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October 2021

Everything to Know About the Rebuilt 4L60E Transmission

Rebuilt 4L60E Transmission

Are you having transmission problems? You may be thinking the time is ripe for you to get a brand-new vehicle. However, the benefits of rebuilding your 4L60E transmission cannot be overstated. 

Here’s what you need to know about the 4L60E, why you should consider upgrading/rebuilding the transmission, benefits of a rebuilt 4L60E transmission over buying a brand-new one.

Overview of the 4L60E Transmission

The 4L60E is a four-speed overdrive, automatic shift, and longitudinally positioned transmission that many experts consider to be the best rendition of the greatest overdrive automatic transmission ever made.

But before the 4L60E transmission, there was the popular Turbo 700R4 produced in 1982. The 4L60E has been General Motor’s most successful continuation of the 700R4 – also known as the 4L60 – since 1990.

The 4L60E transmission refers to the electronically (E) shift-controlled version of the 4L60 transmission.

The 4L60E transmission can be easily identified and differentiated from others by its notable, removable bellhousing. It was produced and released in 1996 right behind the .3L V6 engine and more broadly against V8 engines the following year, i.e., 1997.

By 1998, GM phased the 4L60E transmission into full implementation in RWD car platforms as well as trucks in 2WD and 4WD configurations. 

The 4L60E derives its unique designation from its specifications:

  • 4-speed
  • Longitudinally positioned
  • 6000 lbs. GVWR (gross vehicle weight rating)
  • Electronically controlled (even though the transmission is known to see factory service in trucks that weigh up to 8,600 lbs.)

The 4L60E transmission has remarkable strength and is currently the darling of the ever-evolving transmission building aftermarket. It is capable of efficiently transmitting highly impressive power from performance car and truck applications.

General Motors produced high-performance versions of the 4L60E transmission. This was used extensively in several tire scorchers like:

  • The Chevrolet Impala SS
  • Chevrolet Corvette
  • The Pontiac Firebird
  • The Chevy Camaro
  • The Australian-built Pontiac GTO

The 4L60E transmission uses 2 shift solenoids which are utilized for actuating gear changes. They were known as Shift Solenoid A and Shift Solenoid B in early versions of the transmission. The PCM could achieve up to 4 distinct gear ratios by turning them on and off in pre-set patterns.

But they were soon changed to 1-2 Shift Solenoid and 2-3 Shift Solenoid in order to comply with OBDII regulations.


The basic specs of the 4L60E transmission are as follows:

  • Weight: 146 lbs./dry and 162 lbs. wet
  • Fluid capacity: 8.4 quarts (9.64-inch torque converter), 11.4 quarts (11.81-inch torque converter). 4L60E versions with the large cooling circuit or deep pan require up to 14 quarts.

GM focused on taking off the reliance on hydraulic pressure in order to make gear changes. 

Performance and fuel efficiency were significantly improved using a computer that could readily interpret data obtained from speed sensors and swiftly decide the most appropriate period to shift gears using solenoids.

Reasons to Upgrade/Rebuild the 4L60E Transmission

Automatic and manual transmission upgrades can do a lot of good for your vehicle. Starting from a significant increase in acceleration to fully ensuring that your 4L60E transmission components don’t break down when you least expect.

This is the primary reason why many car owners consider efficient transmission upgrades for their system – to make sure that the engine doesn’t generate more torque than the 4L60E transmission can handle.

If this happens, it may result in a considerable breakdown of every transmission component you know, including forks or shafts.

But simple 4L60E transmission upgrades ensure your engine handles more power as well as a highly improved level of performance and average peak power. This ends up providing that extra boost in speed you crave for.

The considerable increase in the level of performance after upgrading your 4L60E transmission is attributed to its enhanced gear ratios. This is where the engine spends much more time within its sweet power spot.

Upgrades are as important for your vehicle’s engine as changing the transmission filter and oil.

