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Forums > > Transmission wont go into drive when cold
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  #1  
Old 12-13-2009, 04:47 PM
andya
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Default Transmission wont go into drive when cold

2003 Nissan Altima 2.5 SL. On cold mornings I can back out of parking space fine, but when I put it in drive, nothing happens. It acts like it is in Neutral. I can rev the engine and let it warm up some, then it jumps in gear and works fine after that. Jumped me onto a curb the first time it happened. (2 days ago). Any suggestions?
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  #2  
Old 12-14-2009, 02:41 AM
joseibarra joseibarra is offline
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It will not resolve your issue, but how cold is cold where you and the vehicle are?
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Old 12-14-2009, 10:51 AM
andya
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It was about 38 degrees outside when it happened.
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Old 12-16-2009, 03:13 PM
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d0ugmac1 d0ugmac1 is offline
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How's the fluid level?
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  #5  
Old 12-17-2009, 06:25 PM
1998NAltima
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1998 Altima (250,000 miles and still going strong)

I am having the same problem. It was working fine until I took it in and had the transmission fluid flushed. Now there is a long delay going into drive, but only when cold. Also, when cold, the jump from Park to Drive is a rather strong jolt.
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  #6  
Old 02-09-2011, 09:01 PM
jmcs23 jmcs23 is offline
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Sorry to bring up such an old thread. But I have a 2003 that does this sometimes too...

Did you guys ever figure out what was wrong?

Thanks!
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Old 04-19-2012, 12:38 PM
napalm napalm is offline
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any answers to any of these questions. I've seen 3 threads with the exact same questions

I inherited a 2001 altima with my fiance. it started doing this 2 days ago after a radiator swap. I didn't do the radiator swap and perhaps I should have.

I'm thinking a fluid swap would help but I am leary of a 200K miles AT that I don't know the MX history of
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Old 04-19-2012, 12:48 PM
jmcs23 jmcs23 is offline
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My 2003 had this problem for a few months. My fluid level was always OK and it would only do it when cold.

Eventually while driving one afternoon, I came to a stop light. When they light turned green, I throttled to go and I wasn't going anywhere! They RPMs were climbing but the car was going nowhere. I was basically slipping all the way through first gear into second.

I limped home and then had my car towed to the dealership. They told me the transmission needed to be replaced and wanted something like $3400 to do it. So I had the car towed to a transmission shop.

The transmission shop took it apart and found that some of the 'planetary gears' needed to be replaced. They re-built the transmission for $2400.

I haven't had the problem going into DRIVE ever since the re-build. But, my transmission is starting to shift kind of hard from 1st to 2nd when driving slowly. The weird thing is, if I drive faster or more aggressively the hard shift from 1st to 2nd isn't there. It only happens when driving slowly like in a parking lot for example.

I will probably call the transmission shop that did the rebuild to have them take a look since it' still under their warranty.
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Old 07-18-2015, 11:02 AM
KJM KJM is offline
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Hello. I have a 2001 Nissan Altima, 163K miles, with the EXACT same problem. Did not go into drive, but would go into reverse, in the morning when cold, and started happening more frequently, but once in gear it ran fine. Changing the trans fluid was a temporary solution, but it started not going into drive again in the mornings. Upon further research, I narrowed my focus to the transmission line pressure solenoid valve that is known to get clogged with debris, and changing fluid alone is not enough to clean it out. The solenoid is accessible by dropping the transmission fluid pan, and as it turns out, there are two small holes of the side of the solenoid. I sprayed carborator cleaner into each hole on the side of the solenoid and black debris poured out for a few seconds and then the carborator cleaner flowed clear. This was a simple fix and has completely solved the problem. A few squirts of carborator cleaner and a transmission fluid change solved the issue - it now goes into gear immediately, and at all temperatures. No need for a new transmission like most of the mechanics were telling me. I hope this helps others who have the same problem.
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