Renault Scenic 2001 gearbox worries!
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  1. #1
    Tadpole
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    Default Renault Scenic 2001 gearbox worries!

    Hey Frogsters!
    As well as my lovely 1980 Citroen Dyane, I have a 2001 Renault Scenic with 198,000 kms. We’re getting ready for timing belt replacement (one done at 100,000). It’s developed some gearbox “idiosyncrasies” shall we say! After driving in traffic with stopping and starting, the temp goes up a tad and the gearbox gives a bit of a thump when changing down to first gear Now, when it’s cold in the mornings, it is giving a slight thump changing until it warms up. Any clues as to what is going on. Would a gearbox service be possible or is something major happening? This Scenic has been a great car and I’m not keen to replace it. We live in the Central Goldfields so if we’re going to need gearbox work does anyone know of a business in Ballarat, Bendigo or even Geelong etc or is it off to Melbourne for it?
    Your advice and expertise would be appreciated. Thanks for your time.

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  2. #2
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    Only got repair experience with the AD4. Presumably the innards of yours are much the same? I'd say, it's getting tired. You could try and change the trans fluid and add Lukas Automatic gearbox stuff to it to give the seals a bit more life. Worth a try.
    Otherwise do an overhaul - preferable do it yourself and it won't cost much.
    "The enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it's the illusion of knowledge"
    Stephen Hawking

  3. #3
    1000+ Posts REN TIN TIN's Avatar
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    This is a common problem with the DP0 box (which is similar to the AL4 in the Peugeot and Citroen).
    Is the 'check gearbox' light coming on after the 'thump'?

    The oil is supposed to last the life of the gearbox with only topping up being necessary if some has leaked.
    But the topping up procedure is pretty tedious so it's possible it's been neglected.
    At 198000km it probably has reached it's expected life according to Renault.
    You can try changing the oil but it probably won't do any good and at around $25/litre x 6 litres (including torque converter) is not necessarily a cheap way to find out. The jury is out as to whether gearbox additives will help or harm the box.

    The problem is likely to be one or more of the solenoids and the only real fix is to replace them.
    You can try to fix the solenoids yourself but personally I wouldn't touch it.
    Your workshop would have to be spotless so no dirt of foreign matter get in the box and special tools are supposed to be needed. After reassembly the gearbox computer is supposed to be reprogramed so if you don't have the diagnostic equipment you'll have to take it to a Renault workshop anyway.
    But if you want to give it a go the hydraulic distributor is on the front of the box and is relatively easy (for a Renault) to reach.
    The solenoids aren't too expensive and Chinese knock-offs are around if you like living dangerously.

    Here are some pages from the manual

    107.pdf108.pdf109.pdf110.pdf111.pdf112.pdf113.pdf
    Good luck.
    "I cannot help but notice that there is no problem between us that cannot be solved by your departure. Mark Twain"

  4. #4
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    If the DPO is similar to the the AL4 which is the same as the AD 4 as i understand it - no special tools are needed for a simple overhaul.
    That is: 'Seals, pistons, friction plates.
    I found once i replaced friction plates and made sure the clearances were to spec, the transmission was very smooth changing gears.

    Solenoids are easily checked with a multi meter once out of the transmission. Probably can be checked without taking them out by the dealer with their gadget.

    If the transmission oil change is the same or similar procedure as on the AD4 then i wouldn't worry about being too complicated. A bit of mucking about and you need to check it at a certain fluid temperature (i thing it's about 52 deg. C on the AD4) which is not difficult.
    "The enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it's the illusion of knowledge"
    Stephen Hawking

  5. #5
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    Read up on al4 threads ,my son had a scenic we replaced the trans oil with nulon something ,it made a big difference ,the local elf distributor had oil at a very reasonable price also ,my son reconed that changing the engine oil and french filter made a big difference in the gearchange ,but we couldnt work out why ,make sure you have found loosened the filler plug before you drain the oil ,put the same amount in as came out ,run it for a day or so ,then drain again ,re fill then go through ,procedure with the level plug,when its hot , they defiantly respond to an oil change provided there not stuffed from running old oil or slipping clutches ,you dont have to pay $25/litre for oil ,pugs

  6. #6
    1000+ Posts Haakon's Avatar
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    If yours is a 2 litre, I have a transmission I don't need on the farm near Guildford - just down the road from you.

    It was from a crashed car and has been rebuilt, but not tested. Yours for a relatively nominal fee, one that will at least make it worth the risk of installing it.

    It looks like a recent rebuild and the fluid is clean and clear.

    But - if yours is just thumping a bit, a service is worth a shot first. I think your local COMPETENT mechanic (assuming you have it serviced locally) can do it. Just supply them with the right procedure and its not rocket surgery to change the fluid. Use Penrite ATF FS, which you can get at SuperCheap Auto in Marybourgh.

    ATF FS (Full Syn.)

    Buy 8 litres, have the fluid changed twice in quick succession. If this doesn't make it behave, then you're likely into new gearbox territory - as mentioned at those kilometres and without a history of fluid changes every 40,000 KMs the transmission is likely near the end.
    Last edited by Haakon; 30th August 2015 at 08:14 PM.

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