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02 4x4 V8 Eddie Bauer Jerking in Drivetrain

Discussion in 'Stock 2002 - 2005 Explorers' started by Ed in IL, February 16, 2006.

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    1. Ed in IL

      Ed in IL New Member

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      City, State:
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      Year and Model:
      02 Explorer EB V8
      In July 2002, I purchased a 2002 Ford Explorer 4x4 E.B. 4.6 V8 AT with
      towing package. Ever since it was new (now with 63k miles), it's had an
      occasional "jerk" or "bucking" when accelerating (light, moderate and full
      throttle). When it is happening, it usually does it several times over a 5
      second interval (but it is not cyclical or harmonic). This "jerking" only occurs in 2nd and 3rd gear and it does not matter if in over or not. I also noticed that the jerking does not occur in 4x4 high.... it only occurs in 4x4 auto. It also does not matter if the road is wet or dry.


      The ways people driving with me have described this problem is:
      2 micro jerks per second from 20 to 5o mph
      Feels like a miss in the engine
      Feels like trans trying to shift then stopping

      I've had the vehicle to my Ford dealer 6-8 times (I've lost count) and they have not found anything wrong - no error codes, etc. They even installed a "flight recorder" to try to capture what is going on and still have not found anything. In fact my vehicle is at the dealership now and has been there for the past two weeks.

      The "jerking" is in the drivetrain and is intermittent, sometimes the jerking is there and other times it is not. I have encouraged the service writer and mechanic to drive my car home or even drive it for a weekend. They have felt the jerking but just cannot determine what is causing this, they are all scraching their heads. I've had several 4-wheel-drive vehicles and this, definitely, is NOT normal.

      Any suggestions on what may be the problem and how I can get this fixed?...
      I know somebody out there must know how to fix this damned thing. I figure it is something in the motor, a faulty sensor, internal tranny problems, faulty control trac?


      HELP!
       
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    3. gijoecam

      gijoecam Village Idiot Elite Explorer

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      Sounds to me like the normal operation of the Control Trac system. Some people never notice the Control Trac engaging and disengaging during normal operation. Some people (muself included) notice it from day one and it drives us nuts!! However, it's normal and not hurting anything. I've got 105k miles on mine and it's done it from day one. The Brown Wire Mod helped for mine, but your '02 is wired a bit differently and I'm not entirely sure if there's a way around it yet (nobody has tried it to my knowledge). (On a side-note, I'll sned all the knowledge I've got your way if you think it'll help.... but I can't guarantee it'll work)

      -Joe
       
    4. Ed in IL

      Ed in IL New Member

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      This is NOT normal!!!

      GiJoe, If you drove my Explorer I'd bet you a thousand dollars that it is not normal, the mechanic and service guy agree that there is something seriously wrong and they do not consider this normal. They also commented that neither has ever dealt with a situation like mine. I understand what you mean by your post but there is definitely something wrong and the jerking is more frequent now and very niticable to everyone in the vehicle. I did try the wire trick but the 02 does not have a brn wire, I disabled one wire at a time on the 4 x 4 buttons and nothing changed. I would estimate that between 20 and 50 mph on the average probably 10 to 15 noticable jerks are felt during normal acceleration. Thanks for your post and I sure hope somebody has an answer.
       
    5. gijoecam

      gijoecam Village Idiot Elite Explorer

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      If it's actually bucking the vehicle, like a hesitation, or a stumble in the gear selection alone, then yes, I would tend to agree with you 100%. However, you also mentioned that when you shift into 4 high, the problem goes away. The only difference between 4 auto and 4 high is that in 4 high, the transfer case is locked-in at 100% duty cycle, whereas in automatic, the GEM module will vary the duty cycle of the transfer case based on vehicle speed, throttle position, transmission gear, and a few other variables. Locking it into 4high only locks in the transfer case., preventing the cycling from occurring.

      And, for the record, the '02 still has a brown wire that feeds the transfer case clutch coil. It's in a different spot than the 2nd-gnes, but it's still brown.

