How to Repair Skipping/missing Shift for 04 Impala Transmission




About: Hi All! I like to learn, Period. It does not matter what it is. I then try to pass any and all knowledge that I find and learn to all of you. Which is why this site is perfect for doing so!

I found this info online and decided to share with the people who own a 2004 Impala, or car with this type of transmission. Doing this will save you the $3,000 that the transmission shop or your mechanic will try to charge you to Rebuild or replace your transmission when you tell them that your transmission is skipping/delaying or giving you a engine error code.
This Transmission is for the BONE STOCK Impala. not the LS or SS (sorry guys different transmission)

I got the transgo sk4t65e kit and changed accumulator springs and spacers, works great, really easy to do. drop pan, unbolt accumulator housing, pull out piston, replace spring with ones in kit and reinstall. takes about 160 bucks and about an hour of your time.

Step one buy the kit, go onto Ebay and search transgo sk4t65e kit. If you try to buy one of these at your trans/mechanic shops they will not have it or charge you a arm and a leg for it. On Ebay it cost Around or less than $60.

Go and Get some transmission fluid and a trans filter since you are going to removing all of the old fluid might as well do some preventative maintenance on your car as well as fixing a problem. I also put a drain plug in mine to make changing the fluid easy the next time

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Step 1: How to Repair Skipping/missing Shift for 04 Impala Transmission

This is what the kit will look like. For this instructable you will IGNORE the directions of removing the transmission, we are only going to use the parts that are intended for the First/Second and Second/Third module which is on the BOTTOM of the transmission.

Step 2: How to Repair Skipping/missing Shift for 04 Impala Transmission

Now that you have all the materials

1. drain tranny fluid
2. take off tranny pan , keep the gasket because it is more than likely going to be the reusable type ( metal lined)
3. Unbolt accumulator housing, there are 4 or 5 bolts that mount the accumulator to the tranny, but all of the bolts for the accumulator need to come out sooner or later.
4. It will have 3 lines going to the accumulator housing, they just slip out with a little finesse
6. The bolts are METRIC (6 or 8 for the transmission, and 6 i think for the module)

Step 3: How to Repair Skipping/missing Shift for 04 Impala Transmission

Here is the directions for the section that we are going to work on.

You are going to use the springs and shims, and gaskets if yours are worn out

Step 4: How to Repair Skipping/missing Shift for 04 Impala Transmission

4T65E accumulator removed and disassembled showing 1-2, 2-3 pistons/springs. Now

1. Open up accumulator housing and you will see a gasket, which can be reused, and 2 pistons
2. Pull those out along with the springs, you will reuse the springs on top of the piston, but not below the piston
3. The transgo kit uses 3 springs in the 3rd position along with a shim above and below the piston (It will tell you this in the kit, The springs are color coated and it tells you which colored springs go where so unless you are colorblind you cant mess this part up)
4. 2nd uses 2 springs with a shim below the piston.
5. The rods in which the pistons ride on will fit into the bore at the bottom of the accumulator housing
6. Clean gaskets and bolt everything back together, make sure the 3 lines are secure and fully installed into the housing
7. 8mm bolts - 8 ft lbs(module), 10mm bolts- 18 ft lbs(transmission, I did 12ft lbs, remember this is aluminum which is soft and easy to strip, unlike steel)
8. Now pat yourself on the back for saving $2,800 plus from the transmission shops.

One final note. This fixed my problem (transmission skipping and shifting hard into first/second gear) if you are having problems in fourth gear then you will have to remove your transmission and use the rest of the parts in the kit. now the only problem I have is sometimes it shifts too fast into first gear and wants to haul ass. Better that then the other problem.

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16 Discussions


2 years ago

Mr mfrontuto, if the car revs out in first gear should i also change the shift solenoid as well or will the kit you reccomended do the trick?


3 years ago

Wooo, im bookmarking this and will be doing this to mine in the very near future.

1 reply

Reply 3 years ago

I would also recommend getting the transmission pan that has a drain plug in it already so it would make servicing your transmission less of a mess. They are pretty cheap on eBay now.


3 years ago

Just Double Checking before i do this on my transmission... my car delays every time i step on the gas, it will take about 5 seconds or i kind of have to step slowly on the gas pedal till it gets the gear moving. I would usually drive my car on 3 shift. Just to save the embarrassment by others honking because i ain't moving yet when i get the green light, i would just use 2shift and it would work right way. So mostly its my 4th and 3rd shift but scare that im gonna break down 2nd shift soon if i dont fix my problem. You think this solution would fix my problem?

1 reply

Reply 3 years ago

you should check to see if there any error codes first. if you do not have a OBDII tool that can do that you can buy one, take it to a mechanic, or rent one form an auto parts store. If it is not that then it is most likely your shift solenoid that is bad (common problem) that requires that you remove the transmission to do so (although I have seen a few youtube videos where they do it with the transmission inside of the car still.... even I would not try to do that though .


4 years ago on Introduction

Just picked up a nice black 05 LS. Can you explain more thoroughly please, with comparison to before the upgrade:

"now the only problem I have is sometimes it shifts too fast into first gear and wants to haul ass"

So, when you move from PARK to Drive - it snaps fast into D and then wants to take off even while you're pressing the brakes??

4 replies

Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

Craig: No, when the car is already in drive at a complete stop when I press on the gas it shifts into first gear faster than before due to the stiffer springs nothing too bad, but it does take some getting used to at first


Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

Hi Mike, thanks for the reply....

Ok, so what you're saying is the shift is crisper and faster in duration btw 1st and second, and doesn't hesitate/lag like before the mod - correct? Ok gotcha.

Kinda similar to when I put a Corvette servo in my 4L60E chevy tranny - it makes the shift faster and crisper btw 1-2 shift points.


Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

Craig, you are correct, it just takes some getting used to because the car is sifting differently for me


Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

Also, make sure what type of transmission you have, these impalas have several different types of transmissions that were used with the different engine options and model options for the cars (sotck/LS/SS/LX///ect)


4 years ago on Step 2

My transmission needs to get looked at, but I was hoping I might be able to try and fix it myself before I take it in to the shop. This tutorial is extremely detailed and explains each step very well. Thank you for the tip of taking a picture of the copper hoses. I probably would have ended up killing my transmission.
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1 reply

4 years ago

I think this would be such a fun project. I had to replace the transmission pan on a Saturn L200 when I was in high school. I backed over a cement covert and punched a hole in my transmission pan. The replacement was really similar to this.


6 years ago on Introduction

Hello I recently came across your writeup and it may be what I need. I have 04 impala that basiclly skips 3rd gear. I have a android app called Torque that allows me to view the vital signs of my car via the obd2 port on my cart. While monitoring my car through my phone it says its going into third but there is no change in rpm from 2nd to 3rd. When I am in 4th gear and I manually shift into third there is no change in rpm or sound in engine load. I believe the ecm thanks its going into third but physically its not.Does this sound like what your problem was on your impala? Was yours skipping a gear or just slipping? Thanks in advance.

1 reply

Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

rchavez, mine was slipping because of the faulty springs. but is your car giving an engine error code? even if it is not it could be the shift solienoid that is inside the transmission itself. I recommend trying this fix first before taking it to a transmission shop. before I did this fix to my trans I was told I had to pay $2,000 for a rebuild or new one.


6 years ago on Introduction

@ jostler2013 , glad to hear that your car is up and running again! Yes the teardown and rebuild is quite extensive, the only reason I have not done it yet is because I do not have the right tools/and money. once I do I will post the instructable here. wish I could do it sooner.