96' Jimmy SLE Tranny problem - PLEASE HELP!

06-16-2005, 12:21 PM
I went to do a 3 point turn yesterday and in the middle of it I went to put the vehicle in reverse and nothing! I was shocked as there no symptoms leading up to this but then again a woman (my wife) has been driving my truck over her Accord as she prefers the Jimmy. I asked her and she said that she did not notice anything. I pushed it to the side of the road. I got and looked under the truck. No pudle. No drive shaft hanging and the tranny linkage was in tact and connected. Got back in and tried it again while listening carefully. When in reverse I hear a hum kind of a sound and it increased as I brought the RPMs up just a hair. I was not reving the motor as I want to minimize the damage. Shut the motor off and opened the hood to check the tranny fluid. All there at the normal height and did not smell burnt. Got back in and started and the jimmy still had D = Drive. I figured I try for home = less than 2 miles away.. I started off and the vehicle stayed in 1 longer than ever before until about 3,000 RPM then hesitated before it gave me secon. The transition from 2nd to 3rd seemed normal. Only went about 25-30 home very slowly. Parked in driveway, shut off. Car has 90K and seems to have some of the same things that other people are experienceing here. Rough idle and hard starts when warm. I have to solve the tranny problem first but then I plan to tune it up. I am not sure which engine it has ( I think Blazee mentioned there are 3) What is the easiest way to tell. I read through all of the posts last night as this happened yesterday 06/16/2005. I will heed all of the posts here and clean the EGR valve and the make sure the rear brake adjusters have been clicked up. I also have the belt squeel problem and will weasel piss the idler and replace with a Delco belt. Any help would be great and I just wanted to say thanks in advance, this is a great post. I love the truck but my wife is noe scared of it and told me to sell it immediatly. I don't have the heart to as I really love it! It tows it handles the kids and it's great for ski trips to VT.


06-16-2005, 01:50 PM
Look at the 8th digit in the VIN number to determine which engine you have. There are two engines, W and X. W is by far the most common. It is a 4.3L, 262 cubic inch V6 with Central Sequential Fuel Injection (CSFI). Obviously you have read through some of the other threads, so you know what needs to be done for a complete tune-up. Another suggestion to help with the rough idle is to add a bottle of Techron to your fuel. Techron seems to be the best at cleaning the injectors and poppit valves.

As for your tranny problem...bad news. Of all the common tranny problems it sounds like you have one of the few that requires rebuilding or replacing the tranny. It sounds as though you have a broken reaction sun shell. This problem is fairly common. The shell is weakened as a result of shifting between reverse and drive without coming to a complete stop. The symptoms are loss of reverse, second and fourth gear. I'm guessing that on your way home, it actually shifted in 3rd at 3,000 RPMs and you assumed the 2-3 shift was okay because you didn't feel it.


06-16-2005, 03:16 PM
Thanks Blazee I really appreciate your response. Your right I read through the entire Jimmy forum for about an hour and a half last night. Techron is a fule additive available at AutoZone or any auto parts store? I will check the VIN# right away and post. I am bummed with the tranny and was hoping thatsomeone would say to replace the 2 solinoids once the tranny pan is removed. So the tranny is done. I take it the tranny is the one that you posted the bullitin on = 4L60-E. Should I just find a bone yard one? Or bring it in and have it rebuilt. Or get rid of the truck broken which means huge loss. Thanks again and I won't be able to repost untill this eve like 11 or 12 EST.

PS 2 things more please.
1. could towing a real light pop up camper have done this?
2. It looks like the 4L60-E has trouble and is a crapper. What is your opion?


06-16-2005, 04:17 PM
Yes, you can get Techron at any parts store. I used to get it at Wal-Mart, but they only sell 12 ounce bottles. (which means you have to buy two). Then I found it at Advance Auto in the 20 ounce bottles, that is what I get now.

The tune-up will be the same for both engines, so it doesn't really matter which one you have. The difference is in the internal parts..... I believe the X has a smaller cam.

Yes your tranny is a 4L60-E. Before doing any work to it, I would verify that reverse, second and fourth are gone. Don't drive it very far, though, because it will do further damage and cost more to have it rebuilt (if you choose to go that route).

I would repair it, not sell it. The way it is repaired is up to you. Just weigh the pros and cons and see which suits you best. If you get one from a bone-yard, it may last 500 miles and blow up or it may last as long as you own the truck. Others that have decided to have their transmissions rebuilt have paid $1,200 - 2,000. Personally, I would buy a rebuilt tranny and install it myself. A rebuilt tranny usually sells for $500 - $1,000.

It is doubtful that a little pop-up would have damaged your tranny. The reaction sun shell is a known weakness. Shifting between R and D while still rolling weakens them, and eventually they fail.

They aren't as strong as the old TH350s or TH400s, but the 4L60-E is actually a good tranny. They suffer from a poorly designed sun shell and some have problems with valves sticking in the valve body, but other than that they are pretty tough.

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