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Hello everyone! This is my first post here. I recently bought a 1996 Town and Country LXI with 180,000 miles. The van is in good shape overall except for two things. The windsheild wipers do not work and the largest issue is the tranmsission goes into limp mode when it tries to shift to third. We have already done a filter and fluid change with ATF4 fluid. The pan was clean and there was no metal in it. We have already checked input and output speed sensors and put a brand new solenoid pack on it. The strange thing is when the van is on jack stands it will shift into third gear but never tries overdrive. On the ground we never get third at all. We used to at first but now no third on the ground. I am really starting to get annyoed and upset with this thing. Does anyone have any ideas before we take the transmission out? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
 

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You really need to get the transmission computer scanned for any error codes. It is much cheaper than throwing parts or a new transmission at it. I suspect this could be an indication of internal transmission issues but without the fault codes from the transmission that is just a guess.

As for the wipers, it could be a number of things but I'd check at the power distribution center under the hood because I had a wiper issue caused by the relay there. There should be two wiper relays if I recall, one may be for the intermittenrt feature.
 

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valiant67 said:
You really need to get the transmission computer scanned for any error codes. It is much cheaper than throwing parts or a new transmission at it. I suspect this could be an indication of internal transmission issues but without the fault codes from the transmission that is just a guess.

As for the wipers, it could be a number of things but I'd check at the power distribution center under the hood because I had a wiper issue caused by the relay there. There should be two wiper relays if I recall, one may be for the intermittenrt feature.
I am sorry I forgot to put this in my original post. I was trying to remember everything. I had the CVI values checked and they were all within acceptable ranges. I had the van scanned and the following codes came up 36,46,53.
 

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Those codes pretty much confirm the transmission has internal issues. Sorry for the bad news on your first posts here.
36 - Fault after shift
46 - 3 to 4 shift abort
53 - Speed error in 3rd
From Chrysler's documentation on the error codes:
"If code 36 is present (fault immediately after shift) with one of these 50 series codes (referring to codes 50-55) there is a internal transmission problem."
That rules out an electrical issue and you are likely looking at a rebuild or replacement.
 

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valiant67 said:
Those codes pretty much confirm the transmission has internal issues. Sorry for the bad news on your first posts here.
36 - Fault after shift
46 - 3 to 4 shift abort
53 - Speed error in 3rd
From Chrysler's documentation on the error codes:
"If code 36 is present (fault immediately after shift) with one of these 50 series codes (referring to codes 50-55) there is a internal transmission problem."
That rules out an electrical issue and you are likely looking at a rebuild or replacement.
Thanks for your help. I really appreciate it. I am wondering what route to go. Should I try and fix this tranny or just get a used one from a salavage yard? I can't afford to have someone rebuild it for me but my father has mechanic experience but he has never done transmissions. He has a friend who is familiar with rebuilding rear wheel drive ones so I am not sure how much he would know about front wheel drive ones. We can definitely get the transmission out and put it back in but as far as fixing the transmission goes I am not sure.
 

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I have never torn into one of these transmissions but have a few RWD ones (simple ones from the days before over drives). As I undertsand it there are some special tools required for rebuilding these.

Unless you get a decent warranty a salvage yard can be a gamble. There is also an early and late model year 1996 transmission difference so that you have to watch for compatibility as well.
 

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If you go the salvage yard route try to get one from a van that has been wrecked. The odds are it was operating normally and not a transmission with problems.

The 41TE/A604 are very complex and as mentioned, require some special tools.

Only other option is a reman from Jasper or MoPar, but you're probably looking at ~$3K or so, but they do come with a good warranty - 3 years / 100K miles.

Good luck!
 

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If you have a van made on 6/5/95 (early production) the only direct interchange is another 1996 van with the same engine made on that day or before.
If you have a van made after 6/6/95 (later production) the direct interchange is another 1996 van made after that date or a 1997 van with the same engine.
After 1997, the change is likely the style of the TRS (Transmission Range Sensor) plug. A good salvage yard should be able to help you with interchange information.
 

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The overdrive hub could break at the flange on these. A known weak spot to rebuilders. You would have 1st, 2nd, and then nothing, then it would be in 'limp-in' (2nd). A92570A.jpg
The wiper motor grounds through an intermittent wipe control in the BCM. As Valiant67 states, there is a Park and Hi/Lo relays to control the wiper motor if the motor itself tests OK. The BCM itself is rarely the problem.
 

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MonteMan92 said:
Thanks for your help. I really appreciate it. I am wondering what route to go. Should I try and fix this tranny or just get a used one from a salavage yard? I can't afford to have someone rebuild it for me but my father has mechanic experience but he has never done transmissions. He has a friend who is familiar with rebuilding rear wheel drive ones so I am not sure how much he would know about front wheel drive ones. We can definitely get the transmission out and put it back in but as far as fixing the transmission goes I am not sure.
The problem with a typical junkyard transmission is that transmission problems are the reason these vans usually are in the junkyard - the engines and other systems are as close to bulletproof as any car on the road.

I'd suggest you check www.car-part.com - they list every major junkyard in the nation and many of them have leftover rebuilt units, or wrecked vehicles with freshly rebuilt transmissions. The big question is are there any acceptable transaxles near your location.

I used a Baltimore zip code and pulled the list, here are the ones I would contact and try to learn more about. Note: If a vehicle does not have a fresh rebuild or was in a terrible accident, I would NOT buy a used transmission. Remember, even with a guarantee from a junkyard you are responsible for all labor and shipping if the one you receive doesn't work properly.

In my part of the country, about $1100 is typical for a rebuilt unit, installed ($1300 for AWD).

Here are some very interesting listings not far from Maryland:

1997
Transmission
Dodge Caravan AT, 4 Spd, 3.8L, FWD,TESTED 97CVAN4996 $350
Hartlaub's Used Auto Parts USA-PA(Gettysburg) Request_Quote 717-637-1990Request_Insurance_Quote



1997
Transmission
Chrysler Town and Country TESTED...INSTALLATION AVAILABLE K0712 $399.99 Knucklebusters USA-PA(Tamaqua) Request_Quote 877-453-0909 / 570-668-3435Request_Insurance_Quote



1996
Transmission
Dodge Caravan RBLT NEW CONVERTER 90 DAYS EXCHANGE 11307 $950 Warren Auto Wreckers-ELITE USA-NJ(Warren) E-mail 1-732-469-4216

You'll have to get on the car-part site yourself, put in your real zip code, sort by 'distance' and take a look - these three are for a 3.8 vehicle built after 6/1995, so you'll have to check build date, etc to confirm the right trans. You'll see several different years listed in the results - if the results list it, it is supposed to be a direct bolt-in for your vehicle. Good luck!
 
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