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Dodge Dakota Transmission Problems



  • 1trkjon1trkjon Posts: 5
    Hi. I'm the proud new owner of a 2001 dakota sport quad cab w/ 96,500 miles on a 3.9 L V-8. I noticed a leak where the transmission meets the drive shaft. This is just minor,right? How bad could it be? Just give it to me straight doc, I can take it>
  • 1trkjon1trkjon Posts: 5
    correction its a 3.9L V-6,oops.
  • scoopyexscoopyex Posts: 31
    rear tranny seal. about $8.00 at your local parts discount store.
  • 1trkjon1trkjon Posts: 5
    thanks scoopyex, I hope thats all it is, seems to good to be true.thanks for quick reply,I put it in the shop tomorrow, will post back w/ good news hopefully.
  • 1trkjon1trkjon Posts: 5
    I know it's corny but, Rear tranny seal $8.00, Labor $67.00, finding a mechanic you trust, Priceless. My Truck and I couldn't be happier.
  • dcregardcregar Posts: 2
    I have a 94 dakota 3.9 v6, It had a 42rh, which I was rebuilding for a friend, but we came across a 42re from a 98 with about 42xxx on it, could you tell me what would be required to convert it, or is there a vb modificaton as far a changing the t/c lock up sol and the 3-4 sol. Im not opposed to swapping some parts. He does not have enough money to finish repairing the 42rh. If you could please be a tecnical as you can. Thanks much
  • scoopyexscoopyex Posts: 31
    mechanical vs electronic versions. You'll need an ecu or some sort of wiring harness to make it work correctly
  • bpurcellbpurcell Posts: 1
    I have this exact same problem with my 1998 Dakota. Simply hates to shift when cold. Winds out and I have to pump the gas a number of times to catch the next gear. Once it warms up it shifts fine. A trans shop checked it out and told me it was a seal inside the trans that allows not enough or too much fluid by. They offered to fix it for $1200.00 (rebuild) but it sounds like bull to me. Any ideas?
  • scoopyexscoopyex Posts: 31
    I would get a second opinion. Typically the colder your fluid is, the better it's ability to seal. Your problem should get progressively worse as the atf in the transmission gets hotter and thinner. The only other thing may be the seals are heating up and creating a better seal. Again I would get a second opinion. Try warming your truck up in neutral (not park) when it's cold... about about 5 mnutes and see if that makes any difference. A shortcut may be just a simple fluid and filter change with genuine Chrysler atf.
  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    A sticking, mispositioned or out-of-adjustment Throttle Valve Cable can cause this problem, and in fact is fairly common. In addition, the return spring for the Throttle Valve Cable may be missing or stretched. The most common problem is a sticking pivot shaft at the transmission.

    To check it, start at the Throttle Body Lever bracket and follow the cable down to the side of the transmission. When the throttle is opened and released, the pivot shaft should return fully to its starting position from curb idle.

    Low or high fluid levels and a partially clogged filter can sometimes cause the same symptoms, especially in cold weather. There are other possible causes, such as bad electrical connections at the shift solenoids, etc.

