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How to put an automatic car in neutral with a broken transmission? Answered

I have a van that has a broken transmission. I want to take it to the scrap yard to get it out of here. In order to do that I need it to be in neutral so I can move it. When I put the key in and shift it into neutral or any other gear, it doesn't do anything, It shifts smoothly.... not like a normal car. So my question is: How can I shift it into neutral without using the shift lever? Under the hood?

It's a chrysler 1999 van



Best Answer 6 years ago

Is it a minivan with front wheel drive or a full sized van with real wheel drive?

If it is front wheel drive then from your description it sounds like the linkage is broken and not the transmission. You can reach down to the transmission and manually move the selector. Its pretty easy to do.

If it is real wheel drive you might have to disconnect the drive shaft. That also is a pretty easy job.

Fill in the gaps and I can tell you more. I have a Chrysler minivan and have worked on it a lot. Actually I have 3 of them because I use 2 of them for spare parts. You might be able to sell yours as a part vehicle depending on where you live.


Answer 6 years ago

It is a front wheel drive mini van, I don't know what it is, but I've located a cable that has a spring on it, and it is connected to a piece of metal that I believe is connected to the transmission. (when I look at the same part on my 2002 Chrysler mini van it clicks back every time I shift p, r, n....) Is that the linkage? It doesn't move at all on the 1999. You said that I could reach down and manually shift it, Where on the transmission is that?
Thanks a lot.


Answer 6 years ago

From the description I believe that you have the right part. If it is like the older models its on the top of the transmission underneath the battery tray. You have to reach through the cables and hoses to get to it. If the linkage cable is broken you should be able to flip (rotate) the lever with your hand. From the description of your being able to move the indicator in the car freely I think that is what the problem is. However it could also be a broken transmission in which case it might just rotate and do nothing or it might be frozen in place.
I actually had mine get stuck in low once. I went past drive and into low by accident and then could not get it back out. I reached down and manually flipped the lever on the transmission and that took care of it, it never did it again.
If you can get it into neutral don't tow it that way for any distance. It will definitely wreck the transmission for good. You can rent a dolly for a few bucks or like the others suggest find someone who might be interested in it.


6 years ago

If the brakes & lights will work: tow it, you must be able to find a friend who can give you a pull?
Or E-bay the thing and have the buyer collect it for you.