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Westminster, CO 80030
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8AM – 5:30PM Mon-Fri

(303) 922-4102

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Lakewood 303-922-4102

Westminster 303-422-4140

DIY Guide: How to Remove and Install an NV3500 HM290 Transmission

DIY Guide: How to Remove and Install an NV3500 HM290 Transmission

Removing and installing an NV3500 HM290 transmission is a complex task that requires careful preparation, the right tools, and a step-by-step approach. We’ll provide you with a detailed set of  instructions to help you successfully remove and install this transmission.


  1. Tools and Equipment Needed
    • Transmission jack
    • Socket set and wrenches
    • Screwdrivers
    • Transmission fluid
    • Drain pan
    • Safety gear (gloves, safety glasses)
    • Vehicle lift or jack stands
  2. Safety First
    • Ensure the vehicle is on a flat, stable surface.
    • Use a vehicle lift or securely place the vehicle on jack stands.
    • Wear appropriate safety gear, including gloves and safety glasses.

Step-by-Step Removal Guide

  1. Disconnect the Battery
    • Why: Disconnecting the battery prevents accidental electrical shorts and ensures safety.
    • How: Use a wrench to remove the negative battery cable.
  2. Drain the Transmission Fluid
    • Why: Draining the fluid prevents spills and makes the transmission lighter to handle.
    • How: Place a drain pan under the transmission and remove the drain plug. Allow the fluid to drain completely.
  3. Remove the Driveshaft
    • Why: The driveshaft connects the transmission to the differential and must be removed.
    • How: Unbolt the U-joint at the rear of the driveshaft and slide the driveshaft out of the transmission.
  4. Disconnect Linkages and Wiring
    • Why: Various linkages and electrical connections must be removed to free the transmission.
    • How: Disconnect the shift linkage, speedometer cable, and any electrical connectors attached to the transmission.
  5. Support the Transmission
    • Why: Supporting the transmission with a transmission jack ensures it can be safely lowered.
    • How: Position the transmission jack under the transmission and secure it in place.
  6. Remove Transmission Mounts and Bolts
    • Why: The transmission is secured to the engine and the vehicle frame by mounts and bolts.
    • How: Unbolt the transmission crossmember and remove the mounting bolts connecting the transmission to the engine.
  7. Lower and Remove the Transmission
    • Why: Lowering the transmission allows you to safely remove it from the vehicle.
    • How: Carefully lower the transmission using the transmission jack and slide it out from under the vehicle.

Step-by-Step Installation Guide

  1. Prepare the New or Rebuilt Transmission
    • Why: Ensuring the new or rebuilt transmission is ready for installation prevents delays and issues.
    • How: Inspect the new transmission for any shipping damage and make sure all necessary components are included.
  2. Lift and Position the Transmission
    • Why: Positioning the transmission correctly ensures proper alignment with the engine.
    • How: Use the transmission jack to lift the transmission and carefully position it under the vehicle.
  3. Align and Secure the Transmission
    • Why: Proper alignment is crucial for smooth operation and to avoid damaging components.
    • How: Align the transmission with the engine and start threading the mounting bolts by hand. Once aligned, tighten the bolts securely to the manufacturer supplied torque settings.
  4. Reconnect Linkages and Wiring
    • Why: Reconnecting the linkages and wiring is essential for the transmission to function correctly.
    • How: Reattach the shift linkage, speedometer cable, and electrical connectors. Ensure all connections are secure.
  5. Reinstall the Driveshaft
    • Why: The driveshaft connects the transmission to the differential.
    • How: Slide the driveshaft back into the transmission and reattach the U-joint at the differential.
  6. Refill Transmission Fluid
    • Why: Proper fluid levels are necessary for transmission operation.
    • How: Use the appropriate transmission fluid (GM Synchromesh) and refill the transmission to the correct level.
  7. Reconnect the Battery
    • Why: Reconnecting the battery restores electrical power to the vehicle.
    • How: Reattach the negative battery cable and tighten it securely.
  8. Test Drive and Inspection
    • Why: A test drive ensures everything is functioning correctly.
    • How: Start the vehicle and check for any leaks or unusual noises. Take the vehicle for a test drive to ensure smooth shifting and proper operation.

Tips for Success

  1. Take Your Time
    • Rushing through the process can lead to mistakes. Take your time to ensure each step is completed correctly.
  2. Follow Manufacturer Guidelines
    • Always refer to the manufacturer’s guidelines for specific torque specifications and procedures.
  3. Use Proper Tools
    • Using the correct tools makes the job easier and helps prevent damage to components.
  4. Seek Help if Needed
    • If you’re unsure about any step, seek assistance from a professional mechanic.

Removing and installing an NV3500 HM290 transmission is a challenging but rewarding task that requires careful preparation and attention to detail. By following this step-by-step guide and using the right tools and techniques, you can successfully complete the job and ensure your transmission operates smoothly.

For more detailed information or professional assistance, refer to our Ultimate Guide or contact our expert services.

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