Transmission Not Shifting Out of First Gear – What You Need to Do

You have just come out of the home with your car but oops!

The transmission is not shifting out of first gear. Such kind of automotive malfunction is a painful thing. 

The transmission is a crucial part of a car. It is connected to your engine and renovates your car engine’s power to momentum. In this way, the wheel starts running. 

However, if the transmission breaks down, then your vehicle may be stuck out of first gear.

What to do if it happens? 

Today we are here to let you know the reasons why your transmission not shifting out of first gear, how to fix it and what you need to solve this problem. Let’s get started. 

Transmission Not Moving Out of First Gear: Reasons and Solutions 

There might be several reasons why your transmission won’t shift into gear. Most commonly, there are 5 major reasons for this malfunction. Let’s see what are the causes of your transmission issue.   

1. Low or Dirty Transmission Fluid (Any Transmission)

Perhaps, this is the most common problem in any type of transmission. If the fluid level

transmission not shifting out of first gear

 of transmission is low, or there is dirt in your transmission, then there will be a huge problem in gearing up your car. Rusty or dirty transmission fluid may bring debris, reduce viscosity. So, when you find there are some issues with the transmission fluid, go for transmission fluid replacement.

2. Worn Clutch (Standard Transmission)

If there is a worn clutch on the vehicle, your car won’t get sufficient friction for your engine to get enough power to transfer. That means, your car motion will be slower. 

In this case, replace the clutch on your transmission. To replace it, you may need a professional car mechanic.

3. Leaking Clutch hydraulic brakes cylinder (Standard Transmission)

A standard stick-shift transmission may include the leaking clutch hydraulic brakes cylinder. If there is any leak, it may cause your car not to get to gear.

4. Failing Electronics (Automatic Transmission)

In the case you find that there’s no mechanical issue to cause malfunctioning in your transmission, you should then check if there is an electronics issue. There are solenoids inside the transmission. The work to change the gear of your transmission. So, if the solenoids or control module are faulty, then your vehicle may not get on gear. 

5. Shift Interlock Mechanism (Automatic Transmission)

Nowadays, automatic transmissions come with a shift lock mechanism. When you find the transmission not shifting, then you should go for shift lock release. In doing so, you can check the owner’s manual to know how to do shift lock release on your vehicle. 

brake pedal position sensor

A shift lock release will help to reset your car’s shift interlock system as well as will shift your transmission one more time. If it still doesn’t work, you may require a new brake pedal position sensor to change or more transmission repairing to fix the issue.

Check this brake pedal position sensor from Amazon.

How To Fix Transmission Problems

In order to fix the transmission problem, you have to follow a step by step guide. Let’s first know what tools you need to repair transmission problems. Our guide is applicable for most cars.

Code reader

Tools that You’ll Need To Fix:

You may buy this code reader from Amazon.

#Easy Fixes:

Case 1: If your car is not warm and your car transmission disappears out of gear, most probably it happens for short transmission fluid. At that time, transmission loses hydraulic pressure.  

Easy Fix:

If it happens, see the level of transmission fluid keeping your vehicle on a plain surface.  

Case 2: Transmission is barely shifting or not shifting at all. 

In general, the transmission is regulated by the Powertrain Control Module of your car. When the VSS (vehicle speed sensor) will fail, your Powertrain Control Module won’t have any input. Accordingly, the transmission will not move appropriately as well. 

Easy Fix:

First of all, scan the sensor and ensure that the speedometer is working perfectly. Unless it changes the vehicle speed sensor with a new one and checks the system again.

Case 3: Your transmission misses 2nd gear, changes from 1st gear to 3ed gear. Plus, you see the notification”service engine soon” or “service engine soon” MIL is illuminated. 

Easy Fix:

Scan the computer to help locate the transmission control solenoid that is malfunctioning. 

Final Verdict

Indeed, when you find your transmission not shifting out of first gear, it’s a matter of thinking.  To solve it on your own, you have to have enough tools as well as basic mechanical skills. 

If you don’t find it convenient to do it yourself, then go for a professional one. 

Happy driving! 

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