Benefits of a Rebuilt 4L60E Transmission

As you already know, most automatic transmissions are expensive. Companies that sell the 4L60E transmissions and others always charge outrageous prices for brand-new ones.

This is mostly because transmissions are constructed with precious metals. Moreover, the manufacturing process is extremely complex.

However, getting a rebuilt alternative is highly recommended instead of spending a fortune on a brand-new 4L60E transmission. Some of the reasons or benefits of getting a rebuilt 4L60E transmission are as follows:

Saves a Lot of Your Hard-Earned Money

A rebuilt 4L60E transmission is not only affordable but also an excellent option over new transmissions.

Most vehicle owners usually have a few misgivings about buying a rebuilt 4L60E transmission. The major question on their minds has to do with the reliability of a rebuilt transmission.

After all, buying a low-priced 4L60E transmission can only imply that it will not deliver a stellar performance compared to a brand-new transmission.

But this is far from the truth. The primary difference between a brand-new 4L60E transmission and a rebuilt one is that the latter is usually made of recycled components. Drivers can also rely heavily on rebuilt 4L60E transmissions because they deliver excellent performance.

Therefore, purchasing a rebuilt 4L60E transmission makes more sense than shelling out thousands of dollars on a brand-new transmission.

It is Eco-Friendly

More people are increasingly growing concerned about the environment, thanks to the green movement. This has made road users more aware of their vehicles’ emissions and how harmful they can be to the environment.

When constructing brand-new transmissions, lots of energy is expended during the process. The environment takes the brunt of this excess energy.

But rebuilding transmissions such as the 4L60E involves using recycled, factory spec components such as springs, new seals, transmission bands, accumulators, clutch discs, etc. 

By installing a rebuilt 4L60E in your vehicle, you play a small part in saving the Earth by contributing to the green environment.

Keep Parts Still in Excellent Working Condition

Rebuilding a 4L60E transmission involves disassembling it and replacing all the damaged, broken, or worn parts with brand-new components.

Every part that is still in excellent working condition is retained. The outcome is a4L60E transmission that is as good as a brand-new factory replacement.

Longer Vehicle Life

When you rebuild your 4L60E transmission, you have automatically extended the useful life of your automobile. This has several financial benefits you can enjoy.

For instance, you can defer interest on debts and car payments when you extend the lifespan of your vehicle just a little longer. Most dealerships pay almost nothing for trucks and cars with faulty transmissions.

But if your automobile still has a functional unit, you can get a lot more money for it whenever you decide to trade it in. 

Overall, extending the lifespan of your automobile is worthwhile and has profound financial benefits for you.


The 4L60E transmission remains one of the most formidable transmissions that GM has produced. Rebuilding a 4L60E – instead of buying a new one – comes with several benefits that you don’t want to pass up. This includes saving lots of money, extending the lifespan of your vehicle, and contributing positively to the environment.

Rebuilding the transmission involves the use of recycled factory components that renews your 4L60E transmission. This is why experts highly recommend that you rebuild your 4L60E transmission instead of purchasing a brand-new one.

Transmission Temperature Gauge: What Is It?

Transmission Temperature Gauge

One of the biggest problems that shorten the lifespan of a transmission unit is overheating. According to automotive experts, overheating alone causes up to 90 percent of automatic transmission failures. 

The primary reason why transmissions overheat is due to their overworked transmission fluid. The fluid that is pressured to work in extremely high heat or is no longer useful is inefficient. Such transmission fluid will be unable to provide the several functions it is responsible for. 

This includes cooling, lubrication, and fluid pressure. All these are essential to the smooth operation of the transmission. Age and heat are the major causes of fluid degradation, which can easily result in more overheating.

Therefore, it is now up to you to ensure there is no overheating. But is there a way to tell precisely how hot a transmission is? The ideal range for fluid temperature is from 175 degrees Fahrenheit to 225 degrees Fahrenheit.