  • bonnievbonniev Posts: 1
    My dodge dakota will not move when placed in reverse. it will however drive in neutral. it seems to be stuck in drive at all times. i have changed the oil and filter, looked underneath and nothing seems to be broken. it will only start in park and neutral. what can it be? :confuse:
  • dcregardcregar Posts: 2
    You have an issue with the valvebody, ;)
  • cabrecocabreco Posts: 1
    I have a 1993 Dakota 4x4 5.2 ltr V8 with a 46rh auto trans. Since I bought this truck in 1999 it has always shifted oddly. The problem is that whether cold or hot the shift from 1st to 2nd and then to 3rd ONLY happens when the truck's rpm exceed 4000. overdrive engages normally after that. The dealer said the trans was ok back when I bought it. I have read the TPS may have a hand in this and taking voltage readings it showed .83 volts at idle position and 3.7 volts at wide open throttle. The output voltage increased gradually as the throttle plate was slowly opened from idle to WOT. Those numbers I understand are within normal specs. I also flushed the entire trans and replaced the fluid (it had Dextron) with ATF+4. Other than the late shifting no other problems are present. Does anyone have any suggestions or had the same issue?
  • My 93 dakota 4x4 when put into drive will not even attempt to move, but in reverse it has all the power in the is the 4sp with o/d. happened all the sudden. was no slipping no nothing just went out and it will do no forward movement, can not even fill it surge or hear/ rpm change.. any ideas?
  • jnpicardjnpicard Posts: 1
    I have a 97 dakota 5.2 4x4 auto. There's a couple of problems, don't know if their related. First there's a metallic whining from the the transmission that is fairly loud when in overdrive and lately its gotten worse. Recently the tranny started slipping when warm and get to the point of barely moving. Occasionally the speedo will spike over a hundred. When you shut it off for a few minutes, the truck becomes drivable then repeats later. I checked the transmission fluid when this happened and the dip stick was covered in bubbles and appeared over filled. After it was shut off for a few minutes the dipstick was clear of bubbles. Any advice would help. Thanks
  • brekdbrekd Posts: 2
    Hi Folks:

    I have a 1997 Dakota with the 5.2L and auto tranny. For some reason it is now not starting off in first gear. If I manually shift the auto into 1st gear, it starts off normally - no problem, the problem is it simply will not start off as it should in automatic mode, in first gear - it's starting in 2nd.

    Also, the "check engine light" has also just become illuminated.

    One more thing, although I live in FL, I drove this baby to California in November (ran great) however, the heat went out. Blower worked normally, just cool air. THe temperature of the engine was normal, and I had the radiator serviced so I'm confident all the fluid levels were good.

    I'd appreciate any help. This has been a solid truck for me all these years.

    Currently, it has just under 90k on the odo and I am the original owner.


  • I just recently got surprized when my 95 3.9L SLT desided to stop shifting into O/D and there isn't any good troubleshooting web sites out there to help me choose a starting point. I've looked over my Haynes Repair Manual and decided to talk to you folks first.
    I'm hoping someone has knowledge into the common causes of O/D failure, so I won't go on a long goose chase.
    Thank you for your help.
  • moongazrmoongazr Posts: 1
    I am currently in market for a Dakota and test drove a 2002 extended cab, 4 x 4, auto transmission. We noticed a noise when shifting from park to reverse or drive to reverse. The sound was kind of like a whirring noise, but nearly like a grind but not so metallic sounding. Anyone out there have any ideas? Is this a normal noise? I was fairly spooked by it and told the salesman I was not too interested, but wanted to have some more info.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    A lot of Dodge automatic xmissions sound like that when changing gear-selections. (Dakota, minivans, cars...etc) I understand this is a function of the design of the Dodge automatics. Somthing about as they enguage a gear-selection, the electro-hydrolic system calibrates itself. You may be hearing the solenoid-pack as it ripples thru and momentaraly enguages each solenoid.

    The sound I am describing only lasts about 1-2 seconds.
  • brekdbrekd Posts: 2
    Is the solenoid user replaceable? In other words is it inside the autotrans unit or is it outside of it? The reason I ask is I recently lost 1st gear in my 1997 5.2l. If I put it into "D" it starts in 2nd. However, if I manually select "1", it will operate in first.

    Hoping I can fix this myself. Any thoughts?


