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It could be either one, but the solenoids are by far the most likely culprit. The transmission codes are purely because of the camshaft position problem.

The solenoids are right on top of the engine and very visible once you remove the plastic cover.
Thanks for the quick information JohnWR. I see the solenoids side by side on the top front of the engine. I've looked on ebay and find numerous vendors for the solenoids at pretty inexpensive prices, except for the AC Delco ones that are about four times the price, is this one of those "you get what you pay for" scenarios? Thanks again.
 

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Thanks for the quick information JohnWR. I see the solenoids side by side on the top front of the engine. I've looked on ebay and find numerous vendors for the solenoids at pretty inexpensive prices, except for the AC Delco ones that are about four times the price, is this one of those "you get what you pay for" scenarios? Thanks again.
There have been reports of non-Delco solenoids failing early. That is not to say that all non-Delco solenoids fail early, but some cases have been reported.
 

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well mine were dead before 55000 miles,how much befor? I dont know. so I went with the cheep units with life time warranty.... for $22 a set. work 's great!!
 

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well mine were dead before 55000 miles,how much befor? I dont know. so I went with the cheep units with life time warranty.... for $22 a set. work 's great!!
I ordered the replacement solenoids but they won't be here until next week so thought I'd get ahead of the game and at least unhook the connectors. It appears they have some sort of a locking device that must be either removed or opened before the connector can be removed. I suspect its the light gray piece on the top of the connector that has a small tab oriented away from the body of the connector. I gently played with that but couldn't figure out how it works. I sure don't want to break anything, can anyone clue me in on the correct procedure to remove the connector?
 

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I ordered the replacement solenoids but they won't be here until next week so thought I'd get ahead of the game and at least unhook the connectors. It appears they have some sort of a locking device that must be either removed or opened before the connector can be removed. I suspect its the light gray piece on the top of the connector that has a small tab oriented away from the body of the connector. I gently played with that but couldn't figure out how it works. I sure don't want to break anything, can anyone clue me in on the correct procedure to remove the connector?
I'm going to try to describe this without pictures:
In the face of the tab that releases the connector you should be able to see a small part of the grey retainer. Use a small screwdriver or other tool to push that in, then pull the grey retainer out of the connector. In the case of these solenoids, the direction of pull will be straight up. Once it is removed you can push down on the tab to unlock the connector and pull it straight up as well.

i would wait until you get the new solenoids to disconnect anything, then disconnect, replace, and reconnect them one at a time to ensure that nothing gets mixed up.
 

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I ordered the replacement solenoids but they won't be here until next week so thought I'd get ahead of the game and at least unhook the connectors. It appears they have some sort of a locking device that must be either removed or opened before the connector can be removed. I suspect its the light gray piece on the top of the connector that has a small tab oriented away from the body of the connector. I gently played with that but couldn't figure out how it works. I sure don't want to break anything, can anyone clue me in on the correct procedure to remove the connector?
you're right. that grey piece has to comes out first. you be able to pull it straight up about 1/8" and if you look at the center of the grey piece you will see a little tab that stops it from coming up any further. Push that little tab straight in and pull up on the gray piece. It will come completely out.
 

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In the face of the tab that releases the connector you should be able to see a small part of the grey retainer. Use a small screwdriver or other tool to push that in, then pull the grey retainer out of the connector. In the case of these solenoids, the direction of pull will be straight up. Once it is removed you can push down on the tab to unlock the connector and pull it straight up as well.
you're right. that grey piece has to comes out first. you be able to pull it straight up about 1/8" and if you look at the center of the grey piece you will see a little tab that stops it from coming up any further. Push that little tab straight in and pull up on the gray piece. It will come completely out.
No, both of you are only partially right. Yes, the tab has to be pulled up, but it should NOT be (or need to be) removed. It has a stop position when slid up that allows the catch to be pressed and thus to release the connector. Removing it fully will work, but risks losing it or breaking the barbs.
 

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No, both of you are only partially right. Yes, the tab has to be pulled up, but it should NOT be (or need to be) removed. It has a stop position when slid up that allows the catch to be pressed and thus to release the connector. Removing it fully will work, but risks losing it or breaking the barbs.
Most of the ones I have disconnected have come all of the way out, without any obvious stop position. I don't know whether they should have or not, but mine did.
 

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As Soup described, the "lock" in the picture should not HAVE to be removed. They are 99.9999999% of the time designed to be pre-assembled in position so the installer at the factory merely pushes the connector onto the mate and drives the lock home. But, as John and the others have noted, if something is designed to go together, it can come apart so it can pop out upon removal.

John's advice (as it is 99.99999999% of the time) is solid - do one at a time just to keep things simple.
 

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the locks are a pain even when you have messed with them before.but not hard once you figure them out. the hard ones are the outa the way ones you cant see that tend to give you fits.like the sensors at the rear of the head... many items can be left connected till removed and then disconnected when you can see them and work with them better. even just a few inches of freedom makes a lot of difference. and remember to reconnect before installing those items too as you may get it installed and not be able to figure out exzactly how the connector go's back on. :eek:
 

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Thanks for all the great advice, I did manage to get the connector off the intake solenoid without breaking anything. The gray lock or retainer did come completely off the connector when I pulled up on it but it went back on easy. I'm going to heed the wise advice and do one at a time, so for now I'm just waiting on the new ones to arrive. After I get it back together I'll post the results. Thanks again. Frank
 

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Both solenoid's replaced and harsh downshifts & CEL are history. I took the car on two drives where numerous stops were required and the transmission worked fine, no harsh downshifts and the CEL did not come on. This was a inexpensive and easy fix after I followed the advice I was given in the forum. Thanks again for the help.
 
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