Hyundai Repair: Hyundai Excel 94 automatic transmission, hyundai excel, transmission shop

23 Dec 2014 | Author: | Comments Off on Hyundai Repair: Hyundai Excel 94 automatic transmission, hyundai excel, transmission shop
Hyundai Excel

Hyundai Repair / Hyundai Excel 94 automatic transmission


Expert: HT – 4/5/2007


QUESTION: My 94 Hyundai Excel automatic transmission works ok and shifts normally for about the first 20 miles or less if the weather is hot. After the transmission warms up, it does not want to shift into 3rd gear. As it gets warmer, it does not want to shift into second.

The tranmission oil is not burned and is in good condition as is the filter. There is no smoke. No grinding sounds, no slippage, no racing or other symptoms.

Since the transmission performs normally without any problems for the first 20 miles or about a half hour until it gets warmed up and even then, it is not having any unusual sounds or symptoms other than not going into 3rd and if driven long enough has not wanted to go into 2nd gear. I am having touble believing that the trouble is internal to the transmission rather than a sensor or linkage or other problem. Can you shed some light on the possible problem?

The car is at the transmission shop and they seem very unconvincing as to what they have checked other than the fluid and seem to be blindly grasping at a reason to open up and tear down the transmission for a lot of money without providing any speculation on what is causing the problem. The fact that the transmission works perfect until it gets warm and no evidence of problem with the fluid and no sounds or other symptoms makes me uneasy that the problem is in the transmission as opposed to something like a sensor, etc.

I just wanted to get another opinion to see if my concerns are founded. I would hate to spend $1600 or more just to have the transmission torn apart when something less invasive might be the problem.

If the transmission was grinding, smoking, burning oil, leaking or slipping, I would understand the need to go to such extremes, but the transmission shop was vague and could not really give me a valid reason on what they thought the problem might be or what efforts they made to check it so far other than to look at the oil. Are my concerns unfounded or am I right on feeling like they are trying to dig into my pockets without a valid reason? I am almost ready to go get the car and take it somewhere else but I need advice ASAP before I proceed.

ANSWER: I’m a little uncertain about what you say is occurring. You say that once the problems occur, the transmission won’t shift into third or second and third. But you also say that the transmission doesn’t slip nor does the engine race. So, what I’m interested in is what happens when the transmission doesn’t go into either 2nd or 3rd gear.

Does it shift from 2nd to 4th? 1st to 4th? Does it act like it’s in neutral?

Most of the failures with the transmission in your vehicle were with the seals, and they occurred because of excessive roughness of the machined surfaces. In most cases, transmission overhaul or replacement is required. If you’ve determined that’s what will be required for repair, call your local Hyundai dealer and price a transmission replacement.

Hyundai sells the remanufactured transmissions to the dealer fairly cheaply, so you can get a factory reman in many cases for a price below what an overhaul at a competing shop will cost.

Also, I’m not convinced you need an overhaul, either. This is for two reasons. First, I don’t fully understand your description. Second, there is no indication that the repair facility checked the diagnostic trouble codes.

Checking the diagnostic trouble codes is an important part of diagnosing nearly every problem with an electronically controlled transmission such as you have in your car.

QUESTION: You were absolutely correct. Thank you. The transmission place was not telling the truth.

They were gung ho to tear it down and rebuild it without providing any technical reason for doing so (and who knows what the actual final price would be). Before we went to the shop, I discovered the Hyundai mfr has a free website where you can login and enter your car description and look up any component or problem on any year and model.

You can copy detailed technical information on any system or part and obtain detailed troubleshooting, symptom and part information with instructions and diagrams on how to replace test components. The level of detail on the Hyundai website is more extensive than any car repair manual we have ever seen. They also have info on diagnostic codes and how to interpret them as well as indepth info for car owners, test technicians, mechanics and repair shops.

It is also excellent for informing owners so they can ask the right questions at the repair shops and translate the diagnostic code results.

After researching the Hyundai technical info, I spoke with the transmission shop and was able to more intelligently press them for specifics. I asked if they had tested the sensors and ran thorough diagnostics and they told me they did. So I asked if they had a print out of the diagnostics and they said no, they hand wrote out the codes. so I asked for those.

They did not have them. So I asked them to specify exactly which components they tested and any pressure tests, sensors, linkage or other diagnostics. and they were unable to provide an answer. They finally admitted that all they had done was perform a drive test and look at the transaxle oil. yet they insisted this was enough to convince them that the transmission needed to be torn down and rebuilt without any diagnostics whatsoever. You were right!

That was enough for us, so we took the car home (about 40 miles; 1 1/2 hours thru traffic). The transmission was perfect for the first 35 miles but during the last 5, it started not wanting to shift gears again. My husband was driving and said the problem only appears after the car was warm from driving. When he stopped at traffic lights and then started through the intersection and slowly increased speed, the automatic transmission did not want to shift above the 2nd gear. No other symptoms.

No noise, no smoke, no racing engine and the trans oil was good.

