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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all, long time no post. I'm here with an issue I'm hoping someone else may have experienced and solved. I've been researching the forum and the great oracle Google for the last 24 hours endlessly and have yet to find an answer.

After selling the 94 Tiger off long ago I recently picked up a 2005 awd astro with 123k. We have been working to convert it into a camper and are literally ready to now hit the road except for this new issue. We recently had a local 4x4 shop install our Journeys 3/5 lift and 4x4 conversion. It took the shop an extra week to figure out there was a bad bearing in the transfer case in order for it to go into 4L. With the issue resolved, we picked it up yesterday and the mechanic asked us if it was always slow to start off the line. I thought well that's subjective, it's not a camero. Lol.

What the mechanic didn't iterate is we now have a shifting/surging problem with the van. I drove it home about 20 miles, stop and go traffic and highway speeds.

The issue:
Very slow to come off line.

Shifts very quickly from 1-2, then around 15mph it surge-shifts, then around 25 to 30mph it surge shifts again.

Drives fine at highway speeds, however there is no overdrive, when I mash down the accelerator there is no response. It's like driving my old VW!

Cruise control and speedo work.

This van has zero shifting issues prior to this work being done. ABS light has been on for about a month, no codes showing then or now. Shop stated they put it on their computer and also found no faults. Mechanic told us he put new trans fluid and filter in, however when we spoke with the shop owner via phone late last night he stated this was not done but would confirm with mechanic (he was out of town, supposed to call us today and we have not heard from him).

I started today checking the wiring for the 4x4 conversion which looks correct. I checked all the fuses related to the trans and all were also good. I ran the van through the proper procedure to check the trans fluid hot and it looks at the proper level and color. I then took a look at the VSS as it seemed to be the original and upon pulling it out the rubber oring was gummy and deformed and pulling apart, so I replaced with a new VSS. I've disconnected the battery in an attempt to hard reset. Nothing has helped.

At this point I am desperate to get this fixed and would prefer to not take it back to this shop if I don't have to. I've lost my trust in their ability to fix it considering they let us pick it up and drive away in this condition. Has anyone run into this issue after doing their 4x4 swap? Any ideas that perhaps I have not looked at yet?
 

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Well,I would scan for codes, a cheap scanner may not give you transmission codes.
But, a few things-
Make sure AWD fuse has been removed
Double check wiring to PCM, the wire that has to be added
Check the low range switch, that came with kit, make sure it is not stuck on-- it should be an open circuit whenever van is not in low range. Haven't "forgot" to switch mine lately, as I have a manual switch I have to flip when using low range, but, it grounds the wire to the PCM, it is called a "doubler" circuit, so tranny shifts properly in low range, but if my memory is correct, it makes trans upshift very quickly, may lock out the convertor.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Well,I would scan for codes, a cheap scanner may not give you transmission codes.
But, a few things-
Make sure AWD fuse has been removed
Double check wiring to PCM, the wire that has to be added
Check the low range switch, that came with kit, make sure it is not stuck on-- it should be an open circuit whenever van is not in low range. Haven't "forgot" to switch mine lately, as I have a manual switch I have to flip when using low range, but, it grounds the wire to the PCM, it is called a "doubler" circuit, so tranny shifts properly in low range, but if my memory is correct, it makes trans upshift very quickly, may lock out the convertor.
Thanks for your reply. Can you be more specific as to what to look for on the low range switch? I didn't do the install so I'm going off videos of others and the Journeys website which leaves little to be desired. It does seem like it's stuck in lo range...

I did trace the PCM wire last night and it looks correct.
 

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2000 Lifted 4x4 Astro 92 V8-350 Shorty
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Certainly a possibility of an issue with the low-range switch.. try disconnecting it.
It is only supposed to be engaged when in 4-LOW.

