Delayed engagement in reverse

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This topic contains 3 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by Nightflyr * Richard Kirshy 1 year, 3 months ago.

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  • #919965

    I got a 2004 Nissan Sentra 1.8L with 134500 miles on it. It has a delayed engagement for the past month, in reverse only. But this delayed engagement is temperature related because there is no delay engagement when the car is cold, or it’s just very slight I guess. It progressively gets worse when the car is driven for long periods of time. (no codes)
    For example when the car is driven for the first 20-30 mins from a cold state the delay engagement is about 1-1.25 secs. Anything over 60-90 mins driving on average 1.6 secs (sometimes little more or less ). I did have some frigid temps come my way in the area and notice that even after 2-3 hrs driving the delayed engagement averages about 1.25 sec.
    When I first noticed the delay engagement the first week there was a couple times where the delay was 5-8 sec. But then the week after if the delay was over 2 secs I wouldn’t wait for the whole delay, I put it park and then back in reverse and notice the delay is shorter 1.2 secs, I been doing that ever since I notice when a longer delay happens and same result. I have had.a one long delay almost everyday now, if no long delay it’s a 1.6 secs delay (the car has been in this condition for the first month till 2 days ago).
    Two days ago is where it got worse, and how the car is acting now. I have reverse when the car is just started up, even after 20-30 mins but the delay is 1.2 secs about. When the car gets driven over 50 mins I have no feel when the car goes in reverse. When I hit the gas lightly there’s he hesitation or a jerking motion for 5-10 secs till I guess it’s fully in reverse.
    Looking to see what this problem could be, if it could be a valve body or solenoid where it’s something I could get involved with to fix?

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  • #920302
    Nightflyr *
    Richard Kirshy

    What condition / level is the fluid in?
    Has it ever been changed?
    What about the filter?
    There are several possibilities for this issue.
    Valve body
    Worn clutch pack
    Restricted fluid flow
    Clogged transmission filter
    My suggestion would be unless your knowledgeable in transmission operation and repair.
    You might be better of getting it diagnosed at a qualified shop.


    The fluid is in pretty good condition, it got changed once just a drain and refill, the pan has never been dropped so no filter change.

    I took my car to a local transmission shop to get it looked at and all he did is spent 1 minute with it. He checked the fluid on the dipstick, felt it on his fingers, smelled it and said the clutches are worn. I described how it was running, he didn’t even get in the car to see how it was running in reverse. Does this sound like a good enough diagnosis of the car?

    If and when I put another transmission in the car, what’s recommended a salvage yard transmission or to have my transmission rebuilt which I imagine is more expensive? Is it something I can replace myself, never really did something on this level before. Have seen some videos, and seems like it’s not to bad, but I am also in an area where cars develop a good amount of rust, even though my car doesn’t have a tremendous amount of rust on it.

    Nightflyr *
    Richard Kirshy

    That transmission shop is a joke.
    They should have at least test drove the vehicle to confirm the complaint.
    I’d be looking for another shop.

    As to a replacement:
    That would depend on a few things..
    Your budget
    The overall condition of the vehicle … IE engine, brakes, interior, body.
    You have to decide if it is worth the investment and if you will be able to drive the car long enough to make it worth while.
    If after a transmission replacement, your still having to replace brakes, or ball joints, engine equipment.. it can turn into a money pit.
    So best to determine its overall condition fairly.

    A salvaged unit is a gamble.
    You usually don’t know what mileage or condition it is in.
    A decent salvage yard may offer some type of replacement warranty if it is defective, but is extremely limited in the amount of time.
    Also if it fails outside the warranty time limit your stuck paying for another along with the labor to install it again.

    On rebuilding your existing transmission:
    This will be costly to be sure.
    Also, you’ll need to find a quality shop who knows what their doing and offer a decent warranty on their work.

    the third option would be to get a re-manufactered transmission.
    Again from a good source.
    Some can offer free replacement on a defective unit and will reimburst some of the labor costs if it needs replacement after install.

    Concerning doing it yourself:
    If you do the research on the ” How To ”
    If you have the skills required.
    If you have all the tooling required and have a safe place to do the work.
    Yes you could do the job.
    If not, this isn’t like adding anti freeze or changing a head light.
    Doing this install incorrectly is a very expensive learning experience.
    In which case, again I would search for a qualified shop.

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