Hard shifting

Tiny
SHMICKLES
  • MEMBER
  • 1995 SATURN SL2
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 170 MILES
Looking at getting this car for my daughter. It shifts hard just wondering if anyone would know why? I must add that I love Saturn I have had three all have been great. I should have never sold them. This car looks great and the best part its only $650.00. So can you say perfect! I am sure its something simple but one never knows. I was thinking the PCM? Or Vss?
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Monday, September 26th, 2016 AT 6:44 PM

12 Replies

Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
What gears does it have a firm shift into? Also how firm is the shift into each gear? Is there a delay into reverse or a delay bang into reverse? It is not going to be a valve body or line pressure actuator most likely.
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Monday, September 26th, 2016 AT 6:56 PM
Tiny
SHMICKLES
  • MEMBER
I will test drive tomorrow and get answers to these questions. Thank you! I will be getting the SL2 just too good of a car. I am so excited to have found it.
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Monday, September 26th, 2016 AT 7:17 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
I have a 1999 Saturn Sl2 I have had it ten years now.
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Monday, September 26th, 2016 AT 7:38 PM
Tiny
SHMICKLES
  • MEMBER
OK so not only did I test drive it, I purchased it! So here go's going in to reverse it has a 3 second delay with a kick to it doesn't jump but im sure it would if the break wasn't held. In drive mode shifts a hard going into second, going into 3rd it shifts harder with a slight kick, 4th is smother. Now in performance mode foot to the floor it about red lines in 3rd & 4th that is with switching the switch to the right of the gear shift. Now with all that said this was a dealer trade in, not sure if that matter s or not.
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Tuesday, September 27th, 2016 AT 4:42 PM
Tiny
SHMICKLES
  • MEMBER
Also it dose have a bang into reverse not very loud but you can still hear it
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Tuesday, September 27th, 2016 AT 4:47 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
It sounds like a bad valve body but without a line pressure test and a step pressure and when I have the valve body off I would air check all the clutches and air check the reverse servo piston
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Tuesday, September 27th, 2016 AT 8:13 PM
Tiny
SHMICKLES
  • MEMBER
Ok thanks ill, Google how to check that stuff
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Wednesday, September 28th, 2016 AT 2:36 AM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
You need a air compressor to do the air check the clutches and air check the reverse servo piston. Also to do the pressure test you need a transmission fluid pressure tester it. With that you do a high and low pressure test. But to do the step pressure tester you would need a scan tool with those abilities.
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Wednesday, September 28th, 2016 AT 12:25 PM
Tiny
SHMICKLES
  • MEMBER
Thanks, we'll I will be calling some to do the test. If it's the valve body I know I can change it
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Wednesday, September 28th, 2016 AT 1:51 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
Keep me posted.
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Thursday, September 29th, 2016 AT 8:24 AM
Tiny
SHMICKLES
  • MEMBER
Saturntech9, Check this out! OK OK, so I was looking into changing the valve body however when I went to pick up the car I decided to drive it for the next week really get a feel for it, plus I have always had a love for Saturn since it was the first new car I bought. Anyways the battery that was in it was bad I mean bad so I put in a used battery & ***here is the thing*** it wasn't shifting as hard, still had a slight bump/kick but not as hard now from 3rd gear to 4th or 2nd to 3rd the car seemed to be confused also let me say that the car had a high idle 1200 rpm this was normal at this point with a chatter to it (sounds like timing chain has slack in it) ok so I drive it when it had a hard time shifting from 3rd to 4th etc it would run around 4000 rpm so one day I shut the car off in N of course wait then restate placed in D while driving & dang it she is running perfect & smooth!

Now I do this a few times over the next few days, remember the used batter, LOL well I got a new one today put it in no difference in idle driving just the same, then about 15 minutes into my 25 minute drive home I put in N shut it off do the dance OK were good, I come to a Stop sign the car sounds like she is going to die. I get on the gas & she again shifts perfect & running the same. I pull into the driveway & she is idling around 800 rpm no chain clatter etc. Still was shifting a little hard but things improved with the new battery. I am wondering if maybe the computer got reset or something. I am really looking forward to hearing your thoughts.

Also I am going to chaining the timing chain, gears, valve gasket, full tune up with all new fluids etc. In about 2 weeks.
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Thursday, October 13th, 2016 AT 5:25 PM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
The transmission computer learns shifting so if there is a problem with the transmission and the repair is made it still shift the same way it was shifting. Because it has something call learned adaptives. If you reset those adaptives with a scan tool after the repair it will shift good again. Otherwise after the repair thru driving it you can relearn the correct adaptives. So with a bad battery the adaptives could have gotten messed up.
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Saturday, October 15th, 2016 AT 3:14 PM

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