how To Reset Transmission Control Module? – Ultimate Guide 2023

how to reset transmission control module

The transmission Control Module is the most important part of automatic transmission vehicles. Transmission control models can get faulty over time and require a reset to operate properly. Resetting your transmission is an important part of ensuring the proper functioning of your car. 

Resetting the transmission can improve shifting performance and reduce problems such as slipping or hard shifts. Many automatic car owners do not aware of how to reset transmission control module. That’s why we are writing this comprehensive guide.

In this guide, we will provide step-by-step instructions on resetting your transmission correctly and safely. We’ll also cover additional information about resetting a transmission that you should know before starting. 

These are the steps to reset a transmission control module.

  1. Ensure your car is in park and the engine is off.
  2. Disconnect the negative battery cable from the battery for at least 10 seconds to reset the transmission computer.
  3. Reconnect the negative terminal cable to the battery and start your engine.
  4. Keep your foot on the brake while shifting through all of the gears, both forward and reverse, including park and neutral.
  5. Allow your vehicle to idle for approximately 15 minutes with no interruption or changes in speed or RPMs during this time.
  6. Turn off your engine and wait a few moments before restarting it again once you have completed step five above.
  7. You’re done!

What is a Transmission Control Module?

The Transmission Control Module (TCM) is an electronic control unit that controls your vehicle’s transmission and other related components. It monitors factors such as speed, engine load, temperature, and many more so that it can determine when to shift the gears and how hard or soft the shifts should be. 

Resetting the TCM helps reset these parameters so that they can start working correctly again without any issues. A transmission control module also maintains your vehicle’s driving style.

But if TCM goes bad, it can affect your vehicle’s proper functioning. Many people think that resetting TCM can fix all but, It’s important to note that a transmission reset isn’t always going to solve all of your shifting problems, but it may help in cases where there are minor issues with shifting performance. 

If you continue to experience problems after performing a reset, it’s best to have your vehicle checked out by a professional.

Also Read: How Long Does it Takes to Rebuild A Transmission

How to know Transmission Control Module Has Gone Bad

If your transmission is shifting abnormally, it could indicate that the Transmission Control Module has gone bad. This could happens due to many different factors such as faulty wiring or an overheating issue and when you keep your vehicle less maintained. 

Common signs indicating a bad TCM include hard shifts when going up hills, not shifting gears at all, and rough shifting between gears. If you face any of these signs, it’s best to have your car checked out by a professional immediately.

Resetting your transmission can effectively improve its performance and avoid major repair costs in the future. However, if you continue to experience shifting problems after performing a reset, it’s important to get your car inspected by a professional mechanic as soon as possible.

Signs of bad transmission control module

The symptoms of a bad (TMC) can vary depending on the manufactorer and model of your vehicle. Generally, you may experience difficulty shifting or slipping when changing gears if the TCM malfunctions. You may also notice that the car struggles to shift into certain gears, such as reverse or park, or it takes longer than normal for the gear changes to happen. 

Additionally, some vehicles may display warning lights on their dashboard, indicating that there is an issue with their TCM. If any of these symptoms present themselves, its good to avoid driving and take your vehicle to a mechanic in order to avoid further damage and costly repairs.

These are some signs that the transmission control module is going bad

Hard or delayed shifting between gears

The car may struggle to shift into certain gears or take longer than normal for the gear change.

Warning lights on the dashboard

Some vehicles may display warning lights on their dashboard, indicating an issue with their TCM.

Slipping between gears 

The car may slip as it shifts between gears or make a grinding sound when changing gears.

Rough driving

The car may also feel rough and unresponsive or jerk when accelerating or decelerating suddenly.

Poor fuel economy 

An efficient transmission control module can result in good fuel economy, as the vehicle will need help shifting into higher gears at lower speeds, thus consuming more fuel than usual.

Stuck in the Same Gear

Lastly, if the vehicle is stuck in the same gear and won’t shift, it’s almost certain that the TCM has gone bad. In this case, a reset won’t be enough to fix the problem, and you should take your car to a professional for inspection and repair as soon as possible.

If you seen any of these symptoms, it’s important to have your vehicle checked by a good mechanic as soon as possible to avoid further damage and costly repairs. It’s also important to note that resetting the transmission control module may not always solve all of your issues, and additional work may require.

These are some causes of TCM failure:

Faulty Wiring

If the wiring for your TCM is not properly connected or has become damaged or corrupted over time, it can cause the system to malfunction.


