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Hello! First timer here. I recently purchased a 1987 Pulsar NX and wanted to get a bit more information from some experienced folks. First the good - This car is pristine! Cherry red, only a few small dings, no cracks in the vinyl, carpet is very clean, clean engine bay, pop up lights in great working order, power steering works well, and side mirror electric controls work great.

Now the concerning - The auto transmission works well most of the time, but every now and then sticks from 1st to 2nd gear. When you shift into drive, sometimes it stays in neutral and you have to drop it down to 2nd, then back up. A/C blowing hot air (probably just a recharge, but needs to be looked at), radio doesn't work, and wind shield fluid doesn't work.

Now my question - How screwed am I on the transmission issue? What steps should I take to get it corrected?

Here are some pictures!

Doug
 

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Now the concerning - The auto transmission works well most of the time, but every now and then sticks from 1st to 2nd gear. When you shift into drive, sometimes it stays in neutral and you have to drop it down to 2nd, then back up. A/C blowing hot air (probably just a recharge, but needs to be looked at), radio doesn't work, and wind shield fluid doesn't work.

Now my question - How screwed am I on the transmission issue? What steps should I take to get it corrected?
Probably the first thing to do with the tranny is drop the pan and replace the filter. You might want to try servicing the transmission using a fluid that is recommended for use in Dexron II applications, like Valvoline Maxlife ATF or Castrol Multi-import ATF, which are both synthetic.

A flush normally is NOT necessary at all and may even cause problems. The shops make money on flushes, that's why they recommend them. If the ATF is dark, burnt smelling, and you see little flakes or speck in it, DO NOT FLUSH IT. The fluid and transmission possibly has hard part damage, but the transmission just has not figured out it should die yet.

What's your ATF fluid look like? Here's a blotter test. Place a couple of drops of the ATF on a paper towel and wait about 30-seconds or so. If the fluid has spread out and is red or very light brown in color, the fluid is good – No action is needed. If the fluid does not spread out and is very dark brown in color, the fluid is oxidized; if it has a burnt smell to it, then there may be internal damage.
 
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