Gear Linkage Cable
Manufacturers & Replacement Services
Cable Engineering Services designs, manufactures and repairs high-quality control cables & gear linkage cable for automotive, marine and heavy machinery use.
Our wide range of cables can be used for multiple applications, from motor vehicle throttle and gear selector cables to steering cables for boats or jet skis.
At Cable Engineering Services, we understand the frustration of getting the right cable when you need it most.
This is why our staff can manufacture any cable for any vehicle or machine on the same day.
What is a gear linkage cable and how does it work?
The shift selector cable connects the gear shifter, located on the steering column or on a floor mounted console, to the automatic transmission. The cable is typically steel and is protected from the elements by a plastic outer sheath. At each end of the shift cable, often rubber or nylon bushings allow for cable movement and vibration. In some applications, the cable is adjustable, in case the cable stretches while in use.
When to consider replacing the gear linkage cable:
- No response to gear shift movement. Should the cable break, or the cable ends detach, you will not be able to shift at all. Sometimes it is a matter of replacing the cable end bushing. Other times, the entire cable assembly must be replaced.
- Shift Indicator doesn't match the gear. A stretched shifter cable may result in the car being in a different gear than the one you believe you have selected. If the cable is adjustable, this might be resolvable without buying a new cable.
- Unable to remove key from ignition. If the cable has broken, or a cable end has detached, you may not be able to place the vehicle in park. In that event, the key will usually not be removable from the ignition.
Is it safe to drive with a gear selector cable problem?
No. Usually, it will be difficult to operate the vehicle if the shift cable has broken, stretched, or detached — so the car may not be drivable. In the case of a stretched cable, so long as you can select Park and Drive, it is safe to temporarily use the car until repairs can be made. If Park can NOT be selected it is unsafe to operate the car and the car should be left where it is with the emergency brake applied and the wheels blocked while you schedule a repair.
When replacing the gear selector cable keep in mind:
- A mechanic will attempt to re-use your existing cable if only cable ends are needed or if the cable can be adjusted. However, if the steel strands of the cable show significant corrosion, or the cable is clearly sticking or binding in its plastic sheath, a cable replacement will be performed.
- In an emergency, and to move a vehicle with an automatic transmission, a mechanic can directly access and move the manual lever on the transmission to put the vehicle in Drive so you can drive the car to your home while awaiting a repair.