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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Background info: '07 Caliber SXT with CVT and 77K miles on it. The trans temp light came on first during almost idle like conditions in cold weather and trans wouldn't go over 25 mph. I shut it down and let it cool down. Dealer found a hose from the trans cooler leaking small amounts of fluid. The fluid would not always leak (but I did see green drips of CVT fluid on the snow) and the light would not always come on either. I have had the hose replaced and also the CVT fluid and filter replaced by dealer, if they are not liars... I don't trust dealers. I also had the latest trans computer updates installed.

I have had the car back for 4 days now and just today I seen the light come on for a split second and trans lost power while light was on, then light went off and trans recovered power/speed.

I've read where it could be caused by:

1. Bad PCM powertrain control module. - under dash on driverside
2. Bad sensor inside trans
3. Clogged trans cooler

Can any of you help direct me in correcting this problem?
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Wow, 45 people read this post and have nothing to add to it.

I have something to add. I believe that I've ruled out any bad sensor or defective PCM.

I have noticed that when my engine temp reaches one mark below the halfway mark - see arrow in attached picture, my trans temp light tends to come on which triggers the trans to go in to limp mode. What does my engine temp have to do with my trans temp you ask. Well the two radiators are located close enough to each other that heat off one can affect the other.

I believe that the trans cooler radiator after 60K miles/time on it does not cool as it did when it was new. I have been running my cabin fan and heat on HIGH to keep my engine temp as low as I can - see attached picture.

To help support my theory: I read on a different forum that a customer had a transmission replaced under warrenty only to have the new one go out shortly thereafter. Then the dealer replaced that transmission with another new one but this time also replaced the trans cooler too with no further problems. It was only after reading that story that I started looking close at my engine temp vs. trans temp light.

Does anyone know of an aftermaket trans cooler that would work as a replacement?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Please close or delete this thread.

The dealer said there is no problem so I traded it in.
 

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OK, I'm new here and registered just to answer this post

I bought a 07 Caliber with a CVT recently and had the temp light come on and it went into failsafe mode. When I got it home I scanned it with my SnapOn scanner and checked the transmission temp. I found that when the transmission was at 270 degrees the temp of the oil pan and transmission case around it was at 210 degrees.

I tried to get a new temp sensor but was told that they are not a serviceable item. I decided to do some research and I checked the resistance of the sensor at 200 degrees. I determined that a 150 ohm resistor added to the circuit would put the temp signal close to its actual temperature.

I added the resistor and ran the car again. The scanner showed trans temp at 190 degrees and I checked the temp of the fluid and surrounding area. It was 205 degrees. I left the resistor in place and took the car out and beat the crap out of it. I ran 75-80 mph on Interstate 29 for about 40 miles and monitored the temperature. It got to 205 degrees on the scanner and the temp of the fluid and transmission was not over 225. Previous to this the temp light came on after 20 miles at 70 mph.

I have been driving this car for about 3k miles on the highway and city and have not had the temp light come back on and there are no ill effects from the modification.

The temp circuit is a red wire with a white band and you will find it in the round connector at the transmission. If you cut the wire the computer will show the trans temp at around -40 degrees. In my case a 150 ohm 1/2 watt resistor did the trick. You should check your actual temp against what a scanner would show.

FWIW, before this modification the car would lose it's throttle calibration meaning it would hesitate taking off from a stop after it was hot. I first recalibrated it by turning on the ignition switch and then holding the gas pedal to the floor for about 20 seconds, then I would let off the pedal for another 20 seconds and turn the ignition off. When I restarted the car it would be back to normal. Since the modification I have not had a throttle calibration error.

For those who are having these problems it would probably be worth the time and effort to make this mod. What else to you have to lose except the money to replace a transmission. FWIW...
 

