Question on transmission for 2004 Impala


Asked by Oct 28, 2010 at 01:30 PM about the 2004 Chevrolet Impala Base

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

I have a 2004 Impala base model, 3.4L V6.  Love the car, great fuel econony, sooo comfortable on the highway, but, there seems to be a problem with the transmission.  After driving for an hour or so, if I'm stuck in traffic particularly and am coasting between first and second gear, I find the transmission shifts every abrupty.  The car literally jerks when it changes from first to second, and I also feel an abruptness to it when it downshifts from second to first.  Doesn't seem to do it at high speeds, and it doesn't do it from cold start-off - its always like after an hour running.   Have any of you Impala owners experienced this and can advise me what it is and what to do about it?  

8 Answers


transmission is going bad. Have it replaced if you want it fixed. Otherwise ignore it, it could work another 100,000 miles before it stops working. you've checked your transmission fluid level right?


Yup, fluid levels are as they should be. You've experienced this? Absolutely no way around this?

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Hi there I leave in Israel and I have a 2005 Impala bought 3 months ago. I noticed that when the geat is hot (hot I mean at working temperature) there are harsh shifts, especially noticed between 2-3 and 1-2 upward shifting. When the gear was cold shifts were all very smooth. I wasn't happy with those none-smooth shifts and I wanted to know if it means that the gear is in bad shape so I took the car to some repair shop that I know over here, just as I moved in and told the guy there about the problem, he answered immidiately that probably the pressure control solenoid in the gear is not working and should be replaced, he told me that a lot of Impalas suffer this problem (in Israel there is only the 00-05 version) and that the original GM solenoid is bad and the replacement one is made by Bosch. I replaced that solenoid in the repair shop and since then the gear shift are smooth as silk. :) You can get it here: There is also a transgo springs kit that is also related and deny such harsh shifts even if by chance the pressure solenoid isn't keeping pressure so correctly. I know at least 3 other guys here with Impalas that had same problem, 2 replaced the solenoid and the 3rd guy replaced also the transgo kit. All are happy with the gear shifting. Replacing the solenoid is a lot of work, relatively but the trnasgo kit is easier. I suggest you to replace that solenoid first, it will probably solve your problem. Good luck

6 out of 6 people think this is helpful.

HI i have the same car as you and some what going Thur the same thing i have 215,000+ miles i been having it for 7 years now and this is the first problem i ever had from it do you think i should get a new transmission are get a new car. when it runs it runs then it seams like it jumps from D to N and stop pulling


To queenera9. Hi, I still have this car and I still have the problem. Other people on this forum here have suggested it is the pressure control solenoid. I've heard many people say this actually - I just haven't had it serviced yet. I have a friend who has a 2003 Impala same as mine and its doing the same thing to him. He has over 250,000km on his car and I asked him the question - he said he was told it was the solenoid, but his attitude is - I've driven it this far, just put up with it. I wouldn't say get rid of the car becuase of it, its still has a lot going for it. I'll probably get the solenoid fixed eventually when I can budget for it.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.
Joe Chlystun

hi, all you have to do is put in a Shift kit. Use a "trans go" kit or any of the other ones that are recommended for you vehicle. What you car is doing is the computer sense's a "Long" shift which is a slightly slow shift into the next gear. it usually only happens in city and stop and go traffic. after each Long shift it raises ATF pressure until it eventually Maxes out pressure. The computer will reset iteslf after you turn the car off but the Hard shifts will return after another 20 minutes or so of city traffic. The solution is putting in a shift kit. It's pretty easy to install. Just take off your transmission pan as if you would do when you change your ATF fluid. and then you will see your accumualtor. all you really need to do is is put shims in between the pistons. It will dramatically increase shift speed and thus won't trigger you cars computer to max out transmission pressure.

6 out of 6 people think this is helpful.

I had the same problem, but I replaced the front top engine mount braces and the y arms with bushing and the problem was solved because one of the bushings on the brace was cracked and worn allowing the torque to be felt more than usual. Cost me $75 on ebay and 30 minutes of my time. there a video on that shows you how to replace them yourself.


I also went ahead and replaced the engine and transmission mounts to further address this issue and made a huge difference in the hard shift that is being experienced by Impala drivers as the mounts either wear out in 5 years or 80k miles. My car had 109k miles when all the engine and transmission mounts were replaced and corrected the "hard shift" issue and also did a transmission service and transmission flush to ensure that the transmission would smoothly shift on its own during the drive.

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