GMC Sierra Transmission Problems – Top Common Problems

Drivers encountered GMC Sierra transmission problems, although it is known as the best-selling, with 191,186 units sold in 2021.

The 2013-2022 GMC Sierra’s vehicles have been claimed to have shifting issues.

Like Chevrolet, GMC car users may face braking difficulties and the transmission slips. They also get forceful gear interaction.

We assembled a sample of complaints from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. It will give you an insight into the problems.

Besides, looking into the common issues will allow you to know what’s wrong with your car and the repair cost.

What Is GMC Sierra 1500?

gmc sierra transmission problems
GMC Sierra 1500

GMC’s Sierra 1500 is among the strongest trucks available. There are various engine options to meet the demands of consumers.

This light-duty truck has four gearbox choices: ten, eight, six, and four-speed automatics.

The 2022 GMC Sierra 1500 truck is just as competent and flexible as it has always been. However, it’s prettier and filled with far more high-tech amenities.

Its outer look changes with a more eye-catching design. Meanwhile, the interior improvements are the most noteworthy.

It features a 13.4-inch touchscreen navigation system. the car is seen as a more upscale option to the Chevy Silverado 1500.

Do GMC Sierras Have Transmission Problems?

The gearbox and engine configurations should ensure a pleasant ride. Nonetheless, many owners have grumbled about it over the years.

Owners of vehicles from between 2009 and 2013 have reported transmission issues. The most common one is hesitation during shifts.

The problem keeps occurring with newer vehicle models from 2014 to 2021. They allege that the manual transmission began to misbehave when the car hit 100,000 kilometers.

Many owners in America had to bring GM vehicles back to the shops, citing the same gearbox issues. Several buyers even brought General Motors to law.

What Are The Signs Of GMC Sierra Transmission Issues?

In general, the Sierra 1500 hasn’t had many transmission issues. The ones that have occurred rapidly got recalled.

Though these mechanical problems are said to be not too problematic, drivers do not want to risk their lives.

Clunking Sounds 

Most drivers report that this gearbox problem occurred regularly while changing gears. There may be some causes, such as damaged gearbox parts and incorrect fluid.

If the transmission fluid is of poor quality or low, it gets hot much faster. The fluid will deplete and cause the engine parts to grind against each other.

The tension among these elements makes rattling noises that drivers can hear.

Once you bring the GMC Sierra to a repair shop, the professional mechanic will inspect the transmission fluid. They will tell you if you should get the fluid replaced or a transmission flush.

If anything else, they will proceed with the examination to look for other problems. When there are faulty transmission parts, the check engine light will appear.

You will encounter some harsh shifting leading to clanking sounds. A specialist needs to check the vehicle and suggest the best solution.

Shifting Issues

Numerous people running the  GMC six-speed gearbox, have experienced delays whenever shifting. They complained that the gearbox became jammed.

Other users say the transmission doesn’t shift down to the first position.

Meanwhile, for several, the gearbox unexpectedly changes, and the vehicle stops. Sometimes, car owners feel a little shaking in the brake pedal, notably when driving at a slow speed.

They will have to brake and then continue.

Many faults, like a broken torque converter or valve body, can cause shifting troubles. They can all result in a full gearbox failure.

The Torque converter is in charge of pressurizing the fluid. This pressurization will create the necessary force to change the gears.

In case your GMC sierra 1500 torque converter fails, the gears will move out of place.

You may hear crashing sounds. Some discover that the transmission has switched to the neutral position. The fuel efficiency also decreases since the transmission shifts uncomfortably.

It results in a slow car and more fuel usage. The solution would be to install a new transmission fluid or torque converter.

A Faulty Transmission Control Module

Another issue with many GMC Sierras is a faulty gearbox control module. The gearbox control module is in charge of forwarding speed data to the engine and gearbox to assist with shifting.

Once the sensors fail, a few shifting problems happen, such as erratic shifting and delayed shifts. It can even cause harsh shifts that startle the pickup truck to go ahead.

Others have had trouble stopping the vehicles as their car does not shift down gears fast enough. They will need to stop at a red light to inspect the car and get it pulled to a repair shop for checking.

Besides, it’s worth noting that a faulty lock actuator or park-lock cable is another cause of GMC trucks pulling into neutral positions.

What Are People’s Complaints About GMC Sierra 1500 Transmission Problems?

gmc truck transmission problems
Complaints About GMC Sierra 1500 Transmission Problems

We gathered a collection of claims made to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. It will give you an insight into the problems impacting some GMC Sierra pickups.

Please remember that these complaints have been modified for clarity and grammar.

2013 GMC Sierra Transmission Problems

My old vehicle, a 2013 GMC Sierra, has engine troubles and major gearbox problems that have almost got me in a crash.

