Transmission Torque Converter Clutch Solenoid

►  What is a Torque Converter Clutch Solenoid?
►  What Does a Torque Converter Clutch Solenoid do?
►  Symptoms of a Failed Torque Converter Clutch Solenoid
►  Torque Converter Clutch Solenoid Replacement and Cost

Transmission Torque Converter Clutch (TCC) Solenoid: DESCRIPTION

Positioned between the rear of the engine and the front of the transmission is the torque converter.  The torque converter is responsible for transmitting the engine's torque and power to the transmission. To prevent slipping at certain speeds (normally speeds exceeding 37 mph) a lockup clutch located inside the converter locks the engine's output drive to the transmission's input shaft to achieve a 1:1 ratio - meaning 100% of the engine's power is now reaching the transmission.

The fluid pressure that applies and releases the torque converter lockup clutch is controlled by the torque converter clutch solenoid.  The opening and closing of the TCC solenoid valve is controlled by the transmission control module (TCM) or powertrain control module (PCM), depending on the vehicle.  

Faulty Transmission Torque Converter Clutch Solenoid: SYMPTOMS
Failed in the Closed Position

With respect to drivability and performance, a malfunctioning torque converter clutch solenoid (one that fails in the closed position) may not be noticeable.  However, if you pay close attention to your gas mileage, you will see an increase in fuel consumption because the engine and transmission are not locking up at highway speeds because the faulty solenoid.  Thus, you have slipping, which causes the engine to work harder.  The harder the engine works the more fuel it consumes.  Slipping also generates heat.  Any time a transmission overheats, some internal damage occurs.  

TCC Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTC)

A faulty torque converter clutch solenoid normally sets a Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC), which causes the Check Engine Light to come on.

A faulty torque converter clutch solenoid will normally set diagnostic trouble code P0740.

Faulty Transmission Torque Converter Clutch Solenoid:
SYMPTOMS - Failed in the Open Position

The symptoms are different a torque converter clutch solenoid that fails in the open position... The symptoms of a torque converter clutch solenoid that fails while in the open position are quite different from a solenoid that fails in the closed position, as described above. When the solenoid is open, the engine is locked to the transmission so there is no transmission slip. With the transmission unable to slip, the engine will stall when the vehicle comes to a stop.

This type of solenoid failure will set a Diagnostic Trouble Code causing the Check Engine Light to illuminate. The same Diagnostic Trouble Codes listed above apply.

Torque Converter Clutch Solenoid: REPLACEMENT COST

The cost to replace a failed transmission torque converter clutch solenoid is determined, in part, by the vehicle year, make and model. Other factors, such as where the work is done (whether at a local auto repair shop, car dealership or you do-it-yourself) also factors heavily into the cost of repair. If you choose to replace the solenoid yourself, the parts supplier you purchase the solenoid from will factor into your total repair.

Below are costs for replacing the transmission torque converter clutch solenoid in four different vehicles. You can use these costs as a guide in estimating your cost.

DIY costs assume transmission fluid is reused. Replacing the fluid with new ATF increases the cost.  ATF costs between $5 and $10 per quart. You will need between 3 and 5 quarts.

Fail Safe (or Limp Mode)

A failed transmission solenoid or an open circuit anywhere in the electrical system may cause the transmission to go into Fail Safe (or "limp" mode as it is also called) in order to protect the transmission from internal damage that might be caused by the faulty solenoid or open circuit.  In fail safe/limp mode, the transmission will have limited functionality and will lock in either 2nd. or 3rd. gear.  When the transmission is in fail safe mode, the vehicle should only be drive home or to the repair shop.  Maximum speed while in limp mode is around 30 mph.

Continuing to drive the vehicle with the transmission in fail safe or driving faster than the recommended fail safe speed will cause the transmission to overheat.  Excessive heat build up in an automatic transmission is the #1 cause of catastrophic failure.  So, avoid extended driving when the transmission is in fail safe mode.

