Chevy HHR Transmission Problems & Cost

Although many people said that General Motors was trying to copy the Chrysler PT cruiser, the Chevrolet HHR turned out to be quite a successful little car in its own right. It was just the right size. It looked great, and had just enough power to make it interesting. Unfortunately though, Chevy HHR transmission problems can happen as they get older. So let’s figure out what you can do about them.

Need a replacement transmission? Get an estimate for replacement transmissions and local installation. Look up your transmission model by vehicle make and model.

What Transmission Do I Have?

Chevy HHR Transmission Models

Chevy HHR: 4T45E Transmission

Chevy HHR Transmission Replacement Cost Estimate

Pricing varies by model. To be 100% sure on pricing, have your VIN# handy and use our Get An Estimate feature to look up your transmission by VIN#.

Replacement 4T45E Transmission:

TransmissionStreet Smart TransmissionAutozoneAdvance Auto PartsDealer Retail
4T45E / 4T40E1370144014992644

What are the DTC codes related to Chevy HHR transmission problems?

Trouble CodeDescription
P0711Transmission Fluid Temperature Sensor Circuit Range/Performance
P0712Transmission Fluid Temperature Sensor Circuit Low Input
P0713Transmission Fluid Temperature Sensor Circuit High Input
P0714Transmission Fluid Temperature Sensor Circuit Intermittent P0715
P0715Input/Turbine Speed Sensor Circuit
P0716Input/Turbine Speed Sensor Circuit Range/Performance 
P0717Input/Turbine Speed Sensor Circuit No Signal
P0718Input/Turbine Speed Sensor Circuit Intermittent
P0720Output Speed Sensor Circuit
P0721Output Speed Sensor Circuit Range/Performance
P0723Output Speed Sensor Circuit Intermittent
P0729Gear 6 Incorrect Ratio
P0730Incorrect Gear Ratio
P0731Gear 1 Incorrect Ratio
P0732Gear 2 Incorrect Ratio
P0734Gear 4 Incorrect Ratio
P0735Gear 5 Incorrect Ratio
P0740Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Malfunction
P0741Torque Converter Clutch Circuit
P0742Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Stuck On
P0744Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Intermittent
P0748Pressure Control Solenoid 'A' Electrical
P0750Shift Solenoid 'A'
P0753Shift Solenoid 'A' Electrical
P0755Shift Solenoid 'B'
P0758Shift Solenoid 'B' Electrical
P0767Shift Solenoid 'D' Stuck On
P0850Park/Neutral Switch Input Circuit
P0897Transmission Fluid Deteriorated
P0973Shift Solenoid “A” Control Circuit Low
P0976Shift Solenoid “B” Control Circuit Low
P0977Shift Solenoid “B” Control Circuit High
P0979Shift Solenoid “C” Control Circuit Low
P0980Shift Solenoid “C” Control Circuit High
P0982Shift Solenoid “D” Control Circuit Low
P0983Shift Solenoid “D” Control Circuit High
P0984Shift Solenoid “E” Control Circuit Range/Performance
P1860TCC PWM Solenoid Circuit Electrical
P1887Torque Converter Clutch Release Switch

Chevy HHR Transmission Recalls

2009 Chevrolet HHR Recall 09V073000 / 09041

Summary – On some 2009 Chevy HHR’s, the transmission shift cable adjustment clip may come loose, causing the gear indicator to display the wrong gear.
Consequence – If this problem occurs, the driver could remove the ignition key and exit the vehicle thinking the transmission is in Park, even though it isn’t. This can lead to a rollaway, which can cause injury and/or property damage. A lesser consequence would be the inability to start the vehicle because the transmission is not in Park.
Remedy – This recall began on March 24, 2009, and Chevrolet dealers were instructed to inspect and replace any affected transmission shift cable adjustment clips, free of charge. Owners can contact Chevrolet at 1-800-630-2438, referring to recall # 09041. Or they can call the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236

Chevy HHR Technical Service Bulletins (TSB)

TSB 05-07-30-015 – Difficultly selecting a gear / shifter jams
Problem – On some vehicles, the gear selector may become inoperable.
Solution – Replace defective shifter handle.

Common Chevy HHR Transmission Problems

Slipping in forward or reverse gears
Problem – The vehicle may slip in-and-out of forward or reverse gears. There may also be a lack of engine braking, lubrication of the forward clutch, and the DTC P0730.
Solution – One of the oil feed tubes may have developed cracks in one of its welds

Lack of Response
Leaking Fluid
Low Fluid
Burning Smell
Grinding or Shaking
Whining, Clunking or Humming
Refuses to Go Into Gear
Torque Converter Issues
Valve Body Issues
Transmission Noisy in Neutral
Gears Slipping
No 3rd or 4th Gear
No 1st or 2nd Gear
No Reverse
Dragging Clutch
Trouble Codes / Check Engine Light

Can I drive with a transmission problem?

