Q: Hard to shift out of park and shifts rough

asked by on October 30, 2015

I drive a 2011 Chevy Equinox with an automatic transmission that has been acting up and is really making driving a chore. First off, there are times when I can’t shift out of park at all and I have to move the shifter all around to get it to move. Then when driving it will randomly have a hard time shifting up or gurgle like it’s gonna stall. I am very disappointed; this car only has 71,000 miles on it. Is the transmission toast?

This type of issue typically starts with less than 100,000 miles on the vehicle. You may hear a banging noise or the transmission may suddenly jerk into gear upon acceleration or it may not engage at all! If you experience these types of symptoms or any abnormal noise from the transmission, stop driving it immediately! The longer you drive the vehicle, the more damage you will do to your transmission and it will likely result in a very expensive bill and a lot of headache. The most common issue that resulted in this problem was a defective plate inside the transmission, which may or may not cause a fluid leak. Debris inside the transmission has also been known to cause this issue as well. Technical Service Bulletins (TSB) #PI-0324-C, #PI-0312A, #PIP-4990 and #PI-0376 address transmission issues associated with this particular vehicle and your local dealership may have more information as well. I’d recommend that you take this vehicle into your local dealership and ask them for any recall or warranty related information related to your VIN number. A mobile service such as Your Mechanic may be able to diagnose this issue, but the repair may have to be made by a shop as special equipment is needed to disassemble a transmission and it will likely take a few days.

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