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lever problem more details

When I try to go from park to drive, it takes a lot of force to move the lever. I can hardley do it. The same is true for any change in lever postion, neutral, reverse, etc. It is a 2001 and I have had it for four years. The problem began 2 months ago. Thanks, denise
 

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Spilled any sugary liquids in or around the lever a few weeks ago :?: the plastic trim will become "glued" when even a small amount of any sticky liquid gets in between its slip points. Ammonia based cleaners (e.g. Windex) may be all that is needed. However, some spills require disassembly of the shift lever trim for a sufficent cleaning.

Try spraying the shift lever trim with the above on a warm afternoon when the interior is hot. The heat helps soften the "sticky". Use a liberal amount and then try to wick-up any substance that oozes out of the edges with a paper towel. Repeat the process until the towel only picks up the cleaner. You may need to repeat the process for a couple of days in sucession for makimum effect.

After sufficent cleaning a silicone spray lube in the same area can ease any strain on these parts. But silicone will *NOT* clean the sugar and will not give good results by itself.

There are several other mechanical failures of the shifter linkages that could also be the cause. And again if the spill hit just the right spot with just the right quantity then disassembly for cleaning may be required.

HTH! :)
 

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John,

Thanks for the great infomational reply. Since there were a few splashy drops near the plastic slider, I performed your well described procedure. I'm not sure if the shifter moves easier now due to this cleaning or having been manipulated dozens of times during the cleaning process. To be honest, the drag didn't feel like it was coming from the slider/guard but I know these things can prove deceptive.

How difficult is it to uncover the whole in cabin shifter mechanism? It looks like there are 6 phillips head screws that hold the cover and another in the shifter lever itself. I'm game to have a look inside if removing these will let me in.

Best Regards,

SciGuy- Denise's husband
 

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It's not hard. Shouldn't give you too much trouble. AFAI remember the lever knob itself dosen't need to be removed and its interlock button can be a _bit_ tricky to reinstall. Simply remove the other parts and lift the trim up the lever shaft sufficently for completion of the process.

Mine is a 5 spd and the proceedure is on p.g. 20-49 of the factory service manual. However, it appears that the CVT variation has been omitted. (even in the 02 suppliment). And AFAI remember there are 2 screws that hold the knob on the lever and few release mechanism parts inside. The knob screws are "special" so don't loose them and pay careful attention to how it comes apart. It _may_ be _lightly_ spring loaded so when removing the knob screws gently hold the knob down and slowly release this tension when the screws are removed, else it tends to pop apart.

Again its not too difficult, if your paying attention :!:

Please let the group know how this turns out :!: (in this thread)

HTH! :)
 

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On a CVT model, you do not have to take the shift knob (selector) off
to remove the housing...Just 4 screws and two plastic plugs then the
whole housing can lift out over the selector.

JoeCVT - Just your average CVT owner
 

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Thanks so much John and Joe,

After one very careful cleaning using John's technique our Insght cvt is back to shifting very nicely. I haven't used a bit of silicone spray yet either. It looks like there must have been enough accumulation of "sticky stuff" to cause our drag.

I may still take a look under the housing just to satisfy my curiosity;)

Oh, we just bumped our tire pressure up to the high 40s. Instant milage improvement and I prefer how the car drives now as well.

The internet is so helpful.

SciGuy
 

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Thank You all very much for this posting. It saved me about $300. All I needed was some grease, and it was shifting better than when purchased. :)
 
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