My auto transmission shift erratically unless I am gassing on it and then it shifts perfectly,.

My auto transmission shifts erratically until I gas on it and then it shifts perfectly properly

My car has 183000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Experienced mechanics share their insights in answering this question :
What you are describing is often a sign of low transmission fluid or a faulty transmission control solenoid. As you know, automatic transmissions use pressurized hydraulic fluid to change gears. Every time a gear change is required, the car’s computer activates a transmission solenoid, which directs transmission fluid into the valve body to engage the correct gear. When this is faulty or not working properly, this can cause a delay in gear shifting or in some cases cause the car to not shift at all. This type of problem is amplified any time the transmission is low on fluid creating a drop in hydraulic pressure. I would recommend having a professional from YourMechanic come to your location to diagnose and inspect your vehicle.

How to Identify and Fix Common car Problems ?

Our sources include academic articles, blog posts, and personal essays from experienced mechanics :

Typically this is caused by either a sticking internal valve in the transmission, or it may be the vacuum module for the transmission. Most of the time this is caused by an internal transmission issue. If the engine is running fine and is producing the correct sensor signals then the transmission is the problem.
Slipping, rough shifting, and delayed engagement troubles are often due to poor condition or lack of transmission fluid; that`s why it is so important to have the condition of your fluid checked and flushed every 30,000 – 50,000 miles.
A couple of possibilities could be a vacuum leak. If the engine is sucking in too much air, it could raise the engine speed, possibly drastically if a ;large vacuum leak suddenly occurred, such as the brake vacuum booster line breaking or coming loose. Another possibility could be in the throttle control.
Unlike a normal gearchange, in a powershift the driver does not let off the accelerator (unlike speed-shifting, where the throttle is let off very quickly, simultaneously depressing the clutch and shifting into the next gear, rapidly).
This includes speed sensors that tell your transmission how and when to change gears. If your speed sensor is sending incorrect data, it can lead to hard shifting and other drivability problems.
All you have to do is add a bottle of Transmission Treatment & Leak Stopper. It`s specially designed to smooth rough shifting. As you might guess from the “leak stopper” part, Tranny Honey stops transmission leaks, so low fluid levels should no longer be a problem.
One of the most common issues is gear slippage. This occurs because the TCM is not giving the correct commands to shift, which can cause sudden shifting or not shifting at all. Another common symptom is failure to accelerate as usual. If your vehicle cannot change gears correctly, your car`s acceleration will suffer.
In case of a bad ground strap any surge in or drop in power, will have the current struggling to find ground, and cause it to find a direct path wreaking damage to the transmission cables and other parts in the transmission system.
What is the fix for a slipping transmission? It`s simple. Just pop the hood of your vehicle, locate the transmission switch, and change the setting from “SLIP” to “STABLE” . . . If only it were that easy.
The brakes don`t care. And the engine and transmission think they`re working to move the car, so they don`t care. Tom: But if you do it for a much longer time, you might damage the automatic transmission`s torque converter.
Potential Vehicle Damage

You will wear out your brakes much quicker When driving in neutral, drivers become reliant on the mechanical brakes due to the engine brakes disengaging. This can wear out the mechanical brakes much quicker.

If your accelerator were to stick it would most likely be caused by a floor mat or other object getting jammed under the gas pedal. This could obviously be avoided by keeping your vehicle clear of clutter and making sure floor mats are properly fixed in place.
Ghost shifting is when you are pedaling along, and your bike shifts by itself without you shifting. It can really slow you down when this happens. Your first thought is that something just broke. Read on to find out how I fixed my ghost shift problem.
When changing gear, take your foot off the accelerator and press down on the clutch completely before switching to another gear. Changing the gear correctly will ensure that your car stays healthy. Listening to the engine while driving will enable you to understand the car when it needs a gear change.
If your car has an automatic transmission, the shift solenoid will shift the gears for you. The transmission control unit will take the information from the engine and speed sensors along with other parts of your vehicle to then decide when to shift gears for power and fuel efficiency.
But a blown fuse No. 38 becomes a likely candidate causing a loss of power to the transmission solenoids.
Improper Or Harsh Shifting

When there`s no speed signal coming from the sensors, shifting of gears will be a problem because the powertrain control module won`t control them correctly. This will make the transmission not work properly. It will either shift more quickly or roughly than expected.

MAP – The Manifold Absolute Pressure sensor creates a signal based on vacuum levels in the intake manifold, which indicates engine load. A faulty MAP sensor can cause late, harsh shifts, early / soft shifts, or even prevent the transmission from shifting at all.
Synthetic Multi-Vehicle ATF

Lucas Oil Multi-Vehicle ATF provides today`s transmission with excellent oxidation stability, foam resistance, rust and corrosion inhibition properties, wear protection and heat resistance while providing smooth shifting and eliminating chatter.

Release the clutch slowly and gently press on the accelerator. After you`ve moved the gear shift into the gear that you want, slowly release your left foot from the clutch as you gently apply pressure to the accelerator pedal. With practice, you will feel the engine change gears smoothly.
Yes, you can tune an automatic car. – Tuning is not as accurate without diagnostic software and tools like those used by professional tunists. The reason that we recommend a professional tunist is that the more you play around with your engine, the greater chance that something will break.
Any time a battery is disconnected, or in your case a transmission is replaced, it can take up to 90 days for the engine and transmission computer to relearn your driving habits. It`s normal for an automatic transmission not to shift into higher gears until the engine coolant temperature is at a specified temperature.
The TCM fuse is in the main fuse block and is probably 10 amps. If the fuse is blown, that is confirmation but the faulty fuse means there is a short circuit in the TCM and/or wiring that would have to be traced and repaired.
Long story short, an OBD-II scanner can provide insight into your vehicle`s computer, such as the engine, transmission and other vital systems.

