2001 Nissan Sentra, Automatic Transmission Slipping


Old 07-02-14, 01:52 AM
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2001 Nissan Sentra, Automatic Transmission Slipping

Hi. I have a 2001 Sentra, automatic transmission, with just under 200,000 kilometres.

Today I pulled up to a red light, and then when it turned green, I went to take off, in drive, and it didn't go forward. The motor just revved. I quickly put it in second gear, and it went forward immediately. And then the same thing happened again at the next light.

Then went I later drove down the street, I put it in drive and it seemed fine.

Are transmission problems often intermittent? I worry that if I go to a tranny shop to have them take a look at it, they'll automatically say I need a new transmission.....

Any ideas of what I (or actually a friend) should look for, aside from the tranny fluid level?

Any ideas would be appreciated.

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Old 07-02-14, 04:33 AM
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Yes, you can get intermittent problems. Unfortunately auto tranny issues don't lend themselves too well to DIY diagnosis. Probably wouldn't hurt to get it scanned for codes; could be something simple like a shift solenoid.

As a side note, you're smart to wary of some tranny shops and their tendency to jump straight to "rebuild". Large big-name places often run in that direction. If you ask around you should be able to find a good, reputable independent shop that can actually troubleshoot it. You might call 3 or 4 local independent towing companies and ask them who the best tranny guy is in the area; they'll know.
Old 07-02-14, 08:04 AM
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I'll give you my thoughts just from past experience but understand that no one can really diagnose these problems from a distance.

Your 200,000 kilometers equals 124,800 miles to my side of the border which isn't a lot of use unless you have been tearing around up and down hills and mountains and cooking the trans fluid. Is the trans fluid red or really dark red or maybe even turned brown (definitely not a good sign)? You can drop the trans pan and see whats there, any heavy metal or pieces of clutch face- but again if the fluid is cooked the tranny is probably in need of rebuild.

If the car sits all night and cools down and then you try to take off in the morning and the engine revs and it takes a while for the car to start moving......and after the car warms up and trans is normal most or the day....and you get the same problem after the car cools down.....then the torque converter is just about shot and you will eventually not be able to move the car at all. And if you remove the trans for the torque converter then you should rebuild the trans. I have had people who installed used junkyard trans with good results.

But also consider that this is a 2001 Nissan Sentra. I don't know what you paid for it, but I'm thinking it wasn't a lot, how much use have you gotten out of it? Is it worth it to go for a trans rebuild? Will you get your money back out of it?
Old 07-02-14, 08:23 AM
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How long have you owned this car?
Is the transmission oil within the operating fill range?
Has the transmission been serviced?
Old 07-02-14, 07:49 PM
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Ok, y'all asked for it.

Was transmission fluid ever changed?

Also, a silly one. Do you actually have D engaged properly? Silly may be, but on my Ridgeline it's quite tricky to get it in right.
Old 07-09-14, 12:18 PM
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Was wondering how you made out with the transmission?

With the actually moderate number of miles you have on the car and if the car body and engine are still in decent shape its probably worth repairing the trans if the price isn't way high. You should see a lot more miles out of that Nissan engine.
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