Each 20-degree Fahrenheit drop in fluid temperature helps to multiply the life of your transmission. To answer the question in the previous paragraph, there is a way to measure how hot a transmission is, and that is via the installation of a transmission temperature gauge.

What is a Transmission Temperature Gauge?

A transmission temperature gauge is a mechanical device designed to help you keep track of the operating temperature of your transmission. The device does this by measuring the overall temperature of the transmission fluid.

When you oversee these temperatures, it helps to ensure that your transmission doesn’t overheat. This simply means that there will be zero risk or possibility of major damage occurring.

Why Do You Need a Transmission Temperature Gauge?

As mentioned briefly in the previous section, installing a transmission temperature gauge is the best way to prevent overheating within your transmission unit.

This gauge enables you to carefully monitor the temperature of the transmission without interfering in the latter’s major functions. If the transmission fluid temperature exceeds 225 degrees Fahrenheit, it could lead to severe or major mechanical damage.

But the transmission temperature gauge warns you immediately it senses that the fluid temperature is in excess. Heeding this warning can easily prevent the transmission from getting ruined or damaged.

The transmission temperature gauge is an incredibly helpful tool for most vehicles that come with automatic transmissions. This includes diesel trucks that tow freight or heavy loads over very long distances.

How Does a Transmission Temperature Gauge Work?

Every transmission temperature gauge on the market is electronically driven. They employ the 1/8-27 NPT electronic temperature sensor in order to read and then display your automobile’s transmission temperature. This is only possible when you install this tool directly in your transmission’s test port.

Installing the transmission temperature gauge allows you to see the precise temperatures your truck or car’s transmission temperatures are. This is appropriate for individuals with heavy-duty or more performance-oriented vehicles. 

However, this does not imply that you cannot install a transmission temperature gauge in your regular daily driver.

The transmission temperature gauge shows you how warm your temperatures are. This vital information should make you pull over before they get too high. This will save your transmission as well as provide additional insurance since you understand where your transmission temperatures are.

How to Install a Transmission Temperature Gauge

When you get your hands on an aftermarket transmission temperature gauge kit, you will notice that it comes with the following:

  • The gauge itself
  • The transmission temperature sensor
  • The sending unit
  • Terminals 
  • Typical wiring, depending on the exact type of temperature gauge you purchased
  • The mounting hardware
  • Installation instructions

Some transmission temperature gauge kits do not provide wire. Therefore, ensure you check beforehand.

During installation, it is expedient to mount the transmission temperature gauge on the gauge pod specific to your automobile or a universal mount.

As soon as you figure out the mounting location, you will have to run the wires in order to power the gauge – i.e. if it is a digital gauge – as well as its lighting.

You can do this in several ways, though the most common method is to splice into an existing 12-volt power source and then ground.

Installing The Transmission Temperature Sensor

Installing the transmission temperature gauge is pretty straightforward. However, installing the temperature sensor will require the assistance of a specialist. This is because the installation is a complicated process, though it depends primarily on your application.

Most transmission temperature sensors are usually installed by screwing them into a bung of some sort. You can do this in several ways.

Each installation procedure varies in complexity. This depends significantly on how skillful you are, so you should leave this aspect to the professionals.

In most cases, the transmission temperature sensor kit is usually installed in the transmission’s port, the pan itself, or within the actual transmission line with a T fitting.

Some of the Best Transmission Temperature Gauge

The size of a typical transmission temperature gauge is 2 1/16 inches. It perfectly fits right into most vehicle gauge or universal pods.

