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Old 09-20-2005, 01:27 PM   #1
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Default Tranny seal softener question / tranny question

I have a 92 bonneville SE - 205,000 miles and have a quick question about transmission seals.

A few months ago the transmission started acting up. Wouldn't shift into gear from park, trouble shifting between gears (engine races and than finally "kerchunk" into gear).

Fluid was OK (slow leak, no metal shavings or fouled fluid), filter is changed regularly.

Local Cottman'* shop couldn't find anything wrong except to say they saw the problem too. They wanted $350 to drop the tranny to tell me what'* wrong .. considering I'm 2/3 of the way towards a rebuild by the time they put it back together without doing any work I didn't end up doing this.

I ended up putting a bottle of transmission seal softener in which seems to have done the trick. It has recently started shifting a little rough, but nothing to bad.

My question is, do those seal softeners actually help long term or not? I would think that eventually the seal softener would actually start to decompose the seals rather than anything else.





.. in case anyone cares .. bought 92 bonneville in 96 @ $10,600 w/ 60,000 miles

No real huge problems, never had any engine work needed. Only persistant issue has been coolant .. replaces all hoses (normal maintenance) weird nipple adapter failure on intake side, new water pump (this week).
Replaced front wheel bearings @ 100,000 miles
numerous brake jobs (can't this things front rotors ever wear evenly?)
alternator replaced 3x
Transmission weirdness - never failed, just weird
Brian
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Old 09-20-2005, 01:31 PM   #2
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Seal softeners are intended to soften an older/harder seal by revitalizing it. I do not believe they break the seal down over time.
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Old 09-20-2005, 01:50 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by BillBoost37
Seal softeners are intended to soften an older/harder seal by revitalizing it. I do not believe they break the seal down over time.
hmm, so this might be a case of the shop going with the $700-1200 repair potential than the $6 cure-in-a-bottle route? (although i have no illusions that this tranny will need a rebuild eventually. 205,750 miles from the factory isn't doing to bad.

Car definately doesn't have the same performance as when I got it, but I'd be a fool to expect it to be).
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Old 09-20-2005, 01:52 PM   #4
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Without knowing what the shop found it'* tough to answer that.

My only experience w/a seal softener was with a minor leak. Softer made it gush and off to the shop it went.
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Old 09-20-2005, 02:00 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by BillBoost37
Without knowing what the shop found it'* tough to answer that.

My only experience w/a seal softener was with a minor leak. Softer made it gush and off to the shop it went.
Shop hookup to timing computer didn't find anything .. they only dropped the pan and didn't find shavings, that was the extent of the troubleshooting
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Old 09-20-2005, 02:51 PM   #6
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With your mileage I'd drive it and save for a rebuild or used tranny.
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Old 09-20-2005, 05:41 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BillBoost37
With your mileage I'd drive it and save for a rebuild or used tranny.
I agree with you there...

Thats a lot of miles for the internals of any auto transmission.... I wouldn't be supprised if the Trans oil pump was showing signs of failure... You have gotten great life out of that car....

Just out of curiousity, does that car have a 2.84 or 3.06 ratio?

Rpo code list on the spare tire cover,

Code F17 for 2.84 and

Code FW2 for 3.06

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Old 09-20-2005, 08:58 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by jr's3800
Just out of curiousity, does that car have a 2.84 or 3.06 ratio?

Rpo code list on the spare tire cover,

Code F17 for 2.84 and

Code FW2 for 3.06

This one is an F17 - apparently a 2.84 .. question, are you referring to a gearing ratio?

If it makes any difference, the transmission shop indicated that this model didn't have computer controlled shifting .. I don't know about that ..

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Old 09-20-2005, 09:03 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by satsuke
Quote:
Originally Posted by jr's3800
Just out of curiousity, does that car have a 2.84 or 3.06 ratio?

Rpo code list on the spare tire cover,

Code F17 for 2.84 and

Code FW2 for 3.06

This one is an F17 - apparently a 2.84 .. question, are you referring to a gearing ratio?

If it makes any difference, the transmission shop indicated that this model didn't have computer controlled shifting .. I don't know about that ..

Brian
You need a new tranny shop... As they would be in for a big supprise... You have a 4T60-E... In other words 4 speed transaxle( transverse ) 60 series Electronic... This car has a PCM as opposed to an ECM... ECM is Engine Control module as it mainly controls the engine and related items...

The PCM, Powertrain Control Module controls both the Engine and the Transmission... Your transmission will not upshift or downshift without the PCM...

So yes your 1992 Bonneville SE has a 4T60-E and it is controled by the computer...

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Old 09-20-2005, 09:28 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jr's3800
Quote:
Originally Posted by satsuke
Quote:
Originally Posted by jr's3800
Just out of curiousity, does that car have a 2.84 or 3.06 ratio?

Rpo code list on the spare tire cover,

Code F17 for 2.84 and

Code FW2 for 3.06

This one is an F17 - apparently a 2.84 .. question, are you referring to a gearing ratio?

If it makes any difference, the transmission shop indicated that this model didn't have computer controlled shifting .. I don't know about that ..

Brian
You need a new tranny shop... As they would be in for a big supprise... You have a 4T60-E... In other words 4 speed transaxle( transverse ) 60 series Electronic... This car has a PCM as opposed to an ECM... ECM is Engine Control module as it mainly controls the engine and related items...

The PCM, Powertrain Control Module controls both the Engine and the Transmission... Your transmission will not upshift or downshift without the PCM...

So yes your 1992 Bonneville SE has a 4T60-E and it is controled by the computer...
Point taken, this place has an old guy who also told me to always disable overdrive in town .. sounds reasonable I guess, even though this is a newer style car .. after chewing the fat with him it comes out that he actually doesn't work on the cars .. he'* a retired school councelor that took the job of dealing with customers as part time work.

(recently I had this one tuned up .. I asked precision tune what they did as standard service on this model ,. they said they changed the plugs, validated the wires, adjusted the timing, checked / changed the points and lubricated the distributor cap .. which is all very nice except the fact that last time I checked, there isn't a distributor cap, the timing and fuel mix was computer controlled and where the points (and cap) would be there was a row of 3 dual resistor packs). I didn't get it done there .. did that one myself for $45 (new spark plugs and plugs).


A friend of mine'* father had his PCM "tuned" .. he has a 2003 Mercadies S600 with the 12cyl engine and onboard active radar (the one that the ambient noise in the cabin is almost the same with the engine off, engine on, 60mph and 140mph .. he'* loaded) He had a chip "upgrade" installed that changed the engine timing and fuel mix among other things .. I have no idea if it worked, I only road in it once .. you stomp on the gas, the throws you against the seat .. that'* all I'll say).
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