The transmission is the heart and soul of your car’s engine. When it’s not working correctly, your car isn’t going to drive as smoothly as it should, have poor fuel economy, and won’t be able to accelerate as quickly as you can when the transmission control module is working.
For Chevrolet owners, if you notice that your automatic gear shifter is acting slower than expected or that shifting any gears is more complex than normal, it may be time to reset your transmission control module. The easiest thing to do is to take your Chevy to a mechanic, but you don’t have to.
Resetting the module isn’t tricky, and most people can learn to do it. You’ll put the vehicle into the “on” position, hold down the gas, turn the key to “off,” release the gas, and then you’re done.
If you want to learn how to fix this issue on your own, we’ll teach you how to reset the transmission control module in a Chevy, step by step.
Where is the Transmission Control Module Located in a Chevy?
For most fixes on cars, you need to know where to find the piece that needs fixing. Luckily, to reset your transmission control module, you don’t need to know where it is! If you’re curious as to where the module is, it depends.
Depending on what type of Chevy you have, the transmission control module’s location can vary. Even though it can vary depending on the model and year, the main places you’ll need to look for it are:
- Near the battery
- The center console inside your vehicle
- The back of the transmission case; below your engine control module
To reset your transmission control module, all you have to do is be able to get into the driver’s seat and have a key to the car. You’ll also need to be able to reach the gas pedal or have someone with you that can.
How Do You Reset the Transmission Control Module on a Chevy?
Unless you’re a trained mechanic, you won’t be able to handle all issues with your car at home. The good news is that resetting a transmission control module is something anyone can learn to do, and it will save you money by not bringing it to a mechanic.
Why your transmission control module needs resetting can happen for a few reasons. Typically, it’s because the transmission is changing gears too slowly. Keep in mind that when you reset the control module, it may not fix whatever issues you’re facing.
Since the process is easy to learn and free, there’s no harm in trying to fix your car’s issue before shelling out the money at the mechanic.
Tools and Equipment Needed
Most car fixes require at least one tool of some sort. Resetting your transmission control module requires zero tools and no knowledge about your car’s engine. You’ll need a key to the vehicle and be tall enough to reach the gas pedal. That’s it.
Step 1: Put the Vehicle into the “On” Position
You’ll need to turn your key into the “on” position or press the button that starts your car. When you turn the key, you’ll want to see that the dashboard lights are on and the air is blowing because this means you’ve done the first step correctly.
Another way to make sure you’ve done this right is if you hear two clicks. You don’t want to start the ignition yet.
Step 2: Hold Down Gas Pedal
Once you have the key in the “on” position and the dashboard lights are on, you must press the gas pedal. You don’t want to press on it like you’re driving.
You need to push the pedal all the way down until you can’t anymore. Doing this will activate the kick-down switch. Leave it there for a few seconds once you press it as far as it can go. After a few seconds are up, you can move on to step three. Be sure to leave your foot on the gas pedal and not release any pressure yet.
Step 3: Turn the Key to the “Off” Position
Turn your key to the “off” position after leaving your foot on the gas pedal for at least 15 seconds. If you have a push to start ignition, you can press the button now. Make sure you do not remove your foot from the gas pedal at all. If you do, you’ll need to restart the process.
Step 4: Release the Gas Pedal
Now that you’ve put the car in the “off” position, you can start to release your foot from the pedal. You’ll need to do this slowly to avoid slipping and putting pressure on the gas pedal again. Remember not to touch the key at this point, or you’ll have to start the process over.
Step 5: Wait Five Minutes
After completing all these other steps, you’ll need to wait five minutes. Waiting five minutes gives your car’s transmission control module time to reset. If you turn the car on or press on the gas pedal, you’ll need to start all over again.
Step 6: Drive!
Now, all there is to do is start your car and drive! If you followed all the steps above correctly, your transmission control module should be reset and ready to go. As you drive your car around, it will help your transmission control module to begin programming your driving patterns.
Remember, as you drive your Chevy again, be sure to drive around like you usually would so that it programs itself correctly. Just as we mentioned before, trying to reset your transmission control module on your own may not fix the root of your issues, but it’s worth a shot. If this doesn’t work, you can try it again, or you may need a professional.
When you take your car out for a drive after the process, be sure to drive for at least 20 minutes. This will give your car more time to start reprogramming.
What Does Resetting the Transmission Control Module Do?
The job of your transmission control module is to learn your driving patterns and to keep your transmission gears shifting correctly. If it’s not functioning correctly and attempting to reset it, you’re essentially wiping your transmission control module’s memory.
The software can sometimes malfunction, so resetting it can most likely return everything to normal. As you continue to drive, your transmission control module will work with your engine control module to determine your driving style and adjust accordingly.
Will Disconnecting the Battery Reset the Transmission Control Module?
In short – no. Disconnecting your car’s battery won’t reset the transmission control module. This is one of the biggest misconceptions concerning anything with the engine. There’s no need to waste your time disconnecting your car’s battery.
Do you have to Reprogram the Transmission Control Module?
You don’t if you’ve reset the module! Once you properly reset your transmission control module, it will automatically start reprogramming itself. It does this once you start driving your car again after resetting it. It will learn your patterns over time.
If your transmission control module was unfixable and needed to be replaced, then yes. You will need someone to help you reprogram it enough so that you can start driving.
How Much Does it Cost to Program a Chevy Transmission Control Module?
If you reset your Chevy’s transmission control module at home, it won’t cost you a dime to reprogram the transmission control module. Your transmission control module should start reprogramming after following the above steps, including a minimum 20-minute drive in your car. Unless you want to add in the cost of gas for your drive, it’s free.
For those who take their vehicle to a mechanic, there will be a cost. Each mechanic will charge their own prices, but reprogramming the transmission control module can cost anywhere from $75 to $350.
Where to Get a Chevy Transmission Control Module Repaired
Unfortunately, sometimes resetting your transmission control module isn’t the solution to your problem. If you reset the transmission control module and you’re still experiencing issues, it might be time to visit a professional mechanic.
Before you head to a mechanic, attempting to reset the transmission control module yourself is a good idea because it can’t hurt, and it’s free of charge. Plus, it won’t take you more than half an hour when you factor in the drive after the first few steps. When it’s time to see a mechanic, there are several big names to choose from. As with most things in life, supporting locals is a great option.
All you have to do to find a great mechanic in your area is do a quick Google search for mechanics that are capable of fixing your transmission control module. Local mechanics tend to be more affordable and willing to cut you a deal since they control their pricing, unlike corporate or larger mechanic companies.