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I purchased a '97 Wrangler with a 2.5L and as I'm reading I think has a 30RH 3 speed automatic transmission. The transmission has some serious issues that have me teetering on rebuild/replacement. I was wondering if it could be adjusted in the same manner as the 32RH? I had read through the forum on this page regarding band adjustment, oil cooler, etc... With that said here are the issues: The transmission will not engage into first gear if shifter is left in drive. I can however manually shift it through the gears with much better efficiency. The kickdown rarely works, so again I must manually downshift to create the necessary power to get up to speed. The transmission fluid smells a little burnt but has good red color. Before I drop the pan and dig in, is there anything I can do from the exterior before I end my summer fun? I have no real history on the vehicle and it has 173k on the odometer. I'm leaning towards adjusting the throttle cable first to see if it helps. I just did a full tune on the motor and it did help a bit with power.

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COjeepGuy...I would do a service, adjust the bands and change the fluid and filter.  Yes, definitely check the throttle cable, you could have improper throttle pressure signals that would affect the shift points and also the kickdown.  These are simpler, basic steps and worth taking before condemning other components. 

Let us know how this turns out, we can go from there.

Moses

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Moses thank you for your quick reply. I had one more question before I go do all this. Can a 32RH swap be done with minimal effort, or is it better to keep what I have. We are just using the jeep for light off road and cruising around town so I'm trying to not do unnecessary things that won't be useful.

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COjeepGuy...The 30RH and 32RH share design features and even many parts.  The main housing, however, is a different shape at the front; the 2.5L and 4.0L engines do not share common converter or bell housing bolt patterns.  You cannot bolt a 32RH automatic transmission to the 2.5L engine.  (Similarly, you can't bolt an AX5 manual transmission to a 4.0L six or an AX15 to a 2.5L four.  In this situation, the AX15 manual transmission is actually a stronger unit than the AX5.)

There is nothing intrinsically "weaker" about the 30RH than the 32RH, and for the 2.5L engine application, the 30RH works well and provides long service.  Your current mileage is a testimonial.  The only drawbacks to either of these automatic transmissions are the lack of overdrive and a tendency to dry-sump (starve for oil) on steep inclines.

Moses

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