Blogs Car Info Our Show Deals Mechanics Files Vehicle Donation

98 Blazer cannot shift into reverse

My 98 Chevy Blazer (Automatic) will not shift into reverse. Additionally, it has a difficult time shifting into second gear. I have to take my foot off of the accelerator and then it engages. Any ideas. Is my transmission on its way out or do you think it is a fluid issue? My husband said he heard a “pop” this morning before all of these problems started.

Sorry skiteam but this is going to be a little more than a fluid issue. The “pop” your husband heard this morning was the collar of the sun shell inside of the transmission breaking. The collar I’m talking about is where you see the splines in the top of the picture below. This is a very common problem in these transmissions. When they go, you lose reverse, 2nd and 4th gears. When you talk about it having difficulty shifting into 2nd, what actually is happening is, hydraulically and electronicly, you are going through the gears but mechanically the transmission is going from 1st gear directly to 3rd. I still get several of these crossing my bench on a weekly basis. The only way to fix this is to remove and disassemble the transmission. So, in short, its rebuild time. If you decide to rebuild, let me know because there are several issues in this unit which need to be addressed during overhaul that I need to let you know about. Below is a picture of the broken part inside your transmission.


Thanks transman. Not the news I wanted to hear as this will be a costly adventure and the car isn’t even worth that much ($6,000 left on loan) Anyway, is it good enough to drive 20 miles to the mechanic? or do I just let it sit and weep? What is the cost of a transmission anyway?

I appreciate what you know, thanks.

I wouldnt drive it only because when the collar breaks the shell itself scrapes the inside of the case. This will cause aluminum shavings to collect inside the trans and get into places where you dont want it. A basic bench overhaul on a 4L60E transmission is around $1600 (This is what I charge) and that includes the basic upgrades that need to be done on these. I also build HD versions (For towing) and racing versions of this transmission.