The following are some of the top-notch aftermarket transmission temperature gauges on the market today:

  • Autometer Cobalt 6157 – Analog Transmission Temperature Gauge
  • Elite 10 Color Transmission Temperature Gauge
  • Glow Shift 10 Color Digital – 300 Degree Transmission Temperature Gauge
  • Tinted 7 Color Transmission Temperature Gauge
  • Intellitronix MS9107G LED Digital Transmission Temperature Gauge
  • 10 Color Digital Celsius Transmission Temperature Gauge
  • Autometer Sport Comp 2257 – 100-250 F
  • GlowShft Digital LED Transmission Temperature Gauge
  • MaxTow Double Vision 260 F Transmission Temperature Gauge
  • Derale 3009 Oil Temperature Gauge Kit

It doesn’t matter if you go off-roading, use a truck for towing other vehicles, or want only to monitor the transmission temperatures in your daily driver. The transmission temperature gauges highlighted are some of the best-rated, high-quality products on the market today.


Knowing the overall condition of your automobile’s high-performance transmission is crucial. It helps in ensuring that your vehicle delivers incredibly high performances at all times or when required.

There is no better device or indicator of the status of your automatic transmission than the overall temperature of the fluid. The latter ensures consistent performance as well as component durability.

The transmission temperature gauge allows you to effectively and safely track the temperature of the fluid in the transmission.

What Is Transmission Slipping? Signs To Look Out For

Transmission Slipping - Gearstar

Transmission slipping must be dealt with as soon as possible in order to avoid major repairs. Learn what to look out for.

The transmission is responsible for converting power from the car engine into motion for the vehicle to move. Vehicles come with a manual or automatic transmission. If you drive a car with an automatic transmission, the gears change for you while you may have to put a car with manual transmission into gear via its gear selector.

However, one of the common problems associated with transmissions is known as a slipping transmission. This article covers what transmission slipping means, its causes, signs to watch out for, how to prevent the problem, etc.

Transmission slipping: What does it mean?

Transmission slipping refers to a situation in which your vehicle slips into gear without corresponding to its current speed. This can be discomfiting and troubling. In many cases, it is a signal that your vehicle needs thorough maintenance. This is why it is usually risky to leave your transmission unchecked.

What causes transmission slipping?

The following situations or conditions may cause your transmission to start slipping:

  • Solenoid problems
  • Worn-out gears
  • Broken or worn transmission bands
  • Burned, low, or worn-out transmission fluid
  • Clutch problems
  • Torque converter issues

Signs of transmission slipping to look out for

As with most automotive issues, the earlier you deal with it, the more successful you will be at avoiding major repairs. The longer you put off fixing your slipping transmission, the more damage you will likely compound. This will eventually cost you lots of your hard-earned money to fix.

This is why this section deals with the signs to look out for to inform you that your transmission may be slipping:

Unauthorized switching of gears

One of the signs that reveal that your transmission is slipping is that your vehicle suddenly and unexpectedly switches gears as you drive. In some cases, a change in pitch or a noise accompanies the unauthorized switching of gears.

If your car switches gear out of the blue while driving, it can be a potentially life-threatening situation. This implies that your car is unreliable and may start shaking.

When your vehicle feels sluggish

If your car is not accelerating as quickly as it should or feels somewhat sluggish, you could have a slipping transmission problem on your hands. It may also have other issues related to your transmission. This is why you should waste no time in having your vehicle checked by a professional mechanic.

Inability to change gears smoothly

Another symptom or sign of a slipping transmission is when your vehicle finds it difficult to change gears smoothly. You will hear a thud or clunk as your automobile goes down or up in gears.

When there is a delay before movement

If you experience a delay before your car starts moving, it could signify that your transmission has slipped.

As soon as the gear shift moves from ‘Park’ to ‘Drive,’ a long lag ensues before your vehicle starts moving. During this period, the car engine revs but goes nowhere.

When the clutch stops working

This is for those who drive manual transmission vehicles. When you depress the clutch pedal, and nothing happens, your clutch assembly may have been damaged, or something could be wrong with the transmission system.

When the transmission fluid leaks

When you notice a red fluid on your garage floor, coupled with some of the symptoms shared earlier, your transmission may have a problem.

