1998 Tahoe Transmission issue - Will not shift out of 2nd gear

Discussion in 'Chevy Tahoe Forum (GMC Yukon, Cadillac Escalade)' started by RangerRedE, Nov 2, 2011.

  1. RangerRedE

    RangerRedE New Member

    My 1998 4WD (200k mile) Tahoe transmission stopped shifting yesterday while on the interstate. I was attempting to pass and the engine just revved.

    I managed to cruise in 1st and 2nd gears to a shop, where the fluid was checked (2 qts low) and filled. But test drive determined that it will not shift out of 2nd. Have not checked line that runs above skid plate yet. NO previous problems noted. No visible leaks on ground or signs of leaks on trans housing. . No codes in diagnostic computer.

    Any suggestions as to possible cause/cure as I want to go to trans shop informed rather than rely 100% on their advice/diagnosis.

    Many thanks in advance. red tahoe.jpg
  2. murdog94

    murdog94 Epic Member 5+ Years 5000 Posts

    It sounds like the sunshell could have been cooked, and possibly a clutch or two since 2 quarts low can be pretty hard on a 4L60E. And if the fluid hasnt been changed regularly. then that could have been a reason why it was 2 quarts low since the oil will burn off to an extent (i use burn for lack of a better word here) but if you got 200K out of a 4L60E i am quite surprised since most (not all) only make it to 150K.
  3. RangerRedE

    RangerRedE New Member

    Hi Mike,

    I have owned the truck 4 years and was advised to NOT change/flush any fluid in the trans (closed system) unless I was experiencing a problem. I have checked the fluid (color, smell, level) at each maintenance service and added as needed.

    This vehicle has been a daily driver with no trans probs until yesterday.

    My dilemma at this point is : should I attempt to locate the cause, major or minor >or< should I save myself future headaches and have it rebuilt at this time. And, do you know, is it possible to get a crate/new transmission that will fit my vehicle, or is rebuild the only option?

    I am already planning to replace the engine with a crate engine in the near future.

    Your advice is greatly appreciated.
  4. murdog94

    murdog94 Epic Member 5+ Years 5000 Posts

    Most likely you will need a full rebuild at 200K since all of the parts will have a fair amount of wear. and i doubt it is something minor thanks to the tranny failing. as the flush, no you dont want to flush on a high milage tranny, but you can still change the fluid/filter. which helps to keep everything up.
  5. Caddiac

    Caddiac Epic Member 5+ Years 1000 Posts

    X2 on what Mike said. My 98 Burb lost over drive and then third gear. I limped it home on 1st and second and took it to the tranny shop. The transmission had about 75K miles on the rebuild and it needed a second rebuild. The national chain store that did the 1st rebuild used cheap parts and did a shoddy job (spiced the wires in side the tranny case). I won't mention any names but they have the word "Transmission" in their name preceded by the formal salutation customarily afforded to men who are older than those who address them.

    Point is, it was nothing minor, and the only way around it was to rebuild or replace.
  6. murdog94

    murdog94 Epic Member 5+ Years 5000 Posts

    Ive learned that a smaller tranny shop is usually better and i ask them to have tech show me what was broken and why before i pay them. I had the bad tranny in my wifes regal. the shop took me back and the mechanic showed me everything that was wrong with it (he had all the parts that were bad in a bucket) and he took the time to show me in detail all of the failed parts and parts that were about to fail. They also had great ratings from several past customers and one customer who complained just to complain. The mechanic let me take it on a road test before him (shows the confidence he had in his work) and after i brought it back he actually asked me what i thought. After i had voiced any thing that i felt was a touch off he brought me along on his test ride, and showed me the needs of a proper break in. They also had a great warranty on everything. I did a write up on them, but im just trying to give anyone that needs a tranny rebuild and lands in this thread an idea of what a good shop is. I did tell them i was a mechanic and i just lacked the ability and desire to rebuild a tranny. This may have helped some since i told them accurate things. But either way going to a shop you trust helps.
  7. RangerRedE

    RangerRedE New Member

    Hey guys,
    Thanks for the wonderful input. I did take it to a small independent shop for a rebuild which came with a one-year warranty. Just got it back in time to replace my freshly cracked radiator. Now I am having ignition probs. Please see my post today. E
  8. dipstick

    dipstick Member 2 Years 100 Posts

    Bet the 3-4 clutch packs were bad.
  9. moogvo

    moogvo Epic Member 5+ Years 1000 Posts

    Check the pink wire going to your transmission for 12V with the key on. Loss of power will cause the transmission to go into limp mode. Could be a fuse.

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