Radiator failed, contaminated 545RFE - JeepForum.com
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 3 Old 09-22-2012, 02:49 AM Thread Starter
Registered User
1982 CJ7 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Sultan
Posts: 11
Radiator failed, contaminated 545RFE

I have a 2005 WK w/ the 5.7L and a month or so ago the Jeep went into limp mode and spewed transmission fluid out the filler/dipstick tube. We finally took it to get the codes and whatnot read today to find out that the radiator failed and contaminated the transmission with water.

The shop is quoting ~$4000 to do the entire job. I'm thinking I can pull the transmission and take that to someone to be rebuilt. I've heard these transmissions are pretty tough and an experienced rebuilder should be able to rebuild it.

Does anyone else have any experience with this issue? Should I just look for another transmission? I can find them locally via car-part.com for about $1000-1200.

Jagged is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 3 Old 09-22-2012, 05:54 AM
Registered User
kentman's Avatar
2006 XK Commander 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Wilmington, NC
Posts: 1,438
That really sucks. I guess that you really need to make sure that the radiator is fine and replace at any sign of problems. Checking fluid levels and color regularly is the best chance that you have to prevent the issue. The alternative is to mount a transmission cooler outside of the radiator rather than integrated.

You are the first person that I have ever heard that had this issue.

Regarding fixing it, I would have tried flushing the fluid. If the transmission is already toast, then you have no choice but to replace it and the radiator. If it were me, I would do the radiator myself and have the vehicle then towed to a transmission shop other than the dealer to have the transmission replaced. That could cut your costs in half. You could also try to source a used or aftermarket rebuild that may save you more cash.

I killed the transmission on my ZJ. A local shop gave me a lifetime warranty for the same price as the dealer, which was way better than what the dealer was offering. The shop had me return once per year for free service to keep the warranty active. I got 140K miles on the new transmission before selling the ZJ to my brother. It is still good 13 years later.

'06 XK Limited, 5.7L, QD II, Black, 170K
'02 WJ Overland, 4.7L HO, QD, Inferno Red, 130K
kentman is offline  
post #3 of 3 Old 09-23-2012, 02:25 PM Thread Starter
Registered User
1982 CJ7 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Sultan
Posts: 11
Yeah, I'm actually going to do most of the work myself. I'm going to drop the transmission and take it over to a well respected shop my neighbor told me about.

I think it's just a sign that I'm supposed to dig into this Jeep and build it up a bit. I really do like the vehicle aside from all the issues it's had so far.

Jagged is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the JeepForum.com forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid e-mail address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Jeep Forums Replies Last Post
Anyone with an 05 & 545RFE yzjwk WK Grand Cherokee & XK Commander Forum 16 04-03-2012 03:02 PM
Possible WJ 545RFE Issue? WiCkeDuDe ZJ Grand Cherokee Forum 3 10-26-2009 09:08 PM
545RFE-Any changes? Dieseljoe WK Grand Cherokee & XK Commander Forum 4 04-11-2008 09:45 AM
Rear diff contaminated Dylan76 ZJ Grand Cherokee Forum 15 04-05-2006 09:22 PM
545RFE-Is it any good? Dieseljoe ZJ Grand Cherokee Forum 6 10-25-2005 08:40 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome