View Full Version : Torque Converter Lock up/ Trany issues

02-14-2016, 10:13 AM
I'm just wondering, just when does the torque converter "lock up"?

It's been cold here, 12' F. I've kind of noticed it before.

Seems to happen on the First, to Second gear shift. After the first couple of shifts, from a dead stop,it seems to run up to, about 2,100 RPM, then drop to 1,900 RPM, then drop to 1,300- 1,600 rpm. Is the drop from 2,100 to 1,900 RPM is the torque converter "locking up"?,,,,or I do have trany problems?

I ask, because, well, I think I have trany issues.

Six months or so, ago, when getting on the freeway, I wasn't sure if I had a slipping trany or some funky downshift.

You know, roll around the turn easy,,, then hammer down!

A couple of weeks ago, I was cruising along at 35 MPH, then had to give it throttle, to go up a steep hill.

You know, go, slip, go, slip, go, slip,,,,,,downshift,,,,,scream up the hill!

Nope, the trany is slipping!!


THIRD BLEEPING :yell:TRUCK, in a row, with trany issues!

So, now, WHAT do you all propose?

Drive it, till dies?

(Just what does a M-B trany cost to rebuild / replace/ re ---whatever!!)

I want to, but I won't, say what the M-B parts guys say about the wiring harness.

New filter?

Flush it?

Some adjustment, that I don't know about?

This is "my baby", it's my daily driver, I don't have another, (well, not really, sort of, don't want to go there),,,,,Oh, it has a bleeping loan it!

02-14-2016, 02:52 PM
A response!
You are a Lecky right?
Time Served/ Trained I hope!
Picture on your avatar suggests houshold or Industrial! (''Si o Non Senor'!):thumbup:

So your business is fixing /installing electrical "stuff"!--Core business electrical work! Yes?
Small busines owner like me, do you have employees?
I do, some drive me effing crazy some days!

As a small business and van I bet you would say this van is vital to your business. Right!

Basically No Van No Business.
Now as a small busines owner are you reserving 7% of your job tickets for van support new van aquisitiion and a further 3% minimum for a rainy day funds! In short emergencies!
If you are not! Why not may I ask?!

If so, then you are ignoring the tenents of running a small business-- (Well any business really!) Even ones like mine 6 Mechs (4 Yankee Anglos/ 2 Latino Mexs) and a 9 bay shop.

This reserving of funds, is need I mention it, a vital part of successful small business operation. Vital element of training and degree syllabus course material like an MBA in small business! (Any way I digress but its important)

Now going back to your van and the inquiry!
Would it not be better to present your van to a Sprinter Specialist who could with a PROPER scanner interrogate the transmssion and determine if the lock up clutch features are in fact working as they should?
Its a bit of a hit and miss to evalute your van without the appropriate tools like a scanner to find the fault if any exist in the mecanical side or the automation controls!. (But then you should know that in your business too with automation !)

Taking it to a shop with experts will have you back on the road in the hopefully shortest time possible and you can get back to doing things "Sparkywise" earning and developing your business by mangaing it and not grovelling under it (van) trying to find a fix!

Really its the same as me!
The other my 14 ft overhead door lift motor wasn't working. Customer's van trapped inside the shop
Decision time!
Do I try to DIY fix it or call in a professional lecky?
The decision was clear!After doing some prelims like fuses, switches etc boiled down I simply don't have time to pi$$ about with the lift motors!
Call an electrician proficient with door lift gear!
Two hours later I have a bay door opening and closing and hoist availability which is a big earner when fixing cars!
In short cash flow the other vital element of small business

I have customers wanting stuff fixed probably just like you, and besides industrial lecky work is not my core business in my case, unless its Prius stuff with 300V DC buzzing about under the hood!

So to sum up if you want to know how the transmission works why not download something from MB workshop (WIS) sites at about $35/hour.
Giving a tutorial on this forum would give me writers cramp quite frarkly !
Just like you explaining how a "traveller" works in your living room or basement threatre with mood lighting etc etc!
All the best and remember successful companies big or small concentrate on their core business activities and customer development. But then you know that surely!:thumbup:
Small business owner and employer for 25 years in the USA:thumbup:
No place like it, the USA for for doing business! Its the best!

Rob S
02-14-2016, 03:22 PM
Year of unit and mileage would be very helpful.....

My 2008 Navion/2007 Dodge needed rebuild at 90k, cost me $4500 Can.

Definitely if you have access to MB shop nearby, they have the tools to perform intelligent diagnosis.....

Could be just low fluid - any evidence of leakage at all? No dipstick, so need service facility to check.

If not done in last 40-60k miles, have it serviced, ie fluids and filter changed, including torque converter drain by trans facility that knows sprinters, and check how much metal particles in it? maybe $200-300

If this does not resolve, then check for cost of Silverstar exchange tranny maybe $3000, local shop to install.

ps I see your profile lists a 2011 with 270k, so ya, it might benefit from a full servicing, or it might be on its last legs, hard to say.

02-16-2016, 05:44 AM
response: to Lindenengineering, (Dennis, I believe?)

I bet that, walking in, I would say "I'm paying for the granite floor". (Joking)

Yep, you guessed correctly, I'm a State of Ohio, license electrical contractor. And yep, no van, NO WORK.

