An automatic transmission mechanism for controlling shift points comprises the transmission control module, also referred to as the transmission shift solenoid. It may be time to replace the TCM if your Chevy experiences inconsistent shifting or fails to change gears. But do you know how to reset the transmission control module?
Chevys must be disconnected for 10 to 30 minutes to reset the transmission control module. Directly below the windshield, it is located on the driver’s side of the engine compartment. Utilizing the integrated lever is necessary to disconnect and rejoin the TCM.
- What is Transmission Control Module?
- 3 Symptoms of a Bad Transmission Control Module
- How to Locate the Transmission Control Module?
- How to Reset the Transmission Control Module?
- How to Change the Transmission Control Module?
- How Much Does It Cost To Reprogram A Transmission Control Module?
What is Transmission Control Module?
The transmission control module (TCM) is a chip that coordinates with other parts to decide when to change gears. To keep you and your passengers moving forward, your vehicle’s transmission control module interacts with the engine and the transmission.
This section is responsible for figuring out when and when to shift into a different gear while you’re moving forward to maximize your driving experience.
To precisely shift gears at the best time, the TCM considers the vehicle’s speed, load, and current RPM. Kick-down causes the transmission to downshift when you press the gas pedal firmly, giving you more power, but otherwise, the gear shifts are designed to provide you with an inexpensive ride.
The transmission control module should consider uphill and downhill driving, which should then change the gear ratios accordingly. To avoid idling, older transmissions do not automatically shift into “3” or “L” gear; instead, the driver must actively do so.
Along with its primary duty, this control module may transmit OBD2 codes to your car’s computer if it notices any transmission-related problems. The check engine light on your dash will illuminate when one of these codes appears, effectively alerting you to a potential problem.
3 Symptoms of a Bad Transmission Control Module
One or more symptoms are always present when a transmission control module fails. It will be much simpler to determine whether the TCM has to be reset or altered if you know how these symptoms manifest.
1. Dashboard Warning Light
The check engine or check transmission light is the early warning indicator of problems with the transmission control module. Since it frequently manifests before the symptoms, you can take preventative measures to solve the issue.
Modern cars have a touchscreen in the center dash to detect error codes, but older cars require an OBD2 scanner to identify the precise issue.
The scanner will identify the problem for you, but if it merely provides you with a code, look for P0631, P0700, and P0706, as some principles are connected to TCM issues.
2. Hard Shifts
Hard shifts are an obvious sign that the transmission control module is broken. When it’s time to shift gears, your Chevy would accelerate normally but jerk and delay power as the equipment is engaged.
The transmission may also be the source of the issue, but if you can’t scan, you can at least reset the TCM before looking at other possibilities.
3. Failure to shift
Failure to shift gears is the most dangerous sign of the transmission control module. Even when the RPM is high, the transmission may move normally up a couple of bags before failing to shift any farther.
The condition typically manifests during upshifts, but it can also occur during downshifts, which would result in an engine stall. When this happens, it’s critical to identify and address the problem immediately to avoid endangering the car and yourself.
How to Locate the Transmission Control Module?
It may be challenging to access without removing some of your interior elements since the transmission control module is typically found behind your car’s center console. However, before digging around under the center console, you might discover that the transmission control module is on the transmission or, perhaps, even inside the gearbox.
There is a technique to eliminate all the guesswork, but it relies on your car’s make, model, and interior layout. The precise position of your transmission control module can be found in your automobile service manual.
Alternatively, you can consult a professional or the dealership where you bought your car for more details and assistance in determining whether the TCM is the problem.
How to Reset the Transmission Control Module?
There are three ways to reset the transmission control module.
1. Disconnect the battery leads
The most straightforward fix is to unplug the battery’s positive and negative terminals and drive away for 30 minutes. All electrical components, including the ECU, TCM, and others, will discharge, and those without permanent storage will reset.
The issue is that the transmission control module may be equipped with memory, as some take into account the driver’s driving style and modify the transmission accordingly. That TCM model won’t respond to this approach.
2. Disconnect the Transmission Control Module
The transmission control module can best be reset by removing the power and data cables from it. Finding the TCM is the first step. As was mentioned in the section above, it is often located in the upper driver-side area of the engine compartment on Chevy automobiles.
Don’t yank on the large cable connecting to the transmission control module because it is undoubtedly mechanically locked in place. First, locate the safety latch, which will either be a lever or a string of metal or plastic clip-on pins.
It’s also a good idea to unplug the batteries before pulling the plug as a precaution. Remove the cable from the TCM, then leave it alone for a while. Check to see if the transmission control module is operating as it should after reconnecting the TCM and the battery.
3. Follow the Reset Procedure
The reset methods are usually bizarre and involve turning the key and pressing the pedals as if to unlock a secret code. As the manufacturer incorporated them to facilitate specific resets, these procedures operate in most situations.
This is how a Chevy resets the transmission control module:
- The ignition should be in the “On” position.
- Pedal down completely and hold it there for 10 to 15 seconds.
- Release the pedal after turning off the engine.
- Do not operate any of the car’s controls for 1-2 minutes.
- Drive generally for 50 to 100 shifts after starting the vehicle without revving the engine.
How to Change the Transmission Control Module?
Just as simple as physically resetting the transmission control module, changing it merely requires unscrewing a few screws and replacing them with those from the new TCM. It would help if you were cautious about managing the new TCM.
Consider it more like a sensitive computer part than a sturdy auto part. Work slowly and cautiously because it is still vulnerable to collision and shock damage while having a protective case.
How Much Does It Cost To Reprogram A Transmission Control Module?
You may have to pay a small fee or tip the mechanic to perform the reset effectively; the reset itself is practically free. TCM replacements, on the other hand, might cost $500 or more because of the high cost of transmission control modules.
Typically, you can do this at your nearby dealership, but you can also rely on a nearby repair shop.
It’s pretty simple to reset a transmission control module by yourself. This instruction is for you if you want to reset your Chevrolet TCM. This manual applies to more than just Chevrolets. Because it’s simple to locate if you need to disconnect it, resetting the transmission control module on most Chevy automobiles is a straightforward process.
It only requires turning the ignition, applying gas, and waiting in the proper order to perform the reset procedure. The 4L60E Chevy TCM should work with this approach practically universally.