Logo carsalmanac.com
Automatic transmission operating rules AL4
Automatic transmission operating rules AL4

Many French automakers have switched to automatic transmissions. The percentage of cars equipped with automatic transmission in the European market is more than 50. And this applies even to budget cars. Now automatic transmission AL4 is installed on these cars. What kind of transmission is this, what are the features of its operation and problems? All this - later in our article.


AL4 automatic transmission can be found on cars such as Peugeot, Citroen and Renault.

automatic transmission al4

This transmission is a four-speed "automatic". Initially it was marked as DP0. AL4 automatic transmission has been constantly upgraded and now you can find such modifications as 4HP and BVA. All of them were installed on budget cars, such as the Peugeot 206-407 series, Citroen, starting with the C-2 and ending with the C-5 model. It was also equipped with Renault Scenic. The box underwent a significant modernization in 2004. During the operation, she received a lot of conflicting reviews from motorists. Some say that the repair comes down to changing the oil, others have big problems withsolenoids and valves, which are difficult and costly to replace.

Operating Rules

Every car owner tries to take care of his car.

automatic transmission al4 oil

And if everything is very clear with the engine (this is a regular oil and filter change), then what to do with the AL4 automatic transmission? The oil also needs to be changed. But the rules of operation are not limited to the replacement of consumables.

Warming up

Just like the engine, the valve body of the AL4 automatic transmission needs to warm up. This function is provided in the electronic system. However, experienced motorists advise additionally warming up this transmission. Regardless of temperature and weather conditions, the gearbox must be warmed up for at least 5 minutes. In this case, it is not necessary to keep the lever in the “Parking” position. At the beginning of the movement, aggressive driving and sudden accelerations should be avoided. Do not keep the box in sport mode often.

About oil

French manufacturers say that the AL4 automatic transmission is a maintenance-free box, and the oil change period is not regulated. However, this is not at all the case. This lubricant is used differently than in manual transmissions.

automatic transmission replacement al4

The fact is that the manual transmission contains a crankcase filled with oil. The box is half full. When moving, the gears of the transmission rotate, they need lubrication. Thus, they seem to be “wetted” in the crankcase and only then come into contact with the working part of other teeth. The oil does not overheat here, although it also performs the function of a heat sink. Concerningautomatic transmissions, here this fluid is "working". It is she who performs the function of clutch and transmission of torque from the engine to the wheels. On mechanical ones, friction discs are used. At the heart of the "machine" is a torque converter, or the so-called "donut". Inside it there are impellers - small turbines. When rotating, they are interconnected and, due to oil, transmit power to the engine. Thus, the temperature of the lubricant here is colossal. The oil is under heavy load. Therefore, unlike the "mechanics", the AL4 automatic transmission requires regular lubricant changes. Motorists say that it should be changed every 40 thousand kilometers. If you buy a used car and doubt the regularity of automatic transmission maintenance, it is recommended to flush the mechanism. The volume of oil for this operation is about 15 liters (for several cycles). 4 liters are poured into the box itself. As a rule, mining is always black, and there are traces of wear on the crankcase - small metal chips. The smaller it is, the better. The filter also needs to be changed. Below we will talk about the problems that arise during the operation of such vehicles.

Emergency mode and error P1167

This is one of the most common mistakes with the AL4 box.

dp0 al4 automatic transmission

The main symptoms are characteristic bumps in the automatic transmission when starting to move. The transmission enters emergency mode and engages third gear. A Gearbox Faulty error occurs on the dashboard. It usually disappears when the ignition is turned off and on again. Howeverthe box does not stop "kicking" when moving. The reason for this is the low pressure of the automatic transmission AL4. It may differ from the one set by the computer by 1-1.5 bar. This may be caused by low oil level in the transmission. This occurs when there are leaks due to a loose valve body.

How to fix?

If these symptoms occur, check the box for leaks. If the car's mileage is more than two hundred thousand, you need to inspect the condition of the heat exchanger. Also, on older cars, oil pressure spread occurs when the valve body is faulty or dirty. The solution is to disassemble and flush the element. After that, errors are reset and new transmission oil is poured.

automatic transmission valve al4

It is worth noting that for automatic transmission it has a different viscosity. You can not pour grease intended for "mechanics" into it. If during disassembly traces of mining and contamination are found, after 1 thousand kilometers it is necessary to re-change the oil and re-check the level of its pressure in the hydraulic unit.

