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Old 07-02-2001, 05:32 PM   #1
Marinator
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Question Auto trans won't hold gears

My 93 Impreza auto, 1.8L won't stay in 1st or 2nd, regardless of the selector lever position. It shifts normally otherwise. Any suggestions other than a new tranny? $$$ouch$$$!!!
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Old 07-02-2001, 11:20 PM   #2
MPREZYA
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Can you give us alittle more detail like "going up hill", "accelerating", "launching", "Putt, putting around town", "full Throttle", "part throttle", etc.

This will help us to help you.
Rich
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Old 07-03-2001, 02:13 AM   #3
Marinator
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Sorry, I guess I wasn't clear. If I put the shifter in "1" or "2" it is the same as "3" or "D". It just shifts up through the gears like normal. It does this at all speeds and all driving conditions. It will kick down into 1st or 2nd if I hammer the gas(like it is supposed to), it just won't stay there. I can not downshift is basically what it is. If I am going 50+ MPH for example and I drop the lever into "1" it should rev like crap as it shifts into 2nd and then again into 1st gear, but my car just stays in 3rd no matter what. It does downshift at the "normal speed"(about 25mph for 2nd and 10mph for 1st), but it won't rev out in either gear. I hope this is more clear and thanks for any help you can give me.
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Old 07-03-2001, 08:19 AM   #4
tmat3
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I don't think the tranny is dead because it is still shifting correctly. I would think the problem is around:

1) Transmission Control Module is faulty.
2) Gear selector switch is defective.

I'm not a tranny expert, so I can't give out a big detail.
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Old 07-03-2001, 09:51 AM   #5
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Old 07-03-2001, 06:00 PM   #6
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Default What the book says

Ok, here is what I could glean from the manual.

The gear selector acutally selects an oil passage in the lower valve body to select the proper gear. There is also an inhibitor switch which sends a signal to the transmission control module to tell it what gear you are in.

You can run the built in diagnostics to check for an error code. It will also verify that the inhibitor switch is working correctly. Here are the steps. If it doesn't go into diagnostics properly, then I would suspect the inhibitor switch or the TCM.

1) Warm up the car and drive the car at speeds greater than 12 mph.

2) Stop car, turn off ignition switch and then turn it back on. Check to make sure that the "power" light comes on. If it doesn't then the indicator light or the TCM is bad.

3) Turn ignition back off.

4) Move the shifter to "D" and turn the manual switch on.

5) Turn ignition switch to on. (don't start the car)

6) Move lever to "3" and turn manual switch off.

7) Move lever to "2" and turn manual switch on.

8) Move lever to "1" and turn manual switch off.

9) Partially depress accelerator pedal.

The "power" indicator light should start blinking. If it blinks at 2 Hz intervals (twice per second) it is normal. If it blinks at 4 Hz it shows a "faulty battery".

To check for an error code in memory, do the following.

Do everything above up to step 3.

4) Move lever to "1" and turn manual switch on.

5) Turn ignition switch on.

6) Move lever to "2" and turn manual switch off.

7) Move lever to "3" and turn manual switch on.

8) Move lever to "D" and turn manual switch off.

9) Partially depress accelerator.

The power light should blink again. This should either stay illuminated or output an error code. Notice the flashing and the code. For example, three fast blinks followed by 2 fast blinks is a code 32. Tell me what the code is (if you get one) and I'll look it up for you.

Sorry for the length.
Good luck.
Mike M.
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Old 07-04-2001, 12:58 PM   #7
Marinator
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WOW, Thanks a lot Mike, that is great. I ran the tests, but it won't go into diagnostic mode. I tried several times, and the "power" light stays on. Your diagnosis of the inhibitor switch sounds right, so now one last question - Where is the little bastard?

Thanks again
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Old 07-05-2001, 09:32 AM   #8
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Just for fun I ran the test on my car. The only thing I noticed that was wrong with my instructions is that you can't shift into D if the car is off. I had to turn the car on, depress the brake, shift into D, press the manual button, turn the car off, then back on to complete the test. Shift, push, shift, push, etc, until I got to 1, then I depressed the throttle half way and held it. The power light started blinking.

If you did it this way and it still didn't work then I would suspect the inhibitior switch. There is a way to test this by reading voltages at the TCU harness connectors. If you are interested I'll look it up for you. Just drop me an email. I'm fairly sure that it is on the side of the tranny, but I'm not sure. I can look that up too.

Good luck
Mike M.
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Old 07-19-2001, 01:56 AM   #9
Marinator
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I just got back from the dealer, and they said the TCU and ECU had no codes. Thanks for nothing. They say they need to have the car indefinitely to track down the problem, and at $92.00/hr, I will go broke soon. Any suggestions?
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Old 08-01-2001, 04:39 PM   #10
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bump
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Old 08-01-2001, 08:21 PM   #11
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I'd try a different dealer if possible.

Sorry I couldn't be of any more help. I don't know very much about transmissions other than to change the fluid when you start smelling it burning.
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