fairly significant
Typical Repair Cost:
No data
Average Mileage:
144,667 miles
Total Complaints:
3 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (2 reports)
  2. a trans rebuild or a shift selonoid (1 reports)
1998 Dodge Durango transmission problems

transmission problem

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1998 Dodge Durango Owner Comments

problem #3

Sep 072012

Durango LS 5.2L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 129,000 miles


I own a 1998 Dodge Durango V8 5.2L. It's always has been dependable. But a major gas hog. Back in Sept. 2012, my girlfriend called me and said your SUV is not shifting out of 1st gear. I told her to have it towed home. Check the fluid it was full and took it for a test drive she was right. Well I let it sit for a month or so. Other than moving up and down the driveway when the kids wanted to play basketball. Well it ran out of gas. I went got 5 gallons of gas and put it in it. For some reason I decided to take it for a ride. Guess what the problem went away. It ran great and shifted good. Very odd. I asked myself what does fuel level have to do with this. Well since then I have been able make the problem happen 5 times out of 5 times. All I have to do is run it down to about 2 or 3 gallons of gas and park it for a couple hours. start it ,the engine runs fine, but the transmission will not shift out of 1st gear. Shut it off add 5 gallons of gas or so. Guess what the problem goes away. As I said earlier I can make this problem happen and fix it every single time. If I keep at least 5 gallons or so of gas in it. The problem never happens. Since feeling a little more comfortable with it. I have drove it at least 750 miles. Last night I made the problem happen again and fixed it. I wanted to be positive added gas resolved it.

Now I have to ask what does fuel level have to do with a transmission? One repair shop told me it could be a ground when there is certain amount of fuel in the tank. The ground is present. At a low level fuel it loses it's ground and will not shift. another repair shop said I have to replace the transmission sensors. But that would not be a guarantee. Note I have not had my Dodge Durrango formally diagnosed.

I don't want to invest a lot of money in it. Does anyone have or have had the same problem? What was the resolution? Does anyone have a serious resolution? I thinking of selling it, but I don't want to stick anybody with this problem.

- , Enfield, CT, USA

problem #2

Apr 022012

Durango 5.2L V8 318

  • Automatic transmission
  • 175,000 miles

I had this truck off the road for a year and half suspecting the trans was blown. It would drive fine until the truck heated up and then it would start bucking and wouldn't move. We were convinced that the trans was blown. Due to the recession, we were unable to fix it and had it towed to my dad's shop. It sat for a year and then my father in laws shop suffered slow business and he started "tinkering" with it. He took out the filter it was totally clogged (this is our fault we should have done the required maintenance) puts a new one in, fires the truck up and it runs like a charm. The power of the truck was back, shifted great, the whole kit and kaboodle. We did all the other repairs, put it on the road, and drove it for about 2 and half to three months, a few longer trips mostly local though and next thing we know Trans Temp light comes on. I pull over check the fluid and the radiator fluids low. Put fluid in it runs fine for another month. Next thing you know trans temp light comes on again. My husband takes the trans cooler lines off sees the bleed back valve on trans cooler lines is clogged. He cleans it out, does a trans flush and the trans temp light goes off. Well, 2 wks after that, the damn transmission starts slipping. First it was 2nd to 3rd. Now its 2nd to 3rd. The rpms get to 4000 and you have to take your foot off the gas and it will shift. Lucas trans treatment helps a little bit. My neighbor who has the same truck said it could be I need the clutches redone, or its the shifting selonoid. I am more inclined to say I need a rebuild or a new trans all together. I feel like the truck is worth it to fix-we put a new motor in it about 2.5 years ago and mind you the truck has been sitting for a year. The oil pump went bad and the engine blew this is why it was replaced. I know it says to report problems in a separate post, but I think these trans issues are all related. Any advice would be helpful!!!

- , Milford, PA, USA

problem #1

Dec 142011

Durango SLT 5.2L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

my 1998 dodge Durango i just purchased yesterday i knew it had this problem before buying but i am a mechanic and i wanted to get my hand son this truck. ok my problem is when im in first gear coming off a stop i can hit the gas and drive normal but as it shifts from 1st to 2nd gear it almost feels like it wants to go back into 1st gear but it goes to 2nd regardless. i don't have this problem with any other gears only from 1st to 2nd. i have a couple ppl telling me it could b the shift solenoid and a couple are telling me to flush it and change the filter. i don't know much about transmissions but ask me bout a engine n i can almost guarantee u the correct way to fix. any one know wut to do?

- , Milwaukee, WI, USA

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