Unable to move gearshift selector from P position

If the gearshift lever does not move from the “Parking” mode when you press the brake pedal, and when you release it, the “Drive” mode turns on and the error is on, most likely it is related to the brake system. It is necessary to scan the car for errors. There is a problem with ABS and ESP. The cause of the breakdown is poor contact or an open circuit in the wiring of the brake pedal switch. The "limit switch" may also be faulty. The solution is to replace the element or circuit breaker wiring (ifthe problem is poor contact).

Error P0730

She's talking about slipping clutch. It can occur both on a warm box and “on a cold one”.

automatic transmission pressure al4

Symptoms - shocks to the checkpoint and the transition to emergency mode. Sometimes when driving, the engine speed floats (the accelerator pedal is in the same state). This is the towing clutch effect. In this case, the automatic transmission solenoid valve AL4 fails. It is also possible that the hydraulic unit itself breaks down. Further movement on such a car is prohibited, as there is a risk of breaking the “donut” band brake. Such a malfunction usually occurs on older cars and is solved by replacing the valve and pulling the valve body. As in previous cases, after the repair is completed, new oil is poured into the transmission and automatic transmission sensors AL4 are checked for oil pressure spread.

How not to overheat?

It is important not only to warm up this box, but also not to use it at high temperatures. What is required for this? If you stand in a traffic jam for more than 30 seconds, do not be lazy to move the lever from the "Drive" to "Neutral" position. Do not keep your foot on the brake for a long time, as transmission failures can occur with this system.

About the sensor

When operating cars with AL4 gearbox, there are problems with the oil pressure sensor. Its error according to factory requirements is 0.001 bar. This means that at the slightest fatigue of the sensor, it starts to “lie” and displays an error on the control unit. Because of this, the box starts to work poorly.If you detect a malfunction in time, you can meet the relatively small price - $ 100. This is the cost of a new oil pressure sensor. Further operation of the vehicle with a defective element is prohibited, as this may lead to problems with the solenoid.

Brake band failure

With frequent jumps in oil pressure (which may be caused by a broken sensor), the brake band breaks. Many motorists come to the conclusion that it is cheaper to order a spare part "for dismantling". However, most of the AL4 transmissions that go "for parsing" are far from being in perfect condition. Almost all of them have exhausted their resources. Also note that this box is constantly modified. Changed the type of pressure regulator, software. By the way, the software on the first models of this box was of poor quality, because of which it often knocked out an error.

valve body automatic transmission al4

Solution - reloading the software, replacing it with a newer one. But there is one feature. After 2004, the box has been significantly modified, and when reprogramming, you need to take into account the year of manufacture of your car.

Keep an eye on the oil level

When the level is insufficient, pressure fluctuations occur. As a result - the occurrence of one of the previous errors. Once every 10 thousand kilometers, it is necessary to check the remaining oil inside the transmission. Each box has a probe with MAX and MIN marks, and on the reverse side - HOT and COLD. You need to check on a warm transmission. Enough 10 kilometers to return it to normal operation. Atthe vehicle must not be tilted. Also, it cannot be turned off - the probe is removed on the working engine, at the position of the selector "P". If the level is insufficient, you need to return it to the maximum mark. Gear oils must not be mixed. Therefore, the best solution would be a complete oil change. It is expensive, but this way you protect yourself from other breakdowns.

In closing

Thus, the rules for operating this transmission come down to regular oil changes and preheating of the elements before starting the car. If any errors occur, or if the box is in emergency mode (third gear), it is not recommended to continue driving on its own. Also, do not overheat the oil. This is not the best way to affect the electronics. The normal oil temperature inside an AL4 automatic transmission is 75-90 degrees Celsius. If you follow all the operating rules, the resource of this transmission will be more than 300 thousand kilometers. However, if you ignore the warm-ups and new oil, the replacement of the AL4 automatic transmission will be inevitable.

So, we found out what features this box has, how to properly operate it and repair it in case of a breakdown.

Popular topic