HOW TO REPLACE A DOWNSHIFT SOLENOID

What is the Downshift Solenoid?

In modern automatic transmission, pressurized hydraulic fluid is used to change gears. Whenever a gear is changed, a transmission solenoid transfer transmission fluid to the valve body so that the correct gear will be engaged. The downshift solenoid monitors the transition from a higher gear to a lower gear. It is an electronically-controlled mechanical parts that allows fluid movement to engage the correct lower gear. If the downshift solenoid is not functioning, you can notice erratic shifts or a lack of transmission downshifting altogether.

Bear in mind:

  • Downshift solenoid change is not part of your routine maintenance.
  • The failure of the downshift solenoid may lead to serious transmission problems.

How it is done:

  • The car front wheels are turned straight and the car is lifted and supported on jack stands
  • The defective downshift solenoid is taken out
  • The new downshift solenoid is installed
  • The car is removed from jack stands
  • The car is road tested and checked for downshift solenoid operation

Recommendation:

There is no set interval for change of a shift solenoid, though the transmission fluid should be changed per your manufacturer’s recommended interval. Because of the complexity involved in diagnosing a shifting issues, have an expert mechanic diagnose it.

What common signs indicate you may need to change the Downshift Solenoid?

  • Erratic shifting – your vehicle skips gears, shifts back and forth between gears, or simply doesn’t shift at all
  • Vehicle won’t downshift
  • The transmission gets stuck in neutral
  • You notice delayed shifting

How vital is this service?

Erratic shifting can be hard to anticipate and control when you are driving, and can put you in a potentially difficult driving situation. It should be repaired immediately.

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