 The transmission control module may fail if it becomes overheated due to operating at high temperatures for too long.

Faulty Sensors

Faulty sensors in your vehicle’s transmission system can also cause the TCM to malfunction. These sensors provide information about RPMs, engine speed, and other factors the TCM uses to control shift points and overall transmission performance.

Software Issues

Software problems can also lead to a bad TCM. Over time, software updates that are incompatible with your vehicle’s computer system may be released.

Defective solenoid

The solenoid is an electromagnetic switch in the transmission control module that controls fluid flow to the clutches and bands. If it fails or is defective, it can cause shifting problems.

Voltage Goes into the Circuit Board of the Transmission Control Module

Voltage going into the circuit board of the TCM can cause it to malfunction. This can happen when wiring becomes loose or corroded or when there is a problem with one of the sensors in your vehicle’s transmission system.

Heavy vibrations

Heavy vibrations or impacts, such as a car accident, can also cause damage to the transmission control module.

If your TCM has gone bad and needs to be replaced, it’s important to get it done by a qualified mechanic. Replacing a faulty TCM can be expensive, but keeping your vehicle running smoothly and safely is worth the cost. 

After replacing the TCM, follow the manufacturer’s instructions for resetting the system before taking your vehicle out for a test drive. Resetting the transmission control module is an important step that can help ensure that your vehicle runs properly and efficiently. If you have any questions about resetting your TCM, please consult an expert.

Also Read: Car overheating Then Going Back to Normal


Does A TMC Need To Be Programmed?

The transmission control module (TCM) does not need to be programmed. 

However, if your vehicle has been modified or had a significant repair done to it, you may need to reprogram the TCM for it to function properly. Additionally, some vehicles require programming after a transmission rebuild as well. It is best to consult with an auto technician before attempting any work on your vehicle’s transmission control module. 

If you have determined that your vehicle needs its TCU reprogrammed and reset, there are a few different methods available for doing so: 

  • You can take your car to an auto shop or dealership and have them reset it for you. 
  • You can purchase an OBDII scanner and use it to reset the TCU yourself. 
  • You can purchase an aftermarket transmission control module (TCM) and have it installed by a professional. 

How Do I Know If My vehicle TCM Needs To Be Programmed?

If you are experiencing transmission-related issues such as erratic shifting, harsh engagement, slipping, or slipping out of gear, it may be necessary to reprogram the Transmission Control Module (TCM). Your TCM is responsible for controlling how your vehicle’s automatic transmission shifts gears. 

To determine if a reset of the TCM is necessary, first check the fluid levels in your transmission. If that appears normal, take your vehicle for a test drive and pay attention to any abnormal behavior. If you suspect an issue with your shift points or if you hear grinding noises when shifting into gear, then it is likely time to reset the TCM. 

Another indication that you need to program the TCM is if service lights or warning lights, such as the “check engine” light, are illuminated on your dashboard. If all of these checks come back negative and you still suspect a problem with the TCM, it is best to take your vehicle to a qualified mechanic or car dealership for further diagnosis and repair. 

How Long It Takes To Reprogram A Transmission?

The process of reprogramming a transmission can take an hour to several hours, which depends on the type of car and its condition. On average, it takes about two hours for technicians to reset the transmission system in most cars. It is important to note that certain vehicles require additional steps in order to reset the transmission systems properly. In these cases, it may take up to six hours or more in order to complete the process. 

All proper steps must be taken to ensure a successful transmission reprogramming job. This includes checking all of the technical information before starting work and ensuring any existing mechanical problems are addressed before reprogramming. Additionally, it’s important to use genuine parts and fluids to protect the transmission system from further damage. 

Will A Bad Transmission Throw A Code?

Yes, a bad transmission may cause trouble codes to be stored in your vehicle’s computer. The code will alert you and your mechanic that there is a problem with your transmission that needs to be addressed. Some common codes associated with a faulty transmission are P0700 and P1776.


Resetting the transmission control module can help improve your vehicle’s performance and fuel economy, but it is important to know the common causes of TCM failure. Faulty wiring, overheating, faulty sensors, software issues, defective solenoids, the voltage going into the circuit board of the TCM, and heavy vibrations are all potential culprits.

 Suppose your reset does not fix your issue or you’re experiencing any of these symptoms. In that case, take your vehicle to a well known mechanic as soon as possible to avoid further damage and costly repairs. 

After replacing the TCM, follow all of the manufacturer’s instructions for resetting the system before taking your car out for a test drive.

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