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Thread: auto trans issue

  1. #1

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    Exclamation auto trans issue

    ok so anyone that has seen my post know i have a 1988 ram 50 sport 2.6l with automatic transmission with 125 k miles on it. last evening me and the wife decided to take a little run over to some friends *lives about 6 miles one way* about 2 miles from home we are cruising along around 35 miles an hour when all of a sudden my truck down shifted and then back to cruising gear and back again and then back to cruising gear.
    so i quickly pressed the od *aka overdrive* button on my shiftier knob.
    which took it out of overdrive and everything seemed to be ok we went ahead and went over to friends and when i got there leaving the truck running and in park checked the fluid level and sure enough it was real low.
    now on my transmission stick it has two readings check when cold and check when hot.
    the fluid level was hardly showing on the bottom of the dip stick.
    so i have my friend take me down and pick up a couple of quarts of atf tranny fluid go back pour a quart in fire the truck up gave it 5 mins or so check the fluid level it showed to be @ the cold mark.
    so i,m thinking i will run it back home 6 miles or close to it and check it when i get home. now keep in mind where we live it,s rolling hills not mountains but hills some steep grades but nothing terrible bad.
    on the way back home it shifted the same way like it did before so just for safety sake i turned the overdrive off again.
    when we got home i checked the fluid level with the truck running and in park and this time it was just a bit under the hot mark so i added more fluid till it was back to full.
    i haven't ran it today yet i kind of wanted input before i take it out and about.
    *on a side note when i checked the fluid @ my friends house i smelled what fluid there was on the dip stick and it didn't smell burnt in any way.*
    do you think it would be a good ideal to drop the pan and change the filter?
    does it even have a filter?
    i read somewhere i can't remembered where that if a transmission pan has a drain plug then it doesn't have a filter .
    how hard of a job is this going to be keep in mind i,m 51 yrs old with a bad heart i can still get around and do a few things just takes me longer lol.
    bottom line here can i do this myself or would it be advisable to have a mechanic do it?
    thxs for any help.

  2. #2

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    I would be concerned about where the missing fluid went.
    The service on my Dak 6cyl auto trans fluid/filter change at a lube joint is about $73. I'm a little older than you and that is what I do. I want to add a drain plug but I just haven't got to it.

  3. #3

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    as i do agree with you85ram50 i also thought the same thing just where is the fluid going? to be honest i have no ideal i put cardboard under the truck to see if it was leaking not even a drop the underside of the truck is clean as far as i can tell i will have to get it up on a lift where i can get a real good look. i,ve had the truck sense the first of the year and have driven it only about 900 miles. no long trips just a lot of running to town and back around 3-5 miles one way. i don't know i,ll just have to keep an eye on it.

  4. #4

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    Then it probably had low fluid when you bought it.

  5. #5

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    The thing is if you don't check oil over time the fluid will evaporate under normal use. That is why checking fluid levels is the number one thing to do when one does maintenance.

  6. #6

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    You'll be able to put a service kit through it yourself easily enough (filter and sump gasket) but if you're going to do that then you should also adjust the bands which would be part of a normal trans service. It requires a small torque wrench to set them.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by 85Ram50 View Post
    Then it probably had low fluid when you bought it.
    no sir that is one of the thing i checked right after i got it home was check all of the fluids including the differential and they was all good to go.
    *side note*
    i did go ahead and change all the fluids but the tranny

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by geezer101 View Post
    You'll be able to put a service kit through it yourself easily enough (filter and sump gasket) but if you're going to do that then you should also adjust the bands which would be part of a normal trans service. It requires a small torque wrench to set them.
    got some time on your hands? lol i,ll give up to $20 fer you 2 come do it lmao

  9. #9

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    lololol, it would be a first. Fly stateside for a weekend to put a kit through a transmission... I'll add it to the list of obscure requests I've had from you crazy people - well, it's not like you asked me to send you a Chrysler Charger E49 Hemi 6 pack or anything

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by jamesw View Post
    no sir that is one of the thing i checked right after i got it home was check all of the fluids including the differential and they was all good to go. *side note* i did go ahead and change all the fluids but the tranny
    This leads me to think there is a leak that happens when the heat and pressure build up while you drive. Honestly I think might just be making stuff up trying to figure it out. 900 miles and 6 months to an empty trans?????? Hopefully a service will fix what ever is the issue.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by geezer101 View Post
    lololol, it would be a first. Fly stateside for a weekend to put a kit through a transmission... I'll add it to the list of obscure requests I've had from you crazy people - well, it's not like you asked me to send you a Chrysler Charger E49 Hemi 6 pack or anything
    ok i,ll go up to and not beyond $22.50 i,ll even throw in supper if you bring the meat lmao

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by 85Ram50 View Post
    This leads me to think there is a leak that happens when the heat and pressure build up while you drive. Honestly I think might just be making stuff up trying to figure it out. 900 miles and 6 months to an empty trans?????? Hopefully a service will fix what ever is the issue.
    you know i kind of thought about that to once it gets hot maybe it's doing a blow by or something but then again wouldn't there be some tranny fluid under the truck on the frame? i mean it's as clean as can be. the only thing i can come up with is maybe the real seal got tweaked and open up and let the fluid leak out after i parked somewhere and i just didn't notice it. i filled it up and have driven it over the last week and no lose of fluid and it seems to be shifting out ok i don't know got me scratching my head.

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by jamesw View Post
    you know i kind of thought about that to once it gets hot maybe it's doing a blow by or something but then again wouldn't there be some tranny fluid under the truck on the frame? i mean it's as clean as can be. the only thing i can come up with is maybe the real seal got tweaked and open up and let the fluid leak out after i parked somewhere and i just didn't notice it. i filled it up and have driven it over the last week and no lose of fluid and it seems to be shifting out ok i don't know got me scratching my head.
    i meant to say rear seal not *real seal* lol it,s been a long night

  14. #14

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    I'm going to say it was low when you bought it and you've lost some from evaporation. When the transmission started acting up it might've pulled air into the torque converter causing cavitation. When you topped it up, it eventually purged the air out of it and fixed the shifting issue.

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by geezer101 View Post
    I'm going to say it was low when you bought it and you've lost some from evaporation. When the transmission started acting up it might've pulled air into the torque converter causing cavitation. When you topped it up, it eventually purged the air out of it and fixed the shifting issue.
    that'sa thought i,ll just have to keep an eye on it and see where it leads something is bound to happen sooner or later.
    kind of like holler out your wife's sister's name right @ the height of sex .
    of course we here in the states call that rodeo sex
    you see if you can hold on for 8 sec,s lol

  16. #16

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