1982 Cadillac El Dorado



January, 19, 2010 AT 5:12 PM

Transmission problem
1982 Cadillac El Dorado V8 Two Wheel Drive Automatic

I have a 1982 Eldorado Biarritz"”that is, in addition to my 1990 Lincoln Town car discussed earlier viz. The battery cables.

Either at high speed, or whenever the motor has to " work" e.G, climbing a 6% grade, I experience some FWD transmission chatter. When I either let off the gas or use the passing gear, it smooths out and then ultimately returns. The transaxle assemblies/CV boots are brand new, the sealed roller bearings are good, and all wheels have been properly balanced.

I have narrowed this problem down to one of two possible culprits: either a worn Clutch Plate assembly or the Torque Converter Control Solenoid"”or both.

I have to pull it this week in order to replace the leaking seals anyway. This, ostensibly, will also expose both the Control Solenoid and the clutch for easy access.

What do I check for first?


Bill Gaillard
Prescott, Arizona Territory


6 Answers



January, 21, 2010 AT 8:15 PM

So this vehicle has a lock-up converter? Is it an OD transaxle or 3 speed, forgive my ignorance on this exact model, you just dont see them very often. If OD, I would suspect the converter or OD clutch pack is bad. You say th e transaxle assembly is new, was it totally rebuilt? If so I would suspect an issue with the OD pack as suggested before or possibly the lock-up converter, it would depend on when it chatters, in OD or 3rd or when the converter locks up. If only when converter locks up it may be the problem



January, 21, 2010 AT 10:35 PM

First, it definitely has the converter mounted on the left side of the transmission housing (plate) as you are facing forward toward the motor/grille.

Second, so, it might also have a separate OD clutch pack? Well, I have every last scrap of paper on this car from the year dot; in other words, a complete chronological maintenance file. Sometimes, you can tell simply by the VIN #1G6AL5786CE650532, and are you able to cross-reference this with your Cadillac data base?

Moreover, and as this car was a top-of-the-line " Biarritz" model with an EFI HT-4100 4.1L Gasoline V-8, I would have to work under the assumption that it also had an OD transaxle, but I will double-check my maintenance file, regardless, and which should be fairly straightforward.

Yes, and to answer your question, both replacement transaxle/CV boot assemblies are OEM, however, re-mans.

P.S. The high-speed " chatter" didn't begin until shortly after I put a bottle of Lucas into the transmission. This may be either coincidental or, actually, cause and effect? Yes, I thought it was strange, too. Lucas" go figure.

I'll get back to you shortly with what I can find.

Thanks again,

Bill G.



January, 21, 2010 AT 11:19 PM

Does the gear indicator in thedash have either a D with a circle around it or an OD spot in the indicator, this will tell if it is an OD transaxle. If this began after the additive was put in, you may want to try having the trans completly flushed to remove the additive, it sounds like the clutch plates didnt like it. Sometimes additives arent the way to go, just using the suggested fluids is better. Those years were the beginning of the OD transmissions, that is why I was curious if it was an OD or a 3 speed with a lock-up converter



January, 22, 2010 AT 1:45 PM

Hello, Bob or Ken" whoever I am spealing with today.

The forward-drive column display shows, right-to-left, D-3-2-1" and with no circle or " OD" anywhere either on or near the pointer/indicator. Therefore, I would now have to assume that there is no separate OD clutch package either. This is actually a blessing, as there is one less culprit to blame for my transmission's somewhat aberrant behavior.

I should have the green light, now, to pull, R& R the seals, and then do a complete flush and screens, and without having to actually replace the lock-up converter (solenoid).

Let me know. Thanks.



January, 22, 2010 AT 11:37 PM

I read the entries, and I have something to add. You have a 325-4L tranaxle, 4L is 4-speed with lockup. Prior to pulling the transaxle, try driving it and when the shudder occurs, touch the brake pedal a tad. Do this not to slow down, but to disengage the torque converter clutch. If the shudder goes away with the TCC off, I would consider replacing the converter. Not sure what you meant by 'it definitely has the converter mounted on the left side of the transmission housing (plate) as you are facing forward toward the motor/grille.', The torque converter is bolted to the flex plate and is the hydro-mechanical driving member of your transaxle. The solenoid is just on-off, it would not cause your concern, unless it was leaking severly. You could replace it, but I wouldn't replace IT only. If you have a wiring schematic for this vehicle, you could even back out the wire for the TCC circuit so it doesn't engage, and see if that cures it. Since this occurred after an additive, you might consider taking some steps prior to R& R, of getting that additive out of the system, and know the results. You don't want to do the job twice. Hope this helps.



January, 23, 2010 AT 8:13 AM

GStacey: Fiirst, thanks to ALL of you for your help.

Second, both front transaxle assemblies have already been replaced---we're good.

Third, I should have been more succinct about the location of the converter. There's a plate on the left side of the tranny. It's inside that plate. 'Sorry.

Fourth, unfortunately, I have to R& R, regardless, because of my leaking seals---no choice.

I'll try the brake trick with the converter. If it immediately disengages it---not unlike with the cruise control---I'll simply replace it, as well. Moreover, I am one of those fortunate few who actually do have a complete 1982 wiring schematic published by Cadillac.

Again, thank you all for everything.

Bill G. In Prescott, AZ

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