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Dodge Ram Transmission Problems



  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    A fellow I know was, and still is as far as I can tell, a believer that all transmission fluids are "basically the same" because his brother-in-law that's a transmission tech. at a Chevrolet dealership said so. When he put a quart of Dexron in his wife's '99 Caravan I told him that it was definitely the wrong thing to do and that the Dexron could cause damage. He said he wasn't going to spend $5.00 a quart for "Mopar crap" when he could use Dexron-Mercon from Auto Zone at $1.89 a quart. I said you'll be looking at a major problem within 5000 miles.

    I was wrong.

    The Caravan actually went 7300 miles before the clutches were completely spent. Of course, this only validated that Mopar trannies were a POS in his mind.

    Unfortunately, KCRAM is very correct. Success stories with Dexron of non-ATF+ in a Chrysler-built transmission are very, very few, but I've seen a couple of Mopar automatics tolerate a quart of Dexron for a short period (less than a hundred miles) and survive after a complete transmission flush. But in your case I think there was just too much for too long a period.

    Chrysler's ATF+ (ATF+, ATF+2, ATF+3 & ATF+4) are proprietary and very specialized fluids that are specifically formulated for compatibility with the Chrysler transmission design. They use a very sophisticated friction modifier ingredient that cannot be duplicated except by the original manufacturer (Havoline for ATF+3 & ATF+4). Adding another type of ATF will quickly destabilize ATF+ and without the correct formula the usual result is excessive clutch and band wear which loads up the transmission with clutch debris (that gray silty stuff) and clogs the transmissions arteries.

    Good luck,
  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    You have a 46RE transmission. This transmission has an electronic Governor Pressure Sensor and a Governor Solenoid Valve. As you look at the bottom of the transmission, the Governor Body is mounted to the Shift Valve Body just adjacent to the filter. The Governor Pressure Solenoid is located in the center of the Governor Body and has two wires attached to it via a small connector. The Governor Pressue Sensor hangs off the side of the Governor Body and has a four-pin connector.

  • jct43jct43 Posts: 4
    I have a 2001 Dodge 2500 2wd with the cummins engine. I pull a 30 foot trailer that I sell Nascar Collectibles out of. When I bought the truck I heard a lot about the Dodge Trucks having a lot of transmission problems. So with 200 miles on the truck, I drained and flushed the transmission, of the origianl fluid. I then filled the transmission with a full synethic ATF fluid made by Petron Plus. Every 50,000 miles. I change the fluid and filter. The only problem I have had is the solnoed swithches in the bottom of the transmission. I have over 250,000 miles on the truck. The motor and transmission have been great in this truck. The rest of the truck is a diaster. Nothing but problems with the steering, brakes, and 7 visit under warranty on the AC. My next truck will not be a Dodge.
  • we had fords for 23 years and finaly had it with all of the problems. ford never seems to fix anything in their design and once a part is bad they stay bad. we had a titan for 4 months and that thing was a disaster. bad transmission, various electrical problems, a noisy rear axle and 4 sets of brakes in 5k mikes. we bought our first dodge ram in 2002, but it had the small engine and we traded it for a 2003. we then bought a 2500 in 2004, then a 3500 in 2006. these trucks have been spectacular! we've only had one problem, a bad instrument gauges in the 2002. the 2003 has 110,000 miles on it and never had a repair. my dads newest silverado a 2007 has already had 3 repairs to the transmission and tons of brake adn electrical problems. sorry to hear you had problems. but well be staying wity dodge for awhile.

  • i had the same problem with my 01 ram quad cab. I went to the dodge house and spent about $210 on the selenoid and the sensor. I dropped the tranny pan drained the fluid and replaced the sensor and selenoid. total time to do it took about a hour. Easy as can be. goto this link its a total dodge repair guide

    i found it very useful
  • hey everyone i found this link posted it really helped me with my problem

    Its in pdf format complete service guide
  • Can you give me any recommendations on how to fix the current trans or would I be better off replacing it?

    As you mentioned, I did put a lot of stress on the trans during the time the truck was running, but shouldn't I have noticed a problem starting to occur rather than the truck just deciding to stop shifting immediately?

    Thank you for your help!!!
  • I have a 98 4x4. I can feel the transfer case lock in but the front axle just won't do anything. the light in the dash won't come on or anything. could this be an electrical issue or is the actuator just vacume activated??
  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    Personally, I would recommend taking this to a well qualified, Mopar friendly rebuilder. There are some retrofits for this transmission that will increase performance and durability.

    I would say that most transmissions give little to no notice before they stop operating correctly. Many times, especially with Mopars, the fluid becomes contaminated enough and debris is so heavy that the passages and valves in the valve body just clog right up. This can happen in an instant. TH200s and 4L60s & 80s will often produce strange noises, suffer from abrupts shifts, and have flair in advance before they go belly up, but a good portion of them die instantaneously, too (bad Sun Gears). Fords die like Mopars...pretty quickly, usually. But that's a testament to a hearty design.