  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,516
    I would want confirmation that the correct fluid was in there. Chrysler transmissions will only run properly on ATF+3 or ATF+4 depending on the year. If Dexron/Mercon or "universal" transmission fluid is used in a Chrysler automatic, you will indeed hear noises that can lead to problems later on.

    kcram - Pickups Host
  • gpiriegpirie Posts: 1
    I have a 2005 Dakota Quad Cab with a V-8 engine. Periodically when starting out in the morning the engine races and the transmission feels like it isn't engaging correctly. After about a quarter of a mile, the door locks click in and the transmission engages correctly. I think the door locks are coincidence, but my wife isn't so sure. It has been this way since new and it never does it at the dealers and they say that they can't duplicate.
    Regards, George
  • art21art21 Posts: 1
    I am trying to find out the model # of the 1987-1989 Ddoge Dakota 3 speed automatic transmission that couples up to a 2.5, 4 cylinder engine. Wokring on a special project and would sure like to find out what model that is.
    Thank in advance,
    Art in Seattle
  • megie99megie99 Posts: 1
    Hi I have a 1994 dodge dakota v8 5.4L and when I place truck into drive it will Over rev and not shift into second, then after not shifting the trans just completely disengages and will not work until the truck is turned off and back on again. please Help.

    Sincerely Kyle
  • janejanejanejane Posts: 1
    Has this problem been resolved? If so what as done to fix it? I have the same problem.

  • leeholeeho Posts: 1
    i have a 1994 dakota 5.2 auto 2-wheel dr and my Od quit,all other gears are fine,no chevk engine lite.Is there any one out there w/same problem and what shoul i do? :(
  • gdakota02gdakota02 Posts: 2
    While driving my Automatic 4x4 2002 Dodge Dakota's engine started to rev up and began to now in normal (D) doesn't go...I put it in 2 low and 3 low it will engage and drive...and it did get me home (thank goodness)...but now I have no idea if I should invest in a diagnostic tool because the transmission light came on after a few minutes turning the car off and on....or should I drive it in low to the dealer to get it diagnosed....or a transmission repair many horror stories I have read makes me want to stay away from transmission shops or dealers...HElp!!!! I need advice on this nightmare.....possible $3K repair job. Aarrrrg....
  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    There are so many things that could be causing this. We really need to know what engine you have, how many miles, and what transmission maintenance have you performed.

  • ebtrrebtrr Posts: 6
    I have a 98 5.2L 4x4 at about 130K. There has been a faint whining noise for a while which

    becomes audible at about 35 MPH when accelerating and remains when decelerating almost to 0

    mph. It has been there for at least 60K miles I'd guess and was not sure what to make of it.

    Dealer "couldn't hear it" as usual. Lost all faith in them.

    I have been driving a car for a few months and the truck only once in a while. As I have

    gone back to drive it periodically, the whine seems worse. Not sure if it really is or if

    I'm just not used to it now.

    Anyway, did some experimenting with it tonight and found that it is Overdrive related. Does

    not occur when the O/D is off and goes away within two seconds as soon as the O/D is turned

    off. Well that localizes it but I'm sure most shops will immediately want to pull the tranny

    and rebuild it. Financially that is not in the cards. This is no longer my daily driver, but

    occasionally I have to have a truck, sometimes for long trips. I have not pulled the pan and

    I am not sure I'm up to it as I have never done it. I don't get inside engines and

    transmissions but have done about everything else mechanical on vehicles.

    The tranny seems to operate like new otherwise. No slipping or strange shifting. Have had

    the tranny flushed, filter changed and refilled with Mopar synthetic twice so far in the

    life of the truck, so it has been cared for. Fluid level seems normal.


    What are the possible issues I am looking at here and potential costs? Is the overdrive unit

    a separate unit within the transmission that can be pulled and replaced or rebuilt without

    tearing down the tranny? Is it possible this is related to the control solenoid or other

    external parts? (I doubt this one)

    Any help appreciated.
  • 1lenny1lenny Posts: 1
    I have a 1992 dodge dakota with the neat little "overdrive off" swicth. What is the proper way to use this tranny around town, freeways and hills, with and without a laod. I have the 3.9 tranny. thanx for any help. btw. i have just aquired this well maintained truck.
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