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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So my 03 Dakota has always had a hesitant shift to it even when i first bought it 18 years ago. Sometimes it acts like it doesnt want to go into high gear, but if younlet your foot off the gas and bring RPMs down a bit itll go ahead and shift. What would be the cause of that and how would i fix it? Im not doing fast take offs or anything, but itll be running around 2 grand RPMS at 40 miles an hour, back out a bit and it shifts.
 

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Is that the 42RE?
I am not saying that this is necessarily your issue, but I believe that the 42RE has adjustable bands.
 

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I wouldn't take this as the gospel, but a cursory search took me to this site
which seems to indicate that an '03 Dak with a 3.9 has a "42RH/RE."
I looked in my Haynes (because I can find stuff quicker there than in my FSM) & it does say that the 42RE does have band adjustments.
Again, I am not saying that this is the issue that is affecting your Dak's shifting, but I suppose that if it was me I'd be looking at relatively easy things that I could do first.
(Adjusting bands would be easier than, for instance, putting headers on.)
If you wish, I'll get into my FSM and get you the torque & number of back off turns for the adjustment of your bands. Let me know, & I'll probably watch the end of the Steelers/Chiefs first.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thatd be great. Id definitely give it a shot. Ive got a Haynes manual ill look there too
 

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I am watching TV & typing at the same time, but your Haynes will definitely have the procedure.
I can check in my FSM just to verify that Haynes gives the correct torques and number of back off turns in it.
(FWIW, I did use my Haynes a few years ago to adjust the bands on my 46RE. That was before I got a FSM.)
However, I did just look on Rock at your '03 3.9 & it looks to me like some of them had the 45RE which should be nonadjustable.
I personally do not know how to know which one it would be, but I suppose if you look & find that you don't have the adjustment screw, that would certainly narrow it down.
 

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Per '03 FSM: the 42RE FRONT BAND is adjusted by backing off the locknut 3-5 turns & then torquing the band adjusting screw to 72 INCH lb.s. Then back off front band adjusting screw 3 turns. Hold adjuster screw in position & torque lock nut to 30 FOOT lb.s.

NOTE: these are the applicable torques if the "adapter c-3705" is NOT used to reach the adjusting screw.

42RE REAR BAND
(under the transmission pan): Loosen the lock nut 5-6 turns. Torque the band adjusting screw 72 INCH lb.s. Back off adjusting screw 4 turns. Hold adjusting screw in place and then torque lock nut to 25 FOOT lb.s.

Which all corresponds to what I have in my Haynes, except that Haynes does not include the note related to using the c-3705 adapter tool.

However, this FSM is kind of like a new toy for me & I was not/am not aware what all is in it. While looking for band adjustments, I found a troubleshooting section which may be applicable to your issue. Give me quite a few minutes & I'll try to condense what might be applicable to you.

ON EDIT: I just reread the Haynes & the FSM, & the FSM says to torque the lock nut for the front band to 30 foot lb. & the lock nut for the rear band to 25 foot lb. My Haynes has that reversed. I don't think it would make any difference, actually, but next time I do it I'll torque per the FSM.
 

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Okay from the '03 FSM re 42RE:
"shifts delayed or erratic (shifts also harsh at times)"
(I MAY paraphrase some of this)
1)transmission fluid level low or high
2)filter clogged
3)throttle linkage misadjusted
4)throttle linkage binding
5)gearshift linkage/cable misadjusted.
6)clutch or servo failure
7)governor circuit electrical fault
8)front band misadjusted
9)pump suction passage leak

"No 3-4 upshift"
o/d switch in OFF.
Overdrive fuse blown
O/D wire shorted/open
distance or coolant sensor malfunction
TPS malfunction
neutral snse to PCM wire shorted/cut
PCM malfunction
overdrive solenoid shorted/open
solenoid feed orifice in valve body blocked
overdrive clutch failed
hydraulic pressure low
valve body valve stuck
O/D piston incorrect spacer
Overdrive piston seal failure
O/D check valve/orifice failed

"Delayed 3-4 upshift
(slow to engage)"

fluid level low
throttle valve cable misadjusted
Overdrive clutch pack worn/burnt
TPS faulty
Overdrive clutch bleed orifice plugged
Overdrive solenoid or wiring shorted/open
Overdrive excess clearance
O/D check valve missing or stuck
 

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Am I correct in assuming that this is only your 3-4 shift?
Going into 4th at 40 mph doesn't actually sound horrible. Sometimes mine can be a little slow getting into 4th. I'll maybe check it out tomorrow & see what it actually does getting into 4. (Although mine is a 360/46RE.)
 

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I just did an edit to my previous post re adjusting the bands, and although it is nothing earthshaking, it is worth being aware of, so this was my edit:

ON EDIT: I just reread the Haynes & the FSM, & the FSM says to torque the lock nut for the front band to 30 foot lb. & the lock nut for the rear band to 25 foot lb. My Haynes has that reversed. I don't think it would make any difference, actually, but next time I do it I'll torque per the FSM.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Am I correct in assuming that this is only your 3-4 shift?
Going into 4th at 40 mph doesn't actually sound horrible. Sometimes mine can be a little slow getting into 4th. I'll maybe check it out tomorrow & see what it actually does getting into 4. (Although mine is a 360/46RE.)
Yeah its slow going into 4th, ifni let off the gas a bit it will usually shift smooth. I did checl the TPS today and it was a little low on its voltage output, so i replaced it and it seemed to help a little, but ill do more testing on that. As for the rest, i did a trans service 11,000 miles ago give or take. And theres no codes for the light to come on.
 

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Where did you get your fsm?
I watched ebay for a while until a full set came up for what I felt was a good price. (I prefer paper.) Here's what's up there right now:


Ralph P. prefers disc, and he has posted this link a few times:

Bishko Books, Repair Manuals, Owners Manuals, Parts Books & Sales Brochures (autobooksbishko.com)
 

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I took my Dak out for a spin this afternoon & I was trying to pay particular attention to the 3-4 shift. I cannot tell you precisely at what speed it normally happens, as to save some $ I bought tires that are a higher profile than OEM, but with a real soft foot (which I rarely use) it goes 3-4 between 1500 & 2000 (probably closer to 2000) RPMs and probably nearly 40 mph. I do not have to diddle with the gas pedal to get it to shift.

But still, what you are describing with yours doesn't sound to me really horrible. However, adjusting the bands (particularly the front band) would be an easy thing to do.

Out of curiosity, if you just put your foot into it (even moderately) & let it go on its own, at what speed/RPM does it do 3-4?
 

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The FSM does cite a misadjusted throttle valve cable as #2, after low fluid level, for delayed 3-4 shift; looks like it is easy to check & adjust (if necessary).
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
The FSM does cite a misadjusted throttle valve cable as #2, after low fluid level, for delayed 3-4 shift; looks like it is easy to check & adjust (if necessary).
Ill check it out tomorrow, Ill be off, so can crawl up under there
 

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There's probably some you-tubes out there for this, but from the book (with paraphrasing), to check: turn key to off/remove aircleaner/verify that lever on TB is at curb idle then verify that transmission throttle lever is also at idle (full fwd) position (so I guess you will have to get under it after all)/slide cable off attachment stud on TB lever/cable end & attachment stud should be aligned (or centered on one another) within 1 mm (0.039 inch) in either direction.
 
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