Q: Transmission not shifting

asked by on January 11, 2017

the transmission will not shift into drive

Transmission Fluid Service $125.08 - $440.73 Get a Quote

Hi There, This may be a sign of low transmission fluid or a faulty transmission control solenoid. As you’re going down the road, the car’s computer analyzes data being sent by vehicle speed sensors and engine speed sensors. Based on this information, the Engine Control Unit (ECU), or the Transmission Control Unit (TCM), executes the appropriate upshift / downshift by sending a signal to one of several shift solenoids. These transmission solenoids have a spring-loaded plunger inside, which are wrapped with wire. When this coil of wire receives an electrical charge from the TCM / ECU, it causes the plunger to open, allowing transmission fluid to flow into the valve body and pressurize the desired clutches and bands. When this happens, the transmission changes gears and you continue down the road. The car’s computer controls the transmission solenoid in several ways. If the vehicle is equipped with a dedicated Transmission Control Unit, it can open or close the hydraulic circuit using a direct 12v signal. Or, the Engine Control Unit can control the solenoid’s plunger by turning the ground circuit on and off. I would recommend having a professional from YourMechanic come to your location to diagnose and inspect your transmission.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

What others are asking

Transmission slipping

The first thing to check is the fluid level. Park the car on a level surface with the transmission in Park, and the engine running. The dipstick for the transmission is red. Pull it out, wipe it off and take...

01 Chevy Impala v6 3.8L (3800 Series 2). Upper Intake Manifold exploded

Before this question could be answered you will need a mechanic like one from YourMechanic to do a complete assessment of the damages to see if the upper manifold is the only thing that got damaged and why it exploded....

The tire sems unsteady during driving

It is possible that you have a wheel bearing with some play or a loose tie rod or ball joint. Any suspension part that has a joint on it can have play and cause the wheel to wobble and make...

Is the fuel filter located inside the fuel pump of a 2001 Chrysler 300m

The fuel filter is Mopar Part No. 5003960AA. It is a serviceable component of the fuel pump and thus the fuel pump must be removed from the fuel tank to replace the filter. The fuel filter might be discontinued by...

SRS airbag light on

Hello! An airbag light will usually set due to a fault in the SRS circuit. Most of the time it will set due to a open squib in the SRS circuit. A squib is simply the factory term for air...

why does my car jerk and lurch forward when i accelerate and jumps when i apply the brake

Hi Frank. There could be a few possible issues here. Usually, when the car lunges when you're on the brake, it's due to the torque converter slipping or other internal transmission problems. This is really something that a transmission specialist...

How much is the labor and parts for a 2008 Buick Enclave for engine power reduce

Hi Willie. Thanks for contacting us today. The reduced engine power light is a warning system that indicates a problem with a vehicle system, such as a throttle body, throttle position sensor or other components. Since there are multiple possible...

My key will not turn in the ignition.

Try to move the steering back and forth at the same time to turn the key. It may be bound by the steering wheel. To keep this from happening, you need to straighten out the steering wheel before turning off...

Car lost power and makes a really loud noise - 2001 Chevrolet Blazer

Hello. You may still want to have a diagnostic troubleshooting code scan performed on the vehicle. Not all issues will automatically trigger a warning light. However, there may be mechanical issues to blame for this. You will want to take...

Related articles

The Best Used Cars to Buy for Short Commutes
If If you’re lucky enough to have a short commute to work, then you need to consider different factors when buying a used car than someone with a lengthier drive (or more time stuck in traffic). Chances are good that...
A Buyer’s Guide to the 2012 Buick Verano
The The 2012 Buick Verano is a near luxury sedan that is affordably priced with lots of technology and comfort that comes standard. The interior is covered in leather with a rich variety of colors. The legroom in the front...
The Best Used Cars to Buy If You’re an Architect
Obviously, Obviously, architects appreciate beauty and symmetry. This is not just the case when it comes to their building projects, but also in terms of the vehicles they choose. We have evaluated several used cars, and identified the Mercedes...