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Tech Article

The Wiring atop the Automatic Transmission

Last Updated: 03/29/2016
Parts Group: Transmission
My assistant recently swapped out the starter on our 1991 Volvo 240 project car. Success! I was impressed; it's a difficult task because the top starter bolt is VERY hard to reach, unless one gently pushes the automatic transmission towards the passenger side by an inch or two. She used a long 2"x4" piece of wood to pry the transmission sideways, and then kept it in position with a strap. This worked really well. Not everyone had this much success: Starter Removal: Tragicomical Stories of Desperation.

However, as she was undoing the strap, the wood shifted and pulled the wiring away from the top of the automatic transmission. It's an interesting sort of attachment. I gather that the electrical plug doesn't screw on; it's glued on, and then three electrical contacts make their respective connections.

So, once the glue seal is broken and the plug is loose, the only way it's coming back on is by being glued on again. That's not an easy place to work at, nor am I clear what sort of glue to use, or to get the old glue cleaned out -- so that's a project for another day. For now the car seems to be driving OK even so.
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