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Chevrolet Impala Transmission Problems



  • strixstrix Posts: 1
    Transmission has never been particularly smooth on the final 2-1 downshift while stopping (dealer service manage claims normal). Now the unit will randonly engage with a good clunk. Transmission fluid is obviously due for a change, but I've heard a number of stories that after this is performed, it's more likely to fail after all the gunk inside is freed up. The owners manual says its not due until 10k from where I'm at now, and the vehicle has not been operated in any of the "Severe service " categories. Considering all the other issues I've had with this vehicle (two sets of tranny cooler hoses, failed blockheater, two intake manifold gaskets etc etc) I'm not optimisitic for longevity. At least most of the intial failures were covered under warranty, but that's finished now.
  • fordfan_17fordfan_17 Posts: 175
    the 4T65E transaxle has quite a few issues with oil circuit integrity visit and look up your transmission and see if some of the complaints match yours
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 57,591
    I can't seem to navigate that site properly. How do you find the symptoms section?

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  • fordfan_17fordfan_17 Posts: 175
    actually the site is really not set for symptoms its set more for dtc codes and what valves fix what issues ill be happy to help any way i can i have catalogs at my shop that address each issue by code format let me know if you need copies ill be happy to send you some bookwork mr> :)
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 57,591
    I think I'll leave THAT level of detail to you---LOL! If I can search by dtc code that's cool,that'll help.

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  • broglmicbroglmic Posts: 4
    I own a 2005 Chevy impala , 62,000 miles .........Now normally tranny problems come far down the road but mine is sometimes jerks a stop sign and after you drive your car for awhile you know how your car feels . Well it just doesn`t wind out right , shifting is different . So do I get it fixed $$$ which I can`t afford because the warrenty ran out or trade it in ? Suggestions ..........or any one else with these problems..?
  • fordfan_17fordfan_17 Posts: 175
    take your car to a transmission shop that does free roadtest and diagnosis. have the car scanned i'd be willing to bet you will come up with a code 1811 maximum shift adapts. you have a 4T65E transaxle in your car and its very prone to this code
  • broglmicbroglmic Posts: 4
    So does this cost and arm & a leg or don`t you know . Is this common ? Yesterday it was shifting hard between 2nd & 3rd , sometime it does it and then you don`t see it for a day or two . Thanks Fordfan .........
  • fordfan_17fordfan_17 Posts: 175
    to get this vehicle repaired "CORRECTLY with all updates will run 15-2500.00 depending on where you live
  • broglmicbroglmic Posts: 4
    Do you know this for sure ? I will check it out , will see if your right ! Hope not....I`ll trade it in..........
  • broglmicbroglmic Posts: 4
    Well , got the tranny flush finally done . Nothing found , also no codes and the car really haven`t done anything abnormal in 2 months . Did take it in to get the oil changed at a GM dealer and they told me some things were going bad . Got a second opinion and found out that two of the four thigs they said were bad really wasn`t . Doesn`t that make you feel good ........
  • I have an 01 Impala (3.8 V6) with the same issue mentioned in this thread, hard shifts with a P1811 code stored. 112,000 hwy miles, always been babied. Mine acts up when the engine temp gets to one peg under half or above, but never goes above half. It acts up the most shifting from 2nd to 3rd. It is also intermittent...some days perfect, other days hard shifts.

    I took it to the local trans place and they said that just changing the PCS tsb 0O-07-30-002B doesn't usually fix the problem. They recommend following the new 2008 TSB 08-07-30-002 for reconditioning all the valves. None of the known codes listed in this bulletin show up in my computer, I only have the P1811 code. So I am wondering if they are just trying to take me for the extra money.

    I have recently had the transmission flushed and the filter replaced. We add Sea Foam to the new fluid and its shifting a lot better, only a minor harsh shift now and then. The reason we did this is another trans shop told us that if the codes mentioned in tsb 08-07-30-002 are being stored, your trans is already on the way out the door so you will be sticking $750 (to have the valves reconditioned) into something you are going to have to replace anyway in the near future.

    The first trans place is telling me if I don't have the valves reconditioned and just the PCS done, that I am going to ruin my transmission even if it feels like it is shifting ok. Bill will be $750, which of course I don't have.

    Can anyone shed any light on whether they have done just the PCS and not had to have the valves reconditioned? Did you continue to have problems?

