Removing and installing new torque converter

Mommymobile8

Original poster
Member
Oct 26, 2012
14
I drive a 2004 gmc envoy 2wd..i need to replace my torque converter but I don't have any tools anymore because they all were stolen from my car so I have to borrow some, can anyone give me a tool list of everything i will need to do this job?sizes of sockets and wrenches would be an even bigger help..also I think I have bad shift solenoids and will probably replace, how many solenoids total is there?Also would my transmission be a 4l60e?thanks for the help in advance
 

HARDTRAILZ

Moderator
Nov 18, 2011
49,665
You probably need a full rebuild if you think you need a new torque convertor.
 

Sparky

Member
Dec 4, 2011
12,927
What's wrong that you are thinking your torque converter blew? Converters don't typically fail.

If you could describe the symptoms you're having we may be able to help you out. It may not be the converter but the trans itself. Could be blown and needing a full rebuild as Kyle mentioned, or maybe the issue is simply within the valve body and a relatively simple (and much cheaper!) repair.
 

dfc739

Member
Jul 29, 2012
170
Des Moines, IA
Sparky said:
What's wrong that you are thinking your torque converter blew? Converters don't typically fail.

If you could describe the symptoms you're having we may be able to help you out. It may not be the converter but the trans itself. Could be blown and needing a full rebuild as Kyle mentioned, or maybe the issue is simply within the valve body and a relatively simple (and much cheaper!) repair.

Agreed. There are a lot of common problems with these transmissions that can be fixed moderately cheap. Either describe your problems here, or have someone you trust have a look at it. Transmission shops are notorious for going the "it needs a rebuild" route even if the problem is small.

Also, I consider changing a torque converter to be a medium to high level difficulty job. You'll need to have plenty of knuckle/flex sockets available to get to the bellhousing bolts and if you don't have a rack to work on, best of luck. It's not something I would consider doing on the ground without a nice transmission jack and other various tools (i.e. lots of impact accessories).
 

Mommymobile8

Original poster
Member
Oct 26, 2012
14
Well starting out it felt like the transmission was slipping and it started making this ticking rattling sound from where the transmission bolts up at, but i kept driving as its my only ride and now it doesn't move but you can feel it trying to.I had the transmission "repaired" 7months ago as the bill states but he told me he didn't replace everything just the things that were in bad shape including shift solenoids and now he wants to charge me to replace the torque converter and solenoids. there is check engine lights on pointing in the torque converter direction..ALso is it just the 1-2 2-3 solenoids or is there more like one for downshifting?Also I'm pretty much mechanically inclinded and have replaced transmissions before..here's a list of all the codes I don't remember which is which but I'm going to post them all. C0035 C0040 C0055 P0172 P0172 P0894 P0340 P0014 P0335 lol yes there is a lot of them but most of them I believe are sensors but the transmission is the main thing I'm trying to get fixed so it's drivable because I'm paying out of pocket for a rental car and it isnt cheap :sadcry:
 

Sparky

Member
Dec 4, 2011
12,927
Uhh only one of those P codes is transmission related. All the rest are engine.

Here's the breakdown I'm finding:

P0172 System Too Rich Bank 1
P0894 transmission component slipping
P0340 Camshaft Position Sensor Circuit Malfunction
P0014 Exhaust Camshaft Position (CMP) System Performance
P0335 Crankshaft Position Sensor A Circuit Malfunction

C0035 Left Front Speed Sensor Circuit
C0040 Right Front Speed Sensor Circuit
C0055 Rear Wheel Speed Sensor Circuit

Holy crap.

I'm going to say right now a blown torque converter or transmission will not set all of those codes. The transmission slipping would never cause issues with your cam and crank sensors. You have some wiring problems. I'd suspect that actually there may not be anything wrong with the transmission or torque converter at all, just the screwed up wiring is causing the electronics to not work right.

First thing I'd start off doing is checking over your wiring harness and check ALL grounds for starters.
 

gmcman

Member
Dec 12, 2011
4,656
Sparky said:
First thing I'd start off doing is checking over your wiring harness and check ALL grounds for starters.


Absolutely.

You need to get a can of electronics cleaner and spray all the connections you seperate, starting with the large wiring harness at the base of the transmission.

Someone is trying to siphon some $$$ from you, there's alot of good help here and after replacing a valve body seperator plate and a few solenoids I can say that since you are mechanically inclined you shouldn't have any problems.
 

