Automatic Transmission lever problem


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Old 08-10-05, 09:42 AM
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Automatic Transmission lever problem

Hello, I've had this problem for a long time now. When starting the car in the morning or after any extended length of time of it being idle, I have no problems engaging the Transmission (automatic) lever from Park to Drive.

But after driving around, if I stop someplace and put it in park for a short time then I'll have a heck of alot of trouble getting it from park back to drive again. Sometimes it'll take me 30 secs and one time it took me a whole 5 minutes of jiggling and playing with the lever so's to get it moving again.

Someone once told me in passing that it just needs lubrication probably.

I've been to a mechanic a few times since this all began and yet it never gets taken care of. I either forget to mention it or I do and realise later on that they ignored it.

How easy a fix could this possibly be? Any ideas?
 
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Old 08-11-05, 03:32 PM
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Never come across this problem before myself but what I would suggest is to get someone to disconnect the shift cable from the tranny when the problem occurrs and then see if the shift switch on the tranny can be moved by hand. This will help identify whether the problem is in the tranny or the cable/shift lever assembly.

Are you having the problem just getting it out of park or is it difficult to get it into any gear. If it is just getting it out of park and the problem appears to be inside the tranny the park mechanism could have become damaged and the combined effects of expansion due to heat could possibly cause this. The same applies to getting it into any gear if the detent assembly has become damaged.

On the other hand if the cable/shift lever appears to be the cause it could be a sticking cable or malfuctioning shift lock system.
 
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Old 08-11-05, 05:26 PM
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hmmm, thanks rav12.

Interestingly enough this problem hardly ever occured at all during the Winter. But ended just before the cold air came in last year and after the hot days came this year.

'and yes, it's only from the park position after It's been sitting for a short period.
 
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Old 08-11-05, 05:39 PM
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yeah - bit odd. Some other obscure possibility is that some clutch meterial that did not get trapped by the magnet has found its way into the park lever/lock mechaism. Normally Park is obtained by a lever raising and locking into one of the final drive gear wheel's teeth. If the park lever has got damaged it may not slide in and out of the gear wheel's teeth.

It should be fairly easy to do what I suggested - it should just take a few mins to disconnect the shift cable. There should be a locknut that you can loosen and pull the cable out.
 
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Old 08-11-05, 05:56 PM
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I've got the Haynes Repair Manual for my car with only some detailed photos and such.

I can't tell you how curious I am to get those screws off from the casing and investigate myself.

I'm just a bit apprehensive since I'm mechanically ignorant when it comes to cars. So I guess I'll be off to a mechanic again soon. 'got a long trip coming up soon and don't want to get stuck someplace.
 
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Old 08-11-05, 06:02 PM
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Unfortunately transmissions are a different kettle of fish in that most car service manuals do not cover their operation. I have the factory service manual for my car which is 2 big volumes and it still does not cover the tranny much - few things like how to pull the valve body and service it, servicing the intermmidiate servo etc. If you really want to work on your tranny and get good info on how it works, how to fault find and troubleshoot it you need the correct service manual for your tranny. Go to the ATSG website and see if the manual for your tranny is listed. www.atsgmiami.com. If you don't know what tranny you have in your car go to the tranmission exchange co web site - they have a page somewhere listing the tranny model no with the car model. web site - www.txchange.com
 
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Old 08-11-05, 06:25 PM
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THANK YOU VERY MUCH RAV12.

Very helpful information and links to keep for a later day if it doesn't pan out for me right now.

I'm greatful for folks like you lending a helpful voice.

Cheers!

 
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Old 08-11-05, 06:27 PM
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Sure - glad to help. Even if you don't feel confident doing this yourself you can get the manual and read up on what's going on inside your tranny.
 
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Old 08-12-05, 09:26 AM
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shift interlock

Hi cyberfyber I did not see a type of car mentioned however they use what is called a shift interlock to prevent us from shifting the car out of park without our foot on the brake. It is standard on newer cars. There is usually a way to test this safety feature if you could let me know the type and year of the car I can possible offer you more information.

Jaws
 
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Old 08-12-05, 09:29 AM
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Hi there Jaws,

It's a Suzuki Sidekick, 1995 JX
 
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Old 08-12-05, 02:39 PM
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There are a few different methods the manufactures will use to bypass this in case of emergency. It may be noted in the owners manual. There is sometimes a keyslot next to the floor shifter (I asume you have a floor shifter) what you would need to do is insert the key in the slot this will depress a button allowing you to shift the car into gear. Sometimes there is a small cover over the keyslot. If you can not find a key slot I would suggest turning the key in the ignition just enough to unlock the steering wheel but not enough to avtivate the dash warning lights this will also allow you to move the shifter into gear since there is no power present at the interlock solenoid. If this allows you to shift the car into gear the answer may be an adjustment for the interlock solenoid. Hope this helps.
 
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Old 08-13-05, 04:41 AM
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When the problem occurs have some one check if your brake lights are working. The interlock system requires the signal from the brake lights to work. Common intermittent shift lock operation from faulty or mis-adjusted brake light switch
 
 

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