I have a ’96 Geo Tracker that is often used to climb mountains or drive in sand. When used as a daily driver it shifts perfectly. In hot weather while going up steep rocky hills in low range and high temperatures or when it climbed Pikes Peak it begins to up-shift hard and will start to hunt. Once back on level ground it seems fine and as a daily driver it works great with no sign of slipping or hard shifting.
When we got it 8 months ago I added a trans cooler, changed all of the fluids, pulled the trans pan and cleaned the filter. It seemed clean already and there were no signs of metal or sludge. I believe the previous owners maintained it well. Since this happened I added 6 oz of Lucas additive. I noticed that the fluid was slightly cloudy but not at all dark. There is no burned smell.
I am assuming churning or foaming in the converter is to blame. I am guessing that the churn interferes with power delivery and possibly the valves tell it when to shift. I put it in a lower gear and it does work fine. It is probably heating up a bit too. I am often at high altitudes too.
My questions are 1- Am I right about the churning affecting the shift? 2- Is there any grade, brand of trans oil or additive that will resist the foaming or temperature better? 3-Is the trans busted?
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