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Jeep Grand Cherokee Transmission Problems



  • pell312pell312 Posts: 8
    Ellery1- Sounds like your transfer case was included in the Jeep recall.....GC 4x4's, model years 1990-1998 were recalled for defective, leaky transfer cases. Go to and enter your VIN to find out. Sounds like ALL Jeeps' transfer cases are doomed.
  • pell312pell312 Posts: 8
    That clunking sound is coming from the transfer case....THEY ARE ALL JUNK PARTS & JEEP KNOWS IT. Mine's being replaced for the second time in two years.....It clunks when you get up to about 45-50mph and will stop most of the time if you let off the gas? Can you feel the thud under your feet on driver's side? We really need to collectively hound JEEP until the problem is rectified. Jeep is aware of problems with their transfer cases---1990-1998 model year GC 4X4's were recalled for defective, leaky transfer cases. However, the problem obviously extends beyond 1998....mine's a 2000. Anybody in?
  • nene77nene77 Posts: 3
    well thank you....i'm going to have my jeep look at cuz of the locks i will defently tell them i think that is the problem....
  • 2nd Update: Had the Transfer Chain replaced the Transfer Case assy overhauled. Cost was $455.37. Runs like a charm now. Hopefully, I won't have to go through that again for a while....
  • Hello
    I have a problem with my jeep,suddenly my reverse in my car stopped working but the drive is working and the N is working..... What could possibly be the problem? Has this happened to anyone else? I would appreciate any help ....
  • About two weeks ago, I was coming off the freeway up to a stop light. As I was decelerating the RPMs went way high like it was in neutral. This happened at about 50mph. I would push on the accelerator and it was like it was in neutral but it wasnt. I pulled into a parking lot and when it got to about 10mph, it stopped. I continued on to work but it seemed like it wouldnt down shift to 1st, almost like it would kickdown only to second. When taking off from dead stop, it would seem like it would start from 2nd gear. Just yesterday, it acted like it wouldnt come out of first gear. I pulled down a side steet to get off the main road and it corrected itself. It seemed to shift fine like nothing at all was wrong. I changed the trans fluid and filter today and took it for a test drive. It does seem to be better, but not really perfect. Does anyone have any ideas on what the issue could be?
  • rwengrrwengr Posts: 177
    You could be low on fluid. New fluids are clear and its harder to read dipstick. Check it while running and HOT. Dipstick should look really wet. I wish they had kept the fluid red. I made this mistake because I was paranoid about overfilling it.

    Check for leaks in the lines from transmission to radiator.

    I have a Chrysler shop manual for Jeep. For many types of transmission problems they mention that the shift lever cable or the transmission cable to the throttle being out of adjustment could be the reason.

    I suggest you have an honest mechanic look at the cable issues before taking it to a transmission shop. My experience with them has not been good.
  • bill202bill202 Posts: 4
    My transmission shifts into overdrive very hard when I am driving slow in traffic as I reach 30 mph. If I turn my overdrive off it does not do it. I had my fluid changed hoping to correct the problem. It did not help. I have 76000 miles on it.

    I am also pulling a boat on the weekends. I drive with my overdrive off in traffic and until I reach 50 mph. and I drive at 75 mph while pulling the boat. Is that hard on the tranny?

    How do I tell if I have a transmission cooler?
  • rwengrrwengr Posts: 177
    First, you will have a supply and return line between transmission and radiator assembly. I'd be absolutely stunned if you didn't. My 4.0L I6 has it.

    I would expect small hoses that are capped at the end by small metal lines. The lines probably have a metal quick connect fitting where they attach to radiator. One of the lines should connect high and the other low. Radiator assembly may also have A/C lines.

    Is standard cooling enough for your application ? I don't know. If fluid level is going down and you have no leaks you need to find out why. Check fluid level while engine running and HOT. If overfilled, seek assistance.

    Info below is from 97 JGC Chrysler shop manual in their transmission troubleshooting table.

    Condition: Harsh 1-2 OR 2-3 OR 3-4 upshifts
    Possible Causes: Lockup solenoid malfunction
    Solution: Remove valve body and replace solenoid

    Do you have one ? It sounds like you may be headed for a rebuild.

    If they repair something else and this component has modest cost, maybe you should have it done as a precaution. Incremental labor should be small. It might save you a trip back.
  • Hi
    I have purchase from a bid 2004 Laredo CRD with around 60,000 mile , looks like the automatic transmission is stack at 2nd gear .
    The mechanic has replaced the gear oil and filter , and according to there diagnostic computer there is no problem ..

    The car is at transmission specialist that found out with his smartbox the following error :
    X431 DIAG Report
    Code 001:
    Solenoid supply voltage (DTC ID 10 ) .