A transmission that goes into limp mode will sometimes reset itself when the engine is shut off and restarted.  So, if you find yourself in this predicament, find a safe place to pull off the road and shut the engine off, wait a minute or so and then restart it. 

Diagnostic Trouble Codes P0700 thru P0799

P0700....Transmission Control System (MIL Request)
P0701....Transmission Control System Range/Performance
P0702....Transmission Control System Electrical
P0703....Torque Converter/Brake Switch B Circuit
P0704....Clutch Switch In put Circuit Malfunction
P0705....Transmission Range Sensor Circuit Malfunction (PRNDL Input)
P0706....Transmission Range Sensor Circuit Range/Performance P0707....Transmission Range Sensor Circuit Low Input
P0708....Transmission Range Sensor Circuit High Input
P0709....Transmission Range Sensor Circuit intermittent
P0710....Transmission Fluid Temperature Sensor Circuit
P0711....Transmission Fluid Temperature Sensor Circuit Range/Performance
P0712....Transmission Fluid Temperature Sensor Circuit Low Input P0713....Transmission Fluid Temperature Sensor Circuit High Input P0714....Transmission Fluid Temperature Sensor Circuit Intermittent P0715....Input/Turbine Speed Sensor Circuit
P0716....Input/Turbine Speed Sensor Circuit Range/Performance P0717....Input/Turbine Speed Sensor Circuit No Signal
P0718....Input/Turbine Speed Sensor Circuit Intermittent
P0719....Torque Converter/Brake Switch B Circuit Low
P0720....Output Speed Sensor Circuit
P0721....Output Speed Sensor Circuit Range/Performance
P0722....Output Speed Sensor Circuit No Signal
P0723....Output Speed Sensor Circuit Intermittent
P0724....Torque Converter/Brake Switch B Circuit High
P0725....Engine Speed Input Circuit
P0726....Engine Speed Input Circuit Range/Performance
P0727....Engine Speed Input Circuit No Signal
P0728....Engine Speed Input Circuit Intermittent
P0730....Incorrect Gear Ratio
P0731....Gear 1 Incorrect Ratio
P0732....Gear 2 Incorrect Ratio
P0733....Gear 3 Incorrect Ratio
P0734....Gear 4 Incorrect Ratio
P0735....Gear 5 Incorrect Ratio
P0736....Reverse Incorrect Ratio
P0737....TCM Engine Speed Output Circuit
P0739....TCM Engine Speed Output Circuit Low
P0739....TCM Engine Speed Output Circuit High
P0740....Torque Converter Clutch Circuit
P0741....Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Performance or Stuck Off
P0742....Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Stuck On
P0743....Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Electrical
P0744....Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Intermittent
P0745....Pressure Control Solenoid 'A'
P0746....Pressure Control Solenoid 'A' Performance or Stuck Off
P0747....Pressure Control Solenoid 'A' Stuck On
P0748....Pressure Control Solenoid 'A' Electrical
P0749....Pressure Control Solenoid 'A' Intermittent
P0750....Shift Solenoid 'A'
P0751....Shift Solenoid 'A' Performance or Stuck Off
P0752....Shift Solenoid 'A' Stuck On
P0753....Shift Solenoid 'A' Electrical
P0754....Shift Solenoid 'A' Intermittent
P0765....Shift Solenoid 'B'
P0756....Shift Solenoid 'B' Performance or Stuck Off
P0757....Shift Solenoid 'B' Stuck On
P0758....Shift Solenoid 'B' Electrical
P0759....Shift Solenoid 'B' Intermittent
P0760....Shift Solenoid 'C'
P0761....Shift Solenoid 'C' Performance or Stuck Off
P0762....Shift Solenoid 'C' Stuck On
P0763....Shift Solenoid 'C' Electrical
P0764....Shift Solenoid 'C' Intermittent
P0765....Shift Solenoid 'C'
P0766....Shift Solenoid 'D' Performance or Stuck Off
P0767....Shift Solenoid 'D' Stuck On
P0768....Shift Solenoid 'D' Electrical
P0769....Shift Solenoid 'D' Intermittent
P0770....Shift Solenoid 'E'
P0771....Shift Solenoid 'E' Performance or Stuck Off
P0772....Shift Solenoid 'E' Stuck On
P0773....Shift Solenoid 'E' Electrical
P0774....Shift Solenoid 'E' Intermittent
P0775....Pressure Control Solenoid 'B'
P0776....Pressure Control Solenoid 'B' Performance or Stuck Off
P0777....Pressure Control Solenoid 'B' Stuck On
P0778....Pressure Control Solenoid 'B' Electrical
P0779....Pressure Control Solenoid 'B' Intermittent
P0781....1-2 Shift
P0782....2-3 Shift
P0783....3-4 Shift
P0784....4-5 Shift
P0785....Shift/Timing Solenoid
P0786....Shift/Timing Solenoid Range/Performance
P0787....Shift/Timing Solenoid Low
P0788....Shift/Timing Solenoid High
P0789....Shift/Timing Solenoid Intermittent
P0790....Normal/Performance Switch Circuit
P0791....Intermediate Shaft Speed Sensor Circuit
P0792....Intermediate Shaft Speed Sensor Circuit Range/Performance
P0793....Intermediate Shaft Speed Sensor Circuit No Signal
P0794....Intermediate Shaft Speed Sensor Circuit Intermittent
P0795....Pressure Control Solenoid 'C'
P0796....Pressure Control Solenoid 'C' Performance or Stuck off
P0797....Pressure Control Solenoid 'C' Stuck On
P0798....Pressure Control Solenoid 'C' Electrical
P0799....Pressure Control Solenoid 'C' Intermittent

