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Chrysler Repair/'03 Concord Transmission drops to 2nd


QUESTION: I have a 2003 Chry. Concord with a 2.7 V6 and 87k miles on it. After about 10 to 15 min. of driving, the transmission will kick down to 2nd gear when comming to a stop, if I pull over and turn the engine off and wait for a few min.(2 to 3 )it will be alright for another 10 min. or so. Iam retired now with limited income and was told it most likely it was a sensor. If so is this something I could do myself or are the sensors inside of the transmission.. If it is a matter of getting under the car and replacing the sensor I'm able to do that, but not able to tear the transmission down.

ANSWER: Hi Floyd,
The transmission has a fault which causes its controller to disconnect the power to the electrical solenoid/pressure switch assembly inside of it. The fault is recorded as a 4-digit code in the memory of the controller. You can try to read the code using the ignition key: "on-off-on-off-on and leave on". Then watch the odometer window to see the mileage reading to be replaced by a 4-digit number preceded by a P. It may only show P0700 which is a generic code that only says there is indeed a specific code which has to be readout using a plug-in code reader. A nationwide auto parts store (e.g. Autozone) will often do that for free or an independent repair shop will do for $40 or less. Once you get the specific code number and what it means and what to do. Then send me a follow-up question telling me the specific fault code number and we'll go from there as to what to do next. It may be a sensor or something accessible that you can replace yourself.

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QUESTION: Thank you for your prompt reply. the code that came up is P0441.

ANSWER: Hi Floyd,
Did you also see an 0700? Because the trans is shifting into second as you describe that likely is due to a specific coded problem. That dropping into second is essentially preventing the trans from shifting to other gears and is meant to provoke a look into what is the problem, and it goes to second because in that gear there is the least possibility of any further damage until it can be corrected. It is called "limp-in mode". In any case get a fault code readout using a code reader that plugs into the socket under the dash by the steering column. Let me know any codes in the 0700's or 1700's.

About the 0441, that is not related to the transmission but rather says that a part of the fuel vapor recovery system called the purge solenoid is not working the way it should. That solenoid is mounted on a bracket near the air cleaner housing there are also several vacuum hoses going to various parts in the engine compartment. It suggests that the fuel vapor is not being recycled as designed and could be the result of a leaky hose or a malfunction of the purge solenoid. You can inspect the hoses yourself to see if you can find a crack or a poorly connected hose. If you have required smog inspection in your state you will need to correct this situation to pass the smog test.

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QUESTION: I took it to a local auto parts store as you suggested and they said it had the following codes P1776, P0441 and P0700 I hope this helps. Thank you again for your prompt reply.

Hi Floyd,
The 1776 code is called Solenoid switch valve latched in the low-reverse position.
It can be caused by a shorted to ground or voltage, or an open circuit, or is can be a defective solenoid valve. The circuitry can be tested without doing any disassembly. If that checked out then the oil pan can be removed from under the vehicle and then the oil filter removed as well as the valve body which is a tricky mechanical procedure.
There is an 11-step procedure described in the transmission diagnostic procedure manual on 3 pages, and then there are many more pages about removing the valve body, etc. I can copy the 3 pages and the wiring diagrams and attach them to an email I would send to you directly. Then you can get an idea of at least trying to diagnose what is the specific cause of the 1776 code. It appears to not be a simple matter of a sensor replacement procedure.
The diagnostic procedure if followed exactly involves also having a transmission simulator tool made by Miller Tool #8333 whose cost I don't know. You might want to begin by locating a transmission shop that is competent and knowledgeable about the Chrysler 42LE transmission and asking them how they would approach the 1776 code and the costs for each of the steps to do to get to the bottom of this situation.
Thanks for the ratings and nominations.

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Roland Finston


Free fast answer to your repair question about a Chrysler/Dodge/Plymouth car, minivan, SUV, or truck. Problems with electronically controlled engines and transmissions as well as body wiring problems are my specialty. This free troubleshoot advice forum helps you diagnose faults, minimize repair costs or do-it-yourself.

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