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My auto transmission died, need info on a replacement.

 
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Pathfinder_ALec



Joined: 29 Jan 2019
Posts: 6
Location: Los Angeles

PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 2:35 pm    Post subject: My auto transmission died, need info on a replacement. Reply with quote

Hi guys my 98 v6 pathfinder's automatic transmission started making clanking noises and wont go into reverse. Me and my brothers are going to swap it out with a used one.

1998 V6 automatic 4x4. So my main question is the does the used replacement has to be from a 4x4 also? I see the 4x4 transfer case can be detached from the transmission.

Also what year range fits my '98? Most of my research comes up that up to '99 fit. Is that correct?

Anyone know of a low milleage importer in LA that you trust? One quote for a low mile japanese import was for $700 with a 90 warranty.

Any pitfalls in changing out the transmission, I've see a few You tube videos on how to change the transmission and it seems very straight forward. I've swapped out engines before but not a transmission.

Thanks in advance.
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smj999smj
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Joined: 22 Jan 2012
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Location: Prospect, VA

PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2019 8:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It would have to be from a 4-wheel drive. Yes, the transfer case is removable, but then you have the adapter plate. You can't just swap the adapter plate in place of the tailhouse extension on a 2-wheel drive trans because the main shaft is a different length between the two transmissions.

Looking at the Nissan catalog, there were two part numbers used in R50 4x4's with the VG33E engine. One was used up to 12/98 and the other was used from 12/98 through the 2000 model year. Those part numbers were not used on Xterras nor Frontiers. Now, that said, it doesn't mean another part number won't work, but there is obviously some difference. I believe the valve bodies were all the same, so, most likely, it was a difference in gearing inside the transmission. If that is the case....and I emphasize "IF"...you should be able to get a transmission that will work from any Frontier, Xterra or Pathfinder with a VG33E engine and 4-wheel drive. Most salvage yards have interchange manuals or software that will say what will work for a given application.

As far as the R&R, it is pretty straight-forward. If the exhaust system is rusty, that can be a problem. Most usually take the transmission and transfer case out as an assembly; be advised that it is heavy! Heavy compared to what one would pull out of an S-10 or Ranger, for example. While you have it out, you should replace the rear main seal on the back of the engine. Also, I use brake cleaner and clean up the back of the oil pan and dry it with compressed air. Then I'll apply a thick bead of RTV sealant along the side of the rear lip seal of the oil pan and use my finger to smear it and fill the gap along where the lip seal is. This seal is known for leaking over time, so this will help seal the area up, preventing the leak.
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2006 Pathfinder LE VQ40DE AWD, aftermarket radiator, Airlift 1000's, Bilstein HD rear shocks, Doug Thorley shortie headers and mid-pipes, Magnaflow 12580 muffler, aFe Momentum GT CAI w/ dry filter, XTP plenum spacer, Superchips Flashpaq tuner
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Pathfinder_ALec



Joined: 29 Jan 2019
Posts: 6
Location: Los Angeles

PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2019 9:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the info you saved me from making a mistake thinking the tranny of the 2x4 and 4x4 where interchangeable.

the big IF; are you saying that I might be able to use a 4x4 transmission from ANY year up to 2004? There's lots of those at the Pick Your Part.
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smj999smj
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Joined: 22 Jan 2012
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2019 12:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pathfinder_ALec wrote:
Thanks for the info you saved me from making a mistake thinking the tranny of the 2x4 and 4x4 where interchangeable.

the big IF; are you saying that I might be able to use a 4x4 transmission from ANY year up to 2004? There's lots of those at the Pick Your Part.


....with a VG33E engine. The Pathfinder stopped using this engine after 2000.
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2006 Pathfinder LE VQ40DE AWD, aftermarket radiator, Airlift 1000's, Bilstein HD rear shocks, Doug Thorley shortie headers and mid-pipes, Magnaflow 12580 muffler, aFe Momentum GT CAI w/ dry filter, XTP plenum spacer, Superchips Flashpaq tuner
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Pathfinder_ALec



Joined: 29 Jan 2019
Posts: 6
Location: Los Angeles

PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 10:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah, I looked and the underhood stiker on a friend's 2004 frontier and it does have the VG33E engine.

But also the strangest thing. This problem does not let the Pathfinder be pushed back EVEN IN NEUTRAL???? It can be pushed forward but reverse seems locked even in neutral.

I took video. It will drive forward but reverse seems to engaged but something is stuck, sometimes it dislodges and bam! lunges in reverse I panic an hit the brake and then it's stuck again. NO obd2 codes or OD light flash from the transmission. There is no difference if the 4x4 is engaged or not.