    He is pretty sure that it’s the Solenoid that needs to be replace .
    Any idea what went wrong ?
    I’m going to be at the US next week and would like to buy it online , any idea what is the part number and recommended on line store ?
  • Hi,
    I have a problem with my trans and before I dump money into the truck I would like some opinions on what it could be. The trans works well when not under stress but yesterday while trying to tow my boat out of the water the trans would not engage :cry: . It made a lot of noise but eventually pulled it out. But on the way home whenever I took off from a light it would shudder . it did this all the way home. I unhooked the boat to drive a friend home and no shuddering when leaving a light :confuse: ?? Fluid level is good and suggestions? thanks
  • I have a 2001 Jeep GCL 6 cyl 56,000 miles, driving fine then on next trip suddenly won't shift out of first gear until about 3500 rpm.Took it to a tranny shop and mechanic hooks it up to the diagnostic computer and says there is a "pressure switch" inside the tranny that regulates the flow of fluid.Under normal conditions should read 0 (psi?) at idle then as the pressure increases to 37 will shift the vechicle into 2nd. I got an estimate of $1800 to $2500 to repair, sounds over the top. Any body have a similar problem and can offer insight or advice?
  • I have an 03 Jeep GC with 66k miles. I recently noticed that when cruising at freeway speeds (70-75 mph) the transmission will downshift from 5th to 4th gear when there is no excess load on the transmission. It will shift to 4th for a second or two and then shift back to 5th. Even when I am going down hill it will do this. It seems to only do it when the transmission is up to temperature. Has anyone else experienced this? Would a transmission flush help this? Just looking for some answers to see if this is a prelude to more serious issues.
  • tuggajbtuggajb Posts: 646
    if you have never changed the trans fluid can't hurt less than trans overhaul
  • ok, both the mechanic and myself are stumped. We replaced the coolant sensor and then they suggested the radiator fan (mind you they quoted $500). As with the others I have read, my truck runs fine on the highway, but as soon as I am in stop n go traffic, she gets hot. First time she overheated I let her sit for an hour. The "Check gauge" light came on, but when I went to start her again, light was out and she ran fine all the way home (about 40 miles) without a problem. Dropped it off to get it looked at and that's when they changed the sensor. It did it again but this time, it didn't cool off,had to have it towed (the repair shop paid for that) for them to tell me 5 hours later, we need to replace the fan because it wasn't working. Long story short, I did not have them replace it, it ran fine when I bought it home. Checked all the hoses for leaks, none. Coolant was clean and in both radiator and reservoir. Today after the second time (took 2 hours to get home, usually 25 min) the coolant was at the top of the reservior, the hose was limp and the radiator had fluid in it. HELP!!!!!!!!
  • tuggajbtuggajb Posts: 646
    sounds as if your fan clutch is bad cost bout 75 bucks and can change in bout hour main fan is not turning when hot (to check run engine till hot sut off engine take fan and turn it whwn engine is hot should have resistance when you try to turn if turns easy fan clutch is bad)
  • rwengrrwengr Posts: 177
    It will take patience, but you should be able to find a solution. Not big $ to get started. Excuse me if you have done these already.
    You may notice an incremental improvement as you do each step and when you get to the end it may be resolved. Or you may find that one of the steps resolves your problem. Spending repair $ on a guess is not cost-effective.

    First, with engine hot and idling, radiator fan or one of the fans should operate at a high speed. I think it's intermittent. It's operation is not subjective. Do research on how it's suppose to work. Either it works or it doesn't. I had a Ford Ranger with your problem and a faulty fan clutch prevented fan from operating at high speed. Assuming that's not the problem, continue.

    Safety Note: Make sure engine cools (2 hours) before removing radiator cap. Always wear face and/or eye protection when removing cap.

    1) Make sure system was pressure tested. Cooling system operates under pressure to get max effectiveness. Fire your mechanic if he has not done this yet. Replace radiator cap with a new one. Make sure cap pressure rating matches your car. They have to remove the cap to test system, so cap is not part of the test.

    2) Remove old thermostat and put it in a pot of boiling water. If it does not open or opens very little, that may be your problem. I would not put it back in until you get system working (unless very cold). Be sure to put a new one in no matter what.

    3) Make sure radiator front is clear of all debris, insects, etc. Use a soft brush to clean. Avoid bending the fins. Do not brush across the fins. If it was very dirty that could be your problem. A little fin damage is OK. If you have a lot of fin damage consult a radiator shop.

    4) Buy a Prestone backflush kit and purge all old coolant and loose dirt Disconnect reservoir while doing all this.

    5)Next, treat it with Prestone Super Radiator Cleaner. You put it in, drive several hours, and then backflush it. Dirt and deposits interfere with heat transfer between the coolant and engine block, and the radiator.

    Note: For backflush, get a long piece of hose that fits snug into top of radiator so you can direct it into a bucket (5 gal.). Make sure hose pressure is not high. Turn it on slowly and gradually to find the right point.

    Note: Unless it's freezing I see no need to put anti-freeze back in until you finished all troubleshooting.