Relevant Questions and Answers :

the most relevant questions and answers related to your specific issue

My auto transmission shift erratically unless I am gassing on it and then it shifts perfectly,.
ANSWER : What you are describing is often a sign of low transmission fluid or a faulty transmission control solenoid. As you know, automatic transmissions use pressurized hydraulic fluid to change gears. Every time a gear change is required, the car’s computer activates a transmission solenoid, which directs transmission fluid into the valve body to engage the correct gear. When this is faulty or not working properly, this can cause a delay in gear shifting or in some cases cause the car to not shift at all. This type of problem is amplified any time the transmission is low on fluid creating a drop in hydraulic pressure. I would recommend having a professional from YourMechanic come to your location to diagnose and inspect your vehicle.

Won’t shift out of first unless you let go of gas but it will shift back down and never grab second
ANSWER : If you have all the drive shafts in the front and rear, then you will damage the transfer case or one of the axles if you drive the vehicle and engage the front end. The two different gear ratios will do this. As far as the transmission goes, you have a problem with the governor inside the transmission and may have bad second gear parts. Have a mechanic pressure test the transmission and diagnose the shifting issue for you.

07 charger v6 wont move, like its in limp mode, will shift solenoid fix this? wont move in reverse. thinking shift solenoid, help.
ANSWER : The check engine light could mean diagnostic codes related to the transmission failure are available. If you request a check engine light diagnostic a mechanic could see if relevant codes have set and narrow the diagnostic for you. Check to be sure that there is adequate fluid. Check to be sure that the manual lever (shift lever) on the transmission reaches the correct position when you select "D" or "R". If you can’t move in any gear, the problem is not likely to be the solenoids because failure of the solenoids will still allow operation in "some" gears, if the gear is manually selected. If the solenoids failed, such would also result in a code being output because the TCM performs continuous circuit integrity testing on the solenoids. You can test that part separately in any event. There is a 164 page repair manual, with all the diagnostics, that you can use to pinpoint and repair the issue. However, if you just want a diagnostic, you can request a transmission diagnostic – failure to shift and the responding certified mechanic will pinpoint the issue. If you have further questions or concerns, do not hesitate to re-contact YourMechanic as we are always here to help you.

Transmission issues, rough shifting and noise
ANSWER : Many different faults can cause the vehicle to shift roughly. The most common would be low fluid level in the transmission, transmission mounts, the torque converter, or one of the shift solenoids. If you’d like to get this checked before moving forward with a repair, a qualified technician, such as one from YourMechanic, will be able to diagnose your shifting issue and perform any repairs required.

auto transmission leak,when cold would take long time to shift down and then fine, suddenly leak from around bottom bell housing
ANSWER : The transmission cooler lines go into the radiator to keep the transmission fluid cooled. It may be possible that the engine radiator leak has caused the transmission to get hot and now the transmission front pump seal or front shaft seal is leaking.

The transmission would need to be taken out and overhauled since you were already having shifting issues anyway. Make sure to replace the radiator also, or it may damage the engine and transmission. Sealer is only supposed to be used until a repair can be made and will have to be flushed out of the engine at the same time. If you want to have this checked out, a certified mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, can come to your home or office to diagnose and repair your transmission fluid leak.

Kia Optima 2004 v6 LX new engine old transmission no problems before with transmission now my transmission is shifting a high rpm
ANSWER : Hi There,
This may be an issue related to the communication of the PCM and the TCM (Transmission control module). As you may know, the TCM relies on the PCM to transmit information related to RPM’s, which the TCM then uses to determine when to direct the transmission to shift. The transmission control module has various sensors such as vehicle speed sensors, wheel speed sensors, throttle position sensors, turbine speed sensor, and transmission fluid temperature sensors that all direct information to it in order for it to perform it’s function. Other functions controlled by the TCM are components such as a kick down switch, traction control system, and cruise control module. Any of these may also affect the way the transmission control module performs and controls the transmission and the shifting of your vehicle. I would suggest having a professional from Your Mechanic come to your location to properly diagnose your transmission problem.

Transmission intermittently won’t shift to next gear
ANSWER : It is very possible that the transmission may require a full rebuild or a replacement in order for it to perform properly. Although you are able to shift into other gears, if certain gears are not working correctly, transmission damage may be the cause.

If the transmission has already been diagnosed by the dealer that it needs replacement and the transmission is still not shifting properly, it is unlikely that the transmission will get any better without replacement.

It does not hurt to attempt any reset procedure that may be available, but it is also unlikely that a reset of any kind will resolve transmission issues. Small things to check before replacing the transmission if possible would be the fluid level and any trouble codes that may have been stored due to the issue your transmission is causing.

If any codes exist, this may lead you to other possible parts inside the transmission that may be able to be replaced and have your transmission working again as it should. You can get a second opinion from an local expert, such as one from YourMechanic, in order to diagnose your shifting problem and advise you on the next steps.

Car won’t shift into second and has transmission fluid leaking. Transmission is a 200R4.
ANSWER : Hello, this sounds like a problem with the governor, perhaps the governor spring to be specific. If the spring breaks, it will not allow the 1-2 shift. The fluid leak is likely not a big deal on its own – leaking pan gasket or seal.

As to whether the transmission needs to be rebuilt or replaced, that is dependent on whether clutches are slipping, or shifts "solid", proper functioning of up-shifting (clearly a problem there), and downshifting, etc. I would recommend having a reputable transmission shop run full diagnostics to determine if a major overhaul/replacement is in order.

If you’d like a second opinion on this, have one of our mobile technicians properly diagnose your shifting issue firsthand.