Limp mode, have code, new sensor, still limp - connector pins? - DodgeIntrepid.Net Forums - Dodge Intrepid, Concorde, 300m and Eagle Vision chat
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post #1 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-07-2012, 11:43 PM Thread Starter
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Limp mode, have code, new sensor, still limp - connector pins?

Hi guys, noticed a lot of transmission threads lately - here's my own:

Started with sudden harsh / erratic shifting a couple weeks ago. Got the car scanned and the shop told me it's input speed sensor. Fair enough, got an OEM sensor at the dealer, put it on, and boom, all nice and smooth, for 4 days...

Exact same problem came back. Tried resetting the PCM, but same problem after only 2 days. The second time I got the codes from the shop (besides p0700 & p1684):

P0715 - input speed sensor
P0731 - gear ratio error in 1st
P1790 - fault immediately after a shift

The last one is a bit strange. The other two seems to point to the sensor again, but keep in mind it's brand new, OEM, with clean contact at the connector. Speedo works bang-on so I don't think it's the output sensor.

The shop said the connector(s) could have a pin with bad contact. They say it's common on Chryslers and they will use special pliers to reshape the pins for better contact. Both at the sensor and the big connector at the wiring harness, by the firewall.

Has anyone heard of this? Any other pointers? I've searched this forum for the last 2 weeks with no definite answer. I could throw in another output sensor, but I'd rather not.


FYI, transmission flushed every 40k since day 1, using ATF +4. The solenoid pack was replaced myself just 6000 miles ago (with full flush).

Thanks guys!

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post #2 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-08-2012, 06:50 AM
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Quote:
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...The shop said the connector(s) could have a pin with bad contact. They say it's common on Chryslers and they will use special pliers to reshape the pins for better contact. Both at the sensor and the big connector at the wiring harness, by the firewall.

Has anyone heard of this?...
Though the bit about "special pliers" sounds like an embellishment on their part (unless you consider needle nose pliers and jeweler's screwdrivers special tools), and degraded electrical connections is certainly not unique to Chryslers, poor connection of contacts is certainly one posibility. Besides reshaping contacts, spraying with a good contact cleaner and putting silicone grrease on them is also recommended.

Also, sometimes the spring metal in contacts can loose that spring property due to heat and/or corrosion and not be able to press against the mating part hard enough for reliable connection - only way to fix that is replace the contacts or splice in a new connector. But worth trying contact reshaping, cleaning, and lubing first.


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Last edited by peva; 06-08-2012 at 06:52 AM.
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post #3 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-08-2012, 07:15 AM
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Just an FYI or a FWIW:
I have replaced input/output sensors on two cars.
I replaced both input and output sensors at the same time; not just one but both.

BUT these were pre-02 cars.

The 02+ cars seem to have various tranny issues.
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post #4 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-08-2012, 06:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tgs View Post
Just an FYI or a FWIW:
I have replaced input/output sensors on two cars.
I replaced both input and output sensors at the same time; not just one but both.

BUT these were pre-02 cars.

The 02+ cars seem to have various tranny issues.
It's not about the sensors because they are all the same for any 42LE trans. Mostly, in 2002 they started monkeying with the solenoid and the valve body.

EDIT: were the red and blue rubber gaskets still in place on the sensors connectors? This is also a source of concern. Be sure they are both there.

Last edited by Adpros; 06-08-2012 at 06:41 PM. Reason: more data
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post #5 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-08-2012, 09:42 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peva View Post
Though the bit about "special pliers" sounds like an embellishment on their part (unless you consider needle nose pliers and jeweler's screwdrivers special tools), and degraded electrical connections is certainly not unique to Chryslers, poor connection of contacts is certainly one posibility. Besides reshaping contacts, spraying with a good contact cleaner and putting silicone grrease on them is also recommended.

Also, sometimes the spring metal in contacts can loose that spring property due to heat and/or corrosion and not be able to press against the mating part hard enough for reliable connection - only way to fix that is replace the contacts or splice in a new connector. But worth trying contact reshaping, cleaning, and lubing first.
Thanks for the tip PEVA.

Now, pardon my ignorance but what is exactly "reshaping"? Is it bending a curvature on the pins, so that they apply more pressure onto the springs, or squeezing the pins to deform them from their rectangualr shape?

When I installed the connector, I did spray both male and female ends with contact cleaner, and then WD40 to get rid of any moisture and improve conduction. Now that I think about it, the tranny shifted very nice right after installation.

But if it's electrical, then what gets me, is how does resetting the PCM suddenly improve the situation?

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post #6 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-08-2012, 09:43 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tgs View Post
Just an FYI or a FWIW:
I have replaced input/output sensors on two cars.
I replaced both input and output sensors at the same time; not just one but both.

BUT these were pre-02 cars.

The 02+ cars seem to have various tranny issues.
This is a possibility, and I am tempted to try it. But even the shop said if the speedo is perfect, and the codes don't point to them, then output sensor is unlikely.

Then again, there might be some incompatibility between the new and old sensor.
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post #7 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-08-2012, 09:46 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adpros View Post
It's not about the sensors because they are all the same for any 42LE trans. Mostly, in 2002 they started monkeying with the solenoid and the valve body.