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Mommymobile8

Original poster
Member
Oct 26, 2012
14
Oh yeah lol I know none of those codes cause the transmission issue I was just posting them all just to let you guys know of everything going on..the cam sensor has been an issue but the rest of the problems didn't start until I put seafoam into the vaccum line so I'm wondering if maybe it caused some of the sensors to gunk up or if there's one or two failing and causing the computer to read that the other sensors are bad for some reason, but I will check all of the wiring..I can't remember which code it is I dot have the paper with me right now but the mechanic had wrote next to it that it was a shift solenoid A..I really need to figure this out ugh the rental car goes back Monday :sadcry:
 

dfc739

Member
Jul 29, 2012
170
Des Moines, IA
Mommymobile8 said:
Oh yeah lol I know none of those codes cause the transmission issue I was just posting them all just to let you guys know of everything going on..the cam sensor has been an issue but the rest of the problems didn't start until I put seafoam into the vaccum line so I'm wondering if maybe it caused some of the sensors to gunk up or if there's one or two failing and causing the computer to read that the other sensors are bad for some reason, but I will check all of the wiring..I can't remember which code it is I dot have the paper with me right now but the mechanic had wrote next to it that it was a shift solenoid A..I really need to figure this out ugh the rental car goes back Monday :sadcry:

First off, you really need to get the electronics error codes taken care of. The wheel sensors could be as easy as the mechanic accidentally left them unplugged or as bad as an elusive ground that isn't making contact. If you haven't before, you should clean your Camshaft Position Actuator Solenoid (CPAS but parts stores will call it something like the variable valve timing solenoid). There is an excellent guide on here to do so at http://gmtnation.com/f93/how-clean-...osition-actuator-solenoid-picture-heavy-2263/. You should also unplug and plug back in the camshaft position sensor to make sure it isn't corrosion on the electrical connector. It's a lot more difficult to get to the crankshaft position sensor, so you might leave that to someone with long and skinny arms (i.e. not me).

Seafoam wouldn't cause these sensors to go bad. Putting Seafoam in the brake booster vacuum hose shoots it into the intake and then into the cylinders. The camshaft and crankshaft sensors are not in the intake or combustion chambers. The camshaft position sensor is up front and just under the oil fill cap and the crankshaft position sensor is toward the rear of the block on the drivers side (they should never come into contact with the Seafoam put in the vacuum hose). (Manuals are available on this site at http://gmtnation.com/f23/need-service-manuals-get-them-here-371/).

You mentioned earlier, "... now it doesn't move but you can feel it trying to." It won't move at all? As in, when you put it into drive or reverse, it goes nowhere? It just sits there and revs? Or it won't move as in it has poor acceleration? Have you checked the transmission fluid? The transmission must be up to temperature, engine running, after you have slowly shifted through all gears, and be on level ground to get an accurate reading.

None of the codes you provided point to shift solenoid A. And even if they did, there is no way a shift solenoid should fail in 7 months. Probably either the mechanic installed old/used shift solenoids when he replaced them 7 months ago, or there is nothing wrong with them. It's also possible, but not probable, that you were the unlucky one in a million that got a poor quality solenoid. There is a way to check the solenoids while in pan. They can fail a couple ways: they can get plugged up or fail to open the fluid path that they should. There is a set resistance they should be (search google for 4l60e solenoid). Also check them to see if they are plugged with debris. There should be two shift, one pressure control (force motor), one downshift, one torque converter clutch, and one PWM solenoid. They all have different resistance values and ranges over which they will operate, so don't expect all of them to be the same.

Sorry for the long post. Sometimes I get long winded.
 

Mommymobile8

Original poster
Member
Oct 26, 2012
14
Hey guys sorry for the late response I've been super busy..Well the car will move on cold starts just fine and no noise but as soon as it warms up for a short couple of minutes or a quick drive it starts to have the "transmission slip" feeling and the noise starts, by that point I'm lucky if it'll move sometimes I can get it to go some but it's like something isn't catching to make it move and then other times it won't move at all you can feel the car kind of rock a small bit but it just revs up and that's with it in any gear..I checked the transmission fluid once this all started and it was about the full line and when mentioned to the mechanic he said that usually that won't cause any of my issues..Also while I was under the car I noticed the downstream o2 sensor after the cat has a slice in the wiring right at the top of the o2 where it goes in at and there are tiny prices of exposed wires, do you guys think this could cause any of the 10-14 SES codes I previously mentioned?
 

AtlWrk

Member
Dec 6, 2011
674
Mommymobile8 said:
Hey guys sorry for the late response I've been super busy..Well the car will move on cold starts just fine and no noise but as soon as it warms up for a short couple of minutes or a quick drive it starts to have the "transmission slip" feeling and the noise starts, by that point I'm lucky if it'll move sometimes I can get it to go some but it's like something isn't catching to make it move and then other times it won't move at all you can feel the car kind of rock a small bit but it just revs up and that's with it in any gear..I checked the transmission fluid once this all started and it was about the full line and when mentioned to the mechanic he said that usually that won't cause any of my issues..Also while I was under the car I noticed the downstream o2 sensor after the cat has a slice in the wiring right at the top of the o2 where it goes in at and there are tiny prices of exposed wires, do you guys think this could cause any of the 10-14 SES codes I previously mentioned?