    Good luck,
  • I have a 2003 dodge ram hemi that when I hammer it down, (floor it) it will accelerate until about 3500-4000 rpm and will not shift, It seems like it is either starving for fuel/air, or trying to shift. I have heard of it possibly being the Line Pressure Sensor. anyone have any ideas?
  • Hello ,I recently started noticing shifting problems on my 97' ram, mainly when i'm going up a incline or trying to accelerate quickly like getting onto interstate. The motor is 318 with 184,000 miles, with an automatic, could the fluid and filter cause this to happen only at certain times.Other than this the truck drives great, and it shifts fine like in the neighborhood or on local roads, when i can gradually get up speed or on flat roads. Any help will be greatly appreciated. Thank you
  • From a stop my tranny shifts from 1st to 2nd smooth. From 2nd to 3rd I will not shift unless I release the gas and wait from the rpm's to drop. At that point it engages itself into 4th and OD. As long as I keeping moving it seems to shift through the different gears at different speeds fine. It's when I stop, it resets to this procedure of letting off the gas to get it to shift. ALSO.... It will not engage reverse unless I put it in neutral rev to about 3100 rpm and then shift into reverse as I'm letting off the gas. I have to do this because if I leave it in reverse while I rev up, the tranny slamms in gear Hard. Ive had this problem for years. The thing is... in the hot summer months this problem hardly never happens. In the winter it's everytime. I'm can't figure out what it is. I changed my tranny fluid (from dropping the pan) and replaced my filter. It's a super clean truck and I would love to fix it and continue driving it. Any expert advice?
  • i am having the same problem but mine is a 96 dodge ram 1500. Have you found the problem with it yet? if so please let me know. i have not had this truck long love it,

    please help :cry:
  • i have a 96 dodge ram 1500 now the transmission. When i take off it shifts fine except between 2 and 3rd gear, i have to release the gas and go again to get it to shift, then all's fine, please someone know whats wrong and help me.
  • marcusjoeb
    I'm thinking it might be the tranny cooler in the front of the truck. Maybe it's clogged up slowing up the flow of the fluid. That could explain why the winter time is alot worse because maybe because of a thin flow, it actually cools the tranny fluid way to low. What do you think. I know they make a tranny line flush in a can for about 10 bucks. Does your truck get worse in the winter and better in the summer?
  • I have a 99 ram 5.2 auto. I was arrested and the cops towed the vehicle to their yard. When I went and got it back It wouldn't shift out of first gear until 3 to 4 grand unless I let off the gas. I took it to be checked with a free scan deal at aamco and they said it's neutralling out in second and going from first to third and I needed a tranny. It worked perfect prior to them towing it and it works fine besides not shifting out of first correctly. When I'm on the freeway it's perfectly fine. I just want to know if there is anything else it could be that I should check before I start pulling this tranny out. Thanks.
  • Can anyone help me? All I did was drop my pan to change the fluid and filter. I added a drain plug and adjusted the bands as required. After I put things back together I idled the truck to top off the fluid and the truck threw a P0748-PRESSURE SOL CONTROL/TRANS RELAY CIRCUITS.

    I took it around the block and it wouldn't start in low gear. This transmission was flawless before I dropped the pan for service.

    Anyone have any answers for me? Out of all the searching I decided to order a new governor pressure solenoid and sensor. Then I found this site. Parts have not been installed yet.

