Blogs Car Info Our Show Deals Mechanics Files Vehicle Donation

2nd gear

when i drive my car when it has not been driven for a few hours its crunching into 2nd gear but after 10mins of driving its ok

My call is that your transmission internals are worn enough that the temperature of the manual trans lubricant (whatever it is) is playing a part.

I am also concluding this is a shift from 1st to second and not 3rd to second. With the third to second I believe we could more easily pull clutch issues into the range of possibilites.

You could see if a speciality lubricant (perhaps a Red Line product) eases this concern.

I am not delving into linkage issues as you say the problem is temperature dependant.

What car are you driving? Stick or auto? If it’s a stick, I’d guess your second gear synchro is failing. Second gear synchro tends to be the first to fail as it gets the most wear on up and down shifts. Try to double clutch your 1 - 2 up shift when start off in the morning. This will not fix the problem, but may help prolong second gear’s limited life. Helical gears in modern transmission are always engaged, it’s the “dogs” on the sliders which are engaging the slots in the gears. These create the grinding noise you are hearing.


In my opinion, this is the nature of some 5 speed transmissions. We had 85 and 97 GM cars that did this and also had a 1987 VW that crunched going into second until it warmed. Our new 09 GM car with a 5 speed works perfectly, cold or hot.

The GM cars used auto trans fluid in the manual boxes while the VW used SAE 90 GL4 gear lube.

The expense of repairing this, if it that is possible, will be high. Just shift into second a little slowly until the trans is warmed. That is what I did.

it happens going from 3rd back too 2nd aswell untill it heats up i only have it 2wks
and its still under waranty so i brought it back for them to look at

Definately get the car into the dealer if it is still covered by the warranty. Possible causes are the clutch not disengaging completely. Are you sure you depress the clutch fully between gears as you do when you put it from nuetral into 1st or Reverse?

Second, a syncro in the transmission has failed. This would involve a tear down and replacing interanal transmission parts so that warranty could come into play.