Rebuild of a 1995 vw eurovan camper auto transmission

I had the auto trans rebuilt…only one mechanic in Montana professed to be able to do this…all others wanted to put in a used transmission…so I said rebuild it, obviosly at a much lower price. I had had a used transmission put in 10000 miles earlier for $4500…and when it failed, thought this mechanic could do a better job.

Now it works, but when going into 4th it makes a loud noise and it feels like the trans may drop out the bottom of the van. The mechanic said the noise and rumble was normal and ok…It scares me, and a local mechanic said it was not normal…any thoughts? the mechanic is 400 miles away from my town…but I’d go back…

I would take it back to him and insist that he check it out again. He should have given you some kind of waranty on his work.

Did he actually drive the car or did you call him to tell him.

I drove it with him sitting next to me saying, “now you’ll notice it’s loud going into higher gears…but don’t worry that’s ok”…No I didn’t get a warranty…he said he’d stand behind his work…and it’s getting louder…

Where in Montana are you and your mechanic respectively?

Realistically, the smart thing would have been to purchase a rebuilt transmission on an exchange basis from a rebuild house rather than having somebody locally try to do it. I definitely wouldn’t drive it 400 miles this way-- maybe a local transmission shop can diagnose it and perhaps get on the phone with your supposed expert and try to work out a solution.

He’s in Billings…I’m near Fairfield…Can you explain a “rebuild house”…the previous used transmission was found in Germany…and as I said lasted 10,000 miles…thanks for the advice…

Ah, I’m in Missoula-- I was just wondering if it was anyone I know. There’s a couple of really good independent VW/Audi specialists and a couple of good transmission shops in Missoula and it’s about half the distance than Billings so you might consider that if you decide to take it somewhere else.

A rebuild house is a place that does nothing but rebuild transmissions. Basically, you buy a rebuilt transmission from them and they include a core charge which they refund when you send them your old transmission. Because they do nothing but rebuild transmissions all day, they have the process highly streamlined which results in more consistent work and a lower rebuild cost. There’s some transmissions that most transmission techs will have seen so many of that they can rebuild locally, but the Eurovan transmission is not one of them.

Another thing to do is if this guy is still saying it’s “normal” is to take it to the VW dealer in Great Falls and ask them whether it’s “normal”. I’m guessing they’ll say it isn’t and it might even be worth paying an actual VW tech to diagnose the thing, though having them do the actual work removing and installing the transmission will be incredibly expensive. Though if you do end up having to put in another rebuild, a good independent mechanic in Great Falls or maybe even Fairfield should have no problem removing and reinstalling one.