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  1. #1
    New Member juan's Avatar
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    26 Nov 2011
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    Saab(s)
    saab 9-3 combi sport tdi 1.9

    Auto transmission - slipping from 2nd to 3rd gear

    just bought a 2007 saab 9-3 combi sport tdi 1.9, had the transmission service and it starts playing up, slipping when go from 2nd to 3rd gear, the service center told me it could cause software, it may need to have it updated and said that the unit is all boxed in, nothing much can be checked.
    and does it need to take 20 minutes to update the software?. and is it possible to check what level of software it is running?.

    HELP

  2. #2
    Mike
    Moderator Shazam's Avatar
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    30 Jul 2010
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    Saab(s)
    1973 96
    I haven't heard of updating the software for something like this. But then again, my newest car is 16 years old. I also can't imagine a software issue causing it to slip.

    My guess would be the fluid level. Check the level for that. I would assume it has a dipstick to check it, but I'm unsure on this model. If it's low, top it off. Also, give it a sniff and also see what color it is. It shouldn't smell burnt and it shouldn't be dark brown. If it is, drain it and fill it back up. Drive around for a couple hundred miles, drain it and fill it back up. Drive around for a couple hundred more miles, drain it and fill it back up. You should do it at least three times because you cannot drain all the ATF (automatic transmission fluid) at once. Lots of it gets trapped in other parts of the transmission. So three times is the most recommended.

    Lets see what people with the newer cars say though, as I could be wrong about the software. And lets see if we can't get this moved to the 9-3 forum.

    Good luck!
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  3. #3
    New Member juan's Avatar
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    Saab(s)
    saab 9-3 combi sport tdi 1.9
    Thanks, I have driven the car for the last few days myself try to understand the issue - it is my wife's car. the car had service ( replacing ATF ) recently and it starts playing up, drive the car for 8-10 miles and problem start when going up hill ( most of the times ) trying to go to 2rd gear or third , engine just rip up without engaging till let go of gas, sound like not enough fluid, but there is no warning alarm and no dipstick to check fluid level.....

  4. #4
    Frank Wulfers
    Roving Adventurer Wulf's Avatar
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    30 Jul 2010
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    '05 Saab 9-5 Aero
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    I added the instructions for checking the ATF level here: Saab 9-3 automatic transmission, fluid level check / adjust

    It sure sounds like a low level of ATF. Was this work performed at a Saab dealer or other qualified mechanic? Did they use the correct type of fluid?

  5. #5
    Regular Member colombo's Avatar
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    21 Nov 2010
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    Brussels, Belgium
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    117
    Saab(s)
    2003 9 Arc
    I did not know the diesels had the same issue, but for sure the "2nd to 3rd slip" is a known problem with the petrol models. And typically they (Saab garages) are trying to cure it with software updates. But on mine, the software updates has not cured the problem. I have decided to live with it, because if they don't know a fix then it is maybe difficult to find a fix...

  6. #6
    New Member Cafasco's Avatar
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    13 Jan 2011
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    Eagle, ID
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    Saab(s)
    2008 9-3 SS 2.0T
    Yeah sounds like really low fluid to me, particularly if happens going up hill. I'd say whom ever did the service missed something, which makes me wonder if they even used the right fluid. I would not drive it until you get the fluid level correct. It should take Toyota ATF T-IV. There is a large drain plug at bottom of the AT unit. If you unbolt and drain out the ATF into a bucket, it takes 3.75 qts to refill. There is a little green dipstick between the radiator and the AT unit. It's a pain to get to but it is there. DO NOT OVER FILL!

 

 

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