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What happens to an overfull automatic transmission

Brakes locking up 1997 Ram Pickup Cummins turbo Diesel?


my friend has a 97 Ram 2500 Cummings turbo with full tow package,engine brake, and transmission up grade.

after hearing her brakes grinding sound and, seeing ABS light on and apparently its been on for some time

( OK, that’s why we call them Idiot lights)

raising the hood I found master cylinder uncapped ( still no problem)

I put new pads on front for her about 2 weeks ago. The rotors were badly worn but could not replace. who knows when the rears were done. they seem to do little if anything at all

I have been driving it this week hauling some heavy loads in the hills and have had no problems untill this morning. when Im pulling out the brakes seem to be locking up when I touch the pedal and wont release until I kill the engine or pull up on the pedal.

if I use just the rear brake it will barely stop but doen’t lock…

I’m thinking maybe I will have to rebuild master.

also her trasmission is what looks to be about 1qt over full, and full of bubbles

Is that a problem?

I ran the OBD old school way using the flashing dash lights

I get codes 12,32,37,37,55, but I dont have a manual

The bubbles are not a good sign, so try taking out 3/4 to a quart of the ATF. That should get the fill down to about the right amount.

DO NOT TAKE ANYTHING OUT YET!!! First of all those transmissions need to have the fluid level checked with the gear selector in NEUTRAL. If you are checking the fluid level with the gear selector in “P” it will read high. Get it good and hot, park it on a level surface, set your parking brake, place the gear selector in “N” THEN check the level. If its still too high then remove some. Let me know what you find out.


thankyou mr transman
someone had apparently misread the stick and thought where it said
max level when hot in neutral, to be the full point and not 2inch’s below where it read max–
could you tell me how often the filter should be changed and when the bands should be adjusted

thankyou mr jayhawkroy
funny thing it was exactly 3/4 overfull
it weren’t you messing around with my girls truck was it?
just kidding thanks again

Why could you not replace the front rotors?

thats what I told her when I pulled the brakes and she said she coud not afford new rotors someone told her they were $125 I think she will be surprized to find them closer to $400 each

Might want to find a diagram of the brake system and see if you can devise some additional tests. Seems to me like sticking front brakes are unlikely to be a master cylinder problem. More likely deteriorating brake hose inner linings or a sticky caliper (or maybe the proportioning valve?).

The 12 and 55 codes are just brackets saying first code and last code respectively. The other codes are:

  • 32 for gas engine chrysler products is usually no EGR. Do deisel’s even have Exhaust Gas Recycle?
  • 37 is some sort of unhappiness with the transmission.


A readout of the actual OBD-2 codes with a real codes reader will get you more details.

A quick Internet search says you can probably find rotors for way under $400 each. The cheapest ones are probably junk, but they are probably better than what is on there and even in roadsalt country, they may well outlast a 13 year old vehicle.

thankyou mr. vtcodger2
that is very helpful info.
the trany turned out to be 3/4qt overful,and today I will completely flush her brake system with new fluid, and see what kind of debre I find.