GMC Sierra 3500 HD Transmission Problems & Cost | 4L80E | 6L90 | Allison 1000

The GMC Sierra 3500 HD was GMC’s answer to the heavy duty pickups from Ford, Dodge and Chevrolet. Early versions were equipped with the 4L80E transmission, and the 6L90 6-speed in later models. The GMC Sierra 3500HD 6.6L Duramax Diesel got the Allison 1000 transmission. But they aren’t without their problems though, so let’s look at some of the most common GMC Sierra 3500 HD transmission problems, look at cost estimates and 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?

GMC Sierra 3500 HD Transmission Models

GMC Sierra 3500 HD: 4L80E Transmission
GMC Sierra 3500 HD: Allison 1000 Transmission (6.6L and 8.1L Diesel Only)
GMC Sierra 3500 HD: 6L90 Transmission

GMC Sierra 3500 HD 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 GMC Sierra 3500 HD Transmission Prices:

TransmissionStreet Smart TransmissionAutozoneAdvance Auto PartsDealer Retail
4L80E1875188918902800
6L80 / 6L902247252025392930
Allison 10002441285028994200

What are the DTC codes related to GMC Sierra 3500 HD 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'
P0751Shift Solenoid 'A' Performance or Stuck Off
P0752Shift Solenoid 'A' Stuck On
P0753Shift Solenoid 'A' Electrical
P0755Shift Solenoid 'B'
P0756Shift Solenoid 'B' Performance or Stuck Off
P0757Shift Solenoid 'B' Stuck On
P0758Shift Solenoid 'B' Electrical
P0767Shift Solenoid 'D' Stuck On
P0776Pressure Control Solenoid 'B' Performance or Stuck Off
P0777Pressure Control Solenoid 'B' Stuck On
P0796Pressure Control Solenoid 'C' Performance or Stuck off
P0850Park/Neutral Switch Input Circuit
P0897Transmission Fluid Deteriorated
P0965Pressure Control Solenoid “B” Control Circuit Range/Performance
P0966Pressure Control Solenoid “B” Control Circuit Low
P0967Pressure Control Solenoid “B” Control Circuit High
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
P2715Pressure Control Solenoid ‘D’ Stuck On
P2723Pressure Control Solenoid ‘E’ Stuck Off

GMC Sierra 3500 HD Transmission Recalls

None Found

GMC Sierra 3500 HD Technical Service Bulletins (TSB)

TSB 08-07-30-016 – Slipping, refusal to shift, overheating GMC Sierra 3500 HD 4L80E
Problem – Slipping between the gears, overheating, refusal to shift out of a gear, and/or DTC P0894 or P0218, may be because by friction material debonding from the torque convertor clutch (TCC).
Solution – If the friction material has circulated throughout the transmission, the entire transmission may need to be replaced. It is possible to remove the material from the internal components (like transmission cooler lines and the valve body), but it depends on the extent of the damage.

TSB 08-07-30-001 – 2001-2006 GMC Sierra 3500 HD 4L80E
Problem – Harsh or delayed shifts, slipping, no forward/reverse gears. Possible DTCs: P0741, P0742, P0751, P0752, P0756, P0757, P0894.
Solution – Rebuild or replace the valve body.

TSB 08-07-30-015 – 2002-2007 GMC Sierra 3500 HD 4L80E
Problem – Harsh shifts, delayed 2-3 shifts, 2-3 shift flare, no 3rd gear, slips in 3rd gear or reverse. Possible DTC 0757.
Solution – If none of the issues described in Bulletin 08-07-30-001 are present (debris in #11 checkball, leak in oil circuit, damage to the direct clutch), then replace the 2-3 shift solenoid due to a possible sticking pintle.

TSB PI488C – No forward or reverse and/or slipping – 6L80 Transmission | 6L90 Transmission
2010 – 2014 Cadillac CTS-V – 2010 – 2014 Cadillac Escalade (all models) – 2010 – 2013 Chevrolet Avalanche – 2010 – 2014 Chevrolet Camaro – 2010 – 2014 Chevrolet Corvette – 2010 – 2014 Chevrolet Express – 2010 – 2014 Chevrolet Silverado – 2010 – 2014 Chevrolet Suburban – 2010 – 2014 Chevrolet Tahoe – 2011 – 2014 Chevrolet Caprice PPV – 2014 Chevrolet SS – 2010 – 2014 GMC Savanna – 2010 – 2014 GMC Sierra – 2010 – 2014 GMC Yukon – 2010 – 2014 GMC Yukon XL – 2010 – 2014 GMC Yukon Denali

Problem – Trucks equipped with the 6-speed 6L80 or 6L90 transmission may experience no forward or reverse engagement, or slipping between the gears.

Solution – This problem could be caused by a cracked or split transmission filter. If this is the case, the transmission pump should be disassembled and inspected for possible damage. Inspect for any of the following conditions: – scored pump rotor or pump vanes – scored pump cover or pump rotor pocket – cracked pump slide.

