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LeSabre transmission
12-18-2013, 07:58 PM
Post: #1
LeSabre transmission
I have a 2004 LeSabre with 143k on it. Shifts great most of the time. Out of nowhere, it starts to jerk/shift hard going up into every gear. It will quit when I shut the car off for awhile. There doesn't seem to be anything that I can say sets it off. Any ideas of what this could be? Had fluid and filter changed about 6k ago and shop said all was good, no problems.
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12-18-2013, 11:02 PM
Post: #2
RE:
Recalling that's a front drive car, correct?

Either way, sounds like the typical old age problem I have seen many times when the valve body gets a bugger in it or the body itself warps. When everything cools off it's ok, at least for awhile. When hot the issue can be constant or intermittent.

BTW, this presumes there is no "check engine light" glowing on the dash. Engine running issues can throw a monkey wrench into the works so need to make sure that's not part of the mix.

Garner is our trany guy so perhaps he's got something to add?
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12-19-2013, 10:44 AM
Post: #3
RE: LeSabre transmission
Thanks for responding. It is front wheel drive and no lights come on the dash. I would appreciate any help that I can get! Thanks.
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12-19-2013, 11:27 AM (This post was last modified: 12-19-2013 11:34 AM by Garner.)
Post: #4
RE: LeSabre transmission
The very first thing to do is to check the fluid. You are looking for proper fluid Level, Color, & smell. Checking the owners manual is always best but I can tell you how to do it if you don’t have one. Take a drive to get the engine/transmission up to temperature. Park on a Level surface, transmission in PARK, engine running. Pull the stick, smell the fluid. A “Burnt Hair" smell would indicate a problem. Wipe the stick on a clean, white cloth or paper towel. The fluid should be a clean Red/Pink color. Brown, dark fluid indicates a problem. After wiping the stick clean, re-insert it, pull it out, & check the fluid Level. Low fluid level is a common cause of shifting problems and eventually failure. Low fluid usually indicates a leak that will also need fixed.

I would also have a scan preformed with a High End, Full Function scanner. Record all of the code NUMBERS, post those numbers here for review, & have all of the codes cleared. GM had two common valve body codes that would be set by a harsh shift. I can remember P1870, but I think that was for the older, rear drives. It involved putting a stronger spring in the valve body. I think the newer, front drive involves the pressure regulator. Either way, if codes are found we can look them up and go from there.

You also must keep in mind; as Rupe stated, that engine problems are commonly confused for a transmission problem. A clogged air filter or fuel filter, plugs, wires, weak fuel pump, clogged exhaust... anything that causes a lack of power. If the engine is struggling the shifts are going to be harsh. Here again is where the scanner may detect something.

Please get back to us with what you find.

Thanks for using the forum,
Garner

Interested in Mining? Look here: Coal Mining, PA
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12-19-2013, 05:27 PM
Post: #5
RE: LeSabre transmission
Garner...I did check the fluid which is full, fairly red, and did not smell. I will get the codes read and the computer cleared in a few days when I can have the shop do it. The motor does run smooth and it shifts smooth until it goes into the hard shift mode which may not happen for a few hundred miles or in very few miles. Strange deal...only jerks when shifting up but once you are on the hwy it runs smooth, does not slip ever, and does not jerk when in overdrive! Will post codes when I get them.
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