    After all of this, I would be surprised if you didn't see some improvement. If still not working, take it to Jeep dealer. They are expensive, but I would really surprised if they couldn't fix something like this At least you will know you are not paying a mechanic $90/hr because your radiator was dirty. They can put new thermostat in and fill with coolant while making the repair.
  • There's an electric fan, driver's side behind radiator? Mine's '89 Cherokee, it has. Anyway, if so there's a "thermal fan switch", find it. If you disconnect the fan switch harness, usually the switch is screwed into a radiator tank (header), jump the wires from the switch together with a piece of wire and see if the fan comes on. (Still assuming you have an electric fan on your Jeep). If it does, the problem is the switch, replace it. There's also a relay in the circuit? (maybe) Another $5.00 part to replace. As for the fan clutch on the other fan. With the engine warmed up, switch the engine OFF, reach in and try to spin the fan with your fingers, If the fan spins more than 25-50% of a revolution, replace it. You shouldn't be able to feel any play in the fan either. With air-conditioning, as mine has, I turned the a/c on when I was in border traffic and that caused the electric fan to come on - problem solved (at least at that critical moment). Cold outside so I just turned the temp to warm. Haven't seen ANY electric fans just up and quit without first making horrendous noises for months.
  • thanks for the detailed description, it helps. I tried to take it to AAMCO today, but they were honest enough to tell me to take it to the jeep dealer because of the problems. Took it, 350 later, they replaced the coolant fan relay and told me I would still overheat because I need the cooling fan replaced. Again, they quoted 500, its the chrysler part. I researched the part online and ordered it for 120 (OEM part). So in the meantime, they suggested I stay out of stop n go traffic. So now I am on a leave of absence from work until the part comes in. Hopefully thats the final rebuild. They charged $112/hr for labor, ouch!!! More suggestions are good, thanks.
  • Hello:

    I am new in this forum. I have just recently bought a 1996 Grand Jeep Cherokee Limited. It has an error message in the dispaly of "Trans. Overtemp." What might this be about?

    Thank you in advance for your help.
  • You can have a faulty relay switch or your sensor is bad. You should really get it checked on the computer to rule out anything major, Like the radiator.
    -I had a 1986 Rodeo that the "check Engine" light wouldn't go off. Had it checked and it is just a faulty light. Unplugged it in the engine compartment and all was well.

    It could just be the light sticking.
  • Hello,
    Son Jeep just started pouring fluid out when starting motor. Fluid is coming from front of transmission, but not sure where. Going to pull dust cover off, but not sure what to look for. Any ideas?
  • rwengrrwengr Posts: 177
    Check the lines that run from the transmission to the transmission cooler. The cooler will be near or integrated with your radiator. If transmission itself is leaking swap out for a rebuilt one or trust someone to rebuild it. If you pull it and work on it yourself, let us know how you did it.
  • Hello, I read alot of these posts and didn't find my exact problem shown, but my '96 Laredo 5.2/auto won't shift properly from 2nd to 3rd (when stone cold) until I've driven a few miles, then it shifts fine w/no slipping of banging. I just bought the Jeep and it seemed fine when I test drove it (warm). I have 160k miles, but it looks and runs great, just this shift issue when fluids are cold. I can take my foot off the gas over 3000 rpm and sometimes it will drop into 3rd, but if I hold the gas down it won't shift until about 3500 rpm, then it is a hard shift. I checked the trans fluid (in Park) and it was about 3/4" above the full line, but I later read it should be checked in Neutral. So I still need to do that, but what else could it be? This must be a common problem with these vehicles. The fluid was red and foamy when I checked it hot. Thanks.
  • tuggajbtuggajb Posts: 646
    have a valve in trans to hold in lower gear till warm i just got use to mine shifting slow when cold

    trans fluid should not be foamey poprobl ove full
  • Thanks, I later checked the fluid level with the trans in neutral and it showed low, so I added 1 quart to get it in the middle of the full zone, hopefully that will help??? My daughter is driving this vehicle and I need to make sure it's running ok.Do all '96 5.2 V8 trannys stay in 2nd gear too long when they are cold?
  • rwengrrwengr Posts: 177
    Source: 1997 JGC Shop Manual

    No. 9 looks interesting but it is probably less expensive to look first for a misadjustment.


    1. Fluid level low or high
    2. Fluid filter clogged
    3. Throttle linkage misadjusted
    4. Throttle linkage binding
    5. Gearshift linkage misadjusted
    6. Clutch or servo failure
    7. Governor circuit electrical fault
    8. Front band misadjusted
    9. Pump suction passage leak

    Details for No. 9 - Check for excessive foam on dipstick after normal driving. Check for loose pump bolts, defective gasket. Replace pump assembly if required.
  • Thanks, I'll have to pick up a service manual to fully enjoy my new "hobby". Maybe I'll just replace the pump and gasket to start, but it seems to be related to trans oil temperature somehow as it shifts good when the oil warms up. Even if I warm the engine 1st, it doesn't help, the jeep needs to be driven about 4 miles before it shifts properly. I'm guessing it's a common problem? I do know the radiator was replaced before I got it, don't know if they changed the fluid after that. Maybe there's water in it that goes into the filter when it gets warm but blocks the pickup when cold???
  • rwengrrwengr Posts: 177
    If the filter is really clogged it may have more of an impact when fluid is cold. I don't know much about transmission fluid except that there are different types. Maybe somebody put the wrong type in. It sounds the cheapest thing to do first is put a new filter in it and replace fluid and clean the magnet.
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