    Truck is an '02 QC with 5.9L and 101,000 on it.
  • I have a 2001 dodge ram 2500 5.9 V8 auto. while driving the other day the OD off light came on and it dropped itself out of ovrdrive then a short while later the hot trans light came on. A quick code check revealed P1740 ( TCC/Overdrive solenoid).
    Has anyone else encountered this issue and if so, how did you resolve it?
  • dantwebdantweb Posts: 1
    I have a problem with my 02 ram trans i drove my truck to the bank! got out and when i got back in and was leaving she would not shift into overdrive ,, slugish when i start out in drive so i drop her down in 1st to take off , then manuely shift up , 2nd seams to be the same as 1st but she goe's right into 3rd no prob , but no overdrive button and light works but no shifty shifty into OD help please truck is 4 wheel drive also only 84000 miles ?? , also when in third gear and running does not drop down into passing
  • ravenraven Posts: 8
    first time to post in this forum...i have a 2000 dodge ram 3500 4wd cummings diesel 24 valve intercooled turbo diesel. 100k miles
    47re transmission. I have 2 issues: 1st is after truck sits, drop it in gear...., wont move. after several seconds, slowly will pull off.
    my thoughts on this is the anti-drain valve for the pump...?
    then, 2nd issue. part throttle cruise 35-45 mph light throttle pressure, trans shifts in and out.. (of overdrive?)...this has gotten worse as time has gone by... when it first started a friend at a trans shop replaced the throttle position sensor. I dont think this changed a thing...,but i didnt notice it as much/bad.
    I have serviced the transmission regularly and used dodge filter and plus 3 fluid.
    I am an ASE certified master mechanic....also smart enough to know when something is above my head. I dont have an appropriate scan tool, so it's like shooting in the dark. trouble code lights on the dash.
    When above 55 mph everything seems fine..., and if you push hard on accelerator, seems to go up thru the gears ok...
    I would appreciate any helpful ideas on these problems.
  • eteketek Posts: 5
    I have a 97 Ram 1500 , 5.9 , 46re. Will not shift properly, initially it seems to shift but after about a mile or two the problem will start, I can come to a stop and then it won't shift up or sporadic. I ohmed out trans relay pin 87 thru all solenoids back to pcm connector c2, harness is good and solenoids have reading. Recently a shop changed the OD/Lockout solenoid and harness in Tranny but no fix. Trying to troubleshoot myself. With truck running I get 13 volt to Trans relay 87 but I dont see a low from the PCM C2 connector on the other side of the governor pressure solenoid. I have signal voltage coming from the governor pressure sensor. I am thinking of replacing the Solenoid and sensor anyway just to eliminate those. Any help appreciated.
  • ramman9ramman9 Posts: 4
    I have a 2001, 2500 cummins mine did the same thing. I took it to my mechanic he read the code and said the govenor pressure sensor and the trans temp sensor was reading high voltage. He talked to his trans man and he said the sensors could be bad and could change them but it only might last a couple thousand more miles and to ofcoarse to rebuild the whole trans. Then i talk to a couple buddies they gave me two mechanics names 1 still works for the dealer the other quit. Anyway they told me first to try the sensors the truck only has 110,000 and the od off light came on right away followed by the temp light the trans wasnt hot and never slipped just came out of overdrive. So i went to the dealer and bought the govenor pressure sensor and the transducer went to his house dropped the pan and they are right there we change them this weekend and havent had a problem since. The parts were $218.00 and it saved me $2600.00 for rebuilding the trans. I also recommend changing the filter and fluid and adjusting the bands while in there which is very simple as well about 1/4 in gap on the reverse and second. Very simple job bout an hour and a half can save alot of money. Hope this can help you! Good luck! Sincerly ramman9!
  • eteketek Posts: 5
    Thanks for the info Ramman9, I hope my luck is as good. Wish the shop that changed the OD solenoid would have changed the Gov sensor and solenoid while he was in there, seems like that would have been the best thing to eliminate all the easy possibilities. I am going to do it myself this go around.
  • problem started a couple of weeks ago as slow shifts. Last week it pretty much stopped shifting out of 1st and started making a whining noise as a starving pump. I changed the fluid and filter using ATF-4 and the whining has stopped, but other than occasionally shifting at really high rpm's it still doesn't shift out of 1st. Does anyone know what this problem could be?
  • acline1acline1 Posts: 1
    ok, guys, please help me. i am a truck girl with a 2001 dodge ram 1500 4x4. i love my truck, but it quit shifting and i am lost. i am sure this question was asked before, but i am clueless how to use this search. it won't shift out of 1st gear. i let it sit for about a year and just got in it the other day. on the initial drive, it seemed to shift thru the gears ok. after about a mile, it quit shifting. it won't go out of 1st. this is the reason i parked it last year. can anyone tell me what is the matter? is this a common problem and how do i "not" get ripped off fixing it? thanks in advance.
  • I have a 1996 ext cab 4X4 1500 with a 360 motor (5.9). I need to know what trans I have and am having trouble finding the plate on the trans that actually tells me. I am being told it could be a 46RE or 46RH does this sound correct? I have been told the RE was for 1997 or newer and RH is for 1993/4-1996. Please help. I am also looking for a good rebuilt or used trans for this truck if anyone has one :confuse:
  • corkscrewcorkscrew Posts: 254
    The I.D. number for auto trans is stamped on the left side of the transmission case (drivers side) above the oil pan. There is a 9 digit part number followed by a 4 digit build date and then a 4 digit serial number.
  • eteketek Posts: 5
    I had the number on the Tranny but could not find anything on the net to tell me. I called the parts department at the local dodge dealer and gave him the last 8 digits of my Vin# (located drivers side dash at bottom of windshield and also on the underside of hood on a paper if its still there). He was happy to type it in the computer which displays all the details that came on your truck.
  • eteketek Posts: 5
    I am having similar problems and am trying to rule out the simple things (don't cost a fortune). So far my research has proven one thing, it can be a number of different things but the Governor pressure solenoid and sensor are the most likely which I am going to try changing. You may want to get your local auto parts store to read the codes with a scan tool to get an idea what may be going on. Here is a list of possibilities.

    1 - governor pressure solenoid, sensor
    2 - throttle position cable
    3 - shift linkage
    4 - Trans relay in distribution box under hood
    5 - bad connections in harness to pcm , transmission
    6 - bad PCM - powertrain control module on firewall passenger side
    7 - fluid burnt, too high , too low (check with truck running in neutral)
    8 - Bands need adjusting
    9 - fluid filter clogged
    10 - valve body malfunction
  • I had my tranny rebuilt at aamco in arizona. But I am having a small but annoying problem. When i am driving over bumpy roads at highwat speed the rpm's jump 300-400 rpm occasionally. I know the wheels aren't leaving the groundto cause this. I can hear it slip. Is this a tranny problem or is there another culprit? My truck is at aamco in pueblo colorado and they say there's no codes and can't find the problem.
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