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99 Forester Automatic Transmission won't go above first

Transmission first gear 99 forester automatic transmission

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47 replies to this topic

#26 nipper

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Posted 17 February 2014 - 12:01 PM

First i will give you the optimistic news - possibilities:

- Low transmission fluid level
- Dirty transmission fluid
- Faulty Shift Solenoids
- Shift Solenoids harness is open or shorted
- Shift Solenoids circuit poot electrical connection
- Transmission mechanical problems
- Transmission hydraulic control circuit

 

Now the reality - it is telling you the computer told the car to upshift, and it refused to. This is a very rare code in a subaru. You may want to check to see if the solenoid is good, but my gut tells me since this is a auction car, it is a bad tranny.

 

May we ask how much you paid for the car, I'm curious.


Edited by nipper, 17 February 2014 - 12:02 PM.


#27 Rooster2

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Posted 17 February 2014 - 01:06 PM

First i will give you the optimistic news - possibilities:

- Low transmission fluid level
- Dirty transmission fluid
- Faulty Shift Solenoids
- Shift Solenoids harness is open or shorted
- Shift Solenoids circuit poot electrical connection
- Transmission mechanical problems
- Transmission hydraulic control circuit

 

Now the reality - it is telling you the computer told the car to upshift, and it refused to. This is a very rare code in a subaru. You may want to check to see if the solenoid is good, but my gut tells me since this is a auction car, it is a bad tranny.

 

May we ask how much you paid for the car, I'm curious.

He responded earlier on his post.................."I got it for $1700, bid but paid $2400 with all the taxes and fees..".........



#28 nipper

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Posted 17 February 2014 - 01:37 PM

ah ok, forgot about that, im going with that being the reason it being in the auction.



#29 Bfats25

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Posted 17 February 2014 - 04:59 PM

That is my next plan of attack, just haven't had time to get to it yet. I am planning on fixing it though even if the tranny needs work. Is #9 the one I need to be checking?

http://www.justanswe...t-solenoid.html

 

http://www.justanswe...829_capture.png


Edited by Bfats25, 17 February 2014 - 05:07 PM.


#30 Fairtax4me

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Posted 18 February 2014 - 12:36 AM

FSM lists, for no 1-2 upshift: Throttle position sensor, vehicle speed sensor problem (sensor 1 or 2), shift solenoid 1, 2-4 brake (holding clutch), control valve body problem, TCU.
Low line pressure is also possible.

Have you tried putting the shifter in 2, or 3, from a stop to see if it will engage?

What if you run up to high RPM (close to redline) in 1 then shift to 2 or 3?

#31 Bfats25

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Posted 18 February 2014 - 10:26 AM

Keep in mind this is an automatic.

#32 ivans imports

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Posted 18 February 2014 - 10:31 AM

have you checked if trans conectors are pluged in all the way ? also check fuses no power no shift also default is 2nd or 3rd only sure its stuck in first ? the only time I seen this is when the planatarys have piled up or wire harness is broken



#33 Fairtax4me

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Posted 18 February 2014 - 12:29 PM

Keep in mind this is an automatic.

Yes, and you can still select which gear you want to be in by moving the selector to that gear.

Placing the shifter in 1 will hold the trans in 1st gear. It will not shift out of 1st even if run all the way to redline.

Moving the shifter to 2 will start the transmission in 2nd gear only, and will hold it there. It will skip first gear entirely. It will not shift down to 1st, and will not shift up to 3rd.

Placing the selector in 3 will allow the trans to start in 1st, up shift to 2nd, then to 3rd.
It can then downshift from 3rd, to 2nd, to 1st.
It will not go into 4th gear.

If you run up to a high enough RPM with the selector in 1, then let off the throttle and shift it to 2 it may engage 2nd gear. If you do the same then shift to 3, it may skip 2nd and shift straight into 3rd gear. Shifting into D while going downhill may even get it into 4th gear.