Sometimes, it shifts down so forcefully that I feel like another car hit me in the back. One day, I got downshifting so hard that I ran into a traffic flow.

2015 GMC Truck Transmission Problems

My relative purchased an 8-speed transmission 2015 GMC Sierra, but there has been a problem since she bought it. She purchased the car secondhand in the autumn of 2018.

The truck transmission worked perfectly for around ten months. The truck began to shake forcefully when I shifted in the late summer of 2019.

Because of the extremely difficult shifting, she took her vehicle to a repair shop to check my gearbox. It is hard to adjust from first to second or second to third positions.

They charged her an $80 diagnostic cost and reset the transmission.

2016 GMC Sierra Transmission Problems

My friend’s car’s gearbox failed when traveling at freeway speeds. The car switched to neutral, forcing me to pull over to the side. The check engine warning light turned on.

The car would not drive anymore unless it was switched off and ignited again.

He had to continue to do so for the next two miles as I drove to a safe spot. The car was transported to the dealership for inspection.

An internal fault was discovered, and the entire gearbox must be replaced at around 79,000 miles.

2017 GMC Sierra Transmission Problems

I have a 2017 GMC Sierra 8-speed gearbox that slows down under acceleration. Then the car lurches and rushes ahead when I attempt to change gears.

Sometimes, when I try to stop the car, I make a transmission adjustment, and the vehicle tends to rush ahead. I went to the dealer for several days to explain my worries.

Eventually, they had to change to a new torque converter and clean the transmission.

2018 GMC Sierra Transmission Problems

During shifting, the gearbox smashes forcefully, and the fluids are black and polluted. “Operating as planned, no issues observed,” says the dealer.

In addition, when operating, the vehicle vibrates and shakes strongly.

2019 GMC Sierra Transmission Problems

I purchased a 2019 GMC Sierra Denali and have returned it to the dealer several times. However, they refuse to remedy the problem.

It is very difficult to change the gearbox from the first position to the second position. It’s clumsy, rushes ahead, and changes abruptly.

The car can occasionally push forward even when you put your foot on the brake.

2020 GMC Sierra Transmission Problems

My 2020 GMC Sierra is equipped with a new Allison 10-Speed transmission, which is great. However, it has recently exhibited problems caused by a malfunctioning torque converter.

The automatic transmission problems began after the vehicle was on the street for 10,000 to 20,000 miles.

2021 GMC Sierra Transmission Problems

This vehicle has only reached 20,000 miles, and the gearbox is shifting from drive to reverse gear and vice versa.

All of the reviews about it have made me angry. Many other vehicle owners told me they had experienced the same problem.

2022 GMC Sierra Transmission Problems

In January, my friend purchased a 2022 GMC Sierra. Just in the summer of the same year, the car began bouncing or shaking at 65 miles per hour in cruise control.

Sometimes, there are shifting delays and grinding when accelerating. He took the car back to the seller three times.

How Many Times Has GMC Sierra Recalled?

do gmc sierras have transmission problems
GMC Sierra Recalled

From 2013 through 2020, GMC Sierra was recalled 3 times for leaking fluid, a driveshaft, and mistakenly shifting.

According to the Traffic Administration,  the GMC Sierra issued 3 recalls for gearboxes. The recalls apply to Sierra 1500 vehicles manufactured in 2020, 2019, 2014, and 2013.

Besides, up to 54,686 GMC 2013 cars, including the 1500 Sierra, may mistakenly shift out of place. The problem has been traced to a misaligned lock actuator or broken park-lock cable.

2014 GMC Sierra 1500 cars with the 6-speed transmission might have fluid leaks because of the improperly secured oil line. A fire can ignite if the fluid comes into contact with heated engine parts.

Lastly, a recall was made for Sierra 1500s manufactured between 2019 and 2020. The problem is an inadequately welded joint that caused the driveshaft to detach.

If this occurs when the vehicle is moving, the car will instantly be forced to stop.

Fortunately, just 42 units are involved in this most recent recall, keeping this a dangerous but rare event.

What Are The Cost Of GMC Sierra 1500 Transmission Problem Repair? 

To get the transmission functioning properly again, you may need to replace the fluid or purchase a new gearbox. Your alternatives will be dependent on the level of the damage.

A standard fluid replacement can set you back from $150 to $300. The location and the year of car production determine this fee. Older automobiles are less expensive to repair.

A more comprehensive service will be from $250 to $500. That includes changing the filters, adding new fluid, and examining the oil pan.

Extra intricate repairs and maintenance will be more pricey. Other parts, such as the transmission valve body, have an average cost of $300 to $400 to repair.


There are some GMC Sierra Transmission Problems. The common ones are shifting issues, clucking sounds, and defective vehicle transmission control modules.

If you face any of these symptoms, you should take it to the dealer. Though some claim these problems are not very concerning, you should not risk your life for them.

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