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Auto trans won't shift past 2nd gear. Local transmission shop diagnosed problem as bad 3rd and 4th gear clutch packs. They want $3,200 to rebuild. The truck has 193,000 miles but body and frame are cherry and engine runs great. Should I pay to have it done or junk the truck? The truck is like an old friend but I don't want my attachment to it to get in the way of common sense. What would you guys do?
 

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these old transmissions do have clutch and valve problems because of the Dexron III tranny fluid. the fluid GM used in these turns to acid then the metal breaks down.normal price should be $2,000 range and a one year warranty. after the repair work check the fluid for any off color and smell.. then do the fluid change . .... Before they do the rebuild make sure they clean up the tranny fluid cooler lines and the torque converter,,.
new fluid will loosen up the film/particles can cause problems. Dexron VI is the NOW GM approved fluid ..

the other problem could be the ignition switch defective... many had the transmission not work , because of a power problem to the tranny.. 175K-225K miles..
old GM is still working .. new GM is a mess. trucks good fix it.
 

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Bummer news. For $3,200, you can buy another 97 K1500. If I was really attached to the truck, I'd try to find a used tranny and do a swap, rather than rebuild for that price.
 

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I Paid $3000 CAD to have my 4L60E rebuilt a stage 3 HD, Almost a hill climbing tranny. So I guess it depends on your point of view and how reputable is the tranny shop? What exactly does that price get you? If its an oem tranny look elsewhere. I love my truck.

Al
 

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That seems high to me too, unless you are getting a serious upgrade - essentially making it a 4l80 or better.
 

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If the truck is in otherwise great shape, it is worth fixing the tranny. You get another 190k miles out of her and these trucks are beginning to I crease in value. That quote does seem very high for a rebuild. Are you sure they arnt buying a reman and replacing it?
 

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If you shop around, you can find a better price, most likely. We have a shop about 1-1/2 miles from my house, that charges about 3200 to 3500 or so to do a reman, but the owner also ownes a hot rod shop, that builds classic muscle cars, for Drs and Lawyers so His prices are high. There are quite a few tarns shops in a 30 miles radius of me. The place that will do my trans when the time comes, is a shop that also builds race trans. They race at our 2 local tracks, and I know a few people who have had there trans done there. They charge around 2500 or so, for a performance reman. It pays to shop around, and talk to some racers. Im sure a dyno shop can put you in touch with a good trans reman guy. And you want a reman, not a rebuild. A rebuild, means just change out what is bad and nothing else. A reman, they will replace bans, clutches, servos, ect.
 

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That price is extremely high. Get another quote. Rebuilt mine at 211k with same issues for 1k. Truck is worth keeping, just get trans rebuilt. Have them do rear main while trans is out, if it needs it.
 

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Auto trans won't shift past 2nd gear. Local transmission shop diagnosed problem as bad 3rd and 4th gear clutch packs. They want $3,200 to rebuild. The truck has 193,000 miles but body and frame are cherry and engine runs great. Should I pay to have it done or junk the truck? The truck is like an old friend but I don't want my attachment to it to get in the way of common sense. What would you guys do?
[/QUOTE
 

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People are saying its too much, thing is what area do you live in I know its a nuisance but checking around may save alot of money but have you checked around for a used tranny, Those transmissions were known to go out the one on my 1990 went out close to the mileage you have but do as others said if you do either replace or rebuild do make sure the lines are properly cleaned and you add a new transmission cooler I would replace or rebuild it those trucks are so much better than the newer ones take it from someone that traded in my 1990 and first bought a 2001 and then a 2008 and regret not keeping the 1990.
 

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Shop around!
I have the same problem with my '99 and the 4L60e trans after a line blew.
Local trans shop wants $2200 for the rebuild and it comes with a 2 year warranty!
 

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these old transmissions do have clutch and valve problems because of the Dexron III tranny fluid. the fluid GM used in these turns to acid then the metal breaks down.normal price should be $2,000 range and a one year warranty. after the repair work check the fluid for any off color and smell.. then do the fluid change . .... Before they do the rebuild make sure they clean up the tranny fluid cooler lines and the torque converter,,.
new fluid will loosen up the film/particles can cause problems. Dexron VI is the NOW GM approved fluid ..

the other problem could be the ignition switch defective... many had the transmission not work , because of a power problem to the tranny.. 175K-225K miles..
old GM is still working .. new GM is a mess. trucks good fix it.
I also had a problem with the truck not shifting it was the ignition switch funny as that sounds look into that before you spend the big bucks if u do need a new transmission and truck is in good condition and you like it get a new transmission cheaper than a new truck
 

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If it's the ignition switch, the prndl fuse, the plug has come undone or pin e at tranny plug has broken somewhere on the pink wire then you will have 6-7 tranny codes, no speedo, no prndl indicator light and you will be stuck in 3rd although you can manually shift 1st to or 2nd to 3rd I can't quite remember if I had 1st or just 2nd.

Anyways another thought i had that could get a truck home or to a tranny shop if its stuck in first or won't shift out of first or even second is to simply pull the prndl fuse and you will now be in 3rd. I wish I knew that way back when.... you can drive in 3rd gear without causing any further damage.

Al
 

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Auto trans won't shift past 2nd gear. Local transmission shop diagnosed problem as bad 3rd and 4th gear clutch packs. They want $3,200 to rebuild. The truck has 193,000 miles but body and frame are cherry and engine runs great. Should I pay to have it done or junk the truck? The truck is like an old friend but I don't want my attachment to it to get in the way of common sense. What would you guys do?
If it's the ignition switch, the prndl fuse, the plug has come undone or pin e at tranny plug has broken somewhere on the pink wire then you will have 6-7 tranny codes, no speedo, no prndl indicator light and you will be stuck in 3rd although you can manually shift 1st to or 2nd to 3rd I can't quite remember if I had 1st or just 2nd.

Anyways another thought i had that could get a truck home or to a tranny shop if its stuck in first or won't shift out of first or even second is to simply pull the prndl fuse and you will now be in 3rd. I wish I knew that way back when.... you can drive in 3rd gear without causing any further damage.

Al
 

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Auto trans won't shift past 2nd gear. Local transmission shop diagnosed problem as bad 3rd and 4th gear clutch packs. They want $3,200 to rebuild. The truck has 193,000 miles but body and frame are cherry and engine runs great. Should I pay to have it done or junk the truck? The truck is like an old friend but I don't want my attachment to it to get in the way of common sense. What would you guys do?
If the motor is still strong and you like the truck I would repair it. If you're not capable of replacing it yourself, shop around for a better price, Maybe go on Craigslist and see if there is someone that works out of their home. If it is 2WD that sounds high. If its 4WD its probably in the ballpark as they have to deal with the transfer case and all.
 
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