Diagnosing a Failed Transmission Solenoid with Check Engine Light

A failed transmission solenoid will normally set a diagnostic trouble code (DTC), which will cause the check engine light to illuminate.  In these instances, an OBD-II scan of your vehicle's computer will provide information pointing to the faulty solenoid.  The DTC information (or explanation) will almost always include a statement indicating that the problem may be an open circuit in the transmission electrical system.  Therefore, you should always test the solenoid to verify its condition before replacing it. DTC codes specific to transmissions and solenoids are listed below.

Diagnosing any Transmission Problem with NO Check Engine Light

A correct diagnoses of a transmission problem when there is no check engine light is best accomplished with a professional transmission scan.  This type of scan will necessitate a visit to a transmission shop or car dealership.  A professional transmission scan can cost between $60 and $125.  This charge is normally referred to as a diagnostics fee.  It is standard procedure for the shop making the repair to waive the diagnostics fee. 

NOTE: To say that the lockup torque converter LOCKS the engine and transmission together isn't completely accurate because slipping can still occur if the vehicle has a heavy enough load.  A transmission that slips while in lockup because the system is overloaded will generate tremendous heat.  These situations normally end with complete transmission failure.

P0740 Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Malfunction - CODE DESCRIPTION

»  A faulty Torque Converter Clutch (TCC) Solenoid  
»  A damaged transmission wiring harness, loose connection or open circuit in the system  
»  A problem in the Transmission Control Module (TCM) or Powertrain Control Module (PCM), depending on the vehicle.

P0741  Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Performance or Stuck Off 
P0742  Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Stock On   
P0743  Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Electrical    
P0744  Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Intermittent 

DTCs provided above are generic codes that apply to 1996 and newer vehicles. These codes may not apply to all vehicles. Vehicle manufacturers may use manufacturer specific DTC codes that are different from the codes shown here.

Torque Converter Clutch Solenoid: REPAIR INFORMATION

Once it is determined that the transmission torque converter clutch solenoid is faulty, the solenoid must be replaced. Replacing a transmission torque converter clutch solenoid can be done by most any auto repair shop, automobile dealership service center or you can do-it-yourself "DIY".

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