Error code P1870 on '97 Astro AWD

Error code P1870 on '97 Astro AWD

Postby Amnesia Wes [OP] » February 19th 2011, 1:57am

OK all you motor gurus, here's one for you: I just had an error code of P1870 pulled from my '97 Astro AWD with the Vortec V6. What does this code mean, is it important, and if it is, what kind of repair does it involve.

Thanks in advance for any of your help.
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Re: Error code P1870 on '97 Astro AWD

Postby chevymaher » February 19th 2011, 2:22am

This is what I found and it listed for correct year and tranny you have The condition may be due to wear in the control valve body. This wear occurs in the bore that contains the TCC isolator and regulator valves, and results in poor, or no, TCC apply.Also it will cause a real hard 2nd gear shift...as long as the transmission works fine 1st to 4th gear, and good fluid quality,The fluid should be red in color, not brown or black.
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Re: Error code P1870 on '97 Astro AWD

Postby Amnesia Wes [OP] » February 19th 2011, 4:08am

Infrequently, like maybe once in 3 months, I'll experience a had 1st to 2nd gear shift. But goes away as soon as it starts. Is it something I should be concerned about?
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Re: Error code P1870 on '97 Astro AWD

Postby Amnesia Wes [OP] » January 2nd 2012, 4:23am

UPDATE:
ChevyMaher (Randy) suggested I run a bottle of LUCAS Automatic Transmission Additive into my tranny before tearing it apart to look for the hard-shifting problem. I figured I had nothing to lose but a couple of bucks, so I gave it a shot. I poured it in, took the van for a drive and Voila!, no hard-shifting!!!!! It fixed my problem immediately; not 1, 2, or 3 miles down the road. Immediately. The very first shift from 1st to 2nd, was absolutely smooth and has been ever since. Thanks, Randy!
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Re: Error code P1870 on '97 Astro AWD

Postby chevymaher » January 2nd 2012, 4:39am

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Re: Error code P1870 on '97 Astro AWD

Postby 'cudapaul » January 2nd 2012, 6:40am

If you have DTC P1870, your trans is slowly dying.

The TCC valve located in the valve body should be repaired so that you can stop whatever problem you currently have. It usually costs between $150 to $300 and you DO NOT have to have the trans dropped.

No oil, conditioner, transmission additive, or special hydraulic fluid will corect the problem. It exists because a few small parts in the valve body have worn. GM had a huge problem with the 97 and to some degree the 96 model years of the 4L60E where the problem usually started happening around 40 to 60,000 miles. Do a google on the DTC with 1997 and you will see how many GM owners have had this problem.

This is from first hand experience with the same model year as yours.
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Re: Error code P1870 on '97 Astro AWD

Postby redfury » January 2nd 2012, 8:20am

I agree, it's a realitively simple fix all things considered and you'll have the problem corrected 100%, not "it works now, but left me stranded 100 miles from home" fixed.
A temporary fix usually becomes a permanent solution, therefore it does not exist.
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Re: Error code P1870 on '97 Astro AWD

Postby chevymaher » January 2nd 2012, 1:14pm

I did read up on it for him.And explained what was wrong in the valve body in E Mails.They just shift hard forever.it wont strand you.He in hawaii on a island he can't go to far.Shifting hard actually better for the trans clutches.Same as a aftermarket shift kit.Just a pain if you don't want it to.Gentle shifts are where slippage and wear occur.I know guys who swear by this stuff and been using it for years.Never had a problem.Ford trucks are terrible for the same thing.If anybody sure and can show how it accelerates clutch wear or breaks parts I all ears.
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Re: Error code P1870 on '97 Astro AWD

Postby 'cudapaul » January 2nd 2012, 5:29pm

Sure, in the 97, the convertor clutch lining is carbon fiber based. Since the convertor can not fully lockup, it excessively slips and wears the lining, causing the carbon fiber material to circulate and wear hard parts and linings in the trans. The filter can not catch the fine particles.

At low speeds, the trans will work pretty much OK, since the convertor doesn't reach lockup.

If you monitor it on freeway or expressway driving, the trans will "slip" when it tries to lock the convertor clutch.

When the ECM sees three incidents of slipping, it sets the DTC P1870, and forces the line pressure high causing the "hard" shifts. It is not the hard shifts that are the problem, but the fact that the trans is constantly operating with high line pressure. This is hard on the seals and linings. This high line pressure condition is NOT the same as having a shift kit installed.

Yes, he can continue to drive the vehicle. Utlimately, it will require a complete rebuild, if left in its current condition. Rebuilding the valve body before too much damage is done is best, but thats up to the owner to decide.
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Re: Error code P1870 on '97 Astro AWD

Postby chevymaher » January 3rd 2012, 1:42am

Thanks that the info I was looking for.
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