The transmission should also be evaluated for any possible distress to the clutches. GM’s testing and analysis found that split or damaged filters may be caused by a damaged transmission pump. This can send a high pressure fluid spike down the filter neck on a cold start, resulting in the filter body cracking or the filter seam splitting. The filter is not defective and this is not a filter quality issue. Important: Do not replace the filter without inspecting the pump. Failure to inspect the pump and clutches could lead to a repeat of this condition.

TSB 09-07-30-004J – Slips in Reverse or Third, Delayed Reverse or Drive Engagement, DTC P0776, P2715, P2723, Harsh 2-3 Shifts – 6L80 Transmission | 6L90 Transmission
2006-2009 Cadillac STS-V – 2006-2009 Cadillac XLR – 2006-2009 Cadillac XLR-V – 2007-2008 Cadillac Escalade, Escalade ESV, Escalade EXT – 2006-2009 Chevrolet Corvette – 2007-2008 Chevrolet Silverado – 2008 Chevrolet Suburban – 2007-2008 GMC Sierra – 2007-2008 GMC Sierra Denali – 2007-2008 GMC Yukon Denali – 2007-2008 GMC Yukon XL Denali – 2008 GMC Yukon XL – 2008-2009 HUMMER H2 – 2008-2009 Pontiac G8
Problem – Vehicles equipped with the 6L80 or 6L90 transmission may slip when Reverse is selected or have no/delayed reverse engagement, harsh shifts from 2-3 / 4-5 or slips while in fifth, and slipping acceleration when passing. Possible DTCs include P0776, P2715 or P2723.
Solution – This transmission problem may be caused by a cracked 1-2-3-4 / 3-5-R clutch housing.

TSB 14043 – Thrust bearing failure – Allison 1000 Transmission
2012 Chevy Silverado HD – 2012 GMC Sierra HD
Problem:
Certain 2012 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD / 2012 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD and 2012 GMC Sierra 2500HD / 2012 GMC Sierra 3500HD trucks equipped with the Allison 1000 6-speed automatic transmission (MW7), may have been built with an incorrect transmission thrust bearing. Over time, this bearing could fail, resulting in noise and poor transmission operation.
Solution:
The bearing should be replaced with GM part # 29531106

TSB PIP3598C – Intermittent ratio codes or range inhibit – Allison 1000 Transmission
2007 – 2012 Chevrolet Silverado – 2001 – 2007 Chevrolet Silverado Classic – 2007 – 2012 GMC Sierra – 2001 – 2007 GMC Sierra Classic – 4WD Only
Problem – Drivers may experience intermittent no forward or reverse condition, the possibility of a flashing PRNDL display or a “range shift inhibited” message in the driver information center with no saved DTCs. Another possible symptom includes the following DTCs: P0729, P0731, P0732, P0733, P0734, P0735 & P0736
Solution – These Allison 1000 transmission problems may be caused by either an input speed sensor and or output speed sensor issue. The problem could also be caused by a mechanical issue inside of the four-wheel-drive transfer case like a worn bushing.

TSB 14308 – Leak at transmission cooler
2008 Chevy Silverado HD – 2008 GMC Sierra HD
Problem – Diesel powered 2008 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD / 2008 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD and 2008 GMC Sierra 2500HD / 2008 GMC Sierra 3500HD trucks equipped with the Allison 1000 6-speed automatic transmission (RPO MW7), may have a condition in which increased transmission oil cooling circuit pressure may cause transmission fluid to weep or leak. This loss of fluid occurs near the transmission cooler at the crimp joints on the metal ends of the cooler line where it joins the rubber hose. The increased oil cooling circuit pressure typically occurs while driving in extremely low temperatures.
Solution – Inspect and replace cooler lines if necessary.

TSB 04-07-30-018A – Ice buildup on shift cable – Allison 1000 Transmission
2001-2006 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD – 2001-2006 GMC Sierra 2500HD
Problem – In cold climates, it may not be possible to shift the transmission after operating it in snow, slush, or icy conditions. This is likely due to ice buildup around the shift cable-to-manual shaft connection.
Solution – Install an aftermarket transmission shield.

TSB 06-07-30-013 – Shudder in 6th gear – Allison 1000 Transmission
2006 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD – 2006 GMC Sierra 2500HD
Problem – Owners may experience a shudder occurs in 6th gear in 4Hi between 46 mph (74 km/h) and 49 mph (79 km/h).
Solution – Reprogram the TCM with TIS version 6.0 or higher.

TSB 08-07-30-049A – Transmission fluid leak from the ATF cooler – Allison 1000
2006-2007 Chevrolet Silverado Classic 2500 – 2007-2009 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD – 2007-2009 GMC Sierra 2500HD
Problem – ATF leak coming from one of the transmission cooler lines.
Solution – Replace lines with updated design: GM Part #’s 20759971 (upper), 20759972 (lower), 20759971 (hose).

