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Unread 05-15-2012, 04:49 PM   #1
austonreeves
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3 speed tranny, please help!

So I was driving down the road when I noticed smoke coming from the back of my keep, come to find out it was coming from transmission fluid hitting the exhaust pipe, so I was leaking transmission fluid bad from that little dust cover so I patched it enough to get home.... I finally got the transmission dropped and the seal is still in great shape and my torque converter looks fine.... I don't even know what it might be, I had my transmission rebuilt around november

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Unread 05-15-2012, 10:48 PM   #2
jnicewan
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Something I have seen a few times, and even on my own ZJ was the front seal leaking intermittantly. Seems that sometimes the seals can leak and usually when the trans fluid is nice and hot, and then they will stop leaking when cooled down. Mine did that last summer and the seal looked just fine, I replaced it and hasn't leaked a drop since. Also see if you can verify that the trans cooler is ok and working right and the engine is not getting hot, which both could cause the trans to get hot and cause seals to puke. Other than that see if you can tell or make sure that the trans fluid was not coming out of the vent at the top RH side of the front pump and see if you can see anything on the torque convertor like a pinhole in the weld that could be leaking.
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Unread 05-15-2012, 11:26 PM   #3
LJameson
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It could have been overheating and leaking out of the breather, it's located in the belhousing.
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Unread 05-15-2012, 11:43 PM   #4
austonreeves
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Well I looked all over the place but the only place it was coming from was inside the bell housing, and I rolled the torque converter around and I didn't see any leaks in the welds.. It's got my truly stumped
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Unread 05-16-2012, 12:23 AM   #5
jnicewan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by austonreeves View Post
Well I looked all over the place but the only place it was coming from was inside the bell housing, and I rolled the torque converter around and I didn't see any leaks in the welds.. It's got my truly stumped
I mentioned the vent because its inside the bellhousing too, the vent is a little hole at the top of the pump right beside a pump bolt, its also above the front seal so when it leaks it can make it look like a front seal leak. Its not a good thing if fluid is pissing out of the vent unless it was over filled.

I understand being stumped as I was too. When mine leaked (only when hot) it was pissing a steady stream, then it would not leak when cold. Almost every front seal I ever replaced due to a leaking showed no signs of wear and looked perfectly fine. Its a pretty decent amount of time/labor for just a guess though.
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Unread 05-16-2012, 07:09 AM   #6
austonreeves
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jnicewan

I mentioned the vent because its inside the bellhousing too, the vent is a little hole at the top of the pump right beside a pump bolt, its also above the front seal so when it leaks it can make it look like a front seal leak. Its not a good thing if fluid is pissing out of the vent unless it was over filled.

I understand being stumped as I was too. When mine leaked (only when hot) it was pissing a steady stream, then it would not leak when cold. Almost every front seal I ever replaced due to a leaking showed no signs of wear and looked perfectly fine. Its a pretty decent amount of time/labor for just a guess though.
I see the vent hole and how could you tell If that was leaking? Because my transmission was slipping so I thought it was out
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Unread 05-18-2012, 12:54 AM   #7
austonreeves
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Could one of my lines be kinked or the radiator part of the cooler be clogged?
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Unread 05-19-2012, 02:08 AM   #8
jnicewan
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Looking inside the bell housing, can you tell where the wettest point is? Is it wet or signs of leakage around the pump or up around the vent hole, or is most of the fluid around the input and below. Also if the torque convertor was leaking the entire bellhousing should have been sprayed dow with fluid and the T/C should be slimed with ATF.

A kinked line would be seen on a visual inspection. It can be hard to tell if the cooler is restricted unless you pulled the return line off, started the jeep and put in neutral and let it flow into a container to see if fluid is moving through the lines/cooler. There is a spec on measuring the flow, sorry I dont have that. The cooler line pressure should be around 15psi so it should spray out bad but show a nice flow kind of like an open garden hose.
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Unread 05-19-2012, 11:04 AM   #9
austonreeves
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jnicewan
Looking inside the bell housing, can you tell where the wettest point is? Is it wet or signs of leakage around the pump or up around the vent hole, or is most of the fluid around the input and below. Also if the torque convertor was leaking the entire bellhousing should have been sprayed dow with fluid and the T/C should be slimed with ATF.