      This has got me thinking: If you don't mind, humor me: Unplug the transfer case from the wiring harness and take the truck for a drive. See if you still get the clunking/bucking feeling you described. (The 4x4 lights will probably begin flashing, but you won't hurt anything.... the GEM simply won't know where the shifter motor is and the control-trac feedback won't be working, but mechanically it won't hurt a thing)

      If disconnecting the t-case makes the noise stop, (and since it doesn't affect the rest of the drivetrain, trans, engine tuning, etc) then it tells me that's the source.

      Oh, and plugging the t-case connector back in and cycling the ignition switch will reset the system and should cancel all the blinken-lights.

      Let us know what you figger out!

      -Joe
       
    6. Ed in IL

      Ed in IL New Member

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      02 Explorer Jerking

      Hey Joe, I will try your idea as soon as I get my Explorer back from the dealership if the problem is once again not fixed, they have had it for almost 3 weeks now and still no luck. They are considering dropping another tranny in this thing under my extended warranty, this may or may not fix the problem but I guess I couldnt complain about a new tranny. I will keep you posted as soon as I get my Explorer back from ford again, the way things are looking it won't be anytime soon. Thanks again.

      Ed in IL
       
    7. JohnnyO

      JohnnyO Moderator Emeritus

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      #1. Have them remove the rear driveshaft, clean and grease up the slip yoke real good, and put it back in. See if that helps.
      #2. Put in the aluminum replacement driveshaft that Ford has. I had this done on both the Rangers I owned previously, fortunately on warranty, for the same problem. Ford has a TSB about it.
       
    8. Ed in IL

      Ed in IL New Member

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      02 Explorer Jerking in the drivetrain-PROBLEM FIXED!!!

      Hello everyone, I am happy to announce that the jerking problem is now 100% fixed. The dealership that has had it for 3 weeks and 3 service visits finally figured it out. The problem was the 4 x 4 module which is mounted behind the glove compartment. The mechanic explained that the jerking was my control trac system trying to engage the 4 wheel drive, he admitted that he just took a wild guess and replaced the moudule but it did fix the problem. I have driven about 300 miles with no further problems. If anyone out there needs anymore information or has the same problem please contact me. My e-mail address is: kaminski.e@comcast.net My problem that I have dealt with for over 50,000 miles is now gone!!! Thanks everyone for your input.

      Ed in IL :)
       
    9. pitbull325

      pitbull325 New Member

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      I have the same problem!

      My 03 Explorer XLT 4X4 with the 4.0 does the same thing! At first it was only on strong acceleration, especially with a downshift or tuning a corner. At higher RPM's it would start jerking and would continue until I let off the gas. The trans shifted like it should've so I didn't think it was the tranny. Driving it easy I wouldn't notice it at all. It is getting worse to where it does it on light acceleration sometimes. It DOES NOT DO IT when in 4X4 high. I just discovered this after tearing out my hair for 4 months and doing the following: changed the diff fluid, trans fluid, cleaned the MAP sensor, cleaned the injectors, new plug wires, fuel filter, and had the PCM reflashed. I'm going to change the 4X4 module and let you know what happens. I really hope it works!
       
    10. Ed in IL

      Ed in IL New Member

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      Explorer Jerking in Drivetrain

      Yep...It sounds like you have the same problem I had, rReplace the 4 x 4 module and you should be fine. The module is about $300 and the mecahnic said the module is located behind the glove compartment , make sure you disconnect the battery before removing or installing the module so you don't get a power surge spike that may damage the new module. Good luck.