Obviously if your transmission is just slipping, hanging in a gear, or making a funny noise, you could probably still drive your car. However, Chevrolet HHR transmission problems can go from simple to expensive very quickly. So do yourself and your budget a favor, and have your car checked out by a mechanic sooner rather than later.

How often does a Chevy HHR transmission need to be replaced?

If you have your transmission serviced regularly and you don’t drive like a hooligan, then your Chevy HHR 4T45E could last anywhere from 120,000-180,000 miles. But OE design flaws can also shorten the service life, and most used and rebuilt transmissions will suffer from these same issues. A remanufactured Chevy HHR transmission on the other hand, could last a lot longer if the proper modifications have been made to address the known design issues.

How are Chevy HHR transmission issues diagnosed?

Thanks to the magic of computers, most of your vehicle’s systems are closely monitored by the on-board diagnostic system (OBDII). This allows a mechanic to connect an OBDII code scanner to the vehicle, then download the diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs). These codes can often reveal the source of your Chevy HHR transmission problems. But a visual inspection is often necessary to verify that the code is correct.

How is a Chevy HHR transmission replaced?

Replacing a Chevrolet HHR 4T45E means that the old one will have to come out. To do this, it will have to be disconnected from the engine and driveshafts, and that usually means pulling the motor partially or completely out of the vehicle. For an experienced mechanic with the right tools, this isn’t as difficult a job as it might sound. But it does require some skill and patience.

Recommendations for Chevy HHR transmission issues?

To save time and get back on the road faster, have your 17-digit truck VIN# handy and you can get an online quote for a reman Chevy HHR transmission here, then find a local shop using our Find a Shop guide to install it for you.

How to Solve Chevy HHR Transmission Problems

Solution A: Buy a Used Chevy HHR Transmission

While transmission problems are one of the most expensive aspects of owning a car, you should think long and hard before you buy a used 4T45E transmission. You have no way of knowing the true condition of the internal components. So it’s possible that you could have the same problems, or worse. Plus, that junkyard warranty will only get you a replacement transmission if something goes wrong. And, you will probably have to pay the labor charges to install it.

Solution B: Buy a Rebuilt Chevy HHR Transmission

Another option would be to get a rebuilt 4T45 transmission from a local transmission repair center or mechanic. They will usually replace all of the common wear parts using an OE master rebuild kit, then give you a warranty that may only be good at the shop that built it. And don’t forget, if they take it back to the factory specifications, then all of the common problems are likely to return.

Solution C: Buy a Remanufactured Chevy HHR Transmission

To get the most reliability for your repair dollars, you may want to consider a remanufactured 4T45 transmission. These are slightly more expensive than a rebuilt transmission, but they are typically built in a factory and of a much higher quality. Many of the top transmission remanufacturing companies modify their Chevy HHR 4T45E transmissions to compensate for the factory design flaws. And you may even be able to get a nationwide warranty.

Need a replacement transmission? Get an estimate for replacement transmissions and local installation. Look up your transmission model by vehicle make and model.

What Transmission Do I Have?

What Problem Does Your Chevy HHR Have?

Let us know the year, mileage and problem you’re having as well as any trouble (OBD) codes you’ve found. If you’ve been given a quote or paid for a repair, we’d like to hear about that too!

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Leave a Comment

Robert Downs

After owning several of GMs made for profit vehicle’s. Trail Blazers, Cobalt, and HHR. Its become quite clear that Not buying GM is the Best Value.

Eric

I have a 09 HHR and I was in 3rd gear and then nothing.. won’t move in any gear and have clutch pressure and in gear you can smell the clutch.. what could the problem be??

Jeffery Smith

I have a 2008 Chevy HHR. There are multiple error messages displayed. Error codes are: P0700;
P2544; U0073; U0073; U0101; U0101. A used engine was put in at 180,000 miles the transmission was not replaced and it is now at 212,411 miles.

Kash Patterson

I have a 2010 Chevy HHR an it only had 187,000 miles an the car dealership that I bought it fromI called them caz the car wudnt drive well. Shirt if the long they are saying I need a transmission . This will be the 3rd one is that normak

Jack Vaughan

I have a 2006 hhr. My transmission started slipping very slightly, so I went ahead and replaced the trans filter, and fluid. About a week later, drive gear went out. I can still drive in L and I. Today, in I hear, I was going about 40mph and accidentally shifted I to drive. To my surprise, it actually kept going. So I tested it, and drive gear will only work if I’m going 40-45mph. What could cause this?

