6L80 Transmission FAQ | Frequently Asked Questions

  • Learn about common 6L80 transmission problems
  • Everything you need to know when shopping for a 6L80 transmission for sale
  • How and when to buy a remanufactured 6L80 transmission

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Who makes the 6L80 transmission?

First introduced in 2005, the 6L80 transmission is a 6-speed automatic gearbox that is made by General Motors at their Willow Run transmission factory in Ypsilanti Michigan, and at their transmission plant in Toledo, Ohio. They are designed for RWD and AWD/4WD applications, and feature clutch-to-clutch operation with a wide gear ratio for optimum performance and efficiency.

What vehicles have 6L80 transmission?

A number of popular GM vehicles have the 6L80 transmission, including the Cadillac Escalade, Chevrolet Silverado 1500, Chevrolet Camaro, Chevrolet Suburban, Chevrolet Tahoe, GMC Sierra 1500, and GMC Yukon.

How good is the 6L80 transmission?

In response to the question ‘how reliable is the 6L80 transmission?’, the answer partly depends on how well the transmission is maintained. A number of 6L80 transmission problems can occur however, including slipping and failure of reverse gear. For more information on 6L80 transmission problems, click here.

How strong is a 6L80 transmission?

If you were wondering how much HP can a 6L80 handle? This transmission is designed to handle as much as 440 lb-ft of engine torque and 664 lb-ft of output torque. That’s obviously quite a lot of power, which is why the 6L80 transmission is used in high-performance applications like the Chevy Camaro and Chevy Corvette. 

What is the difference between 6L80 and 6L90 transmission?

The main difference between the 6L80 transmission and 6L90 transmission is the strength of the internal components. The 6L90 transmission case is 1-3/8” longer, which provides extra room to house two additional pinion gears (6 total). There’s also strengthened input and output gearsets, and heavy duty applications receive one more clutch plate in each clutch pack. All of these changes increase the 6L90 maximum output torque rating to 885 lb-ft, and the GCVW jumped to 21,000 lbs. 

How much does a 6L80 transmission weigh?

The 6L80 transmission has a dry weight of 195 lbs, and can weigh as much as 230 lbs when filled with the recommended amount of Dexron VI transmission fluid.

6L80E Transmission Problems & Solutions

Reverse Fails to Engage – If you’ve selected Reverse and your vehicle still won’t move, then it’s possible the park prawl (the metal piece that stops your vehicle from rolling), or one of the clutches has become damaged.

Slipping Between Gears – If you experience slipping in reverse, or between 2-3, then it’s very likely that the 1-2-3-3/5-R drum has developed a crack, which will require an entirely new drum and bearing.

Slipping in First Gear – If you have difficulty getting your vehicle to move from a dead stop, then it’s possible that one of the solenoids is stuck in the ‘off’ position, or there’s a problem inside of the valve body.

If you’re having 6L80E transmission problems, you’re going to want the most economical solution. A rebuilt 6L80E transmission will only have a certain number of components that get replaced. So the service life is limited, and the warranty will only last 1-2 years. A used 6L80E transmission is pulled from a wrecked vehicle, so there’s no telling what may be wrong with it, or how long it will last. A remanufactured 6L80E transmission on the other hand, is completely remanufactured, and it’s designed to exceed the manufacturer’s original specifications. That way you get a longer service life, along with a 3-year/Unlimited Mile Nationwide Warranty.’

Remanufactured 6L80 Transmission Updates and Upgrades

GM designed the 6L80 transmission to be able to handle high horsepower/torque applications. However, they can often wear out prematurely. To correct the many design flaws of this gearbox, Street Smart Transmission upgrades and modifies many of the key internal components during the remanufacturing process. Some of these improvements include:

 

  • A remanufactured valve body that’s been upgraded with system correction and recalibration kits
  • An upgrade transmission pump with machined pump body mating surfaces and a resurfaced pump rotor to maintain proper fluid pressure
  • To prevent front seal leaks, premature bushing wear, and vibration, all remanufactured 6L80E torque converters come with an updated stator support shaft and seal rings, then each is fully tested for leaks, concentricity, lockup and balance
  • To improve holding capacity, an upgrade 38-element low sprag is used
  • To bring the control software up to date, the Transmission Control Module is reflashed to include the latest calibrations based on the VIN number
  • To improve fluid pressure and internal fluid flow control, upgraded bushings are installed
  • All the bushings and machined surfaces get polished to a mirror-like finish of at least 15 RA
  • Each remanufactured 6L80E transmission receives a complete system correction and recalibration kit, including updated servos, valve body accumulators, and PR system components