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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
Junkyard transmissions around here are $125-$150 if you pull it. Another alternative is to buy outright a whole wrecked Dart from a place like Copart.com or directly from an insurance adjuster. I have seen some really low mile Darts on Copart sell for fairly low prices. With a whole wrecked Dart, you might recoup some of your money parting it out or have spare parts for yours for the near future. I have been that route when there were two teenage drivers in my home. Still driving one of those Neons.
I'd probably have a whole other car to drive by now if I had room for a 3rd car. Anyway, I just got my car back home, and... I'm finding it hard to believe the transmission is toast in my car. It upshifts and downshifts like it has for years, pulls solidly in every gear, and generally doesn't do anything abnormal. Also does "POSSIBLE INTERNAL LEAK AND TRANNY DRIVEN WITH NO FLUID" (what the tech wrote on the work order) sound like what the service manager was telling me over the phone yesterday? Because he never said anything like "Oh hey, your transmission was dry, by the way". He specifically told me there were metal pieces in the fluid when they drained it! He also told me that it wasn't the hydraulic pump, but the technician noted that it does need a hydraulic pump.

So suffice to say that I'm not quite ready to admit defeat. I'm going to do a deeper dive with AlfaOBD and see if the TCM has any data to suggest malfunctioning, which the service manager suggested was the case yesterday. I know for sure that as of Monday night, the only error code on the TCM was P1CC0, and it went away on its own after a couple of start cycles. There's also an ECU mismatch code on the BCM (probably because the CTM failed to respond during the last proxy alignment, because, ya know, it failed) and if you access the ABS module it will also generally report an error, but it appears to be caused by interfacing with it and it goes away quickly on its own. I may also try replacing the hydraulic pump on my own, since I'm pretty sure it's easy to access (if you can post or have already posted the procedure it would be much appreciated, as always). Oh, and does your service manual perchance tell you how one might even check the fluid level in a C635 DDCT without draining it? It's not like it has a dipstick, after all.
 

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21 - Transmission and Transfer Case / Automatic - C635 DDCT / UNIT, Transmission Hydraulic Power / Removal

REMOVAL

1.Connect the scan tool and depressurize the hydraulic circuit.

2.Disconnect the negative battery terminal.

3.Remove the air cleaner box assembly (Refer to 09 - Engine/Air Intake System/BODY, Air Cleaner - Removal) .

4.Raise the vehicle (Refer to 04 - Vehicle Quick Reference/Hoisting - Standard Procedure) .

5.Remove the belly pan.

6.Disconnect the wiring harness (1) and (2).
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7.Remove and disconnect the pipes (1, 2 and 3) from the valve body and the hydraulic power unit.
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8.Remove the mounting screws for the accumulator strap (1) and the hydraulic power unit (2 and 3).
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9.Remove the hydraulic power unit (1).
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10.Remove the O-ring from the filter pipe fitting and discard.



21 - Transmission and Transfer Case / Automatic - C635 DDCT / FLUID / Standard Procedure

DRAINING, FILLING AND LEVEL CHECK

NOTE: The fluid level in the C635 DDCT transaxle cannot be measured with a dip stick. To verify the proper fill level. Drain the transaxle and fill with the proper amount of specified fluid.

1.Raise the vehicle.

2.Position a suitable drain pan under the transaxle.

3.Remove the drain plug (2) and allow the fluid to completely drain from the transaxle.
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4.Allow the fluid to drain into the pan.

5.Install the drain plug (2) tighten the plug to 27 N·m (20 ft. lbs.).

6.Remove the fill rubber plug (1).

7.Fill the transaxle with 1.66 liters (1.75 quarts) of Mopar BOT 350M gear lube (68092630AA quart).

8.The correct fill level will be 6.5 mm (0.25 in.) below the fill plug hole (1).

9.Install the fill plug.

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Did they reuse the old fluid or replace it with new?

The two fluids are easy to confuse. If they put in new, I hope they used the correct fluid.
The trans fluid:
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The hydraulic fluid:
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The drain and fill looks just like the manual trans. Most manual trans fill instructions say to fill until it just starts to run out. Getting it to a quarter inch below the edge seems troublesome, not sure if a little fluid more can hurt anything. Maybe your tech thought a quarter inch lower than the hole was too little. What I use to fill a manual trans is the same as what I use to fill my outboard boat motor drive lube. It screws right onto the bottle and then you just pump. No elaborate funnel hose setup necessary.
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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
The drain and fill looks just like the manual trans. Most manual trans fill instructions say to fill until it just starts to run out. Getting it to a quarter inch below the edge seems troublesome, not sure if a little fluid more can hurt anything. Maybe your tech thought a quarter inch lower than the hole was too little. What I use to fill a manual trans is the same as what I use to fill my outboard boat motor drive lube. It screws right onto the bottle and then you just pump. No elaborate funnel hose setup necessary.
View attachment 127091
The C635 DDCT specifies 1.66 liters / 1.75 quarts for the gearbox. I have no idea what they did fluid-wise. The service manager claimed there were metal shavings in the fluid they drained, and the tech's note says it was driven with no fluid. Both of those things can't be true at the same time. I will be draining and refilling it before I drive it again in any case. In reading other threads on these forums, it sounds like "the transmission needs to be replaced" is the go-to response when anything goes wrong that's even remotely related to the DDCT. And it's absurdly expensive, as I noted. I checked with one of those dealerships that has an online parts store in Canada, and the list price for the DDCT is in fact CAD $9,665.00. Surprisingly, they say they even have it in stock.