A kinked line would be seen on a visual inspection. It can be hard to tell if the cooler is restricted unless you pulled the return line off, started the jeep and put in neutral and let it flow into a container to see if fluid is moving through the lines/cooler. There is a spec on measuring the flow, sorry I dont have that. The cooler line pressure should be around 15psi so it should spray out bad but show a nice flow kind of like an open garden hose.
Well thats the problem... All of it was pretty wet, but when we finally got the transmission dropped it was hard to tell what it was coming from, the only guess I can think would be the seal just randomly going bad or something out of that vent hole, but why would it be doing that? I know it I had to much in it it would over flow but would that cause it to slip too?
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Unread 05-19-2012, 12:52 PM   #10
jeepyj13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by austonreeves

Well thats the problem... All of it was pretty wet, but when we finally got the transmission dropped it was hard to tell what it was coming from, the only guess I can think would be the seal just randomly going bad or something out of that vent hole, but why would it be doing that? I know it I had to much in it it would over flow but would that cause it to slip too?
Yes overfilling will cause slippage in some cases. Never overfill an auto. I did this to my 3sp when I 1st got my yj. I was on roadtrip with my yj when it started leaking all over the place and smoking. It was during the summer too. I drove it back home carefully disconnected one of the trans lines going to radiator, put it in gear just enough to pump some of the excess fluid out. Then I connected lines back check fuid level and I havent had any slipping or trans problems since. It may leaked around the vent and seals.
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Unread 05-19-2012, 04:01 PM   #11
austonreeves
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But if it ran fine for months before that with no added Tranny fluid an then all of a sudden do that going done the road? I swear f I dropped this transmission just because I had too muh in it, I'd be pissed!
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Unread 05-20-2012, 05:02 PM   #12
austonreeves
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Here are the pictures!
Everything looks like it should, that's why I'm stumped, the transmission lines are not clogged, I just shot 125psi of air through them so anything that was in them should have came out, I just don't know
image-447595599.jpg   image-2988689370.jpg   image-3429600517.jpg   image-1690199070.jpg   image-3758942652.jpg  

image-278593970.jpg  
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Unread 05-20-2012, 06:07 PM   #13
jnicewan
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Did you clean that up before the pics? Its hard to tell whats leaking from the pics, I would expect to have seen a puddle somewhere or at least more fluid. Is it wet sround the vent hole, or is it manily around the torque convertor hub and bellhousing? I still think its a front seal but thats my guess. Its not that the trans has to overheat for a seal to fail but hot fluid usually makes a leak worse. I drove my jeep for a couple days with a leaky front seal, it would only leak at the hottest part of the day, not in the morning/evening, when it leaked it was only a small drip or very light stream. I would imagine if the vent was puking it would dump a good amount of fluid suddenly, if the torque convertor was leaking (weld ) it would be a small leak but leak all the time when running.

Things you can consider doing with the trans out is re-routing your vent externally. Best way to do that is pipe thread an elbow on the vent hole, then drill a hole in the bellhousing to run a hose out of. If you do that then you will eliminate one possibilty of a leak from that area.
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Unread 05-20-2012, 07:37 PM   #14
austonreeves
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jnicewan
Did you clean that up before the pics? Its hard to tell whats leaking from the pics, I would expect to have seen a puddle somewhere or at least more fluid. Is it wet sround the vent hole, or is it manily around the torque convertor hub and bellhousing? I still think its a front seal but thats my guess. Its not that the trans has to overheat for a seal to fail but hot fluid usually makes a leak worse. I drove my jeep for a couple days with a leaky front seal, it would only leak at the hottest part of the day, not in the morning/evening, when it leaked it was only a small drip or very light stream. I would imagine if the vent was puking it would dump a good amount of fluid suddenly, if the torque convertor was leaking (weld ) it would be a small leak but leak all the time when running.

Things you can consider doing with the trans out is re-routing your vent externally. Best way to do that is pipe thread an elbow on the vent hole, then drill a hole in the bellhousing to run a hose out of. If you do that then you will eliminate one possibilty of a leak from that area.
I didn't clean anything up, but it sat for a little whole before I got the chance to drop it. It was wet around the vent hole and the seal so I don't know which one it could be so I'm just going to play it safe and change the seal and fill it with the proper amount then see from there
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Unread 05-22-2012, 12:04 PM   #15
austonreeves
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Ok I got the transmission back in with way less fluid then what it did have. Got everything hooked up and of course it didn't have enough to register on the dipstick, so I put half a quart on and still nothing. Looked down no leak.... Let the transmission get hot, put a little more in, just a little was on the dipstick, so I went to the store bought 2 quarts and put those in and it's just right under the minimum mark. Still no leak but it's smoking from the transmission fluid that was on the exhaust. Oh and befor the last quart I put in, I put it in gear and when I would pull down from reverse to drive it would shut the jeep off... Is that just because it had enough fluid to register it and them didn't have enough to make it smooth so it shut it off? It still shifts from park to reverse to drive kinda hard but driving it seems ok, anything to check, any tips?
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