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  #1  
Old 05-19-2002, 09:35 AM
rkent
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transmission not shifting

I ned help, by the way what a great resource for MB owners and enthusiasts. I have just boughg a 89 560sl and the second day I drove the car shifting problems started. I have read all the threads and am a little confused on one that will not shift out of second gear. The car only has 56,000 mi and was drive by little ole lady. Literally was stored every winter and not drive at all. 500 mi ago they had the tranmission serviced by a Mercedes Dealer. I doubt they put synthetic oil in as the invoice shows $3.00 per quart for the transmission fluid. I drove the car about 5 mi yesterday and it will shift out of first fine if you manually pul it into 1st and shift to second but only after about 4 1/2 mile did it ever shift into 3rd and that was after a lot of playing with the shifter. At that point it shifted into 4 th gear fine. I have gpme as high as 4500 RPM trying to get it to shift. Then last night I drove the car again and could never get it to shift into 3rd gear. Is this possibly a vacuum problem, other problem or do I likely have a bad transmission?

Thanks for your help

Rick
89 560 SL
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  #2  
Old 05-19-2002, 09:39 AM
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I would suspect a vacuum problem. Recently, when the vacuum line became disconnected on the 240D it would not shift at all. I did not check to see if it would shift manually. Check for vacuum leaks first.
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  #3  
Old 05-19-2002, 09:40 AM
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Someone else can probably help you on the vacuum issue.. but can I suggest the kickdown switch could be stuck down? It happens to me occasionally, and is worth checking just to be completely sure before you start the expensive work!

later

Russ
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  #4  
Old 05-19-2002, 10:04 AM
rkent
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I think the kickdown switch is working, if I understand it correctly. While in 2nd gear you can accelerate rapidly and it will drop to 1st gear.
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  #5  
Old 05-19-2002, 01:13 PM
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Kickdown is a combination of control pressure and electrical dumping of governor pressure. If you got shifting one moment and none the next, I give a big thumb's up to the kickdown switch suggestion. The easiest way to be sure is to disconnect the kickdown solenoid at the back of the transmisson. It just plugs in and can be reached from the rear by sticking ones hand to the passenger's side of the trans mount (this for the SL all other models its much easier) forward about 4 inches below and forward of the output flange above the pan on the right rear.

The reason for disconnecting it here is to totally eliminate the electrical activation. The electrical activation can also occur due to the B position switch and the malfuntion of the kickdown relay which is part of the klima or fuel pump relay.

It is most likely the kickdown switch itself and can be disconnected there. This seems to be more common on SLs for some reason.
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  #6  
Old 05-21-2002, 08:00 PM
rkent
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Unhappy

Well I unpluged the solenoid for the kickdown switch but with no change except now it will not downshift into low gear manually. It appears there is vacuum on the modulator valve also. It just stays in 2nd gear all the time. Any other suggestions?
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  #7  
Old 05-21-2002, 08:47 PM
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Location: Niceville, FL
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Had a similar problem with mine after the trans fluid/filter were replaced. Shifted fine before, but since I just got the car I thought I'd get 'er up to speed by changing the fluids. Had to take it back twice and have fluid suctioned out. After the second time, she started shifting smooth as silk.

Could be any of the problems suggested by the previous posters, but it could be something this simple too.
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  #8  
Old 05-21-2002, 10:59 PM
rkent
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Is all ATF red. I have noticed the fluid on the dip stick does not appear to be red. I thought that pecular since all I have ever seen was red in color.
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  #9  
Old 05-22-2002, 09:00 AM
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The next thing to check is the control pressure cable. Be sure that the thing isn't stuck out; the cable is pulled out by the throttle linkage behind the fuel distributor, but only pulled back by the internal spring force on the internal control valve.

If the cable is functioning the pan must be pulled and the control pressure valve disassembled for sticking.

The next step would be to pull the valve body and apply the pertinent clutch pack with air pressure. If the mechanical is right try a new VB gasket and a proper retorque. Case/VB warping and leakage causes considerable problems.

If none of that works then MB makes rather cheap rebuilt VBs.
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  #10  
Old 05-22-2002, 09:27 PM
rkent
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I called my nearest MB Dealer (which is 60 mi away) and he suggested a switch that is in the console where the gear selector moves to the right to go into low. Said they were bad about sticking. I have looked and do not see anything except the plastic cover that slide over as you move the gear selector. Is this a possiblity and if so how do I see the switch. Thanks for all your help. I will try the additional items and report back.
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  #11  
Old 05-23-2002, 12:10 AM
rkent
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I found the b switch so I disconnected it, drove car and still have same problem so I reconnected the switch.
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  #12  
Old 05-23-2002, 01:13 AM
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Rick,

I am not familiar with your model but this site with its article might prove to be helpful:

PROPER VACUUM SYSTEM "TUNING" ACHIEVES OPTIMAL SHIFT CHARACTERISTICS AND AN ACCURATE REPAIR-

http://www.continentalimports.com/ser_ic20242.html

Jeff
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  #13  
Old 05-23-2002, 04:17 AM
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Dont forget to check the basics, warm up the car and check the transimission fluid level...is it full?
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  #14  
Old 05-23-2002, 09:13 AM
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The reason I said to disconnect the solenoid at the trans is that eliminates all electronic kickdown issues including the "B" position switch.
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  #15  
Old 06-06-2002, 09:31 PM
rkent
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Update on my malfunctioning transmission. The car has been in a transmissin shop in Jacksonville, AR for two weeks. They called today and said they had done everhthing external that they knew to check, including dropping the pan. They said the inside looked good and very clean when they dropped the pand and could see no problem. Their suggestion now is to let them go into the transmission and rebuild it. However this is not a MB dealer. My concern is they go throught the transmission and put it back together and it still doesn't work. Should I allow someone like this go throught the transmission or should I pick the car up and go the MB dealer in Little Rock?
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