This is because when there is a transmission fluid leak, it results in a slipping transmission.

Is it safe to drive your vehicle when the transmission is slipping?

When you have a transmission slipping issue, it is not safe to drive that vehicle. This is because the safety of the vehicle is highly unpredictable. It can slip into different gears without giving you any warning, shake, or even cause severe damage.

Therefore, get your vehicle checked out immediately when you observe the signs or symptoms of a slipping transmission.

How to prevent transmission slipping

You can prevent transmission slipping. But you need to be sure that fluid leaks or worn-out bands are not behind the problem. If this is the case, you may have to replace either the worn-out gears, the solenoids, the clutch, or the torque converter.

Any of these repairs will cost you a lot of money, especially if a transmission specialist handles it for you. Having an older vehicle will not be in your favor, and this is why you should check out every other possibility first.

Your automobile’s onboard diagnostic computer can inform you of the problem if you own a newer vehicle. This is true if the problem the solenoid is behind the transmission problem.

However, if your newer vehicle transmits error codes, ensure you check them out first in order to determine what they tell you about your transmission’s status. 

If you still can’t pinpoint the problem, consider examining the transmission bands. Replace any worn or broken transmission band. If you have to replace a single band, then ensure you replace them all. This is to prevent dealing with this particular issue within the next few weeks or months.

You can also get right under your hood to confirm the level of your transmission fluid. Ensure the fluid is at its correct level.

If the transmission fluid level is lower than it should be, try and locate the primary source of the leakage. You may find that a seal is loose or discover holes in one of the fluid lines. The transmission pan can also spring a leak, or you may have a faulty transmission pan gasket.

If you are a keen DIYer, you can replace these faulty parts on your own. However, if you discover a cracked torque converter, you may have to invite professionals for a look-see and in-depth repairs.

Identify the origin or source of the leakage and fix it as soon as possible. You can also consider adding an excellent transmission leak sealing solution the next time you refill the transmission fluid.


If your transmission is slipping, you can easily get tempted to make attempts at fixing it on your own. But if you are inexperienced or feel uncomfortable working on your transmission, the best decision you can make is to allow a transmission specialist to handle the repairs for you.

Transmission specialists have the tools and experience to detect the causes behind the slipping of the transmission. Once they diagnose the problem, they can quickly fix it within a short period, and you can get back to your day-to-day lifestyle.

Why You Should Consider a Custom Transmission

Custom Transmission - Gearstar

A custom transmission has many benefits including top-notch performance and long term benefits. Learn more about the perks.

A vehicle transmission is one of the most crucial components of any automobile. It is responsible for moving the power from the car engine to the wheels. There are two major types of transmissions: automatic and manual transmissions you see in stick-shift vehicles. The latter requires the car driver to complete a few steps so that the vehicle operates effectively.

However, suppose you are currently in the market for a car transmission. In that case, you will be faced with two options: get a brand-new OEM transmission or get your damaged transmission professionally rebuilt.

When rebuilding your transmission, the transmission specialist takes it apart and carefully inspects every component, looking for signs of wear, tear, damage, or other issues. Every worn or damaged component will be replaced, and the entire unit cleaned thoroughly.

The transmission specialist then carefully rebuilds the transmission and reinstalls it in your drag racer, muscle car, truck, or SUV. This is a labor-intensive process that demands extraordinary attention to detail.

A brand-new OEM transmission purchased from the vehicle manufacturer seems like an excellent idea. But unless you have very deep pockets – both for the purchase, installation, and tuning of the transmission system – that option may not be for you. 

On the other hand, custom car transmissions – i.e., a car transmission that professionals have carefully rebuilt – may not look so appealing to you. Still, the benefits of going for this option are long-term.