This will give an indication if it is a solenoid or hold clutch problem related only to 2nd gear, or if there is it a problem that affects all gears above 1, such as low line pressure, or a fault in the valve body.

#34 tirod

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Posted 19 February 2014 - 08:52 AM

My link was to the elaborate process to pull the transmission codes, not OBD. Agreed, I preach it daily, codes do not tell you what is broken. OBD is mostly emissions and won't even tell you the oil pressure is low. 

 

My comment about AWD Subaru transaxles being complicated comes from the perspective of comparing them to a Detroit sedan. With three input shafts connecting the torque converter, things are not easy peasy, plus having the front differential between the TC and actual unit, it gets further complicated. Add a rear output shaft and you have another item. 

 

The front CV shaft seals are installed on the back of the differential preload plates, you do not simply pull them out and drive in new. Plus installing the TC requires pulling the pump drive tube to connect it to the TC first - and most DIY Subaru owner's working on a transmission replacement aren't going to find those instructions in a Chiltons (which are largely filled with errors - including a misleading CV seal reference.) 

 

I have put an AWD transaxle in mine. Along with all the engine connections, pulling the CV shafts requires disconnecting enough of the struts to get the spindles some free travel. It's not easy like a 350 Chevy station wagon, and they are not light weight units. The tool rental places prefer to upsize their trans jacks to the 3/4 ton capable ones because of it. You cannot bench press this thing into place like a Mustang three speed.

 

I'm not going to be the one to misinform the first time installer and say it's easy like any other car. It's not - install the TC incorrectly and you can shove the pump tube into the pump, which results in destroying the replacement transmission. I found I had to spend as much time on the net to find the correct procedures as I did under the car. It can be done, tho, and it's running now, even with the P0748 code and flashing AT TEMP light episode that resulted in replacing the "A" pump pressure solenoid. 

 

For those not aware, use of a trans jack under the pan can drive the magnet at the dimple into the solenoid rendering it useless and requiring more repairs. There's a fraction of an inch clearance and the pan will flex that much. 

 

Not your dad's 350 Turbo Hydro. Complicated. 


Edited by tirod, 19 February 2014 - 08:57 AM.


#35 ivans imports

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Posted 19 February 2014 - 10:55 AM

Pulled a 02 outback trans changed front diff and pinion total time 2.5 hours mind you was # 10 this year comes out in under 30 min



#36 ivans imports

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Posted 19 February 2014 - 10:56 AM

If you undo the front control arms off the body you don't even have to take the front tires of to undo cvs



#37 Fairtax4me

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Posted 19 February 2014 - 07:53 PM

I just knock the pins out and slide the trans side to side a bit as I'm lowering it out. The axles literally fall off the stubs on their own. (Most of the time)
Fling them forward after they pop off and they're out of the way of the bell housing.

Not sure these transmissions are more complicated than any other. The basic sections are the same as any other. There's just a combination of three different units in one. Transmission, transfer case, and hypoid final drive, all rolled into one compact housing.

#38 tirod

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Posted 20 February 2014 - 12:19 PM

Again, they are. In the limited perspective of only working on front drive transaxles, they're much the same. 

 

Working on economy three speeds or automatics from 30+ years ago, they are a nest of snakes. In those days you could drop the driveshaft by loosening four nuts, 4-6 transmission bolts, and then out. 30 minutes was very practical. 

 

The average DIY who has never done it, not so much. Please don't overstate it. There are posts on the internet about owners trying to clock the TC and not accomplishing it for three months. Their set of instructions never mentioned the third internal tube which has to mate correctly. All they get is a pic of one half an inch too far out. Nobody even mentions test fitting the starter to see if you have it right. 

 

They are apparently not the accomplished professionals others seem to be. If you have been down that road many times, bragging about it doesn't make it easier for the new guy. He needs the details and cautions. Who has mentioned it in the thread for the OP? An AWD transaxle is a piece of cake only if you already have the skills. Many do not. 

 

It's what keeps the dealer in business, and reading up Subaru threads, the business is really good with this demographic. Most of the owners have extremely limited skills. The much smaller group of those who do work on them are much the opposite. But, mechanical competence doesn't equate to posting skills, either. 