TSB 10-07-30-008A – Transmission won’t shift into overdrive – Allison 1000
2006-2010 Chevy Silverado HD – 2006-2010 GMC Sierra HD
Problem – Owners may experience a failure to shift into overdrive, or a 4-5 shift flare. Possible DTC P0777 or P0735.
Solution – Inspect and possibly replace the 3rd, 5th, and reverse clutch piston.

PIP4290A – Engine Stalling – Allison 1000
2007-2013 Chevrolet Silverado HD – 2007-2013 GMC Sierra HD
Problem – Owners may experience stalling or surging when stopped with the transmission in gear. Possible DTC P0742.
Solution – Inspect and replace the TCC solenoid and valve inside the valve body.

Common GMC Sierra 3500HD Transmission Problems 

Solenoid DTC’s – GMC Sierra 3500 HD 6L90E
Problem – A number of diagnostic trouble codes, including P0776, P0796, P2714 and P2723, can be caused by a pressure leak at the end of the clutch regulating valve.
Solution – The bore plug will have to be replaced with updated versions, or modified to accept an O-ring kit.

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?

If your GMC Sierra 3500 HD can still make it up and down the road, you might say “It’s fine, I’ll just drive it until I can get it fixed”. But that is not always a good idea, depending on the symptoms. You see, there are a lot of (very expensive) moving parts inside of a transmission, and if something isn’t right, continuing to drive with a transmission problem could damage something else.

How often does a GMC Sierra 3500 HD transmission need to be replaced?

The overall lifespan of a GMC Sierra 3500 HD transmission largely depends on how well it was maintained. Factory design flaws also factor into this equation, along with how/how hard you drive. But on average, we’ve seen the GMC Sierra 3500 HD transmission last for between 130,000-180,000 miles. A high quality replacement transmission however, can last considerably longer if all of the factory design flaws have been addressed and the vehicle has been maintained.

How are GMC Sierra 3500 HD transmission issues diagnosed?

It is fairly easy to guesstimate what the root cause of your GMC Sierra 3500 HD transmission problems might be, but you won’t truly know unless you have the right tools and experience. A good mechanic or transmission repair center will be able to connect your truck to a computer and find out which diagnostic trouble codes (DTC’s) have been stored. Once they know what to look for, they can perform a visual inspection to verify the problem.

How is a GMC Sierra 3500 HD transmission replaced?

In order to replace your GMC Sierra 3500 HD transmission, the truck has to be lifted from the ground in order to gain access to all of the parts that will need to be unbolted. Then the transmission can be lowered to the ground (typically with a transmission jack), so the new transmission can be installed. Once it is in place, for the 6L80, the vehicle PCM will have to be reprogrammed / reflashed to accept the new transmission using the latest GM subscription.

Recommendations for GMC Sierra 3500 HD 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 GMC Sierra 3500 HD transmission here, then find a local shop using our Find a Shop guide to install it for you.

How to Solve GMC Sierra 3500 HD Transmission Problems

Solution A: Buy a Used GMC Sierra 3500 HD Transmission

The quickest way to fix your transmission problems is to simply buy a used transmission or used transmission. These can be found at most junk yards, and they often come with a 30-90 day warranty. However, there’s no way to determine the actual condition of the internal components, so you could be spending a bunch of money to have the exact same problems. Plus, that warranty only covers the transmission if it’s defective, not the labor costs that you’ll have to pay.

Solution B: Buy a Rebuilt GMC Sierra 3500 HD Transmission

Another option would be a rebuilt transmission or rebuilt transmission. A local repair shop will remove your transmission, then install a bunch of new parts during the rebuild. The problem here is, the skills and experience of each transmission rebuilder will vary widely from shop to shop, so you could have problems from something that wasn’t adjusted properly. And the 1-2 year warranty might only cover you at certain transmission repair shops, in a specific geographical area.

Solution C: Buy a Remanufactured GMC Sierra 3500 HD Transmission

Many owners depend on their vehicle to commute and get things done. Their gasoline engines are designed to go 100’s of thousands of miles, so it makes sense to invest in a remanufactured transmission.

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 GMC Sierra 3500 HD 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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Troy Stricklin
1 month ago

Won’t shift up from 2nd gear

Luis Rivera
1 month ago

09 gmc 6.0 transmission stuck in drive

charles reed
2 months ago

Forward.gears work like they should reverse.slips mpst pf the time

charles reed
2 months ago

2000 chevy 3500

Daryl Balcom
9 months ago

Code p0721, replaced output shaft speed sensor. Same code, same vehicle actions. Speedometer jumping, truck will barely move.

Dan
1 year ago

How to tell tour converter going bad

Dan
1 year ago

When driving 65 miles an hour it pops out of gear have to stop shut off vehicle then it resets and works ok help

Robert
2 years ago

Fluid level one inch above full.
Will pull out in first gear and hold 30 mph. In second if throttle is feathered. Too much throttle is like shifting into nuetral.

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