Why You Should Opt for A Custom Transmission Over Buying a Brand-New One

Here’s why you should consider a custom car transmission over purchasing and installing a brand-new one in your muscle car or drag racer:

Superior Performance

Refurbished or used transmissions nearly always come with one form of internal damage or the other, as well as multiple Band-Aid fixes or repairs. Since they are mostly price-friendly, you may easily get tempted to purchase the refurbished or used transmission as soon as possible.

However, you may be exposing your vehicle – and yourself – to a lot of risks. There is a good chance that the used or refurbished transmission may not work seamlessly with your vehicle.

This is why it makes sense to settle for a transmission rebuild of your original car transmission. Custom transmissions guarantee superior performance and smooth operation, making your automobile sound and move like it is brand new.

Less Financial Strain

The upfront costs of rebuilding a vehicle transmission may seem un-pocket-friendly. But the truth is that the money you will save in the long run will be worth it in the end.

For instance, you won’t have to keep paying technicians a lot of money to combat problems or ongoing issues. Repairing transmissions over and over again can lower their value over time.

But this is not the case with a transmission you rebuild for your truck or car. If you eventually sell the vehicle, the custom transmission will have a warranty that enhances its value in the prospective buyer’s mind.

Eliminate Worries

The primary purpose of rebuilding a transmission is to make it run like it is brand-new, i.e., the way it came straight out of the factory. 

This means replacing every damaged or worn component – including bolts, nuts, etc. – while the still-good working parts undergo a thorough cleaning, oiling, and re-installation.

This is why you should work with a reputable mechanic shop or technician proficient in rebuilding a transmission from the ground up. You will enjoy the inner peace that comes with knowing that you won’t have to worry about buying or fixing your custom transmission.

Extended Vehicle Lifespan

A faulty transmission that is not functioning properly puts a lot of strain on other drivetrain and powertrain components. Weak transmissions also negatively affect the engine, differentials, cooling system, axles, transfer case, exhaust, suspension, and wheels.

When a pro rebuilds your transmission, it runs like a brand-new gear mechanism. This helps protect other parts of your vehicle and extends the lifespan of your truck, SUV, or car.

Retain The Transmission Originally Designed For Your Vehicle

Keeping the same transmission system originally designed for your car is the #1 benefit of sticking to a custom gear system. 

Nearly all vehicles come with a transmission that is originally designed and tuned mechanically to work with the engine and the overall drivetrain system.

Rebuilding a custom-made transmission costs far less than purchasing and installing a brand-new transmission system obtained from the vehicle manufacturer.

If you also buy a refurbished or used transmission, you will save a lot of money. However, you will also be assuming many additional risks since you may not know the condition or history of that used or refurbished transmission. There’s also an excellent chance that it may not perfectly fit your vehicle.

This may lead to incurring additional costs for repairs over time, or you may have to go through the rigors of returning it and getting another one. This will not only waste a lot of your time but will also cost you a lot of money.

This is why getting your original car transmission professionally rebuilt by specialists is an excellent, cost-efficient option.

Increase Transmission Lifespan By Replacing Parts

You can enhance the lifespan of your vehicle transmission by replacing damaged or faulty components instead of repairing them.

When you replace the parts with new ones, it gives new life to your transmission, and this helps to boost the lifespan of your transmission.

It is important to state that you should not work with technicians that quickly cut corners on the job. This will either ruin the overall performance of your transmission or significantly reduce its performance.

This can easily result in minor or extensive damages long before hitting the average life marker.

Therefore, work only with reputable technicians and ensure you take proper care of your transmission. This includes getting the transmission checked by professionals from time to time.


As you can see, the overall long-term benefits of opting for a custom transmission far outweigh purchasing a brand-new OEM transmission. 

Not only are you retaining the use of the original transmission custom-made for your vehicle, but you will also have a profound peace of mind, knowing that you will enjoy the use of your car for a long time.

You will also save lots of your hard-earned money over time and continue to experience the top-notch performance of your drag racer or muscle car.

The rebuilt transmission always comes with warranties, ensuring that you will get your money’s worth out of the automotive unit.