cold. Car performs smoothly and without problems.
2. After about 20 miles the problems start. ATX is at optimal temperature. I sense a slight delay in shifting that grows more and more problematic over time. If I accelerate with a little more power or at an uphill road RPMs go up until they reach 6,000 and I can hardly accelerate at all. It seems the ATX is not able to lock a gear or transform engine power into forward acceleration.
3. AT warning light comes on. Sometimes also the check engine light comes on.
4. Last time both warning lights came on and error P0841 was found. This time only the AT warning light is on. I do not now the error code at this time.

Recently the engine overheated due to a lack of cooling fluid. Consequently the cylinder heat gasket blew and was replaced by a Mazda technician. ATX was cleaned (flushed) several times to get rid of some residue from the blown heat gasket. Problems started after this.

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No
Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013 AT 9:54 AM

9 Replies

Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
Sometimes transmission flushes stir up problems that's why I don't believe in them. Let's see what codes you have in the computer now?
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Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013 AT 12:17 PM
Tiny
MAZDA_DRIVER
  • MEMBER
Well, in this case the ATX had to be flushed since all kind of other fluids (cooling fluids, motor oil) got into it.

The sensor associated with P0841 will be replaced shortly. It's the oil pressure sensor for the ATX.

However I was looking for opinions about the issues I described. I especially was hoping for some ideas what could be the reason for this kind of behavior. A oil pressure sensor not working correctly could certainly cause some problems. But are these problems like the ones I described? Or should I lock for other probable causes?

Could this behavior be caused by some mechanical problems as well? If so, what kind of mechanical problems are most likely to cause such problems? Is there a way to find out for sure?

There is no transmission expert nearby where I live. So I have to go to my Mazda dealer who honestly admitted he has no clue about transmission problems. So it would be certainly best if I could assist him in any way (and yes, my efforts will be honored in the final bill).

So I will get the newest error code as soon as the pressure sensor arrived (it has already been ordered). But until then I'm more than glad if anybody could provide me with some more insight about what might going on with my ATX.

Just today I had a hard time to go uphill at all as the RPMs went up but the car wouldn't go forward because the engine power was not transferred to the transmission somehow. It was like having the car shift to N and push down the gas pedal - a lot of noise but nothing more.
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Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013 AT 1:29 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
The P0841 is letting you know that you have a transmission pressure sensor bad circuit issue too it or low line pressure in the transmission. From your symptoms I would say low line pressure. If it was just the sensor I couldn't see it causing the transmission to slip etc. That's why I was asking for current codes?Have you checked the transmission fluid level yet?I just had a user that got a transmission fluid flush and they never fluid the transmission fluid level up all the way.
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Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013 AT 7:20 PM
Tiny
MAZDA_DRIVER
  • MEMBER
Transmission fluid levels seem OK to me. It's hard to read the level, but I think I managed it. Car dealer also read the level and said it was OK. I was not yet able to get the current error code.

Thanks for your insight and help. I will give the current error code when I get it. For the rest of the week I will only go shorter distances (< than 20 miles). The ATX won't get up to its full working temperature during those short trips (at least this is what I assume) and should work perfectly.
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Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013 AT 8:25 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
Be careful if the pressure in the transmission is low then you burn your clutches in the transmission.
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Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013 AT 8:39 PM
Tiny
MAZDA_DRIVER
  • MEMBER
Hi,

luckily I was able to find an ATX expert about 20 miles from where I live. As I found out he has customers coming in from more than 150 miles away because he is the expert they were looking for. I personally witnessed a couple coming in from more than 150 miles away.

So I met him today and he examined my car. Since water entered the ATX as the cylinder heat gasket blew he had no good news for me. Even slight amounts of water in the ATX (usually caused by a blown cylinder heat gasket) will most likely destroy the ATX. Water will eat away on all non-metal parts of the ATX. As he checked he still found some water residue in the ATX oil.

I told him I would really like to keep the car. So he is now going to overhaul the ATX. He will give me a quote tomorrow. He has to look up the engine in his database to be able to give an exact quote and refused to even give an estimate today. Of course it will still less expensive than to buy a new used car. And I really like my car.

I'm writing this not only to give feedback but also to warn other people who might experience a cylinder heat gasket problem to have their transmission checked for any foreign fluids in it. Some motor oil in the ATX oil might be tolerable. But beware of any water in the ATX oil. It will most certainly ruin your transmission.

BTW: On my way back home I found out that when I accelerate really slowly (what I call "soccer-mom-drive") I can keep the transmission from slipping. Of course this is only a temporal solution until I get the transmission overhauled.
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Wednesday, April 24th, 2013 AT 9:25 AM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
Doesn't sound like good news keep me posted.
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Thursday, April 25th, 2013 AT 6:59 AM
Tiny
MAZDA_DRIVER
  • MEMBER
Well, it didn't end too well.

The transmission specialist was not able to get all the parts needed to rebuild the transmission. Honestly, he didn't sound too eager to try hard either.

At the end I decided to buy a new used car. Since my financial situation does not allow for a new Mazda 6 I had to downgrade and bought a 2006 Volkswagen Rabbit (Golf) Mk 5. The Volkswagen dealer offered me $1,300 for the Mazda. I guess this is a fair offer given the fact that the transmission is totally broken.

I get a one year guarantee for free which can be extended for another year and an additional $150. The price for the Rabbit was very reasonable and it was originally bought and maintained at this specific dealer by a lady. So the dealership knows the car from the very beginning which is a huge plus.

I payed a huge price for learning that water will inevitably destroy any transmission.
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Wednesday, May 8th, 2013 AT 11:20 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
Glad to hear that it was all resolved and ateastist your back on the road again.
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Thursday, May 9th, 2013 AT 5:36 PM

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