Can you drive with a bad transmission range sensor?

Answered by Jarrod Smith

So, let me share my personal experience with a bad transmission range sensor and how it affected my ability to drive.

A few months ago, I was driving my car and suddenly noticed that it was not shifting gears properly. The engine was revving high, but the car was not accelerating as it should. I immediately suspected that something was wrong with the transmission.

After taking my car to a mechanic, they diagnosed the issue as a bad transmission range sensor. This sensor is responsible for detecting the position of the gear selector and relaying that information to the Powertrain Control Module (PCM). The PCM then uses this data to determine when and how to shift gears.

In my case, the transmission range sensor had partially failed, meaning it was sending intermittent or incorrect signals to the PCM. This resulted in the transmission not receiving the proper gear command input, leading to the issues I experienced while driving.

Although I could still drive the car, it was not an ideal situation. The car was not shifting gears correctly, which not only affected its performance but also put additional stress on the engine. The high revving and lack of acceleration made it difficult and unsafe to drive in certain situations, such as merging onto highways or overtaking other vehicles.

However, it’s important to note that if the transmission range sensor completely fails, the situation can be much worse. In such cases, the PCM will not receive any gear command input at all, rendering the vehicle unable to move. This means you won’t be able to drive the car at all until the sensor is replaced or repaired.

Driving with a bad transmission range sensor is possible, but it is not recommended. The faulty sensor can cause issues with shifting gears, affecting the performance and safety of the vehicle. It’s best to have the sensor replaced or repaired as soon as possible to avoid further damage to the transmission and ensure a smooth driving experience.