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VS Berlina serious auto transmission issue

Discussion in 'VR - VS Holden Commodore (1993 - 1997)' started by baron_beeza, Oct 20, 2019.

  1. baron_beeza

    baron_beeza New Member

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    I have experienced a rapid failure of the drive on my VS Series II Berlina and hope someone here may offer some clues.
    Currently I have no reverse, or even engagement of reverse but the fault has changed since the first sign of a problem just 800 metres beforehand.
    Hopefully the symptoms may be enough to describe the situation.
    Cruising on open road for an hour and slowed for another 70Km/H zone. Suddenly heard strange rumbling from what seemed like front right wheel area.
    A Brrrrrrrr, of a second or two, then paused, possibly as i lifted my foot, and then a repeat brrrrrr . My initial thought was rumble strip but then plastic inner guard fouling.
    I stopped and all seemed normal. Car idled normally etc. On take-off again the noise reappeared so I turned into a side road driving 300 metres to find a suitable area to stop and investigate. Noise may have changed to a screeching at times, like a bearing whine. (Alternator screech)
    I then drove 300 metres back to park the car for the night. Screeching at times in lower gears as I crawled along.

    During the retrieve I noticed engagement of reverse immediately brought on the noise. The car seemed ok at low rpm when Drive was selected. I then completely lost Reverse for a period. Drove onto the trailer normally, forward. Reverse had returned, at least it could be selected but although quiet at idle screeched when trying to take load/few rpm.

    The car currently is home and awaiting work.
    I can select and take load on all forward gear selections. Engine operation is normal, no abnormal lights and the diagnostic code is 12.
    I changed ECU and the fault and code is unchanged.
    At the moment the fault is now a failure for the vehicle to even see the reverse selection, it is like selecting a second Neutral.
    Engagement of Forward gears is normal with about a 0.5 second delay on loading the engine. That said, I think it may have been hanging in the lower gears as I moved it to load onto the trailer.

    No noise at the moment. Hasn't been since reversing, at low power, off the trailer. I lost Reverse completely (again) at the next engine start.

    I obviously have a major transmission issue or an electrical problem.

    Given the transmission was working very well until the first sign of a problem, the noise. I can't see it being a wear problem. Sudden failure, maybe, but the nature of the beast has been changing in the few minutes of abnormal operation.

    The car has a history of electrical glitches most of which I have just lived with.
    The headlights dimming was cured by fitting another section of fusebox. Dirty fuse contacts in that portion of the original box was the culprit.

    Some electrical functions have not worked since I got the car 2 years and 40,000K ago.
    High beam flash. ( Low and High selection/operation normal)

    Others work at times.
    Reverse lights. Movement of lever helped.

    Security and central locking stopped working 6 months ago.

    Hopefully I have provided enough detail for the sleuths here to offer some suggestions.
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2019
  2. ringfeder3

    ringfeder3 Active Member

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    Read my post titled 'transmission fault'. There was a link between my the electrical problems and transmission fault in my vr Calais....
     
  3. baron_beeza

    baron_beeza New Member

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    Thanks for the reply. Yes I did see your post this morning and found it interesting. https://forums.justcommodores.com.au/threads/transmission-fault.278859/

    I would like to think I also have an electrical issue given the onset and changing nature of the fault.
    Against that though is the noise but again it is changing and may be the result of and possibly not the cause of my issues. I just hope i haven't irreparably damaged it in the process.

    The transmission was coasting when it happened and had been working great up until that point. The fluid level is normal. It just seems to me to be a most unusual time for the auto to fail if it is a mechanical issue.

    I would love for someone here to say it is so-and-so sensor or a solenoid.

    I checked a few videos of the 4L60E box and I don't see anything applicable to my situation yet.

    I like to think it is an interlock or failsafe device preventing the box from selecting Reverse, but the fault has been changing. Then I have the terrible, horrible noise. What was a rumble then morphed into a howl. I did wonder if it was road or engine speed related but that was only for the first few hundred metres. After that I feel that it is more of a constant, like a rotating component doing something it is very unhappy with.

    No bangs or metallic noises yet but at the moment the car is stationary.
    I would like some more responses here before I get brave enough to actually try and drive it again in any forward gear.
     
  4. Trevor loves holden.

    Trevor loves holden. Well-Known Member

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    Once you lose reverse you can kiss it gearbox good bye.

     
  5. Trevor loves holden.

    Trevor loves holden. Well-Known Member

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  6. gossie

    gossie Well-Known Member

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    Change over gear box.
    Losing reversing tells you that.
    I had a VS over 20 years years ago, lost reverse so did a rebuilt change over box and all was fixed.
     
  7. Utel67

    Utel67 Active Member

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    Could be a broken pump which will cause loss of pressure for reverse which requires a higher pressure, or your reaction sun shell has broke, either way it will require a full rebuild due to metal particles going through out the transmission and converter and cooler lines.

    Quickest and cheapest way is to buy a used transmission and converter.
     
  8. baron_beeza

    baron_beeza New Member

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    Thanks for the replies guys. Not going in the direction I was hoping but my first thoughts were that I was up for a transmission replacement.
    I will wait anther day or two before I start reading up on what is involved there. Will be looking out for a suitable replacement at the same time.
     
  9. BlackVXGTS

    BlackVXGTS Well-Known Member

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    From 4L60e common problems:

    1. Slow, slipping or no reverse: “lo-reverse” clutches are worn out, fluid leak in the reverse apply circuit, or broken sunshell. It is possible to remedy a fluid problem by removing the checkball from its cage in the case in the rear of the trans may help (must remove valve body), or adding a high-viscosity additive such as Lucas Transmission additive or other seal restorer product. May also have worn boost valve (can replace in the pan).
     

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