transmission torque converter

Transmissions and Rear Ends

  1. RICK SMITH

    RICK SMITH Member

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    so driving the 87 fifth avenue the other day and it developed a shake while downshifting, this quickly turn into a no drive or reverse, there was also a whining sound.
    The car would not move at all. I let it cool down and it ran OK but not good to drive the 2 miles back home. Now I notice it is leaking fluid. The fluid smells burnt.

    I havent got around to checking any thing yet, but my question is I am sure the converter failed but what are chances the tranny may be OK.
     
  2. BudW

    BudW Moderator Staff Member

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    Check the fluid level first.
    If an automatic transmission doesn’t have enough fluid – the car will not go anywhere. It has to have fluid to operate the clutch pistons and so forth.

    I’m not convinced it is the torque converter failure (yet).

    If transmission has a massive fluid leak – then it will be doubtful you can fix the problem with transmission in car (which most likely would be the front pump seal/bushing).

    I have a suspicion that a lack of fluid is a cause of most of your symptoms and the fluid leak is the primary cause of failure.
    If that is the case, once the leak is fixed and a fluid/filter change – you might be good to go.
    Too early to say, at this time.

    I recommend filling transmission to proper level. As long as you don’t have a massive fluid leak, then drive car around for a while and see if any of the non-oil leak symptoms are still present – and report back.
    If you have a massive fluid leak – then stop.
    BudW

    From my '77 FSM (Factory Service Manual). My '86 FSM says the same - except on what fluid to use.
    77 FSM pg 21-62a.JPG
    77 FSM pg 21-62b.JPG
    Note: the drain part is not needed, in this case - just the refill to correct level part.
     
  3. RICK SMITH

    RICK SMITH Member

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    not a fluid problem I check fluid weekly and it never leaked until this issue started fluid all ways has been full and bright red in color.
     
  4. BudW

    BudW Moderator Staff Member

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    I must have misunderstood when you said:
    All I was suggesting was to make sure fluid level is currently between the lines and drive for a bit, if it was low.
    If it is currently between the lines, then you need repairs.

    Chrysler automatic transmissions, until the mind ‘90’s, were always hard to check and get the correct fluid level. Checking fluid level with car in park does not cut it (not saying you did – I’m only saying in general).

    The condition you describe sounds like a fluid level problem – either too much or too little.
    Too much, and fluid aerates and turns into a pink foam. Foam does not lubricate and doesn't act like hydraulic fluid – which “could” cause the symptoms you describe.

    If you say fluid now is at correct level – then it is time to send to transmission shop or remove for overhaul. Or, if transmission has a massive fluid leak, then time to remove the assembly and you might possibly perform repairs, at that point.
    You might be able to overhaul it as well.
    I have worked inside of more Chrysler transmissions – than I think most people have (close to but not quite a thousand).


    By the way, I have a little fluid leak on my ‘77 wagon A904 coming from the front pump seal. At the current leak size and my experience, I have about 6-9 months before that seal gives out and forms into a “massive fluid leak”. I’m about to rebuild an existing ’84 police A999 transmission sense it has a lockup torque converter whereas my ’77 does not have lockup (for better gas mileage (lockup), lower 1st gear (A999) and better governor and more clutch disks (police version)). After done, I can just swap the transmission out when it finally gives out/up.

    You should already have the A999 transmission (but not the police governor (higher shift points)).
    BudW
     
  5. Aspen500

    Aspen500 Well-Known Member

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    Torqueflite's are checked for fluid level in neutral. In park it will appear to be over full.
     
  6. BudW

    BudW Moderator Staff Member

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    Exactly (which is why I posted the directions on post #2).

    A common problem I see, of people not familiar with Chrysler transmissions – is the automatic fluid levels are not checked correctly (and I’m by no way implying the OP (Original Poster) is/has checking it incorrectly).

    I'm glad that Chrysler finally changed the fluid check method in the mid ‘90’s to a more common method – but that doesn’t apply to our cars.

    If you check fluid in Park and without cycling the shifter between the gear selections, first – a person will have an erroneous fluid reading (under full – by well over a couple of quarts, sometimes).
    BudW
     
  7. BudW

    BudW Moderator Staff Member

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    Had chance to look at the car, yet?
     
  8. AJ/FormS

    AJ/FormS Well-Known Member

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    My questions are; was this a forced downshift, or an automatic downshift as when coming to a stop?
    And is this in a recently overhauled unit?, or a long-time good-running trans?
    The accompanying vibration and whining kindof points to a broken part. I haven't heard a TC whine, so going from personal experience, your symptoms are same as what mine did when the back planetary splines stripped out.
    You still need to do your due-diligence as Bud instructed.
    After that I would do a pressure test to prove the pump is OK,and the servos are working,or at least the L/R. If your pressures are to spec, then very likely the TC is Ok. You cannot bench-test the TC so it's now or never.
    Having said all that, L/R bands break, and over-running clutches can split, so If the pressures are good, then drop the pan and check that band. If it is intact and has a reasonably close adjustment then if it was mine, it would be coming down.
    I haven't pulled near as many units a bud, maybe a tenth at most. Naw not even that many. I mostly install shift kits, and diagnose them, and get somebody else to pull them,lol.Sorry Bud I couldn't resist,lol.
    Back in the 70/80s a guy could make money in the RnR, but these days everybody plays the; I'm so broke can't you cut me a deal,card. I say sure, pull it yourself and save big money, I'm not particularly keen on that part of the job anyway. Suddenly they're no longer interested, and I get to go back to work on something I do enjoy.
    At age 64,it's nice to finally be able to pick and chose my jobs. Currently I can still do that.