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Shifter won't go into reverse

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Old 20 Aug 2010, 09:25 pm
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Default Shifter won't go into reverse


I have a 2003 PT Base Model with a 5-speed manual transmission. The mileage is 157k. The shifter won't go into reverse. All the other gears are working fine. Has anybody had this problem? What did do to fix it?


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Old 20 Aug 2010, 10:04 pm
yaris's Avatar
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Default Re: Shifter won't go into reverse

did it just never go in reverse or sometimes it engages?

if it never engages, maybe you have a worn bushing in the shifter links, my friend's hyundai accent did it a few weeks ago...

if sometimes it engages, maybe its just that the gears in the tranny aren't in the right position to engages, you just need to release the clutch very slowly while applying a little pressure to the shifter and the gear should engages. on some manuals vehicles the reverse gear can sometimes get tricky to engage...
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Old 20 Aug 2010, 10:40 pm
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Default Re: Shifter won't go into reverse

See if this older thread helps.

what is wrong with my manual transmission?
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Old 20 Aug 2010, 10:56 pm
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Default Re: Shifter won't go into reverse

Thanks for your reply.

I can sometimes roll the car forward and get the shifter into reverse, but it's been getting more and more difficult to find reverse.

I hoping its a bushing and I don't have to get major trasmission work done.
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Old 07 Jun 2011, 10:56 am
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Unhappy Re: Shifter won't go into reverse

Did you ever find out why it didn't go in reverse?

My 2002 PT just did this last night...and i'm about to take it in...stomach in knots..hope it doesn't cost a mint!
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Old 07 Jun 2011, 12:44 pm
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Default Re: Shifter won't go into reverse

With most manual transmissions reverse is not a synchronized gear so there will be instances where the teeth for reverse simply will not line up. My Cobalt was that way, my wife's Amigo was that way and our Impreza is that way.

Most of the time going to 1st then to reverse will solve the problem. Other times I have to roll the car forward just a bit and then it will go in.

If you can never find reverse I'd say you have a problem. If it only happens sometimes then it's probably the transmission being a transmission.
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Old 18 Dec 2011, 09:31 am
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Default Re: Shifter won't go into reverse

I sprayed the linkage under the shifter boot with WD_40 and it worked for me !
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Old 18 Dec 2011, 07:02 pm
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Default Re: Shifter won't go into reverse

There's only a few moving parts near the shifter, I'm not sure what lube would 'fix.'

As in Cruizin' thread, Do booger Bushings first before anything else.

This transmission has a 'reverse brake'. It's more or less a synchronizer for reverse.

If you're having engagement problems, especially in low ranges / reverse, dragging clutch is #1 suspect.
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