I've done some quick checking, and I'm not clear on what parts need to be replaced for the hydraulic pump assembly. Is it the motor and the accumulator, or is there an actual pump module in there that I'm not seeing?
 

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Sounds like I'm having the same issue on mine. Looking for a replacement vehicle now and hopefully the dealership will give me something back on a trade -too bad as this is a really nice looking car
:(
 

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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
Sounds like I'm having the same issue on mine. Looking for a replacement vehicle now and hopefully the dealership will give me something back on a trade -too bad as this is a really nice looking car
:(
If the dealer has diagnosed it as needing a new transmission, you're never going to get anything for it from an FCA dealer, who will be able to check the service history. I'm still planning on taking a shot at just replacing the hydraulic pump assembly because to put it bluntly, I don't believe them in regards to the transmission. I got two very different stories and the transmission works perfectly fine. It's expensive, but $1200 on a car that's paid for has fairly low mileage for its age (116,000 kms) isn't too bad. It also doesn't look like too much of an ordeal to replace that assembly. I'm sure there will be something stupid that makes it unnecessarily difficult, because every job on this car seems to have that, but at least it's not a 65-step process that requires special tools like replacing the transmission.

The thing is, I still miss driving my Dart. That DDCT is fun when it's working right. Also, driving a Grand Caravan is making me want to give up driving altogether and go back to cycling everywhere.
 

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I didn't take it to the dealer for the initial DDCT fix or the transmission diagnosis as it was a local mechanic (and not even sure if it is in fact the transmission), so I'm not sure anything would be included in it's history. Hopefully, the dealership will be having a good day when I bring it in and give me a break?!!!

If you need another parts car, let me know as I'm willing to make you a great deal! Although, I believe the part(s) you need are probably the same as the one that is going bad in my car.

Take care,

-Joe
 

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DONT GIVE UP THE SHIP!! 1200$ while is a bit of money, if it fixes the problem then it may be worth it. Too many times even dealers now are like, this cost us to much or to hard, everything needs replaced, buy another car. Everything can be fixed but like in the IT world anymore, they don't diagnosis anything anymore, its either reboot, reimage or replace. Even when you are getting conflicting stories. and people wonder why dealers get a bad rap. yet another example. Good luck in your replacement!
 

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Unfortunately it is $3600 just for the transmission and I already spent $3900 on the clutch 10 weeks ago. Sorry, but can't afford to keep dropping money into this vehicle. Thanks for your response.

-Joe
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
Unfortunately it is $3600 just for the transmission and I already spent $3900 on the clutch 10 weeks ago. Sorry, but can't afford to keep dropping money into this vehicle. Thanks for your response.

-Joe
If that was a quote to replace the transmission with a new one, that's a steal, believe it or not. The retail price for a C635 DDCT is around $6,000 in the US (it's almost $10K in Canada). Even used they're not cheap, at least not here. I found one last night at a junkyard, already removed from its donor. It has almost twice the mileage my car has and they want almost $2K for it, more than 4 times the price of a nearly new 6F24 automatic (used on the 2.0L and 2.4L Darts).
 

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That was for a used one and my mechanic was going to do the work for 1/2 the labor price as I just dropped $3900 on the clutch a couple months ago. So still probably a good deal, but not when you take all into account!

-Joe
 

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Discussion Starter · #34 ·
6.Disconnect the wiring harness (1) and (2).
View attachment 127081

7.Remove and disconnect the pipes (1, 2 and 3) from the valve body and the hydraulic power unit.
View attachment 127082
8.Remove the mounting screws for the accumulator strap (1) and the hydraulic power unit (2 and 3).
View attachment 127083
9.Remove the hydraulic power unit (1).
View attachment 127084
10.Remove the O-ring from the filter pipe fitting and discard.
Ok, so I have the hydraulic control unit on order and expect to get it in the next week or so. In the meantime, I decided to have a look at this on the car. Has anybody done this job before? Because I have questions.

