What Does the Engine Code P2706 Mean?

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A P2706 engine code means that there’s an issue with shift solenoid ‘F,’ an important part of your car’s transmission. This issue requires repairs ASAP, as it can cause drivers to lose the use of a gear, get stuck in a gear, or be unable to shift at all. 
If left unrepaired, an issue with a shift solenoid can cause larger (and far more expensive) transmission problems.
Engine codes are rarely a welcome sight, but they exist to help keep you and your car safe on the road. Here, car insurance broker Jerry takes some of the fear and mystery out of engine codes, including what they mean and how much you can expect to pay for repairs. 
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What does the engine code P2706 mean?

Definition: The engine code P2706 is the result of a faulty shift solenoid—specifically, shift solenoid ‘F’. 
A lesser-known car part, a solenoid is an electrohydraulic valve. Your car’s Transmission Control System uses six solenoids to control the flow of transmission fluid to the various clutches that allow your car to shift gears. 
The Transmission Control System in your car periodically checks each of the solenoids to make sure they’re working properly. A small test current is sent to each solenoid, and if the Transmission Control System doesn’t sense a spike, it tries again. 
If a spike isn’t detected three times in a row, an engine code is generated.

What can cause the P2706 engine code?

Causes of a P2706 can be anywhere from an easy fix to a complicated issue.
The simplest trigger of this code could be dirty or low transmission fluid, so make sure that you are keeping up with your routine car maintenance
On the more serious side, a P2706 could be caused by a broken or malfunctioning solenoid. These valves rely on electricity to work, so shorts or faulty, damaged, or dirty connections are often behind a bad solenoid. 

Common symptoms of the P2706 engine code

Since your car periodically checks its solenoids, you can expect the Check Engine or Service Engine Soon light to turn on when this issue is detected. However, there are some other signs to watch for that might indicate a transmission solenoid problem.   
Some symptoms you might notice as you’re driving include: 
  • Delays in shifting—time lag or power loss in between gear shifts
  • Unpredictable gear shifts—your car randomly shifts gears up or down
  • Inability to downshift—you can change to a higher gear, but not back down

How serious is the P2706 engine code?

A P2706 should be addressed right away. Problems with the transmission directly affect safety and driveability, so don’t wait! 
Next to the engine, the transmission is one of the most important (and most expensive) components of your car. Not taking care of a failing solenoid quickly could lead to other far more costly and time-consuming repairs. 
It generally takes an auto shop around one hour of labor to diagnose the P2706 engine code. The cost varies depending on your location and vehicle type, but most auto repair shops charge between $75 and $150 an hour. 
Costs to replace a solenoid vary depending on your make and model, ranging from a few hundred to almost a thousand dollars.

Can I fix the P2706 engine code myself?

It depends. If the code is being generated simply due to low or dirty transmission fluid, you may be able to handle things yourself. 
Pop the hood and take a look at the solenoids and the surrounding harnesses and wires. Do you see any damaged components? Look for connector pins that are corroded, bent, pushed out, or broken. 
A solenoid that looks like it needs repair should be left to a professional mechanic. 

How to check transmission fluid

If you have the necessary experience and tools to replace low transmission fluid, here’s how to do it yourself:
  • Refer to your owner’s manual first to verify you have the correct type and amount of fluid and other tools. 
  • Cars with manual transmissions must be raised on a hoist to access the transmission. In this case, it’s best to seek a mechanic’s assistance. 
  • Leave the engine running and open the hood. Your car needs to be thoroughly warmed up and on a level surface. 
  • Locate and remove the transmission fluid dipstick, and lay it on a white cloth or paper towel. The color of the fluid should be clear or light pinkish. If it’s dark or has particles, have it changed by a mechanic
  • Wipe the stick and re-insert it into the fluid reservoir. Remove the dipstick again and check the fluid level. 
  • If the fluid level is low, you can slowly add fluid using a small funnel. Make sure you do not overfill the transmission fluid as this can cause damage. Add a small amount, check the level, and repeat as needed. 
There’s a certain level of expertise needed to properly care for a car’s transmission. If in doubt, see a professional.

Find affordable car insurance

Unexpected car issues like an engine code can seem to throw a wrench in your budgeting plans. Luckily, there are several ways you can free up some extra cash to make handling repair bills easier, like finding a lower insurance rate.
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