Case Study: 2012 Chrysler Town and Country Transmission Problems

  Case Study 2012 Chrysler Town and Country Transmission Problems | Chrysler Town and Country 62TE Transmission Repair
  Dave Riccio, Owner/Technician

By Dave Riccio, ASE Certified Technician, Owner of Tri-City Transmission & Auto Repair, Co-host of Bumper to Bumper Radio

CASE STUDY: 2012 Chrysler Town & Country, Transmission Issues

Customer Saves Thousands on Chrysler Town & Country


This customer owns a model year 2012, Chrysler Town and Country, Touring Edition, Minivan, front wheel drive with 133,120 miles. He and his family were on the highway, headed out of town for the holidays when the transmission began to whine and the vehicle quit moving. This customer had the vehicle towed to the Chrysler dealership in the small town where they were headed. After the dealerships diagnosis, the dealership contacted the customer indicating the transmission was broken beyond repair and would need to be replaced. They had implied his transmission was the worst one they had ever seen and replacement was the only option. The bill was going in excess of well over $4,000, plus, plus, plus. This customer was not comfortable with that answer from the dealership or getting his transmission fixed across the state in a small town, so he towed the vehicle to us at Tri-City Transmission and Auto Repair.

When we received this vehicle, the initial test drive with our technician showed the transmission functioned just fine. However, as the vehicle began to warm up to operating temperature, the technician began to hear the whining noise the customer described and the shift quality began to deteriorate. These symptoms were very consistent with a filter that was starting to plug off as a result of a failed internal transmission component. The technician suspected the torque converter, as it is one of the common pattern failures for this transmission -- especially on road trips. We let the customer know there was a possibility of a targeted major repair where we simply remove the transmission from the vehicle, partially disassemble the transmission and addressed the failed component with some minor transmission touch ups. From there, we would provide a complete transmission reseal with new fluid and filter, reinstalling the transmission back in the vehicle.

It was evident that this transmission was very repairable and anything but the "worst we had ever seen" as implied by the dealership above. Even if we had to  fully re-manufacture this customer's transmission, it was still going to be considerably less than the Chrysler dealer's replacement of the whole transmission. The customer agreed to have us proceed with the work.

Sure enough, disassembly of the transmission revealed that there was a failed Torrington bearing in the torque converter which shed metal debris enough to cause the transmission filter to plug off. Otherwise, the transmission had no burnt clutches and with the exception of the worn compounder drum, this was still a very good transmission.

With the customer's involvement, based on his current needs and where he was in the relationship to the life cycle of the vehicles ownership for his family, he opted for the targeted repair where we simply re-manufactured the torque converter, addressed the problematic compounder drum, and then resealed the transmission with new fluid and filter. This was in lieu of performing a total transmission re-manufactured service and certainly in lieu of the dealership replacing the transmission in its entirety. This ended up saving the customer some serious dough as he had already been thinking about his next vehicle. The targeted repair was a great option for his family's needs.

Over the last couple decades, we have seen the dealerships get out of the transmission repair and rebuilding business altogether. They often times give the customer the impression that they can repair the transmission when they can't. We believe they only do this to get customers committed, but at the end of the day, they don't fix transmissions. They simply replace the whole transmission. There are exceptions to this, however we have found them to be few and far between. The majority of the time that they don't or won't.

This type of repair and occurrence happens daily at Tri-City Transmission and Auto Repair. This is especially true when it comes to Chrysler transmissions as they have some finicky electronics and finicky computer software and many times transmissions are diagnosed as bad by dealers or automotive generalists. At Tri-City Transmission & Auto Repair, we have performed thousands of minor repairs as well as dozens of major repairs and re-manufacturing service on the modern Chrysler Minivan transmissions.

Transmission Background Information:

This Town and Country transmission 62TE replaced its predecessors, 41TE also known as the Chrysler A604. It still utilizes a minority of parts and manufacturing process from the 41TE. In addition to the Town and Country, it is also utilized in the Volkswagen Routan. The a six speed with a highly modulated torque converter clutch. The model number indicates it as a six speed, however, there is a half gear or seven gear utilized in the downshift sequence. It has a handful of transmission software control updates which are fixed with a computer, not a wrench. Additionally, in a majority of cases we are able to perform in car repairs. In other words, we don't have to go through the time and expense of removing and re-installing the transmission in the vehicle. Those would be repairs such as, software updates, solenoid packs, speed sensors, wiring repairs, adaptation resets, valve body repairs, computer replacements, just to name a few. On occasion, we do see this transmission fail, however, in those instances we can repair or re-manufacture the transmission without replacement. When we do provide our "Custom Transmission Re-Manufacture" service we make several updates and modifications to insure the transmission outlasts the original.

Case Study 2012 Chrysler Town and Country Transmission Problems | Chrysler Town and Country 62TE Transmission Repair