Throwin out a theory: there's a problem with the transmission filter. If it wasn't installed correctly, the seal was damaged or, most likely, the wrong filter (i.e. a short filter) was installed it can starve the pump causing slipping and the noise you described. It'll work ok at a cold start because enough fluid has settled in the pan to maintain a prime. I spent months tracking down a transmission racket (no slips fortunately) that actually turned out to be a defective filter. Relatively easy/cheap thing to check.
 

dfc739

Member
Jul 29, 2012
170
Des Moines, IA
Mommymobile8 said:
Hey guys sorry for the late response I've been super busy..Well the car will move on cold starts just fine and no noise but as soon as it warms up for a short couple of minutes or a quick drive it starts to have the "transmission slip" feeling and the noise starts, by that point I'm lucky if it'll move sometimes I can get it to go some but it's like something isn't catching to make it move and then other times it won't move at all you can feel the car kind of rock a small bit but it just revs up and that's with it in any gear..I checked the transmission fluid once this all started and it was about the full line and when mentioned to the mechanic he said that usually that won't cause any of my issues..Also while I was under the car I noticed the downstream o2 sensor after the cat has a slice in the wiring right at the top of the o2 where it goes in at and there are tiny prices of exposed wires, do you guys think this could cause any of the 10-14 SES codes I previously mentioned?

Ok, let's just work on the major problem here, the transmission. Once you get it actually running you can work out the other kinks. Does the transmission do the same thing no matter which gear selector it's in (Reverse/Drive/3/2/1)?


AtlWrk said:
Throwin out a theory: there's a problem with the transmission filter. If it wasn't installed correctly, the seal was damaged or, most likely, the wrong filter (i.e. a short filter) was installed it can starve the pump causing slipping and the noise you described. It'll work ok at a cold start because enough fluid has settled in the pan to maintain a prime. I spent months tracking down a transmission racket (no slips fortunately) that actually turned out to be a defective filter. Relatively easy/cheap thing to check.

I agree with AtlWrk. It could be something very simple like the transmission filter came loose. It sounds to me like you're losing fluid pressure somewhere or you never make pressure. The fluid pressure is used to apply clutches and make the truck move. The way a transmission changes gears is it changes fluid paths via the various solenoids. This allows it to apply certain clutches and release others. I think it's beautiful in its simplicity, but I like tearing stuff apart and learning how it works. The reason for pressure loss could be something as simple as a bad/incorrect filter or something like one of the plastic accumulator pistons crumbled and is now exhausting pressure back into the pan. My plastic accumulator pistons (both of them) were on the verge of crumbling, but I replaced them with aluminum. There are several other things it could be, but this is a good starting point.
 

Mommymobile8

Original poster
Member
Oct 26, 2012
14
Thanks for the replys, I'm in the process of trying the torque converter or atleast inspecting it and the flywheel but once I get the transmission back in I'm pulling the pan and replacing the shift soleniods with a new filter and depending on what shape the fluid is it It may get new fluid as well..but would the noise be coming from the exact spot that the torque converter and flywheel are in if it was the filter?also yeah it doesn't matter what gear it's in itll still do the same thing, to begin with reverse was the worst but now the problem is the same in every gear..
 

dfc739

Member
Jul 29, 2012
170
Des Moines, IA
Mommymobile8 said:
Thanks for the replys, I'm in the process of trying the torque converter or atleast inspecting it and the flywheel but once I get the transmission back in I'm pulling the pan and replacing the shift soleniods with a new filter and depending on what shape the fluid is it It may get new fluid as well..but would the noise be coming from the exact spot that the torque converter and flywheel are in if it was the filter?also yeah it doesn't matter what gear it's in itll still do the same thing, to begin with reverse was the worst but now the problem is the same in every gear..

Care to share some pictures? Sorry to doubt, but I find it a little unbelievable that someone who has the understanding/ability to drop the transmission and remove the torque converter doesn't realize that you cannot bench check the torque converter without cutting it open. Torque converters are sent to specialty shops for rebuilding because they are welded shut. The weld is cut open on a lathe and only then the components can be checked. The specialty shop will also have a welding machine that provides a nice, uniform weld to reconnect the housing back together.

[video=youtube;GTvFYTFwTOw]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GTvFYTFwTOw[/video]

The noise could be if the flexplate to converter bolts are a little loose, but the bigger issue here is the fact that your truck won't even move. The fact that it will move when cold says that the flexplate is turning the converter, so that's good. Has there ever been any other work done on this transmission?

Again, why are you replacing the shift solenoids??? None of the error codes you provided point to the shift solenoids. My troll detector is off the charts on this one, and I'm done feeding it.
 

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