Tranny was stuck in neutral... - DodgeIntrepid.Net Forums - Dodge Intrepid, Concorde, 300m and Eagle Vision chat
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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-09-2018, 10:11 AM Thread Starter
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Tranny was stuck in neutral...

This morning I started the car and put it in D for about 50 feet and it was fine. Turned off car and came back out about 15 mins later, turned on car to put it in reverse and nothing. I put it in D and nothing too.

So, I checked the fluid level and it was fine. Went back in and cycled through the gears and got to '3' and it seemed to go into gear, then all gears worked again and it drove like normal to my destination, no limp mode or anything. All gears worked and shifted fine.

Is this the beginning of the end? The car has been running perfectly and this is quite abrupt. I also have no codes other than 12 and 55. Last work I did on the tranny was a fluid and filter change a few months ago, the fluid wasn't dirty or anything, used ATF+4.
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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-09-2018, 11:21 AM
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Have you checked your fluid level today?
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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-09-2018, 11:33 AM Thread Starter
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Yep. Fluid level is good. This has never happened before and I drive like a grandma.

Maybe shift linkage issue? The lights in the dash matched which gear I was selecting though I don't know if the lights are controlled by the shifter itself or the tranny.

Reading around, I wonder if the shift solenoid could be the issue as well. But I figure I would have other issues if that were the case, like erratic shifting while driving which I don't have.

Last edited by codyj; 12-09-2018 at 12:36 PM.
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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-09-2018, 12:48 PM Thread Starter
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I just went out and started the car again and seems to be shifting fine, but it'll be in the back of my head now.
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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-09-2018, 04:23 PM Thread Starter
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This thread posts a similar issue:
https://www.dodgeintrepid.net/15-gen...ny-issues.html

Seems the pump is losing prime which makes the most sense.

Last edited by codyj; 12-09-2018 at 04:25 PM.
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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-09-2018, 06:36 PM
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The gear lights are derived from the range sensor, so it would appear your shifter linkage is intact.

Dan or Ron are your best resources for this one.
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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-09-2018, 07:18 PM Thread Starter
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This was also the first time that I can remember when I only drove the car a few feet and turned it off on a cold start. Almost never do that so if it is a tranny pump prime issue, it could have been this way for a long time and I never realized it since I drive far enough not to notice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Drydocked View Post
My 97 LHS was doing that same thing last winter. Researched in the service manual and found a description of that exact problem, says it is caused by excessive clearance between the torque converter shaft and the pump bushing, causing the pump to loose it's prime. This is caused by the bushing, shaft, or both being worn. Remedy is to replace torque converter and the pump bushing (better to replace the whole pump not just the bushing). Pump will only loose prime on a cold start and if the trans is shifted after driving a short distance, like backing out of a garage and shifting to go forward. Let it idle for a few seconds and it will then go. Short term fix is to back it in at night but sooner or later it should be fixed. I ended up rebuilding my trans last spring for other reasons.
Doesn't seem like an easy fix. Tranny would have to come out at the very least.
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-09-2018, 09:51 PM Thread Starter
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Possible TSB about this issue, though 1st gens don't seem to be mentioned:

TSB #21-004-05
https://www.ertyu.org/steven_nikkel/.../21-004-05.pdf

Another site with same issue:
https://300mclub.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=34998
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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-11-2018, 10:18 AM Thread Starter
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I wonder if it could also be the accumulator seals leaking. I've no idea how to diagnose that though. May have to take it to a tranny shop. If it is just accumulators, I can drop the valve body and spend $20:
https://www.amazon.com/42RLE-TRANSGO.../dp/B009SOVRGU
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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-11-2018, 06:32 PM Thread Starter
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So, today it happened really bad.

I checked the fluid and it was damn near empty. WTF? Where the hell did it go? It doesn't appear to be leaking. I'll look more tomorrow, too dark now. I swear the fluid was okay two days ago.
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post #11 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-12-2018, 11:41 AM Thread Starter
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Last night I added a quart of ATF+4 and seems to be okay. I'm going to assume I miss read the dip stick when I filled it up a few months ago after my filter change. Though it drove just fine during that time, maybe the cold weather affected it? I looked for leaks and found none, checked coolant to see if the radiator busted internally but no fluid in the coolant. If that's all it is, then I'll be the happiest man alive for a few days but I'll keep an eye on it.
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post #12 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-20-2018, 04:13 PM Thread Starter
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I've definitely got a leak some where. Losing about 1/2 quart per week and I don't see a drop below the car other than engine oil from my cam seal. I sat for about 5 minutes after a long drive looking under the car, not a drop. It's really weird.
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post #13 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-21-2018, 01:21 AM
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That is strange. Seems like leak into rad is only possibility, though you don’t see evidence of that.

I don’t recall if it’s possible to leak from trans directly into diff. (they are two separate compartments and fluid types), but eventually you’d get overflow from diff. air vent. Maybe check diff. grease level for over full (remove fill-level plug) and if ATF-grease mixing.

Last edited by peva; 12-21-2018 at 01:23 AM.
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post #14 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-21-2018, 11:52 AM Thread Starter
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Yeah I was going to check the differential fluid next. I changed it about a month before my transmission oil/filter.

The only thing I can think of is it leaks only when moving. Figured I'd see at least some evidence on the ground after parking over night with that much disappearing.

Local tranny shop may have better luck. May take it to them tomorrow.
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post #15 of 26 (permalink) Old 12-26-2018, 08:34 PM Thread Starter
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Figured I had nothing to lose so I threw in a bottle of Lucas after pumping a quart of fluid out. It's been a few days, but the fluid level is remaining constant and I do not have any more delayed gears in the morning. I still don't know where that fluid disappeared to. Best guess is it was leaking out when driving and leaving no trace.

I'm guessing the L/R piston seal is bad and wasn't sealing until the fluid warmed up a bit to soften it. I'm also willing to bet there was Lucas in there before I changed my fluid and filter. My dad was the type to throw that kinda stuff in the car.
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