    Also any thoughts on whether the first trans shop is feeding me a line or if there is some truth behind it? Since it is doing it between the same two gears and not through out the whole shift pattern, should I be looking at replacing the clutch assemblies and not the PCS or value reconditioning?

  • fordfan_17fordfan_17 Posts: 175
    as much as i hate to inform you the trans shop is correct about the valves. adding additives to this trans will do more harm than good the 4T65E transaxle is prone to this code. the definition is maximum shift adapts reached..what this means is the pcm in the car has reached its limit to be able to adapt the trans shifting pattern to keep it smooth......... please visit go to transmission stuff and search for your transmission in the locator....4T65E you will find that sonnax sells a replacement valve for your trans that corrects this problem. along with many other valves that help to restore oil circuit integrity within the transmission.....all of todays transmissions have major valvebody problems. please feel free to drop by my carspace page and read my blogs on oil circuit integrity concerning todays might shed some light on your situation
  • Mileage 86,498

    Other than the usual Impala problems that everone else had in the past, I do like my red Implala.
    I had experienced a transmission shift problem for the last couple months. I drive 45 miles one way to work all highway miles. I do drive easy on the accelerator. The problem is most noticable at the 45 MPH shift. The shift acts like it is having problems deciding what gear to go in. The RPM gauge will jump back and forth causing the car to lurch back and forth.

    If I push the accelerator down a little bit, it will downshift, accelerate to a higher speed (50 MPH) and then shift just fine.

    Sometimes this happens at the lower gear shift point around 30 MPH, but much more noticable at the higher gear change.

    I checked the Trans fluid. Fluid looked clear and no burn smell.
    It progressively got worse, and not wanting a problem like this to cause a major problem in the winter, I made some calls to several transmission places and to a dealership.

    After explaining the problem to each one, no one will give you any idea of what the problem is. Just bring it in, they say.

    So I took it to a local ATRA transmission shop that was reported to me as a reputable place to go. They have been in business more that 25 years. I was told that this was a common problem with the Impala, but sometimes it is a simple fix.

    I left it with them to look at. Received a call about 2 hours later stating that it was more serious than they thought and would need $340.00 to tear it down to make a more thorough check on the transmission.
    I asked what my worse case scenerio would be. They said they would not try to guess at this point. I approved the tear down.

    Received a call a couple hours later and was told that the transmission needed to be rebuilt. Said the cost would be $2475.23 with tax.
    The breakdown is rebuild transmiision = 1073.63, converter = 241.88, filter = 9.14, ATF = 24.50. Labor = 910.00, flush cooler = 65.00, tax = 151.07.

    I asked if it would be cheaper to put in a brand new transmission. Was told that I would have the same problem again, because it would be the same transmission that I originally had. Said the rebuild will have better parts put inside than what the new one comes with. The rebuild comes with a one year warranty and is covered with any ATRA transmission place nationwide.

    So, car is working fine, shifts well, the people at the shop were clean and polite. The shop was in good order. I do not know if this is a good price or not. Just wondering if anyone one knew.

    I have read on this forum that several people have been having transmission problems also. I am 59 years old and never had a car with transmission problems until now. I do not abuse my cars and usually run them up to 200,000 miles plus before buying another.

    This is frustrating and irratates me. I was driving a Chrysler LHS with 195,000 miles on it before I started to drive my wife's Impala. We were looking for another car for my wife, a Chevrolet car, Impala, Malibu or other to trade the LHS off or sale it outright as I usually do.