On the Hyundai site, I found info on a transaxle oil temp sensor which if faulty can cause the same type of problems our transmission has. Works fine when cool and begins not shifting when warm with a defective temp sensor. It also described some other cases where the temp sensor can cause the TCM to send the wrong signal to the pressure sensor, depending on the type of temp sensor failure (high, open or short on leads).

Since this temp sensor is only a $40 part and the online diagrams show it is easy to access under the transaxle oil pan, we thought we would replace it and change the trans oil and filter and see if this improves the problem. The detailed instructions on the Hyundai site also provide VOM tests we can use to check some of the other sensors and components on our own. If this doesn’t work, we can try your second suggestion of the transmission replacement.

This will sound like a strange question, but is there another way to obtain the Hyundai replacement transmission other than the dealer?

Our local Hyundai dealer is extremely crooked. They did an unforgivable ripoff on my car 5 years ago when it only needed a $268 fan replacement for the AC which another shop had already diagnosed and priced out. But I went to the Dealer for a second estimate, thinking genuine Hyundai parts would be better.

The Hyundai dealer tore out the entire AC system without permission and without providing the requested estimate and told me it could not be put back together because they had already disposed of it. Then after I was forced to comply, kept my car 10 days waiting for a replacement AC at a cost of nearly $2000 in addition to rental car fees I also incurred. They enraged so many customers here, most people now go out of state or to another distant metro area to buy Hyundai’s.

Since this dealer owns every Hyundai dealership in the Dallas and north TX area. is there another way to get the Hyundai replacement transmission and installation? Or some way to buy the replacement through another method and have it installed by a third party competitor? I’m not sure how this would work out with a competitor shop.

Some are very resistant to installing parts provided by the customer.

Although we can tackle changing a sensor and doing some VOM tests at home, we are not set up to swap transaxles. Honest auto repair sources in this area are few and far between.

Let me thank you again for your help. If we had not pinned down the transmission shop for details, we would not have known they never ran any diagnostics whatsoever. At least we are now better informed and will be sure to verify the diagnostics before we jump in the fire for an expensive rebuild.

ANSWER: First, you can check for diagnostic trouble codes yourself. In the transaxle section of the shop manual on, it’ll give a diagram of the diagnostic test connector. You can connect an analog voltmeter and read the trouble codes with the sweeps of the needle.

Second, don’t rush to replace the fluid temperature sensor. If I recall correctly, the operating strategy on your car isn’t such that the transmission will stay in a low gear if the fluid temperature gets too high.

I’m still not sure of your symptoms. If the transmission is staying in second gear, I’d think that the engine would be racing as you drove, but you say that’s not the case. If you can, please explain to me whether the transmission just stays in second, acts like it’s in neutral, or anything else you can think of that will help me understand.

Hyundai Excel

Anyone can purchase a transmission from the dealer and install it themselves, including other shops. I’m sorry that the dealers in your area aren’t more honest.

Check out the diagnostic worksheet in TSB 05-40-005. I realize you won’t be able to do everything there, but you may be able to learn something from the tests you can do.

Right now, I’m thinking you may have a pulse generator issue, but again, until I have a better understanding of exactly what the symptoms are, I’m not confident of much of anything.

QUESTION: My husband said I described the symptoms backward. (although it is my car, I have not driven it since this problem started). Let me start over again and have him describe it step by step as I type

Here is his description:

Everything on the transmission was normal for the first 35 miles. Then we stopped at a traffic light and he said he shifted into neutral while stopped. When the light changed, he shifted into drive. The shift from 1st to second was a harder than normal shift.

2nd to 3rd and 3rd to 4th were normal. As the engine reaches normal operating temperature and encounter multiple stop lights with it in drive, the 1st to 2nd gets a little bit harder on the shift. 2nd to 3rd seems longer and shifting 3rd to 4th disappears.

The car never shifts into 4th after that.

If the tranmission is cooled down for about a half hour or more such as while you are shopping, then the entire process starts again from the beginning.

He said he tried something different today by shifting into neutral at each stop light with his foot on the brake and then shifted back into drive after the light changed. He said this seemed to extend the distance he could drive before the problems began to reoccur. He feels that heat appears to be the main factor in when the transmission begins to start having the problems.

He felt that shifting into neutral at the stop lights helped delay the onset of problems by reducing heat and stress on the transmission while the car was sitting at the red light.

He also says that normal highway driving without the stop and go of traffic lights seems to forestall the onset of the problems. Again. heat related.


The symptoms you describe further open up the possibility that this may be a sensor issue of some sort, although I think the temperature sensor is unlikely because that typically won’t cause failsafe. Once the transmission control module sees certain failures three times, it’ll put the transmission in failsafe (third gear only).

You definitely want to start with reading the diagnostic trouble codes using the voltmeter procedure I’ve listed above. Use the manual to translate the codes and follow up with them here. I’ll advise on how to proceed.

Hyundai Excel
Hyundai Excel
Hyundai Excel
Hyundai Excel
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