First, I can't find electrical connector #2 in step 6. The #1 connector is obvious, it's right on the bottom, but the only other electrical connector near the control unit is for what appears to be the downstream O2 sensor. Pictures of the new hydraulic control unit show only one electrical connector, so am I losing my mind here?

Second, pipe #2 from step 7 doesn't look like the one in the diagram and does not have any kind of "head" to unscrew. Here is a picture of the line in my car. I'm talking about the black crinkly line in the foreground. Can somebody tell me how you disconnect it? Both ends looks like some kind of plastic fitting over a plastic nipple. I hope this line is reusable with the new unit, because it looks like the nipple on the filter of new units comes out perpendicular to the filter housing (like in the diagram) instead of inline at the end of it.

Coil Motor vehicle Automotive tire Automotive fuel system Electrical wiring

Third, any tips on how to remove the 2 screws for the accumulator strap? The heads are inward-facing between where they are mounted and the transmission, and while I can just barely see one of them, I can't think of how you could access it with a tool. Is it possible to remove this assembly with the strap in place by loosening it so the accumulator slides out of it and the new one slides in? Or can the accumulator be safely removed and put back on? It can be purchased separately, and it has a big hex bolt head on it, so I assume it comes off and can be reinstalled. It would probably make it a lot easier to access the fasteners holding the control unit to the transmission, anyway.

I really hope this relatively easy-looking job isn't made 1000 times harder just by being unable to access fasteners. It's bad enough that it uses those semi-rounded E-Torx bolts that FCA loves so much (and that I dislike).
 

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If that was a quote to replace the transmission with a new one, that's a steal, believe it or not. The retail price for a C635 DDCT is around $6,000 in the US (it's almost $10K in Canada). Even used they're not cheap, at least not here. I found one last night at a junkyard, already removed from its donor. It has almost twice the mileage my car has and they want almost $2K for it, more than 4 times the price of a nearly new 6F24 automatic (used on the 2.0L and 2.4L Darts).
I just heard back from the mechanic that purchased my dart. He said it was the slave clutch and not the transmission after all. $200 part and 3 hours work fixed it, transmission is fine. Really bummed but my mechanic was sure it was the transmission. Definitely something to check if yo get the weird whining engine sound, followed by something that sounds like a belt falling off on the drivers side of the engine/transmission area. Oh well, just picked up a Kia Forte for my son to replace it...definitely not a Mopar:(
 

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I just heard back from the mechanic that purchased my dart. He said it was the slave clutch and not the transmission after all. $200 part and 3 hours work fixed it, transmission is fine. Really bummed but my mechanic was sure it was the transmission. Definitely something to check if yo get the weird whining engine sound, followed by something that sounds like a belt falling off on the drivers side of the engine/transmission area. Oh well, just picked up a Kia Forte for my son to replace it...definitely not a Mopar:(
So was it the even or odd gear clutch slave? The even clutch slave requires the trans to be removed from the car. The odd clutch slave can be removed and replaced by lowering the trans after removing the trans mount. Can you find out if he removed the trans or just lowered it?
 

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So was it the even or odd gear clutch slave? The even clutch slave requires the trans to be removed from the car. The odd clutch slave can be removed and replaced by lowering the trans after removing the trans mount. Can you find out if he removed the trans or just lowered it?
It was the odd slave clutch so it just needed the trans to be lowered, bummer but oh well probably would have been something else soon.
 

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Have a 500L same engine/trans and had an inkling someone in the larger Dart community (thanks for being here!) might have a similar issue too.

I just did the timing belt/water pump/associated pulleys hoping for some magic. Nope. Is this whine/groan what you're experiencing? Especially noticeable when engine shuts off, I've got no check engine light and it shifts fine.


Many thanks and hope the hydraulic control replacement goes well!
 

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No that sounds completely different than what my Dart sounded like. It was more of a more pronounced squealing and then it finally later evolved into a sound like a belt was falling off in the engine with a lot of vibration and shaking of the entire vehicle. Sorry, but on the upside, it doesn't sound as bad as mine, so hopefully it won't be a major issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #40 ·
Have a 500L same engine/trans and had an inkling someone in the larger Dart community (thanks for being here!) might have a similar issue too.

I just did the timing belt/water pump/associated pulleys hoping for some magic. Nope. Is this whine/groan what you're experiencing? Especially noticeable when engine shuts off, I've got no check engine light and it shifts fine.


Many thanks and hope the hydraulic control replacement goes well!
Yeah, the 500L is basically the closest thing to a Dart hatchback in North America. Your car does sound pretty much exactly like mine does at this point. I also intermittently get the P1CC0 (Hydraulic Pump Stuck Off) CEL, which indicates the pump is not producing enough hydraulic pressure, so I've purchased a Hydraulic Control Unit that is slowly making its way from Texas to my front door. I'm hoping that will solve the issue and the dealer was just blowing smoke about the DDCT itself.
 
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