1989 Chrysler Extended Van Transmission Problem

gingertomSeptember 13, 2008

I have a 1989 Chrysler Extended Van (3 litre) with 4 speed automatic transmission. I would like to know where the band adjusters are located. Inside the trany or outside? Thanks.

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So far as I know, there are no band/clutch adjustments accessible from outside this transmission.

Apparently, you have the 3.0 L, V6, Mitisubishi engine with Chrysler's A604 4 speed transaxle. I once had the same engine and tranny in a Dodge Dynasty. I have the shop manuals for this car. The only external adjustment mentioned is the one for the shifter cable and links.

1989 was the first year for this tranny and it proved troublesome for serveral owners. The concept was good, but the execution was lacking. This tranny was designed with with long stroke hydraulic actuators (compared to the comventional automatic tranny). These actuators were controlled by servo-valves that were operated by electronics. Since these valve were pulse width modulated, they could make a raspy, buzzing sound which was normal but generated concerns by owners. The valve box was loaded with sound deadners to reduce the problem, but the valves were still audible.

My experience with my transmision was that when the clutch facings wore down to the point where the actuators run out of stroke, it is replace/ rebuild time. Since the timing of actuator operation is constantly monitored and adjusted, the driver does not get a clue that his tranny is nearing its end until a few miles before comlete failure, in my case, it was about 100 miles from first glitch to failure.

My '89 tranny lasted about 80,000 miles which included considerable commuting; I had a '92 that went over 110,000 miles.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2008 at 12:57AM
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Additional Information about
Chrysler's 1989 A604 4-speed transaxle.

One of the annoyances with this transmission came not from the tranny, but from the engine controller chip. The chip was programmed to produce a better EPA rating for mileage and emmissions. This program was taylored wring to the best performance out of the EPA test, not necessarily the best behavior for the every day commuter. This design pemitted shifts from 2nd to 4th skipping 3rd under certain loads and speeds. The results was good for the EPA test, but an annoyance in city driving. After sitting at a red light, upon a green light, if the driver started across the intersection at a normal acceleration, then found himself approaching a 30 MPH speed limit, he'd ease up on the throttle and the tranny would bang into 4th gear which lugged the engine and as vaccuum fell, it shifted back to 3rd. So, a trip across the intersection would be a start in 1st with a shift to 2nd about 1/2 way across, then a bang into 4th and after a small pause, back to 3rd. What a kluge! One way to avoid this was to keep your foot into the gas pedal and overshoot the speed limit, or do a timid acceleration at light change upsetting the other motorists. In my opinion, the way this feature performed shortened the life of this tranny, not to mention driver dissatisfaction.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2008 at 1:25AM
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