      Ed in Illinois
       
    11. apple

      apple New Member

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      Finally...

      i have had a chance to look at my explorer a little more. mine has been doing the exact samething ed mentioned and i have just been dealing with it. today i unplugged the t-case and it stopped. and if i read correctly, joe you said it is an electrical problem. correct? my guess it that i need to replace the GEM module.

      now how long, if at all can i drive with the t-case unplugged? i will replace the module it is just a matter of finding time to do it. look forward to your help and thanks for all the posts.

      apple
       
    12. WaltB

      WaltB New Member

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      Jerking Problem

      I replaced two tires in Dec after a knot formed on one. I had a set of "no name" tires that came on the car. I put two new Michelins on it and started experiencing the symptoms you describe. I thought it was the tranny. Took it to the dealer and they wanted $2200 to replace the differential and the wheel bearings which I didn't think were problems. One day I had the car in the driveway and something didn't quite look right about the tires. I grabbed a yardstick and found that the new Michelen tires were an inch larger in diameter than the old tires although they were marked to be the same size. I pulled a 5 A fuse underneath the dash and two 20A fuses under the hood. The jerking stopped but the 4X4 Low light and the Door Ajar lights burned dimly. Wasn't sure if I had locked it in 4X4 Low for a while but kept checking the temp of the front differential and it seemed cool. Put two more Michelins on this weekend and replaced the fuses. So far it hasn't jerked. Looks like the difference in tire diameters is being picked up as axle slip.
       
    13. Bucksnort

      Bucksnort New Member

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      I have been experiencing the same problem with the jerking. I took it to a trany shop cause I thought it was the xmission slipping. I was not they said the OD light would be blinking it there was a problem. I'll try the 4x4 module if it's been working?? How much are we looking at and is it a simple install?
       
    14. ccahill

      ccahill New Member

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      Thanks for this info. I have a 95 that is doing the same exact thing. It does it in 2wd so I will try shifting into 4h and see if that makes any difference. I have tried just about everything else - plugs, wires, MAF cleaning, throttle body cleaning.
       
    15. jeff.dunham

      jeff.dunham New Member

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      Jerking, Engine Missing Problem

      I have a 02 explorer 4.6 v8 and I get a hesitation (engine missing?) when I accelerate or even during steady driving. I can counteract this by accelerating quickly. The motor under idle has died a few times, normally on a cold engine. I have not tired to engage the 4x4 while this is happening, but I intend too.
      I have brought the vehicle to a garage and they replaced
      -spark plugs, wires, boots :usa:
      -coil on one cylinder
      -fuel filter
      -air filter
      -did a fuel system test (was 5lbs over spec)

      They indicated that the engine was missing on many cylinders however they could not find anything that would help the problem since the vehicle did not throw a code out.

      If this sounds like what you were dealing with please let me know or if you have any other suggestions.

      Thanks
       
    16. lolar

      lolar New Member

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      Hey Walt, I just experienced the same thing ...I think. I replaced the Goodyear Fortera HL's with Triple Treads and on the way home I noticed the shudder during upshifts. I have been reading the forums about tranny problems concerning synthetic fluids,etc, but it seemed to me that it started right after I replaced the tires. I dont know if the shop still has the old tires to measure them but I'll call them tomorrow. I have an 02 Mountaineer with full time AWD so I dont know if that would be the same comparrison.
       
    17. apple

      apple New Member

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      changed my OEM Module

      i have finally changed my module and i wanted to report that everything is working fine and back to normal. about 6 months ago i disconnnected my 4x4, by crawling under the explorer and unplugging the 4x4 and drove like that until i was able to find a module that matched mine. i finally found one on ebay for $10, a good deal if you ask me. i guess the dealerships want like 300 for them. so, today i went out and put the new one in and i have drove about 25/30 miles today w/ zero problems. it actually seems to be driving better than before. i will report if anything changes. thanks for all the help.
       
    18. mferdin

      mferdin New Member

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      wow.. I am so happy to have found this thread. For 6 + months now I have been delaing with the jerking between 2nd and 3rd gear but now after the BLizzard we had ( and not having to use 4x4 since I bought in 10-2005) I realize the 4x4 isn't even working..so maybe I can kill 2 birds with one stone and get the module replaced and both will work????? what do you guys think?
       
