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Rob Faucett
I'm Stuck On You!
I’ve shared a few stories of very odd problems that took some unique testing to figure out. I have another one to share, but don’t think of this problem, in particular, think of the method of testing. After all, it’s on an old Elantra (2011), which you probably don’t see very often. But, you’re likely to see something similar on any other car. The call went like this. This car had a c...

A Sticky Situation
Just when you thought you have seen it all, life and transmissions will throw another curve ball your way. Things like bushing wear, spring breakage, bore wear, are commonplace, and the list goes on. Sticking valves are probably one of the most common things on that list. We see it all the time, and we have our usual repairs to get the valve body back to working order. Or, at least we think so....

Proceed with Caution: Allison 2-3 and 4-5 Flare Shift Repairs
Whenever I can, I like to get off the ATRA Hotline and do some hands-on diagnosing on a live vehicle, and there are a few shops in town where I get the chance. A friend of mine recently had an Allison come into his shop with a customer complaint of slipping shifts after an extended drive. He drove the customer’s vehicle, and sure enough, it had a slight flare on the shift from second to third...

62TE Intermittent OD Circuit Code
The most difficult problems I have ever experienced in all the years I have been in this industry are the intermittent ones. My most favorite one of all was a mid 90’s Ford Thunderbird with an AODE. The customer brought it in, saying it would neutralize from time to time going down the road. I took it on a road test for about twenty minutes, worked like a new one the whole time. Took it to lu...

RE0F11A Diagnosing Performance Codes
Often in life, things are not always what they seem, and with today’s automobiles, we frequently come across codes with the same title but a different definition. Solenoid performance codes are one of those that can sometimes be misleading. And most of the time, when we see a solenoid performance code on the scan tool, the solenoid is not the cause of the problem. Manufacturers usually progra...

6R140 Repeat TCC Failure
Back when I started in this business, most technicians were expected to build three or more units a day. In some production facilities they had people tearing down transmissions, and others cleaning and loading onto a cart. Then loading the cart with the soft and hard parts to be passed on to the technician. Building six units a day and making them work under these circumstances was realistic. ...

6L80 Bind After 2-3 Shift
A long time ago, an old man once told me, “if you think you know everything there is to know about transmissions, it’s time to find a new profession.” At the time, I didn’t really know what he was talking about, I honestly thought, how much is there to know? After a few years, I realized what he was talking about. From two speeds to ten speeds, adding electronics, and integrating the compu...

Dealing With A 2-3 Flare, Isn't That Boring...
I recently had the pleasure of dealing with a 2010 6R140 with a 2-3 flare that became worse as the temperature increased. Once the problem is identified, I normally look for any “quick” fixes first. Most days, saving time is saving money, and there just happened to be a bulletin from Ford addressing this issue. Unfortunately, like most things, nothing is a guaranteed fix, as many problems can ...

Shifting Our Focus Back on the FNR5
Sometimes the simplest things in the world can lead to the biggest of headaches. I’ve known of many people, including myself, that will build ZFs, Mercedes, Hondas, and various other transmissions throughout the week, and the one that gives them a problem is an old THM350. Like the THM350, the FNR5 does not have an excessive amount of moving parts in it, but it can still create more problems tha...

Tracking Down The ZF6HP21 E Clutch Failure
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The ZF6HP21 has been around for some time. If you haven’t seen one yet you’re sure to see it soon. This transmission uses other names like the 6R60, as well as other variations. Whatever name it has, they all work pretty much the same and have a common failure point; the ‘E’ clutch, which controls 5th gear. In the June 2019 issue of GEARS we covered the internal failure points, so in this ...

The Long Way Around: Some Simple Testing on Nissan's RE0F10A
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CVTs have been around for some time but there’s always been one nagging part that keeps people from working on them: Getting the parts. Sure, the information is available; there are workshops and seminars all across the country but when it comes time to actually work on one about the best you’ve been able to do is replace them. Times are changing and parts are easier to find so let’s jump ri...

Tracking Down the ZF6HP21 E Clutch Failure
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Normally, when a road trip is planned, it’s planned out using some form of map or GPS. Imagine going on that trip without the use of either. There’s a pretty good chance of getting lost on the way to the destination. This also applies to transmissions. Hydraulics are the road maps for the circuits, and without that road map, it can lead to some difficulty tracking down the cause of the prob...

Chrysler Pressure Switch Rationality Codes
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Many transmissions by various manufacturers use pressures switches to monitor the presence of fluid in a circuit. Some early GM’s used them for determining position of the manual valve, some used them for determining position of the lock up valve. Late GM front wheel drives and many other manufacturers used them to monitor shift valve positions. For most Chryslers, these pressure switches are us...

68RFE OD Clutch Failure: Part 2
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In our last article about overdrive clutch failure on a 68RFE, we left off at surface damage where the valve body contacts the case. Your next step is to perform the same check at the case surface behind the pump. Though we haven’t seen or heard of any damage here yet, it’s a likely situation. Into the pump, from the case to the stator support, check for worm track damage, warps, cracks, or...

68RFE OD Clutch Failure
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There are some things in life that have little meaning, while others stick with you till the grave. One of the many things my father taught me has stuck with me my whole life so far: “The more pieces of pipe you put in the plumbing, the greater chances you have for a leak.” And as more parts are added to today’s transmissions, the more places there are to look for a leak. Most transmissio...

Light It Up! The Taillight that is.
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After a certain number of years in the industry, you might think you’d have heard everything. That’s usually when you get the call that lets you know, you haven’t. From ignition coils failing causing no-communication codes, to Chrysler governor systems that won’t function properly due to oxygen sensors being shorted out, they just keep on coming. Here’s one you’ve probably never heard ...

Common Mercedes 722.9 Problems
Like most other transmission, as the years go by, the 722.9 is hitting the bench more and more often. And, over the past few years, we’ve seen some common problems among them. As usual, the simplest things can lead to major problems in the 722.9. The majority of the failures we’ve run into are caused by the O-rings on the tips of the solenoids deteriorating, leaking fluid, and not properly ...

Even Common Conditions are Sometimes Wrong
It’s easy to know the right thing to do after the problem’s fixed; it’s a little more difficult to track down the actual problem to begin with. Experience, time, and cost can sometimes lead to replacing parts that weren’t needed, wasting time, money, and reputation. Anyone who’s been building for several years can tell you all about the old 125C and their lockup solenoid problems. The...

Going Nowhere Fast... 5R55W Delayed Forward Engagement
Every transmission that comes in your door will have a problem and something that caused it. Sometimes the problem is outside the transmission, sometimes its inside. Knowing how things work will make it easier to locate the cause. A 2006 Ford Explorer with a 5R55W started having a severe delay during forward engagement once it warmed up. The customer drove it for over a month like that, until i...

Gear Ratio Codes vs Solenoid Performance Codes
You’ve no doubt heard the old saying: “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” That old saying can be revised for the modern diagnostician: “Don’t judge a code by its description.” Many code descriptions can be very misleading, and jumping to conclusions by what’s in front of you can become a costly mistake. Here’s a story about a technician who was working on an AS68RC that was dis...