Not shifting, but starts and no codes?

Tiny
JACKSON SHEPHERD
  • MEMBER
  • 2008 PONTIAC GRAND PRIX
  • 3.8L
  • V6
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 148,290 MILES
My car starts up, but the gear shift is loose and will not change gears. It drove all day, but in the later evening, it went loose on me. Normally there is a bit of feedback when shifting gears, but now there is not. We were thinking the shifter cable or the solenoid, but we are not sure. Is there a solenoid under the center console with the shifter cable? How do I go about repairing this without taking the vehicle to a shop?

My brake lights work when the car is turned on. But nothing happens when we try to put the vehicle in reverse.
Monday, August 21st, 2023 AT 1:29 PM

6 Replies

Tiny
KEN L
  • MASTER CERTIFIED MECHANIC
  • 44,365 POSTS
Yes, this does sound like the shifter cable is broken but to be sure work the shifter while someone watches the transmission gear selector arm to confirm. Here is how to replace the cable in the images below. Let us know what happens and please upload pictures or videos of the problem so we can see what's going on.
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Monday, August 21st, 2023 AT 4:30 PM
Tiny
JACKSON SHEPHERD
  • MEMBER
  • 4 POSTS
I will absolutely use this, thank you! Just one question before I work on this, it may take me a few days to get to it due to limited resources and manpower. What do you mean by "while someone watches the transmission gear selector arm"? Does that mean have someone watch if it the light on the shifter changes gears to reverse and such?
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Monday, August 21st, 2023 AT 4:35 PM
Tiny
KEN L
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I would have someone inside running the shifter through the gears while watching the transmission gear selector arm, (the opposite side of the cable) to see if it moves with the shifter handle. Foot on the brake pedal please.
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+1
Tuesday, August 22nd, 2023 AT 11:01 AM
Tiny
JACKSON SHEPHERD
  • MEMBER
  • 4 POSTS
Thank you, Ken! Once I can do this, I will reach back out for further assistance if I need it. Knowing myself, I probably will.
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Tuesday, August 22nd, 2023 AT 11:04 AM
Tiny
JACKSON SHEPHERD
  • MEMBER
  • 4 POSTS
I found the problem after working my way through the center console! Thankfully I didn't have to remove anything further. I was wondering if you might know what the yellow rubber gasket is called though. It seems I am missing the one behind my transmission. I tested the shifting with the cable back on the ball, and the vehicle recognizes gear change, and I do see movement on all parts down there.
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Wednesday, August 23rd, 2023 AT 10:30 AM
Tiny
KEN L
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  • 44,365 POSTS
Nice work, the part you need is a shift cable grommet. It might only be a part of the cable, but you might call the dealer to see if they service it separately. You might be able to rig something.
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Thursday, August 24th, 2023 AT 10:53 AM

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