- Learn about common Hummer H3 transmission problems
- How and when to buy a remanufactured Hummer H3 transmission
Hummer H3 Transmission Problems & Solutions
In an effort to expand its SUV portfolio, General Motors acquired the Hummer brand from AM General in 1999. The legendary Hummer H1 continued to be built by AM General, as did the new truck-based Hummer H2. The smaller Hummer H3 however, was largely based on the Chevy Colorado/GMC Canyon. So it was produced alongside the pair at GM’s truck plants in Louisiana, Canada, and South Africa. Regardless of its underpinnings, the Hummer H3 could still wade through 2ft of water, climb over crazy obstacles, walk up moderately high walls, and park on top of small hatchbacks. Part of this capability was due to the trick suspension/axle setup, and the other part was due to the stout 5-cylinder and V8 engines. All three powerplants (3.5L, 3.7L & 5.3L) were backed by the 4-speed automatic 4L60E transmission, which was perfectly capable in this maxed-out SUV. But time and mileage can lead to some common Hummer H3 transmission problems, which we’re going to look at now.
Common Problems with the Hummer H3 4L60E Transmission
Loss of 3rd or 4th Gear
One of the most common Hummer H3 transmission problems is the complete failure of 3rd and/or 4th gear. This happens because one or more of the metal clutch discs inside the 4L60E 3-4 clutch pack can fail prematurely and prevent the transmission from engaging those gears. To correct this design flaw, every remanufactured Hummer H3 transmission from Street Smart Transmission is fitted with a more durable 7 disc High Energy 3-4 clutch pack, which is designed to significantly outlast the OEM 3-4 clutch pack.
Unusually Hard 1-2 Shift
If you’re experiencing a harsh 1st-to-2nd shift, delayed 1st gear engagement, or a transmission shake/shudder at low speeds, then you have another one of the common Hummer H3 transmission problems. This issue is usually caused by a faulty little plastic piece called a 4L60E 1-2 accumulator. It’s designed to act like a shock absorber, reducing the effects of the pressure that builds inside the valve body during a gear change. In order to keep your H3 4L60E functioning longer, Street Smart Transmission replaces the OE 1-2 accumulator pistons with stronger aluminum pistons, and completely recalibrates the valve body for better fluid pressure control.
Delayed Shift from 1st to 2nd
The opposite of the above problem is a long pause between 1st and 2nd gear. This Hummer H3 transmission problem can be caused by a worn or broken 4L60E 2-4 transmission band. Over time, the OEM friction material on the transmission band can wear away, preventing it from engaging the clutch drum and shifting properly. To extend the service life of your Hummer H3 4L60E transmission, Street Smart Transmission installs an upgraded High Energy 4L60E 2-4 transmission band, which features a much thicker layer of friction material that adds to the durability and longevity of the transmission band and clutches.
How to Solve Hummer H3 4L60E Transmission Problems
Solution A: Buy a Used Hummer H3 4L60E Transmission
Since it’s based on a standard-issue Chevy pickup truck, finding a used Hummer H3 transmission at a junkyard won’t be very difficult. Finding a used 4L60E transmission that doesn’t have any problems however, could be very difficult indeed. And while you’ll probably get a 30-90 day warranty from the salvage yard, it’ll only cover a replacement transmission, not the labor cost to install it.
Solution B: Buy a Rebuilt Hummer H3 4L60E Transmission
If you don’t want to risk having more 4L60E transmission problems in the future, then you could opt for a rebuilt Hummer H3 transmission. Most of the time, a mechanic or transmission shop will simply remove your existing gearbox, then use an OEM rebuild kit to replace most of the commonly worn parts. This usually works good for a while. But all of the factory design flaws will still be there, and that 1-2 year warranty might only be honored by a small number of shops.
Solution C: Buy a Remanufactured Hummer H3 4L60E Transmission
To find a permanent solution to all your transmission problems, you’re going to need a remanufactured Hummer H3 4L60E transmission from Street Smart Transmission. Not only is it upgraded to correct all of the factory design flaws, but it also has to undergo hot & cold dyno testing before it leaves the factory. This ensures proper functionality, and breaks in all of the new components. That way there won’t be anything out of adjustment once it’s installed. It also allows us to issue a 3-year/Unlimited Mile Warranty (18-months/100,000 miles for commercial and heavy duty applications). Unlike most transmission warranties, our Nationwide Warranty will pay for parts and labor at any licensed repair shop in the country. So you get a transmission that’s designed to outlast the original, and a warranty that covers you anywhere in the U.S.A. Hummer H3 transmission problems = Solved.
To learn more, give us a call at 1-866-812-7560. Or you can click here to check on the price and availability of a remanufactured Hummer H3 transmission.