Also a possible issue with the Park/Range (neutral safety) switch on the side of the transmission. It tells the computer what gear you are in. Mine did weird things (shifting issues) after my trans was rebuilt.. turned out to be issues with the harness (after it had been disturbed).
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Ok so I disconnected the plug... No change.

I put my code reader on it and came back with a slew of codes. (supposedly the shop put it on their computer and saw nothing). Unfortunately my scanner does not tell me what is a historical code and what isn't, but in regards to the transmission here's what I've got:

P0741
P0751
P0752
P0756
P0894
P1810

I'm no mechanic but I really think unless they went digging in around the trans while working on it there must be a bad sensor, something knocked loose or bad wires somewhere. I could be wrong. The shop is now not returning our calls or communicating with us so I have no confirmation as to whether or not the trans fluid and filter were changed.

Looks like we will be taking it to another shop tomorrow with a better code reader who can hopefully diagnose. What a shit show this has turned out to be.
 

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OK, looking at those codes, my "professional" guess would be they have damaged the wiring harness to the transmission, somewhere. From the plug going into the trans, up to the PCM.
I doubt it is the harness inside the trans. Possible they have shorted out and burned up part of the PCM.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
OK, looking at those codes, my "professional" guess would be they have damaged the wiring harness to the transmission, somewhere. From the plug going into the trans, up to the PCM.
I doubt it is the harness inside the trans. Possible they have shorted out and burned up part of the PCM.
I appreciate your feedback! I will update when we hear from the different shop tomorrow.
 

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Common Sense + Critical Thinking
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This van has zero shifting issues prior to this work being done. ABS light has been on for about a month, no codes showing then or now. Shop stated they put it on their computer and also found no faults. Mechanic told us he put new trans fluid and filter in, however when we spoke with the shop owner via phone late last night he stated this was not done but would confirm with mechanic (he was out of town, supposed to call us today and we have not heard from him).
The ABS light would not illuminate for no reason. Does the ABS unit have power, check fuses? Does your code reader read extended codes?

What does the transmission fluid level and condition look like, does it look better than it did before, look new? How about the pan gasket/bolts/etc, look like it's been removed/replaced? What happens if you manually shift into 1st 2nd? After checking the transmission fluid and such, see if you can get the freeze frame data for those codes, then I would clear those codes, start the engine let it run a few times, turn it off, if you still don't have any codes do like 3 drive cycles and see what comes back.

I wouldn't be so quick to blame it all on an electrical issue.

Anyway, I always recommend getting the FSM, either paper or the GM Techline eSI which is the digital FSM(see links in sig) so you can look these kinds of things up easily :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
It's taken the new shop a few days to get the van in but this morning we have a preliminary report. The wiring on the low range switch was not the correct size, and was also not secured properly and has been rubbing on the driveshaft. When wire is removed from PCM transmission runs fine.

So the shop is running new wiring and securing it correctly this time and fingers crossed the issue will be no more. They have been in communication with Journeys to ensure everything is done correctly this time around.

There were some other issues found with the work from the previous shop, sounds like it was a real hack job. I'm waiting to get the final report before deciding what to do next in regards to asking for a refund or looking at legal action.
 

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2000 Lifted 4x4 Astro 92 V8-350 Shorty
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Bob got it first... chicken dinner!
Glad to see it was a simple fix
 

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Common Sense + Critical Thinking
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The wiring on the low range switch was not the correct size, and was also not secured properly and has been rubbing on the driveshaft.
WTF, grrr, it's amazing that the original shop could miss something so obvious. Not sure about the wiring size statement but either way, glad the new shop is getting you sorted!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thank you all for your help! We got the van back today and it's running like a dream.

We also spoke with the previous shop and got some money refunded to us. Not enough in my opinion, but enough to take the sting out of shop #2 and move on with our lives.

See ya'll down the road!
 

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Well, I have to give some credit to the old shop for at least refunding part of the cost. It sounds like they were at least honest enough enough to admit their mistake.
It could have turned out to a lot of hassle, to get even less in return.
Rod J
 
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