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Old 12-01-2010, 08:54 AM   #1
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Can anyone tell me how the torque converter works on my 94 Bonneville.
Here is the problem, when my car has been sitting.....8 hrs. or more and it is really cold .... around 0 degrees (or colder) it doesn't always go into gear right away. most of the time if I wait about about a minute it will go into gear. The trany shop said it is my torque converter leaking down and once it fills back up it works.
So here is my question How does the converter lock up? I ask because sometimes I have to turn the car off then back on to get it to work. I guy from work suggested that it needs to stop to lock back up.(with fluid)
Does this make sense?
Brian
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Old 12-01-2010, 03:56 PM   #2
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I would check your trans fluid regularly to see if low fluid is the problem. The dip stick would tell this tail. Also you would notice a sizable puddle of trans fuild on the ground. The torque converter holds upwards to 4 quarts of fluid. This problem sound more like a solenoid problem. Is your check engine light on?
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Old 12-02-2010, 07:40 AM   #3
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His diagnosis is odd. If anything that sounds more like a checkball in the valve body not keeping fluid in it, more than an actual TC problem. I don't have any actual experience in this area though, have heard of the issue...but not the actual cause.
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Old 12-02-2010, 11:15 AM   #4
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Between Bill and I you are looking at more of a Valve Body Problem than a Torque Converter Problem. The check balls and solenoids are both part of the valve body.
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Old 12-02-2010, 08:12 PM   #5
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The tranny shop was saying that the converter was leaking the fluid it should hold into the tranny.
How I was to determine that, was to check my fluid in the morning and if it showed over full on the dipstick (which it did) that was the problem. I'm guessing that It is worse in the cold because the seal is shrinking and letting more fluid drain out of the converter.
I was just wondering if it seems plausible that the converter can't lock up until I turn the car off and the converter mates again (with fluid). If so I am on the right path if not I have other problems.
If the converter is the problem I could just change it ...but if not I will need to change the whole tranny.
my fluid is OK and I changed it and the filter about a year and a half ago.
Thanks for your help. Brian
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Old 12-02-2010, 09:33 PM   #6
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To test the TC (torque converter) draining theory. Check your fluid level before you start the car and check it after about 20 seconds you will see a drastic drop in level if the TC is sucking it back up. Like stated before the TC can hold up to 4 quarts of fluid.
Anyone who has changed a transmission can attest. When filling it up for the first time the fluid vanishes quickly because the TC it pulling it in.
So if your situation is true. You're TC emptying problem would be like filling the transmission for the first time every start up.
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