45RFE (5-45RFE TCM) Dreaded P0700 Code - Dodge Durango Forum and Dodge Dakota Forums
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Old 07-23-2011, 10:35 PM
Doom4life Doom4life is offline
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45RFE (5-45RFE TCM) Dreaded P0700 Code

2002 Dodge Dakota with 4.7L and 5-45RFE TCM.

On my way home last night, I noticed at around 70km/h if I pushed the gas pedal about 3/4 of the way the engine would rev slightly before the transmission would downshift.

I did this a few times to replicate it, which it was, and tried it with overdrive off and it would act wierd. Just as I was getting home, the check engine light came on. Parked it, cycled the key and it popped up P0700 which is a generic code for a transmission malfunction.

I have access to my mechanic's scanner on Monday, so hopefully I can pull more specific codes from the TCM. I know its a generic code, but what kind of things could cause this (I've searched and have come up things like the valve body, solenoid pack, etc.). Is it safe to drive around town with it like this? When I say around time I mean to work, to the store, etc.

I had a transmission service in the winter, which included two Mopar filters and I have always kept the maintenance up on the transmission.

The symptoms I have:
- When cold, normal operation. All gears work, torqe converter locks up, overdrive gears are functional. Pressing overdrive takes the transmission out of overdrive.
- When warm, limp mode. Only uses second and third gear (though today it seemed like it was stuck in third gear for a bit).

I've also noticed over the past few years, the quite frequently when I first start it, there seems to be a delayed engagement between park to drive. If I give it gas, it usually starts to move right away, except when it delays it'll rev to 1500 RPM's and barely move (it would be similar to on a manual leaving the clutch part way in and giving it gas). I know there is a TSB out for this, but as I said I know the filters aren't the suspect onces as they have been replaced twice already.
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Old 07-24-2011, 03:02 AM
caulk04 caulk04 is offline
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I'd bet your delayed engagement problem IS the filter. Nothing else has been proven to cause that.

Sounds electrical to me, that'd be my guess. Will have to see what the specific codes are.
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Old 07-24-2011, 06:52 AM
Doom4life Doom4life is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caulk04 View Post
I'd bet your delayed engagement problem IS the filter. Nothing else has been proven to cause that.

Sounds electrical to me, that'd be my guess. Will have to see what the specific codes are.
I don't think the delayed engagement could be the filter, as this is the second set of filters that have been replaced on the transmission with no change in that specific symptom.

I agree with you that it's probably something electrical. I spoke with my friend (mechanic for 10+ years) and he is betting its the pressure control solenoid. Anyways, I'll know on Monday the exact code when I have access to the scanner.
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Old 07-25-2011, 08:55 PM
Doom4life Doom4life is offline
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To update, I pulled the following codes:
P0733 - Third gear incorrect ratio
P0944 - Loss of hydraulic pump prime
P1790 - Fault immediately after a shift

Looks like the transmission is toast, as there was clutch paterial int he pan and the top of the valve body. Third year is also lost (engine just revs).

I made a post in the bad news forum, as I am not sure whether to sink a shitload of money fixing the transmission among other things, or just walk away and sell it as is or part it out and get a newer Dakota for a little bit more than what it would cost for me to fix mine.
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Old 07-25-2011, 11:31 PM
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I wonder if the trans was starving for fluid and 3rd got burnt up. Did you have the seal from the sump filter stuck in the trans and install another one on top of it?

I'm hard on mine and I've never felt it slip a bit.

Mine has the delayed engagement once in a blue moon. I'd say once in 50 cold starts...something like that.
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Old 07-26-2011, 12:41 AM
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Nope, a seal wasn't installed on top of another seal. It just burnt up the third gear clutch trying to go up a hill. I honestly think it has to do with the loss of hydraulic pump prime.

Mine delayed shift quite frequently. I'd say it was like yours when it was still udner warranty, but the dealership dismissed it because it wasn't easily repeatable. But I would say within the past year or so it would frequently act up at a minimum once a week.
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Old 07-26-2011, 02:24 AM
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Once it gets prime and engages, that is no longer an issue. It should have thrown a code for low pressure if that was an issue.

Doesn't matter anyway, your trans seems to need rebuilt. A fluke. After all, this is the same trans they put in 3/4 ton Rams with the Hemi.
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Old 07-26-2011, 02:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caulk04 View Post
A fluke. After all, this is the same trans they put in 3/4 ton Rams with the Hemi.
It also sits (or sat in previous years) behind the 5.7L engine in a 3500. So it's gotta be strong (enough).
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Old 07-28-2011, 01:48 AM
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Correct, it goes behind the Hemi in all truck applications. Not sure what the Hemi cars use.
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Old 07-28-2011, 06:38 PM
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Wow surprised to hear this. I beat the ever living sh*t out of these transmissions and they never failed or even got hot past 160*. I put a 700lb plow on the front of my dakota with nearly the same weight in the bed and plowed my 100+ mile route for 2 years with it, traded it for a Ram 2500 that I plowed with a nearly 900lb plow with the same in the bed on that same route, except I picked up a parking lot the size of a football field. Never one problem.

I hate the gear spacing of the 545RFE but it is a solid tranny. I'd rebuild or buy a reman'd tranny for it.
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