Jack Vaughan

Also, there are no codes at all, no stored or active

James Yax

Here are the symtons my HHR is having:
1. At low speed deceleration the S/T light comes on and the display say Service Traction. The engine dies and does not start back up easily I usually have to try several times, but when it finally starts, if the S/T is still on, it runs rough, shifts hard, and engine revs by itself. If the S/T is off, all is normal again.
2.Sometimes when I try to start the car, nothing happens when the key is turned, but the dash lights and displays go dark as normal when turning to starting position. I have to try several times before it finally starts. Sometimes when this is happening the locks on the doors lock, which normally only happens when the shifter is taken out of Park.
3.The Check Engine light comes on and stays on, but car runs fine. Then it is off again.

Hhr owner

Tcm might need reprogramming

James

My Honda HHR will not Chang outa first gear at all it reverse really good An drives good just will not change outa first wat the problem I even tried reving up rpms while driving’an it want change

Clark

I don’t have any warning lights or check engine light and the transmission hasn’t slipped yet. But I sometimes get a puddle of transmission fluid in the car port. Most likely the transmission (automatic transaxle) pan gasket? I’ve also heard that even though the transmission is “sealed” and filled for life with Dexron VI fluid the transmission is vented and the fluid can get hot, expand, and end up coming through the vents. Fact or fiction?

Dale

My hhr transmission is slipping from start off. And when shifting gears.

Jackie

My 2009 transmission warning light comes on and stays on for 2 to 3 days. Then the warning signal disappears. After a while, the transmission warning signal reappears again. I read somewhere online that this is just a problem with my electrical signal????

Tosha

I have a 2010 HHR and it acts as if it is going to stall out.The display keeps said Engine Power Reduced.How do I fix the problem

Hhr owner

Try resetting the computer by starting with key in ignition off position, then without starting the engine, turn key to on then back off and then on and back off then on and then off and the fourth time you turn it on the computer should be reset. Also try disconnecting the battery for 5 min. If that doesn’t work, get a computer diagnosis, it could be a number of different things. But your definitely in limp mode, might be an electrical issue.

Tashia

I GOT A 2009 CHEVROLET HHR AND IT’S GOING IN GEAR BUT I WANT SHIFT OUT DO YOU THINK THAT IT’S NOT ENOUGH TRANSMISSION FLUID IN IT OR WILL I HAVE TO REPLACE THE TRANSMISSION I PUT A MOTOR IN MY CAR ABOUT A YEAR AGO

Tashia

I ALSO HAD THE TRANSMISSION PUMPED IN MY CAR I THINK THEY DIDN’T PUT ENOUGH TRANSMISSION FLUID IN IT

James

Did you ever find the solution to your problem bc mine doing the same thing just wana no how u fixed it

Michael J Wisotzkey

Test drove a 2008 HHR today and it felt as if tranny wasn’t going to 4th gear.Is there a 4th gear?Overdrive? Overdrive button? RPM was around 2500-3000 @ 60-70 mph.Is that normal? I’m used to driving a Grand Caravan so HHR was a totally different experience.Car has 141000 on it,no rust,newish tires,rotors,rear shocks.Price is $1500.Any thoughts? Anyone?

Jim mutch

Shifts hard between 1st and 2nd slams into gear

Joe

I also have this problem as well. Just recently did the tranny start to make a whizzing noise when trying to change gears.

Douglas

My 2007 HHR PANEL is doing same thing. Whining noise when at idle and while driving

Sara L

Did you ever figure this out, my 2011 is doing the same thing.

D W in Philly

Probably the shift solenoid for 1-2 part cost less than $20. Might as well replace both for the time spent doing it yourself or cost of labor. I chose OEM valve body which comes with all the electrical sensors and solenoid and if valve body is worn or clogged i don’t have to worry with new.

Something cause solenoid to wear prematurely. Cost for Valve body a little over $100 dollars for peace of mind. Also bought case gasket and seal set for. $56 which has seal for CV axle new gasket for case and valve body. Also purchased new filter and OEM gasket for pan since you have to remove fluid for this job. I won’t be worrying about leaks or vavle or electrical problems.

Most mechanic say this transmission has more electrical problems than mechanical. However opening any transmission makes it subject to leaks with old seals and gaskets. Not a full rebuild or even close but address known problem areas while fixing the problem.

Not needed on passenger side however i replaced both cv axle driver side had excessive play on inner joint with occasional thump sound. I am not a mechanic and did it myself. Long hard job but can be done. I also had code from check engine light for 1-2 solenoid and check tcm. Hope this helps

ShanleyClan

How long labor-wise did that take? Would a shop be willing to do a partial rebuild like that? I have an 08 HHR where suddenly w/no warning signs refuses to go into any gear except reverse. Same 4T45 model AT. Sounds like your idea is only option except selling for salvage in St. Paul, MN. BTW, impressive skill for DIY job like that. Wow.

Douglas

Check transmission module. Unplug it and plug it back in. Check to make sure map sensor is plugged in.