EDIT: were the red and blue rubber gaskets still in place on the sensors connectors? This is also a source of concern. Be sure they are both there.
Yes, both seals were in place. Also, I just noticed the old sensor had a light coating of grease on them, so likely everything was sealed up nicely.

Makes the damn thing even more puzzling :(
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post #8 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-08-2012, 10:44 PM
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Thanks for the tip PEVA.

Now, pardon my ignorance but what is exactly "reshaping"? Is it bending a curvature on the pins, so that they apply more pressure onto the springs, or squeezing the pins to deform them from their rectangualr shape?...
The male pins generally don't need reshaping. The female contacts do. If that is the problem, you'll notice that one or two are mis-shapen so they're larger than the others, and so they don't grip the male pins tightly. You would take a pair of needle nose pliers or small jeweler's screwdriver and squeeze or pry against their outside to shrink them back down to be as small as the others. Don't squish them flat - you just want to re-establish that spring-tight fit that they're supposed to have.

Again - be aware that they may have lost that springy characteristic such that they will not retain that smaller shape once the male pins are inserted even after you re-shape them, in which case you would have to replace them or the entire connector. And also pack them with silicone grease (not WD-40). If they're not going to stay tight enough to press thru the grease for good contact, then they're not going to be any good anyway with or without the grease. The grease will prevent any future corrosion.


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Last edited by peva; 06-08-2012 at 10:48 PM.
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post #9 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-09-2012, 01:18 AM Thread Starter
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Ahh, I see. Thanks again Peva.

Quick update, I measured the old input speed sensor, and got 748 ohms. I'm using that as a baseline. I then disconnected Connector 4 on the PCM, and measure the resistance of pin 33 to 34, which are the input speed sensor and ground. I got 746 ohm.

Now I haven't measured the new sensor by itself, but looks like there's no significant resistance in the wiring. I'll measure again in the morning when the car is dead cold, as that's when the problem occurs.

I'm putting my hope on the output speed sensor. After that I'll try re-shaping the pins per PEVA's directions. After that I'll be lost... New PCM? Unless anyone else have experience with those codes I have.
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post #10 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-09-2012, 05:09 PM Thread Starter
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Here's another update, hopefully this would help anyone with the same problem in the future.

I pulled out the output sensor - it was caked with metal shavings!

$50 later, I put in a fresh OEM sensor back in. Test drove the car - the smoothest shifting I've felt in years So lesson learned - just because your speedometer is bang on, and the PCM does not point to an output sensor, does NOT mean everything is alright. Again, just because your speedometer works does not mean the output sensor is in good shape.

I'll cross my fingers and pray the problem is fixed. I'll report back in a week or two.

Thanks for all the help guys, I really appreciate it!
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post #11 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-09-2012, 05:53 PM
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Here's another update, hopefully this would help anyone with the same problem in the future.

I pulled out the output sensor - it was caked with metal shavings!

$50 later, I put in a fresh OEM sensor back in. Test drove the car - the smoothest shifting I've felt in years So lesson learned - just because your speedometer is bang on, and the PCM does not point to an output sensor, does NOT mean everything is alright. Again, just because your speedometer works does not mean the output sensor is in good shape.

I'll cross my fingers and pray the problem is fixed. I'll report back in a week or two.

Thanks for all the help guys, I really appreciate it!
Just one question...Did the shavings look like this?


Or like this?


If it's the first one then you'll likely be good to go. If it was like the second one, well...
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post #12 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-11-2012, 10:02 PM Thread Starter
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ADPROS,

It looked EXACTLY like the 1st one, so phew!

Funny how the input sensor has none what so ever. I guess that make sensor as it's in front of the clutch packs.

My fluid was also flushed at 40K and 80K. I'm at 85K now so very unlikely I'd have heavy shavings. BTW, been 3 days and still shifting butter smooth (or as smooth as a Trans-go shift kit would allow).
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post #13 of 35 (permalink) Old 06-12-2012, 08:11 AM
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I am in the middle of replacing my transmission.
I pulled all four sensors.
The ouput sensor is the one that attracts the metal dust.
The input sensor appears to be clean -- always.

Now, I already new this but I couldn't remember which one collected the dust.
(It's CRS syndrome; maybe too much "Valvoline Carb/TB cleaner" at one time or another)
.
.

Last edited by tgs; 06-12-2012 at 08:41 AM.
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post #14 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-10-2012, 09:38 PM Thread Starter
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UPDATE: problem is back! Grrrrrrrrrrr...

Now that summer is over and my Z06 is parked for the winter, 2 days after driving the trep, exact same symptom. I haven't got the codes re-scanned, but I'm willing to bet it's the same. An Innova 3160B scanner is being shipped to me as I speak, which should pull the codes with ease.

I am totally out of ideas - both sensors are brand new with less than 1000 miles on them, and all wiring have good contact / resistance.

Anything else you guys can think of before I dump my money on a new valvebody or PCM?

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post #15 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-11-2012, 06:56 AM
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You are problably going to have to pull the valve body and solenoid pack.

It seems that most threads on this subject for the 02+ cars deal with replacing the valve body and solenoid pack with a rebuilt unit

Seems to be a very common problem and not a cheap fix.
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