    19. rrgone

      rrgone Active Member

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    20. mferdin

      mferdin New Member

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      UPDATE: I had to take the Explorer to FORD this morning ( I couldnt replace the part myself and didn't have anyone close to me that could) and I told them what I thought the problem was ( the 4x4 module) which they tested and agreed and it's a total of 375.00 parts and labor to replace, and also I had a tranny issue with the jerking when shifting from 2nd to 3rd .. I was told that FORD is aware of issues with this and stated that the processor must be reprogrammed ( problem arises in variable altitudes???????) so anyways.. they say it should be fixed and total out of cost about 500.00.. but with additional snow expected this week , I am hoping,,Oh so Hoping, that everything is fixed and no more problems.. I will let you guys know :)
      *********edit........... i got a call from ford that says that the 4x4 auto and high will work but not low so they have to do further testing because that is not connected to the 4x4 high..?? hmmmmmmmmm
       
      Last edited: December 27, 2006
    21. billsyzfr-1

      billsyzfr-1 New Member

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      I have the same jerking problem in my 02 XLT. I did the plug wire changes, cleaned the IAC Valve, and took it to a tranny shop. After joining this forum, I'm getting mixed reviews. Mine has all the same symptoms, but it still does it when I place it into 4x4 high. Usually this is where it stops this ghost jerking for others here, but mine still does it. The thing is going down the road soon, nice, but un-needed, and I don't want to put a bunch of money into this thing. For sale!! 02 XLT 95K, $9500.00 OBO As is.
       
    22. Bob DP

      Bob DP New Member

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      99 4x4 jerking in drivetrain

      I to have jerking in my 99 explorer 4x4 AWD. I sounds like the drive shaft oe rear end. I have had the front drive shat and Transfer case rebuilt. They have looked at the rear drive shaft and Differencial and they are fine? I have disconnected the wires from the transfer case, unplugged the 4x4 modual and took the fuse out of the ABS. I do not have limited slip differencial.

      The jerking (knocking) started between 30 and 50 MPH. It then spread to above 70 MPH and now does it at as low as 10 MPH. If I let of the gas the jerking goes away and will happen any time I accellerate and put a load on the drive train, even down hill. I have 130,000 miles on the car. The noise is loud inside the car and sometimes, but not always the car will knock but not feel like it jerks.
       
    23. ummduh

      ummduh Member

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      interesting to find this post now. mine does something similar, but only on coast/decel. the dealer flashed the comp, and now it only does it every now and then.. and only from higher speeds. i also realized I have slighty different sized tires front/rear (one new set, one half worn set; same brand though)

      i'll have to give this a try.
       
    24. jwright4

      jwright4 Member

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      I am having the same exact problem with mine. Mine has been doing the hesitation for about a year, but just over the weekend on a trip to my parents house i decided to put the 4wd on to see if it still skipped and jerked when i accelerated hard. Sure enough it did NOT do it. What test with it in 4x4 high is i noticed when i started to need a little more power (when i had the cruise set) it sounded like a loud humming/vibrating noise near the floor boards, like the 4wd was kicking in.
      I have an appt next week with ford and i'm going to see if they'll just throw a new one in to see if that makes it stop, and if it does i'll have them replace it.
      Problem is fairly intermittent, but i can always duplicate it. Seems to do it more once the truck is warmed up as well. Thanks for posting this.... I hate to say but i have had dreams that this problem has been fixed..then i wake up lol I'll let ya'll know how i make out next week.

      Jay
      03 Explorer XLT
       
    25. ummduh

      ummduh Member

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      I can't say this is my exact problem, but disconnecting the t case fixed it 100%.

      Not sure what I am going to do, now that I am out of WI I have 0 need for 4wd, and have been thinking of ways to just permanently disable all of it, instead of replacing parts I don't want anymore.
       
    26. jwright4

      jwright4 Member

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      here in the good ole northeast i'm gonna need it in about 2 mos. but good idea if you're in a area u don't need the 4x4.
       

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