    So what did we end up buying? A Honda for the wife and I am hoping I can drive the Impala another 100,000 miles. Then I have to drive the Honda. Come on GM! Whaaaa!
  • I've seen a lot of questions on here about the same problem but no one posted what they did to get it fixed... Can someone send a reply of how they fixed the problem and how the car is running now?
  • We have a 03 impala w/ 115k on it. It shakes when shifting gears, and hesitates. We took it to shop, came back with same two codes as yours. He cleaned the Mass air flow sensor and changed trans. fluid and filter. I drove it to work 45 miles each way, ran fine. Now today, has the same problems and the check engine light is back on. Will keep you posted on what we find out. Would appreciate any information you have to offer.
  • P0742 is a TCC comanded off code (torque converter clutch) this code is a secondary code to the 1811 code which is max shift adapts reached code. this/vehicle has what is called ADAPTIVE learn memory, which means it learns the drivers habits..the reason the trans is shifting hard is because the computer can no longer adapt the shift strategy to keep the trans shifting smoothly, so the pcm locks line pressure at maximum and sets code 1811 and turns on check engine light. once code 1811 is set the pcm also disables lock up in the transmission hence the 742 code. the 4T65E transaxle is very prone to this problem unfortunately it means the trans has to come out to be repaired. there will not be a major amount of damage but the valve body will need some updates or the code will return.a new pressure control solenoid and input speed sensor are also a must with this trans since in order to replace these 2 items the trans has to be removed also line pressure boost valve needs to be replaced to get oil circuit integrity back in control. if you need further info please visit and look under transmission specialties add in your year make and model of car and transmission id = 4T65E this will bring you to the page of corrections for your cars trans. and you will be able to see what needs to be done in order to get your vehicle running correctly again. Im sorry to say this means an overhaul but at least you will go in with your eyes wide open. this is an expensive transmission to repair

    cheers Gene
  • levellevel Posts: 29
    My transmission on 2007 Impala LTZ was repaired at 35k miles. However, about 2x a month it still randomly and unexpectedly slips when taking off at the traffic light. It will continue to slip at the next 2 or 3 traffic lights and then it will clear up. The problem is that by the time I make it to the dealer it is no longer slipping. Does anyone have any ideas about what is going on?
  • I got one that will top you all. We have a 2002 Impala LS that we love; no problems, good mileage; excellent car. In July; whike car shopping, we ran across this Golden Anniversary Impala. Pretty cool car. Only 6000 made. Only comes in two colors: Black ans Red Jewel Tint. Tried it out; liked it and made the deal. Around the 4th of July, Chevy had a deal with 0% financing for 60 months. You can't beat that. The car has the 3500 motor, compared to the 3800 our '02 has. Therefore should get better mileage. WRONG!!! "02 gets 26-27 in town and 32-33 on highway. '08 gets 23 in town and 26 at best on Freeway. That's driving only 68 mph. That should have been my first clue. At 800 miles, the tranny starts this up-down clunking transmission trick. Called the dealer. They came and picked it up at my work. Oh yeah; the AC was cool at it's lowest setting. Out of its first 22 days we owned it, it was in the shop 12 days. I told them that I wasn't picking up that car when it was fixed. I wanted a different car. I filed a claim with Chevrolet; they give me some reference number. Basically after e-mailing the head of Customer Relations. and ED Pepper ( the North American Vice-President); I loose. You cannot beat a large company, even when they turn out a pile of CRAP!!!. So I drive this car which by now I truly dislike; and guess what? I was at a locksmith class out of town, and all of a sudden, I pull into Arby's for a bite to eat, and I can't get the shifter anywhere above Neutral. I shut car off. Turn back on several times while trying to move shifter, and finally it moves. It pulls this trick on me several more times that day. Made an appointment at the Dealer; and they tell me that there are no computer codes designating anything wrong. Also they cannot duplicate either problem. Car now has 3055 miles on it, and I hate it. Chevrolet won't back or help me at all. Every time I get some e-mail or letter, the last question is always: How do you like your 50th Anniversary Impala? I always say that I am extremely disappointed in this car. They could give a crap less. This is the 6th new GM vehicle that we have bought since '77, and it will be our last one. I guess that I should have taken the 4 month wait and gotten the Car I wanted in the first place. The TOYOTA PRIUS. Foreign will be our next vehicle. Harry Jonas, Central Wisconsin.
  • levellevel Posts: 29
    Something is going on with GM. I think they want to put out consistently good vehicles and the engineering is right, but due to their financial woes they cut back on costs where they can --- parts, 3rd party components, warranty work, etc. Plus I think one major problem is they can only focus on putting quality into a few models at a time, right now Malibu, Saturn Aura, Silverardo. I feel you, my wife and other family members have started switching to foreign models after buying GM for years.
  • levellevel Posts: 29
    See my post #120.
  • levellevel Posts: 29
    See my post #120.
  • levellevel Posts: 29
    I have a 2007 Impala and have been experiencing the same transmission problems as most of you. My car about three times a month slips when taking off at light, sometimes catching me by surprise ---strong jerk, once pulling car into next lane.

    Who is up to joining me in class action against the 3rd party transmission supplier & perhaps GM?

