View Full Version : PRND disappears from the intrument cluster

02-22-2013, 06:09 PM
Every other time I start the truck it goes into limp mode, for some reason there's extremely poor communication between a shifter and the transmission.? Anybody else had this happen before? Any ideas?

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 2

02-22-2013, 06:18 PM
You might try cleaning the transmission connector contacts and/or look to see if its leaking and wicking up to the TCM (Transmission Control Module) under the drivers seat.

You can buy spray electronic contact cleaner at the auto parts store.

02-22-2013, 09:18 PM
I guess I never made the connection lol... It's been leaking for a while I'll try that see if it works thanks!

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 2

02-24-2013, 11:56 PM
Clean the connector up, had lots of oil on it, put it back in there, still no "P" for Park... I would still like to understand where the signal is sent from to the instrument cluster? I would imagine the signal is sent from the shifter lever, but it also could be from the transmission?

The reason I'm asking is because I've already replaced the shifter 6 months ago and it drove fine for 6 months now its doing it again! I know there's a communication problem I just can't narrow it down to where.

And up until a few days ago when the " P" would disappear I could just show it to neutral reverse neutral and back to park and it would go again.... Or i could unplug the shifter and it would seem to reinitialize and the "p" would come back...
Now im stuck, probably need to get the codes cleared again, but really would like to fix it for good.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 2

02-25-2013, 02:44 AM
If the Sprinter is actually shifting, then it's the communication to the Instrument Cluster (IC) display that's at fault.

The Shifter, Transmission control module, Engine Control Module and anti-lock brake controller all talk over a single CAN-C bus twisted pair of wires.
The Instrument Cluster monitors that same pair (SKREEM and Automatic Temperature control are on the same pair)

So there's no "private" connection ... it looks (to me) that the fault is purely in the IC.
I'd start by finding and reseating its connector (but i'd think that dozens of other displays would have gone weird).

What year is your Sprinter?

02-25-2013, 03:03 AM
03 3500..om612.. Im the guy that did the swap into the 2004 f-150.

There is not a part of the sprinter modules and or wiring i havd not seen or studied, or worked on.

The entire motor trans and complete wire harness and all the module's are all grafted to the ford. I am using the cluster too.

I have driven the truck for Bout 20k. With problems about 5k of that. If it went for the electronics everything else is great.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 2

02-25-2013, 03:05 AM
I had a DAD.... Sold it because of all the time i wasted trying to get it to work correctly..... Id rather pay the dealer to let me use the DRB3.holding out for deal on one some day.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 2

02-25-2013, 03:12 AM
Also should tell you its very intermittent... It has worked solid for 4 months, untill yesterday... Now im locked out.

Id get in the truck and start it and the "p" would be there.... Drive to the lumberyard.... Come back out and the "p" is gone. So id shift it back and forth feom rev to neu to drive, after a few times it would pull out of it.

Then all the sudden it stopoed playing that game, its locked. :confused:

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 2

02-25-2013, 03:51 AM
Is there transmission fluid in the TCM (I don't know where you put it - it controls the Transmission)?? I had asked about that earlier. If it's full of oil, you can try to clean it or look to buying a new one (I had heard that they are about $900 each). You may need a DAD (or Dealer) to reset it after cleaning it.

If the Trans connector shaft is leaking, get another one, and change it. It will wick Trans fluid into the TCM and cause problems (you will need to force spray brake cleaner thru the lines to flush it out after you have stopped the leak).

NOTE The TCM is not openable, but where the 2 connectors are, you can flush out the TCM with spray electrical contact cleaner.

See: http://sprinter-source.com/forum/showthread.php?t=19076

Some photos of my TCM (before cleaning)

02-25-2013, 10:59 AM
Thanks for all the responses!

I did check the TCM, dry as a bone. (under ford driver seat) Sounds like the next logical step is to do the connector rebuild. I have been planning on doing it anyways. 50695 this is how wet the connector was.... Literally dripping with fluid. All i did was a quick cleaning and put it back together, as im in the middle of finishing my home remodeling.
Looks like i will be forced to take a break and fix the truck. Its hard to work with out your truck! :-)

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 2

02-25-2013, 11:08 AM
Btw i only have 38k on my motor. Here are some pics of the truck. Did the swap around 4 years ago 50696http://img.tapatalk.com/d/13/02/25/yvema5a6.jpghttp://img.tapatalk.com/d/13/02/25/ynu4e6aj.jpg

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 2

Aqua Puttana
02-25-2013, 12:31 PM
Id get in the truck and start it and the "p" would be there.... Drive to the lumberyard.... Come back out and the "p" is gone. So id shift it back and forth feom rev to neu to drive, after a few times it would pull out of it.

