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2005 Transmission Issues

I have a 2005 Cavalier (60,000 miles) that’s been having some transmission slipping in the cold weather. As the weather has warmed up, the issue has lessened but not quite gone away.

We added a little transmission fluid, but I haven’t yet had a chance to replace the fluid/filter.

The check engine light has been on in my car since I’ve owned it… the shop I bought it from replaced the solenoid, but the code still hung around.

Everything I’ve googled tells me that the issue could be the wiring or could be the solenoid needing replacing.

My real question is… how soon do I need to act on this?



By those codes you seem to be having a problem with the torque converter clutch, and it probably is related to that solenoid’s function. The solenoid itself is only one part of the system that makes it all work, however. You could just as easily have an issue, for instance, with the wiring harness.

What kind of shop are we talking about? If it isn’t a shop that specializes in transmissions then you should find one of those - your best, local, independent place - not a national chain transmission shop. Ask them to check it out and make sure they know that the solenoid was already replaced.


As an update, I’ve taken it to a local transmission shop and he said he hooked it up to the system and really got no additional information from that. He says the next step is to open up the pan and check for metal in the fluid and try to repair from there.

That sounds reasonable to me - but I’m not a transmission expert or anything either.

Its partly reasonable because dropping the pan, inspecting it & changing the filter is just something that should be done anyway.

Did they say anything about inspecting the wiring for the transmission? Many “transmission” problems originate from outside of the transmission. A good transmission tech can also test all of the solenoids in there with scanning equipment to make sure that they operate within specs. It doesn’t mean that there might not be an intermittent problem (so hard to detect), but I’d be skeptical as soon as they start saying anything like “we can try…” Sometimes you do just try stuff, but only after you’ve followed the right diagnostic steps and are still at a loss.

He was saying that the amount of metal in the pan would direct him where to go as far as where to look next, whether in the transmission or the wiring.
The fluid and filter change was just about to be due for the car, and the price he quoted me for that was on equal footing with what everyone else around here charges, so I was good with just going ahead with that.
I’ll keep all of this in mind. He didn’t sound like he was thinking it would be a huge ordeal to suss out.