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44RE (98 Durango) Transmission Rebuild - Questions on Appearance of Gears, etc.


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Gerik Bensing
New User

Dec 3, 2021, 2:16 PM

Post #1 of 6 (237 views)
44RE (98 Durango) Transmission Rebuild - Questions on Appearance of Gears, etc. Sign In

1998 Dodge Durango, 250,000 miles, 5.2L Engine, 4-speed automatic transmission
I'm rebuilding my '98 Durango's transmission (44RE) due to a loud whirring in 4th (Overdrive) gear and a leaking rear seal. Also started to shift poorly. Has 250k miles on it and was rebuilt once by the cheapest shop I could find around 40k miles ago for a messed up OD (I towed a heavy load for a couple thousand miles with OD on... which I knew I shouldn't have been doing).

Now I'm trying to fix it myself and have it all apart and found some obvious problems and then items I am not sure about, so I'm hoping someone more knowledgeable on what parts should look like can help. I have a link below to take you to a bunch of images of what I'm seeing. I found the rear ball bearing was shot in the OD section, so likely that's the main problem there. Haven't touched the valve bodies yet.

Any other advice on what I should be looking for would be appreciated.

Particular questions...

1.) Driving Shell has worn in spots where it interfaces with front clutch. I assume this needs to be replaced. What can cause this? What kinds of symptoms would be expected from this?
2.) Rear planetary gear has unusual grooves (to me) at outer tooth surface and meshing faces are shiny. Normal, unimportant, or indicates needing replacement?
3.) Missing torque converter dust cover - do I need to find a replacement or does it not really matter?
4.) Are the bushings in need of replacement?
5.) The amount of shavings I'm finding - to be expected or does it indicate bigger issues?
I can grab more photos for whoever wants to see anything else.
https://imgur.com/gallery/wChRcDm


gsferraro
Enthusiast

Dec 5, 2021, 9:01 AM

Post #2 of 6 (197 views)
Re: 44RE (98 Durango) Transmission Rebuild - Questions on Appearance of Gears, etc. Sign In

Hello,
The shell gets like that from the direct drum, no worries there. The planet gear may just be the gear cut as long as they turn and the gears do not rock you should be fine. I always change the pump bushing and the direct drum bushings as well as the forward planet hub bushing, pump bushing is important a worn bushing can cause converter codes. No fluid should come out the sensor connector, change that. Pump gears look ok to use over. Gary (transmission shop owner)


Gerik Bensing
New User

Dec 5, 2021, 9:53 AM

Post #3 of 6 (194 views)
Re: 44RE (98 Durango) Transmission Rebuild - Questions on Appearance of Gears, etc. Sign In

Thanks so much Gary, I was preparing to buy a new sun shell and direct drum because I wasn't sure and the internet has been not overly helpful. I dug a bit deeper and found a bunch of sun shells used on eBay with the same wear.
For the planetaries / sungear - does the wear in the pictures below seem concerning? Sorry if any of the images are a bit washed out. I was trying to take close ups with a camera I was borrowing. I also have a picture of my low/rev drum the rear band rides on that has some nicks.

https://imgur.com/gallery/7tjBx8c


(This post was edited by Gerik Bensing on Dec 5, 2021, 10:04 AM)


gsferraro
Enthusiast

Dec 5, 2021, 9:57 AM

Post #4 of 6 (192 views)
Re: 44RE (98 Durango) Transmission Rebuild - Questions on Appearance of Gears, etc. Sign In

Hello,
Planet gears are probably cut that way, I could not click on the link to view the picture


Gerik Bensing
New User

Dec 5, 2021, 10:04 AM

Post #5 of 6 (188 views)
Re: 44RE (98 Durango) Transmission Rebuild - Questions on Appearance of Gears, etc. Sign In

Whoops, helps if I actually make it a link and not just text. Should work now if you want to check the pictures out (couldn't upload anything here, wasn't working for me). It's different from the wavey stuff at the top.


(This post was edited by Gerik Bensing on Dec 5, 2021, 10:07 AM)


gsferraro
Enthusiast

Dec 5, 2021, 11:14 AM

Post #6 of 6 (173 views)
Re: 44RE (98 Durango) Transmission Rebuild - Questions on Appearance of Gears, etc. Sign In

Hello,
Planets look pitted, no good. The low drum, if you could clean that up, make it smooth if it's not smooth, will be ok to use.






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