Then all the sudden it stopoed playing that game, its locked. :confused:

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 2
Wouldn't the shifter operating game point to something in that area? Have you checked the connectors around the shifter? Not necessarily just the ones directly connected to it, any others in the area which may get bounced by the movement.

Edit: Could the shifter interlock cable be transmitting movement over to the instrument cluster when the shifter is moved around?

I guess it's safe to you are out of the warranty period. :tongue:

Nice project on the truck. I can't imagine the effort it took. :thumbup::thumbup:


02-25-2013, 12:32 PM
Very cool. Aside from the intermittent problems, how has it been driving? What's your mpg? How is it in 4wd? How does it compare to what you had in there before?
Again, it looks very cool. :rad:

02-25-2013, 03:10 PM
@ aqua the interlock is and always has been removed. The shifter still moves just fine it just won't shift out of second. And if I aggrivate the computer enough it'll go into first gear limp mode which is 20 mile per hour! Lol

I get between 25 and 30 mpg. The gear ratio to match the Sprinter 25 inch tall tires is 4.88. The 4 wheel drive is fully functional. The torque is what makes it happen... it towes my 7500 pound boat just fine. When everything is working correctly it's a great Truck. Sometimes I wish I would have went with a Volkswagen 3.0 or some other around 3 liter motor but all of these motors nowadays are locked up with the EPA computers. You have to be really determined to get around it

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 2

02-25-2013, 03:14 PM
Yes I have check the connectors a lot! I'm currently debating on whether to order another shifter... Thank honestly I'm going to have to take a break from my house and just work on the truck and clean everything up and get all the transmission connector issues taken care of. Then I'll take it to the dealer and read the drb3 and maybe I'll be on the right track.

My whole point to this post was to figure out where the signal actually came from on the instrument cluster and I will be honest I've never checked the plug on the back of the instrument cluster for problems before. But I will check it this time and seems like the signal comes from the network of the can bus not from any direct given place... But if I was to put money on it I would say it's the transmission not communicating with the instrument cluster. I never put 2 and 2 together to check the plug and I knew it was leaking! Always nice to have somebody talk you through your problems lol :-)

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 2

02-28-2013, 02:13 PM
There is an electronic plate inside the transmission just above the valve body. They are notorious for going bad and causing the limp home mode activation. They have been revised about 5 times. I have been involved with this problem in two '99 Mercedes E300's and an '06 E320 CDI. Replacing the electrics plate solved the problem on all 3 cars. Mercedes had programmed the '06 car to set 2 DTC's. This necessitated a trip to Mercedes in 2nd gear to erase the 2nd code. The generic OBD code reader wouldn't do it.

There are some great deals on these original Mercedes plates for about $125.00 on eBay with free shipping.


The part is easy to replace. Remove the pan and filter, remove the electrical socket in the right front corner.The valve body is held on with about 10 bolts. Remove the valve body to your workbench. Remove the plate and install the new plate and transfer the solenoids and reassemble everything.

I want to congratulate you for successfully doing the conversion. I have been involved with Mercedes conversions and know firsthand what you are up against with Mercedes electronics.

02-28-2013, 02:33 PM
Wow... Thats the first ive heard of this... I suspected there was a transmission circuit board for it to communicate on the can-bus. Definitely look into it! Thanks

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 2

02-28-2013, 11:20 PM
On the Mercedes sedans with the 722.6 transmissions from '96 upward there is another module below the quadrant inside the gearshift mechanism. I don't know if one is used on the Sprinter.

Do you have the Mercedes EPC (Electronic Parts Catalog)? I can check My EPC and see if the Sprinter uses the same plate.

Did you get the wiring diagrams from Alldata/DIY?

The trouble codes for the defective electrics plate state that the trouble is the planetary Set RPM sensor. There are notches in the outer edge of the planetary just above the sender in the electrics plate. The signal from the sensor has to agree with the Engine rpm and the car speed and the gear that the transmission is in. If the sender in the electronics plate is defective the TCM puts the transmission in Limp Home Mode.

03-02-2013, 08:31 PM
No, i downloaded the pdf manual for the t1n some time ago. Off the forum like 5 years ago.
Yes the sprint shifter has a SLA module.. I know from my experiences with it the shifter communication is a problem.

the codes are always communication failure . hopefully cleaning and replacing the plate will work.

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 2