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1997 Dodge Dakota gearing down when engine warm / transmission?

Being a Pickup Gal, I have an automatic 1997 Dodge Dakota. When driving from work to home, she drives like a charm. However, if I have to make a stop in between (like to the grocery store), after I make that stop then get back in and drive home, the transmission feels like it?s messed up, and won?t go into a higher gear. When I do press on the accelerator heavily to make it go into a higher gear, once I let off the gas, the transmission gears itself down to first gear. I took it to a transmission place, and they said they found nothing wrong with it, and of course could not duplicate what happens to me when I drive it. It only does that after the engine has been running. Could this be a belt slipping because the engine is hot? Any help you can share would be very appreciated.

Thank you!

Sassy Sue

It sure sounds like the governor pressure sensor (Transducer) is bad. This is a known problem in these transmissions. Its a pretty cheap fix. I would have a transmission shop take a look there.


Thank you for the info!! I will certainly give that a try! Thanks again!!

Transman, the governor pressure switch fixed our family’s Durango but it would not shift up (not always). Sassy Sue says her’s is downshifting, would that still be the GP switch? Or is she mistaken about the downshifting?

The transducer definately would cause the downshifting issues she describes. I wish she would post back and follow up with us, I’m curious to know how she made out.


“When I do press on the accelerator heavily to make it go into a higher gear,”

Honey, when you press the accelerater heavily, it will take a lower gear, not a higher one. And I doubt very much it is a belt slipping.