There is sometimes a raspy sound in park, not in neutral not in reverse, yes in Drive. Only when the raspy sound shown up in park can then the reverse lunge back really trying but if the raspy sound does not show up in park reverse does nothing but still can't be pushed back in neutral ever! it's the wierdest thing, if there wasn't that raspy sound sometimes combing from the transmission area I would think the rear differential is shot, or could it be the parking pin broke off or bent ? I live in a very hilly area.

here is the link to the youtube video I didn't narrate to try and hear the sounds (the cassette player was making a sound at the begining but I turned that off later) still hard to hear https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MgPM6Bt-cps
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smj999smj
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Joined: 22 Jan 2012
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 4:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In internal, mechanical failure, would not necessarily throw a code. The common failure on these transmission (and it's not just Nissan) when forward gears work and reverse does not is when the snap ring pops out of it's groove on the reverse clutch drum. When this happens, there is nothing to keep the pack of frictions and steel plates inside the drum in place when the drum piston engages and tries to compress them. Without the ability to compress the plates, the reverse drum cannot allow reverse gear to engage. The fix for this is to R&R the transmission and tear it down to replace the reverse drum assembly. Of course, if one is going that far, it makes sense to overhaul the transmission while it is all apart. So, for that reason, one needs to make the decision of rebuilding or replacing the transmission. A transmission repair shop can give an estimate of a rebuild, but there is always the potential for added cost if there is hard part damage, such as a bad planetary set, which won't be discovered until the trans is torn down and inspected. Hard parts can get expensive and likely have to be ordered, which equates to more down time. For these reasons, most dealers and many independent shops sell remanufactured transmissions with a warranty rather than deal with the potential headaches of rebuilding transmissions. It's more cost effective on the whole. Of course, for the vehicle owner, going the route of a used transmission may make more sense on an older vehicle, but that assumes the gamble of possible getting a transmission that's not good or won't last as long as a reman unit would.
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2006 Pathfinder LE VQ40DE AWD, aftermarket radiator, Airlift 1000's, Bilstein HD rear shocks, Doug Thorley shortie headers and mid-pipes, Magnaflow 12580 muffler, aFe Momentum GT CAI w/ dry filter, XTP plenum spacer, Superchips Flashpaq tuner
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Pathfinder_ALec



Joined: 29 Jan 2019
Posts: 6
Location: Los Angeles

PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 5:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Might buy this used transmission, the guy says it's a low mileage japanese import he got for his 2000 pathfinder but never isntalled it. these pic are from then. I'll go check it out in person on Sunday. What should I veryfy?





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smj999smj
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Joined: 22 Jan 2012
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2019 11:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The only thing you are going to be able to verify is that all of the sensors are in the same location as yours.
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2006 Pathfinder LE VQ40DE AWD, aftermarket radiator, Airlift 1000's, Bilstein HD rear shocks, Doug Thorley shortie headers and mid-pipes, Magnaflow 12580 muffler, aFe Momentum GT CAI w/ dry filter, XTP plenum spacer, Superchips Flashpaq tuner
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Pathfinder_ALec



Joined: 29 Jan 2019
Posts: 6
Location: Los Angeles

PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2019 9:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Would I be able to find a part number stamped on it, say pre '98 or post '98?
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smj999smj
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Joined: 22 Jan 2012
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2019 10:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pathfinder_ALec wrote:
Would I be able to find a part number stamped on it, say pre '98 or post '98?


Nope.
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2006 Pathfinder LE VQ40DE AWD, aftermarket radiator, Airlift 1000's, Bilstein HD rear shocks, Doug Thorley shortie headers and mid-pipes, Magnaflow 12580 muffler, aFe Momentum GT CAI w/ dry filter, XTP plenum spacer, Superchips Flashpaq tuner
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Pathfinder_ALec



Joined: 29 Jan 2019
Posts: 6
Location: Los Angeles

PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2019 11:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So that used transmission turned out to be poop. I looked greasy with a poor attempt at clean up, chewed up cables, and it was left out in the open where all the shafts had surface rust. Correct me if I'm wrong but those "rusty" shafts would eat up the seals right?
Any way back on the hunt for a transmission or sell the pathfinder.
Thanks for all the advice!
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smj999smj
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 14, 2019 2:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If it was just light rust, the shafts might be cleaned up with a Scotch pad. If there is pitting, that's another story.
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2006 Pathfinder LE VQ40DE AWD, aftermarket radiator, Airlift 1000's, Bilstein HD rear shocks, Doug Thorley shortie headers and mid-pipes, Magnaflow 12580 muffler, aFe Momentum GT CAI w/ dry filter, XTP plenum spacer, Superchips Flashpaq tuner
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