Had a former co-worker / now fellow contractor tell me: "You don't pay me for what I DO, you pay me for what I KNOW!". I try to remember that.

To save some space: http://sprinter-source.com/forum/showthread.php?t=45394

I'm hearing you (Well, at least, somewhat).

The closest I have come to doing a transmission, is watching the Chevy's go back together, the second time. That's as close as want to come to that, on my daily driver. The "project" in the garage, that's a different story.

No manual. none at the discount stores. Have sort of/ not really, looked on eBay. Seem to be computerized, but I don't want NO :yell: PDF of a paper manual!

I have found the "M-B Guide to the 2009 Sprinter" online. That helped a lot. (But not enough, to want to THINK about working on it)

"some funky" tools needed? What is that, a 20 point bolt on the serpentine belt tensioner? AND X-ray vision, to see in there. And just how does that water pump belt come off?

Can-bus? I have a rude understanding of it. Knowing what I know,,, ain't touching it! It's a "little" bit past shoving a paper clip in & making the check engine light flash.

So far, the only things I've done are several sets of headlights & install some LED lights in the back.

So far, fixed at the dealer:

engine oil cooler leak(with in a week of purchase),,,,,,,I could have done it in FAR less time, than 3 weeks.....But I had "the old beater" to drive. "They" had some worker issues,,,,,but still.

Service A...."$200 for an oil change!!" (Service A=$300),,,,, for $35,, I'll sit on butt & eat pop corn! While there, I asked about the transmission. Like, "Could you check the fluid & tell me what it looks like". I got a blank stare, in return. I almost said, " I can buy a dipstick & 3 to 5 break off caps, on eBay, for $25". I was asking for fluid check. I wasn't asking for a free be.

I got a "brake wear" indicator.,,,,,, Well, Service B rolled around. Had them do the brakes, while I was there.

I had been planing on doing the brakes myself, it just got to be "get them done".

As a kid, I couldn't afford to fix them. Now, if I'm going to be at home, with no wheels for two / four days, I might as well do it myself.


Back on topic:

I kind of asked two questions.

The first should have been: "Does the torque converter lock up, at the end of first gear?"

The second was, kind of, "It's somewhat slipping, what should I do?"

(Can it be "saved"?

(M-B says a filter at 40K, so mine SHOULD have been at 240K, but no one knows.)

To:Rob S,

That was kind of the answer, that I was looking for.

WOW, just wow! $3,500! (Giving a US to Canadian exchange), just WOW!

I had a '95 Chevy done for $1,100 with Kevlar clutches & a couple of HD parts. I took it to him at 1: pm, had it back 11: am, next day. The '93 Ford was something like $1,400? (new starter, Heli-coils, too). Took it to the mechanic (too tall, for the re-builders lift) at 3: pm,who pulled it, took to the re-builder, had it back at 10:am, the next day. FAST, CHEAP!!..... But both had "electrical issues". The Chevy, the second time cost $200 / labor & $4-500 in "hard parts", they put the "old" clutches back in!

(Yep, I the Chevy done, it "blew up", took it to a different guy to have it redone, then took the Ford back to the FIRST guy!))

The dealer has told me that a Filter & (what, 3 quarts of oil?), is $300. "They" DON'T do the torque converter (something like, 8 quarts). They do have "someone" come in, to flush, for $800 (filter?).

My concern with either one, is that the :yell: thing goes out a week later.

$800 is a nice chunk, towards a rebuild.

Perhaps, I should start looking for a M-B re-builder,,,, Sigh.

07-23-2016, 11:39 PM
A "thread, from the dead", it's my post!!

Two trips ago, to the dealer (mechanic),,

I said a "Check Engine Light, Glow Plug Light, Air Bag Light, & a Pain in the REAR!!!!, Seat Belt Light!


Bad EGR Valve

Bad NoX (both) Sensors

Five Bad Glow Plugs

Bad Glow Plug Relay(DUH!)

Bad Passenger Air Bag

Bad Driver Seat Belt Buckle switch

I opted for EGR Valve & NOx sensors. ($490,,, for a "factory reconditioned" part,,,,,, Anyone,,,,,,,,, ANYONE???????

A small fortune latter,



Last trip,, a Fluid / Filter / Torque Converter Drain,,,,,, It changed,,,, I've hit 3,800 RPM a couple of times!!

07-24-2016, 04:24 AM
Regarding torque converter lockup: Although Dr. A (Sprinter Guru) says the T1N torque converters don't lock up, my 06 van, when driven with a light throttle up a slight grade from a stop sure feels like it does. After the 1 to 2 shift, with RPMs a littile over 2000, it will increse RPMs with the speed, then with no change in throttle pressure, vehicle speed will stay the same and RPMs will drop by about 300-400. Very repeatable event, warmed up, same road, same load, same driver mostly watching the girls strutting their stuff in their skimpy summer do, on the sidewalks of our little left leaning ex hippie town.


10-10-2016, 04:35 AM
Regarding torque converter lockup: ................mostly watching the girls strutting their stuff in their skimpy summer do, on the sidewalks ................ .


You're trying to tell me, that you notice truck issues, while doing this?:clapping::clapping:

Hell, I'm just trying not to wreck!