View original topic: Did I kill my auto trans? Page: 1, 2, 3  Next
Pelalozhstar Sun Oct 11, 2020 5:59 am

I replaced the main seal and the seal on the end of the transfer case

Measured how much atf fluid came out and replaced it 3 qts
Took it for a test drive and it began to shutter approx 5 miles Checked fluid level. Dry. Added one qt and ran it it read on the dipstick but still low. Added some more and went for a ride. Was slipping pretty badly then after 2 miles plumes of white smoke... barely made it back to the garage.... dipstick read there was still fluid but was leaking from what appears to be the torque converter... options? Ideas? Iím really bummed out and depressed about the whole thing....

IdahoDoug Sun Oct 11, 2020 8:46 am

Just a guess but due to your NOT doing the obvious proper fluid level check before setting out (regardless of measuring the 3 quarts), I'm going to guess you don't do this type of work much yourself. Which takes me to my next point that you may not know - the proper way to check the fluid level in your auto tranny.

Which is to warm the engine, shift through the gears in a stationary level spot, then wipe and check the dipstick.

it sounds like you way overfilled the tranny here, so let me/us know if that's the case, drain it to the right level and start over on a proper test drive. Hopefully that's all and you'll be fine. Did you replace the filter while you had the tranny off?

MarkWard Sun Oct 11, 2020 8:50 am

3 qts should have been plenty if you only had the torque converter out to replace the converter seal. I wonder if the shafts down the center got dislodged? Did the torque converter completely seat? There are 3 definite clicks as it seats.

If fluid is coming out the bellhousing, something is not correct. In answer to your question, yes it may be damaged at this point. Dropping the pan might yield some debris prior to pulling it back out. The manual describes how to check AT pressure. Sorry.

Pelalozhstar Sun Oct 11, 2020 8:52 am

Yes I did the filter as well.
No I do not do too much engine work... I mainly stick to brakes and oil. But! My friend whose shop it is at does do this type of work...
Back to your point about checking fluid levels. I did what the book said drive 6 miles and check on an even level surface. I did go through the gears originally noticed it wasnít liking shifting too well from drive to reverse and added more fluid.... then we checked when it was sitting cold and then when it was warm after moving it a few dozen feet... I suppose itís possible that it is overfilled, but would that cause it to slip terrible?

MarkWard Sun Oct 11, 2020 9:05 am

Overfilling can cause it to slip. The fluid level needs to be below the moving parts. If not, it gets areated and the bubbles keep it from fully engaging.

?Waldo? Sun Oct 11, 2020 9:35 am

For checking the ATF, the owner's manual states that the engine must be warm, not cold or hot (approx. 10 kms of driving). Also: "The engine must be running at idling speed, the handbrake must be applied and the selector lever at P." A very common mistake that people make is to turn off the engine when checking the ATF which results in an incorrect reading.

Wildthings Sun Oct 11, 2020 12:12 pm

Pelalozhstar wrote: I replaced the main seal and the seal on the end of the transfer case

There is nothing in the transmission that I would call a main seal and there is no transfer case, so it's really hard to know what you actually replaced.

As others mentioned you have to be 100% sure you got all the spline aligned correctly when installing the torque converter or things will not play out well. If you had to draw the transmission up to the engine by using the bolts, that is a very bad sign.

Pelalozhstar Sun Oct 11, 2020 12:51 pm

I replaced the main seal on the engine. That was my problem originally
I pushed the transmission up to the engine with muscle....

Pelalozhstar Wed Oct 14, 2020 2:54 pm

Appears that there was no damage to the splines everything came out as it did originally.... one thing is that in the last photo you will see a vent hole?? On the trans? I plugged it. Could that be causing the pressure buildup that is forcing the seal out?

djkeev Wed Oct 14, 2020 3:52 pm

If you're talking about that unused dipstick hole, that is plugged with a steel plug by the factory.


kourt Wed Oct 14, 2020 4:06 pm

The pump shaft insertion depth looks correct.


Pelalozhstar Wed Oct 14, 2020 4:27 pm

Someone who definitely knows more than me said that something internally has failed in the auto transmission... that is why there is pressure building up and forcing the seal out... He was trying to convince me to find and install a manual transmission. I doubt I could find one in my neck of the woods... but I honestly would rather have the auto... nostalgia I had the same van carbon copy in high school. Thoughts but Iíd like to get everyoneís opinion on what could be blowing this seal out internally. As for now Iím going to be using some high temp sealer to seat the new seal in the housing... if anyone has any other options for me Iíd appreciate it while the trannys out of my beloved beast.


Paul :D

4Gears4Tires Wed Oct 14, 2020 4:43 pm

Nah, keep the auto. It's a utility vehicle. I wish mine was auto. The manuals don't even shift nicely. :lol:

Wildthings Wed Oct 14, 2020 4:59 pm

There is nothing internal on the transmission that should be blowing that seal out. Pretty sure that it only has case pressure behind it. You should have two spring loaded vents on the top of the transmission, one for the automatic section and one for the final drive section. Just grab the cap on each vent and wiggle it around and spin it. This will do a fair job of cleaning any crud hid under the cap out.

You can remove the vents and use a tiny drift pin or a brad to test the check valve to make sure it will open under light pressure.

Get some Aviation Permatex or other tacky goop and smear some on the outside diameter of the TC seal before installing the seal to lock it into place. Do not use silicone as that will act like a lubricant and may allow the seal to walk its way right back out.

djkeev Wed Oct 14, 2020 5:21 pm

So tell us again......

You dropped the pan and replaced the filter screen
You replaced the engine front main oil seal
Did you replace the torque convertor seal? If so with what brand?
Go get the NAPA seal, many say it is a superior seal.
I can probably dig up the number, it was an order item at the huge NAPA store in Great Falls.


Pelalozhstar Wed Oct 14, 2020 5:27 pm

Thanks for your response Dave and wild things,

The tc seal in question is from go westy.... some other forums spoke many evils about napa parts... thanks for the input. I will shmear goop on it when the new part comes in.

All my best.

djkeev Wed Oct 14, 2020 5:42 pm

This is a photo Kourt posted of the seal you do NOT want.

You want the metal seal. (NAPA) maybe others are too.

kourt wrote: Howdy,

The Van-Cafe seal is the all-rubber failure prone seal--I advise against buying it. I had three or four of them fail.

The Napa part 550237 is nominally a rear wheel seal, not a torque converter seal, but its design (with metal contact surfaces and a slightly larger diameter) makes it a good and tight fit. Go with the Napa 550237 seal or the National 3051N. Don't go shopping for something that looks like the seal on the Van-Cafe site--you'll wind up with a poor performing seal.



Pelalozhstar Wed Oct 14, 2020 5:44 pm

Dave whatís he deal with that seal?

djkeev Wed Oct 14, 2020 5:49 pm

Pelalozhstar wrote: Dave whatís he deal with that seal?

They don't withstand the test of time in use. They are failure prone.


djkeev Wed Oct 14, 2020 5:50 pm

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