    I buy American products but with this performance I'm not sure how long I can hold out given the economy and the need to get good "lasting" value for hard earned money. Now is the time to demand better of our American companies before the remaining consumers bolt for foreign vehicles!
  • I bought this impala three days ago from the County I live in. Its a retired police cruiser. The transmission was rebuilt in warranty by Chevrolet at 54k. I bought it with 104k for 2000 dollars and it seems to run fine, with no check engine lights or anything. I drove it up to work today on the interstate and it seemed to sound like it was running at a high RPM at around 80-90mph. When I let my foot off the gas it didnt slow down super fast like I would think it would do in third gear... but still it sounds like the engine is working harder than most other cars would. Any suggestions.... and would the check engine light come on in this car if there were a tranny/overdrive problem??? Also, I did shift it from D down to three a few times, but only once I got to the city, and I never could tell a difference or a changing of gears, unlessI let off the gas completely. Then there was some definite tranny movement. I am getting around 17-18mpg and I am told for an Impala this isnt that great. Is mileage worse maybe on a POLICE Impala? I drove home later that morning and it did the same thing on the interstate, however when I got back into town and shifted it from D down to 3 there was a definite downshift or transmission movement of some sort again, although slight at around 50MPH. I took it to Nash Chevrolet and they checked for codes and said all was well code wise... why would it do this on the interstate but not in-city? Is it a police package thing for more power? I think the crappy mileage may be to all the extra 9C1 gears weight (seperate coolers for EVERYTHING). Tell me what you guys think!
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 57,591
    Well you might have a lower rear end ratio in that package, for more power, thus higher rpm, worse gas mileage.

    Also at 90 mph you aren't going to get good gas mileage anyway, so forget that.

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  • I was told by Chevy Dealer that the Police Impala had the same gearing in the Transmission that the Pontiac Grand Prix gets, which is Higher than the standard Impala. Don't know if this helps but the gearing ratios out to





    Final drive ratio:

    Overall drive ratio:

    Still... 17MPG... that sucks, I am pretty convinced I bought a car w/ no Overdrive.
  • I recently bought a used 2001 Chevy Impala & its a nice car for the price.

    The only issue is that when it's good and warmed up, the automatic transmission makes a low whining sound when its in 4th gear. If I downshift manually to 3rd the whine goes away. If I shift back to D, it starts whining again as soon as it upshifts into 4th.

    It does not slip or seem to misbehave in any way, but I'm afraid to take it on long trips for fear that it's going to go out on me, and I'll be stuck with a 3 speed.

    Any ideas? Or should I just drive it until something happens?

    Thanks, B Dear
  • i have an 04 impala and both ours cars have the same problem,sometimes it jerks a little and sometime it wont sometimes it slip just a little and then it'll be awhile before it happens again,i took it to a trans shop they told me i have an internal trans problem it they would charge me 400.00 to tear it down to see what the problem was i was like no way,that wasnt including the labor and repair.i'm all for a recall my car gets routine oil change and tune up.i'm in on a class i feel better it wasn't just my impala..i like my car dont get me wrong and really dont wanna let it go,but gm is starting to make me wonder.
  • I'll put it to you like this, I bought a used 2001 Impala that had 30,000 miles on it when I bought it. I replaced the catalytic converter at 45,000, the transmission at 60,000, the power steering at 75,000, upper and lower intake gaskets, at 85,000, another catalytic converter 95,000 and I now have 105,000 miles on it and the HVAC blower is out and for the past few months my windshield wipers decided they would stand straight up when not being used instead of laying down flat. I have to replace the brakes every year, I've replaced the thermostat, and the majority of the rest of the cooling system components. I have put almost as much into it as I have paid for it, and why have I never traded it in? Because there's always something wrong with it and I almost have it paid off now and would rather not take on another payment/problem. So enjoy your car while it runs well, because I would bet it won't be for long.
  • I have a 2000 Impala LS with 96,000 miles on it. Recently I have started to have some problems with my transmission. From a stop, when I give it gas, it's like the transmission won't engage and start moving the car until the engine is running around 2000 RPM. I checked the fluid level and it was a little low (but not to the add mark). I filled it up, but I'm still having the same problem. It only does this in Drive and 3rd. When I have it in 1st or 2nd, it doesn't have any problems.

    Does anyone have any suggestions?
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