 

Nope, you don't have to disco a lot of the suspension to get the axles out, but claiming they just pop out, not so much. That is a high level skill trick many aren't going to finesse the first time out. Removing the lower control arms, OK. Pulling the nuts off the top of the strut will do it, too. OR - you can remove the lower strut bolts at the camber adjustment/spindle and re-install them by the witness marks you left on them. Lots of ways to do it. 

 

Not all that common to find on the internet tho. If we keep it up, we might be able to catalog all of them here, the OP certainly will benefit. Then he can make an informed choice and do what he needs. 



#39 Bfats25

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Posted 20 February 2014 - 02:35 PM

Yes, and you can still select which gear you want to be in by moving the selector to that gear.

Placing the shifter in 1 will hold the trans in 1st gear. It will not shift out of 1st even if run all the way to redline.

Moving the shifter to 2 will start the transmission in 2nd gear only, and will hold it there. It will skip first gear entirely. It will not shift down to 1st, and will not shift up to 3rd.

Placing the selector in 3 will allow the trans to start in 1st, up shift to 2nd, then to 3rd.
It can then downshift from 3rd, to 2nd, to 1st.
It will not go into 4th gear.

If you run up to a high enough RPM with the selector in 1, then let off the throttle and shift it to 2 it may engage 2nd gear. If you do the same then shift to 3, it may skip 2nd and shift straight into 3rd gear. Shifting into D while going downhill may even get it into 4th gear.

This will give an indication if it is a solenoid or hold clutch problem related only to 2nd gear, or if there is it a problem that affects all gears above 1, such as low line pressure, or a fault in the valve body.

That was the first thing I tried, but the other day I tried what you said and ran it closer to red line before shifting to second. No noticable shift but when I went back down to first I noticed a quite a shift. In that case, it may be going to second, I can't tell. NO change going to 3rd or 4th.

After I drove it i ran the diagnotic codes again and it came up with P0733 - Gear 3 incorrect ratio, as well as gear 2 incorrect ratio.


Edited by Bfats25, 20 February 2014 - 02:37 PM.


#40 nipper

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 01:10 AM

once again incorrect gear ratio means the computer is calling for an upshift but the transmission wont do it. refrain from redline testing as you dont know how good the engine is either, and dont want to major issues on your hands.



#41 ivans imports

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 10:43 AM

broken band or forward clutch pack



#42 Rooster2

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 11:11 AM

IIMHO, it may be easier, and better at this junction to replace the tranny with a good used one from a w-yard. They aren't that expensive, and installation isn't that difficult. Broken Subie automatics aren't worth repairing.



#43 Fairtax4me

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Posted 21 February 2014 - 11:23 AM

Used tranny time.
The computer is commanding shifts to 2nd and 3rd, and as far as its concerned the shift solenoids are responding as intended. It's looking for a change in input speed signal (engine RPM) when the shifts are commanded, and since neither 2nd or 3rd are engaging, there is no drop in engine speed, so it sets codes for those gears.

Like Ivan said, it could be a clutch pack, or a band problem, or combination of the two. Easiest and least expensive route is to put a used trans in.

#44 ivans imports

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 11:18 AM

Band takes 25 min to change and same for forward clutch pack parts 150 $ is very first part in trans when center pump section is removed. Easy to inspect bit of a pain to remove diff and pinion but no big deal



#45 nipper

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Posted 22 February 2014 - 11:48 AM

One mans "A bit of a pain" could be another mans week long project. 



#46 ivans imports

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 12:19 PM

true but if your going to change it anyway is worth a look to see what happened



#47 nipper

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Posted 23 February 2014 - 12:28 PM

Oh yes i am all for an autopsy.



#48 ivans imports

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Posted 28 February 2014 - 11:35 AM

And a 2nd one came in bad pinion bearing two in a row 98 outback this one new pinion bearing is under 200$ so is worth fixing







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