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4l80 question..

Discussion in 'Chevy Trucks' started by LUCKY 7, Jan 12, 2011.

  1. LUCKY 7

    LUCKY 7 Senior Member
    Messages: 107

    I've been looking for the right truck with an Allison in it- not much luck so far. Now wondering about a 6.0/4L80 combo. I'm scared of the 4L80 because of all the horror stories about them- mostly reverse problems I've read. Can this tranny be "built" to stand up to plowing use? I know you should be very cautious with all trannies but I don't want to have to drive like grandma when I'm plowing either. Can it be "built" or are you stuck with the weak reverse bands no matter what?
  2. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

    By modifying your shift technique, you can virtually avoid the reverse band issue. Use a [R] - [1] - [R] - [1] - [R] - [1] - [R] - [1] -.....you get the idea LOL.

    This will keep the reverse band engaged. It's the cycling on and off that kills them.

    There are dozens of threads, you can search using my user name.
  3. LUCKY 7

    LUCKY 7 Senior Member
    Messages: 107

    I've gotten into that habit this year. So it isn't about coming to a dead stop as much as it is about the gear selection? How is your new one working?
  4. sweetk30

    sweetk30 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,588

    to get the allison its a dmax or 8.1 bbc

    and 4l80 is a good tranny. just got to use your head when drivin.
  5. LUCKY 7

    LUCKY 7 Senior Member
    Messages: 107

    any other thoughts on what can be done with this tranny?
  6. carkey351

    carkey351 Senior Member
    Messages: 229

    1. the 4L80e is a wonderful tranny that is plenty heavy-duty; for those that aren't idiots. my truck has 192,000 miles on the same 4L80e and is still working great.

    2. maintence is important: i.e. fluid/filter changes, correct fluid/fluid level. also as earlier posted shifting techniques will lengthen the life; face it -plowing is just plain harder on a truck in many ways.

    3. there are transmission builders that build them heavier i.e. called a 4L85e. don't quote me on this (since I have only built a 4L65e and its been a while) -but the upgrades include a stronger sun-gear shell and a few other items that make it virtually built-proof.

    4. the 4L80e is NOT an allison, that is an apples to oranges comparision they both have great features, but the 4L80e is plenty strong and parts are more readily available and cheaper (i think).

    From my experience the 6.0L/4L80e combo is a good one; if you don't need a diesel then there really isn't much of a need for anything else..
  7. mayhem

    mayhem PlowSite.com Addict
    from Peru MA
    Messages: 1,016

    I'd say both. Proper gear selection for the task at hand minimizes internal wear and tear...dead stop before shifting and moving minimizes wear of the u-joints and other parts of the driveline.

    My 2000 has a 4L80...great tranny thus far at 136,000 miles. Doesn't slip, doesn't clunk...it just works. Take care of your stuff and it'll take care of you.
  8. sweetk30

    sweetk30 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,588

    biggest problem with autos and people that dont care or dont know is .....

    you dont wana drive in OD cause the computer will not put out the signal o the line pressure part of the tranny to let the pressure go all the way up to max for best fluid flow and holding power.

    so if you tow/plow/offroad in od then you are not useing the full power capacity of the tranny and burning it up slowly.

    lots of times in od you wont get engine braking when letting off the gas. if in 3rd/2nd & 1st you will get engine braking.
  9. MarkEagleUSA

    MarkEagleUSA Senior Member
    Messages: 335

    Just curious... what happens if you don't make it all the way from 1 to R? I seem to end up in N more often than I care to admit. Does this mean that the bands are disengaging so I'm not getting the full benefit of the 1-R shift?
  10. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

    Just keep at it. It will be second nature after a while. I don't even look at the needle when shifting. All feel.
  11. deere615

    deere615 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,919

    What exactly do you guys mean by the 1-R shift?
  12. sweetk30

    sweetk30 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,588

    dont shift from park or reverse to od or drive. use low gear like 1 and 2. then stop and do reverse for backin up. like i said its so the computer will give the tranny full fluid pressure for maximum laod holding .

    with todays computer controled trannys there is not tv / kickdown cable to mechanicly tell the tranny what load is on it. so there for no way to bump up line pressure.

    thats why we have 3 key sensors for trannys. map = manifold pressure or vacume = how much load is on the motor for how much work the tranny will be reciving. then there is the tps = throttle position sensor = same basic thing as map tells the system how much potential load is coming down the line. then tach raw data = how fast things are workin for diffrent needs in the system.
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2011
  13. deere615

    deere615 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,919

    So plow all my lots in 1 or 2 and dont use D? Correct?
  14. sweetk30

    sweetk30 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,588

    well dont use the overdrive portion of the range. this tells the computer its on light duty.
  15. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

    Don't use 2. Use 1 only. You will be taking off in second gear. That's OK for the occasional takeoff on slippery conditions. But if you do it repeatedly you generate excessive heat in the torque converter. Performance will be terrible also.
  16. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

    Pretty simple. Use 1 for forward travel. Use R for backwards travel.
  17. deere615

    deere615 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,919

    Ok I am going to have to do this next time. Question though? how does this help save the reverse band? I am all for this if it is better for my trannys as thats one thing that always worries me with my trucks
  18. Sydenstricker Landscaping

    Sydenstricker Landscaping PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,882

    How does this r-1 shift pattern do for guys like me with a transgo hd2 shift kit and increased line pressure and shift points thru the computer? I don't leave first till 20 mph
  19. 2COR517

    2COR517 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,115

    The reverse band is also the low band. Same band. So by shifting from [R] to [1], you basically keep the band under tension continuously.

    Shift kit doesn't change how the transmission works. [R] to [1] for you also
  20. jklawn&Plow

    jklawn&Plow Senior Member
    Messages: 469

    What if I put it in Tow haul mode. This raises shift point and works well on the medium driveways I plow? Any adverse affects?