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This is an old thread, but my daughter's car has the same issue. Does anyone have pictures of resistor modification? She is going away to school. Car has been great except highway speeds. If we travel long distance the car has to stop about every 1.5 hour or so and sit for about 20 minutes. Around town, stop and go driving is never a problem. Only happens at highway speeds. You would think highway miles would be cooler running conditions. Anyway, I ordered some resistors, figured I'd give it a try. May have to buy her another car for school and I drive the Caliber around town. Thx
 

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Each sensor goes bad in its own way. My application took a 150 ohm resistor. Without a scanner that can give you accurate readings from the temp sensor it will be a guess as to how close it is. I am not really convinced the temp sensor is really necessary. 150 ohms should suffice. I did not take any pictures. I cut the red wire with the white band and soldered the resistor to the ends and taped it up. It's been two years now and the transmission is still functioning ok and no over temp problems. There was a reason that Chrysler was bankrupt back then and crap like this transmission issue is one of them. The fact that the temp sensor is not a serviceable item was a stupid move on their part. I wonder how many perfectly good transmissions got replaced/rebuilt over this defective electrical item.
 

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I would like to ask you a question regarding the fix with the 150 ohm resistor. The round switch where is it located from the bottom of the trans or do I need to take the battery out and air cleaner. I bought a soldering gun and resistor but I cant seem to find the switch your talking about. please help me.
 

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The sensor is inside the transmission. What I am talking about is the round electrical plug on the outside of the transmission. It is on the left side of the transmission about half way up the side as you are sitting in the driver seat. You can get to it from the bottom. You may have to remove a plastic splash panel if necessary. Once you find the connector and have it where you can get to the harness open it up and locate the red wire with the white stripe. Cut the wire and solder the resistor into the circuit. That should take care of the temp light. Again as I stated above. Each sensor will probably fail at a different electrical value. Without a scanner and a thermal heat gun you won't know for sure but I don't think it will really matter. Good luck with your repair. Ray

Edit to add: I sold the car a few months ago and it's still going strong. Well, at least the transmission is. :)
 

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I have the same issue in my daughters car and had it checked by a mechanic shop and said my tranny is good and no leaks etc..
Can some show me or tell where to find a resistor your talking about?
Thank you
 

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if you have an electronics store nearby you can get one there, with mine I used a in line 1 watt 150 ohm resistor, i noticed that some have used a 1/2 watt 150 ohm , I ordered mine from someone on ebay, about 2.99 for 10 of them so they are not very expensive
 

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OK, I'm new here and registered just to answer this post

I bought a 07 Caliber with a CVT recently and had the temp light come on and it went into failsafe mode. When I got it home I scanned it with my SnapOn scanner and checked the transmission temp. I found that when the transmission was at 270 degrees the temp of the oil pan and transmission case around it was at 210 degrees.

I tried to get a new temp sensor but was told that they are not a serviceable item. I decided to do some research and I checked the resistance of the sensor at 200 degrees. I determined that a 150 ohm resistor added to the circuit would put the temp signal close to its actual temperature.

I added the resistor and ran the car again. The scanner showed trans temp at 190 degrees and I checked the temp of the fluid and surrounding area. It was 205 degrees. I left the resistor in place and took the car out and beat the crap out of it. I ran 75-80 mph on Interstate 29 for about 40 miles and monitored the temperature. It got to 205 degrees on the scanner and the temp of the fluid and transmission was not over 225. Previous to this the temp light came on after 20 miles at 70 mph.

I have been driving this car for about 3k miles on the highway and city and have not had the temp light come back on and there are no ill effects from the modification.

The temp circuit is a red wire with a white band and you will find it in the round connector at the transmission. If you cut the wire the computer will show the trans temp at around -40 degrees. In my case a 150 ohm 1/2 watt resistor did the trick. You should check your actual temp against what a scanner would show.

FWIW, before this modification the car would lose it's throttle calibration meaning it would hesitate taking off from a stop after it was hot. I first recalibrated it by turning on the ignition switch and then holding the gas pedal to the floor for about 20 seconds, then I would let off the pedal for another 20 seconds and turn the ignition off. When I restarted the car it would be back to normal. Since the modification I have not had a throttle calibration error.

For those who are having these problems it would probably be worth the time and effort to make this mod. What else to you have to lose except the money to replace a transmission. FWIW...
Hello, I know this is an old post, I have 2010 Dodge Caliber that is in a good condition but have this annoying problem. I am keeping this car for sentimental value, plus I’m a little cheap 😅

can you tell me how do you check the trans oil actual and sensed temperatures. I really want to make your modification but I live in a very hot and arid part of the world. If I allow the oil to get too hot I’m afraid to blow up my transmission! I installed an additional auxiliary transcooler but it didn’t solve this problem. I’m excited to give your method a go
 
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