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Robert R
Robert R, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Chrysler
Satisfied Customers: 4518
Experience:  28 years experience, ASE Master Certified, Chrysler Master Certified, Sprinter Van Certified
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2002 PT Cruiser: neutral..automatic transmission radiator..Fluid level

Customer Question

2002 PT Cruiser drops into neutral usually around 39mph. car was in an accident and the automatic transmission radiator was replaced. Fluid level is good. Car just started dropping into neutral on its own. At some point it seemed to get stuck in a lower gear which felt nice because it stopped falling into neutral, but the Check Engine Light came on. After stopping and restarting the shift was back to dropping into neutral again. OBD codes were P0562, P0700, and P0888.

I removed the battery and cleaned the posts because they looked corroded. This also reset the ECM. Dropping into neutral problem remained and, after a day of driving, it did the same thing where it gets stuck in low gear and Check Check engine light came on. Same codes.

I have a power steering leak, a busted upper engine mount, some wheel bearing loose, and a broken cover on my fusebox. I took it to the dealer. They cleared the codes, and drove around the lot. They said it was shifting fine after resetting the codes. However, once I drove off and got at almost 40 mph, the problem started again. I went immediately back the dealer who said it's probably a wiring problem or corrosion in the fuse box. I cleaned out the fuse box very well and replaced all fuses and the problem still exists.

Any ideas?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Chrysler
Expert:  Ricardo Hohl replied 6 years ago.

ricardo hohl :

hi, this code seems to be a relay problem or relay box problem have you replace the transmission relay yet


If you are referring to the little black cubed-shape fuse inside the fuse-box that is under the hood, the answer is YES. The owner's manual diagram of the fuse-box calls it the Electronic Automatic Trans-axle (EATX) relay.

Expert:  Robert R replied 6 years ago.

Hello, My name isXXXXX to Just Answer. I will do my best to help you with your concern. When you had the vehicle scanned at the dealer did they give you the codes that they retreived? I see that when you had it scanned, you had the P0700 code, this code is stored in the ECM to tell you that there is a code in the TCM (transmission controller). If you can post any codes pulled out of the TCM, I can help to steer you in the right direction to get your concern solved.


PS. I looked up the P0888 code, that code is telling you that the Transmission Relay output is always off, I will post the Diag Chart for that code. This may help with your concern. If you need more info, click reply. Thanks


P0888 Diag Chart - Click Here.




Customer: replied 6 years ago.
The dealer got this code: P0884 - Power Up at Speed
When Monitored: When Transmission Control Module initially powers up.
Set Condition: If the TCM powers up and senses a valid forward gear PRNDL. DTC and Output RPM is above 800 RPM (Aprox. 20mph) then DTC will set.

The recomended fix is to repair wiring and/or connectors as necessary, perform 41TE Transmission Verification test (Ver 1).

The codes I got were:

P0562 - Charging system voltage condition-battery voltage low. So, some sort of poor electrical condition.

P0700 - Transaxle control fault. A shorted or open circuit within the transaxle.

P0888 - Transmission relay always off. Open circuit on the Transmission Control relay. Could be a Failed transmission solenoid/pressure switch assembly.

Expert:  Robert R replied 6 years ago.
You might check the wiring harness that runs below the battery and along the exhaust crossover the battery may leak and damage the harness below, causing many problems, transmission and or engine related concerns. The same may happen where the harness runs near the exhaust, the wires will melt together inside the harness and cause the same type problems, you will need to open up the harness and check the wiring inside. Either melting of the insulation or battery acid intrusion into the wire insulation will cause problems.
Robert R, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Chrysler
Satisfied Customers: 4518
Experience: 28 years experience, ASE Master Certified, Chrysler Master Certified, Sprinter Van Certified
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