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How to tell transmission type?

Discussion in 'Explorer & Ranger Transmissions, Transfer Cases, &' started by jbburks, September 28, 2005.

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    1. jbburks

      jbburks New Member

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      I have a 2002 4dr Explorer XLS with the 6cyl engine. How do I tell what type automatic transmission I have?

      The maintenance schedule that came with it lists several models of transmission that need a fluid change at 30k miles. The schedule also lists other transmission types that DON'T need a periodic change, but nothing I can find under the hood or elsewhere tells what type of transmission is in the vehicle.

      The dealer is no help at all. They just say change the fluid.
       
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    3. Brian_B

      Brian_B Well-Known Member

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      Look on the drivers door tag for a code and post it.




      I would bet its a 5R55E. Personally, I see no need to change the fluid until around 60K in anything, but thats me. Others will post their opinons as well.
       
    4. dogfriend

      dogfriend Human-Animal Hybrid Elite Explorer

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    5. Brian_B

      Brian_B Well-Known Member

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      You are right. Another ford dumb design (IMHO).....sounds like taking a pinto transmission and adding OD. Yep...thats the wonderful A4LD.
       
    6. dogfriend

      dogfriend Human-Animal Hybrid Elite Explorer

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      Yes, seems not so bright to me either.

      Lets recall Explorer transmission history:

      91-94 A4LD - A modified Pinto trans which has gained a rep for blowing out at relatively low mileage

      95-96 4R55E - An improved, electronically controlled A4LD, not quite as fragile but still has problems

      97-01 5R55E - Beefed up a little more, electronic control allows another forward gear from the previous design. As far as I know, they don't puke their guts nearly as quickly, but still not the strongest link in the powertrain.

      02+ 5R55W (4doorsonly, Sport-Trac still uses 5R55E) Apparently, Ford is so confident in their track record that they decide to make the tranny non-serviceable. I guess we will know in a few years if they are justified. Personally, I like having a dipstick so I can at least examine the color of the fluid on the stick, if nothing else.
       
    7. Brian_B

      Brian_B Well-Known Member

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      Doesn't the new trans also say not to change the fluid for 150,000 miles? Never seen fluid last that long. Ch**y has lifetime anti-freeze and fuel filters now too. Its getting worse everywhere.

      I bet the dealers tell you to change the fluid every 30,000, but bring it to them. $$$$$$$$$$
       
    8. physh

      physh New Member

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      if you have an a4ld can you bolt on a later model beefier tranny like a 4r55e or 5r55e? It is a 2WD automatic with OD
      thanks,

      physh
       
    9. dogfriend

      dogfriend Human-Animal Hybrid Elite Explorer

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      No, its not just a straight bolt in because the later models have electronically controlled shift solenoids; the A4LD does not. You would need to add the later model electronics or find an aftermarket controller for the 4R55E or 5R55E. This would take a lot of knowledge and research and money.

      Some people have installed 700R4 trans (using a special adapter) in place of the A4LD. You could search on that to find more info.

      http://www.explorerforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=142953&highlight=700R4
       
    10. physh

      physh New Member

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      thank you dogfriend, I appreciate your help.

      physh
       
    11. jbburks

      jbburks New Member

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      The plate inside the driver's door says: TR:R.

      The transmission has a dipstick for the fluid.
       
    12. dogfriend

      dogfriend Human-Animal Hybrid Elite Explorer

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      My manual is for 97 and doesn't list that code. For 97, the code for 5R55E was D.
       

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    13. BrooklynBay

      BrooklynBay Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      Which manual were those transmission codes from? The dealers are always telling you that the newer vehicles don't require as much maintenance, like the 100k mile platinum spark plugs. In another thread, I saw that Amsol oil could last for 25k miles. It might be true, but what if it is inside of an old engine that was never maintained? I'm sure that these things wouldn't last as long. As for the 5R55W transmission without the dipstick, I'm surprised that no aftermarket manufacturer ever made a dipstick upgrade that could be attached to it. I'm sure that something could be easily fabricated.
       
    14. dogfriend

      dogfriend Human-Animal Hybrid Elite Explorer

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      Those codes are from the factory manual (CD version) for 1997.
       
    15. Glacier991

      Glacier991 EF Tranny Guru Moderator Emeritus

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      It IS possible however, to take the stronger internal parts from the 5R55E and put them into the A4LD case and have the best of both worlds. On here known as a "Frankentranny" - thanks to the idea and thread posted by Brain (it is in the stickies). So far ... far as I know, only Brain and I have built or are building them.
       
    16. BillJ

      BillJ Active Member

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    17. BrooklynBay

      BrooklynBay Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      Here is the information from that link:

      Axle Codes
      L - Limited Slip Differential
      C - Conventional Differential
      Code Ratio
      41 3.27C
      42 4.10C
      43 3.08C
      45 3.55C
      46 3.73C
      D1 3.27L
      D2 4.10L
      D4 3.73L
      D5 3.55L

      Transmission Codes
      Code Model
      D (1997-2005) A5LDE / 5R44/55E
      D (1992-1996) M5OD-R1
      J M5OD-R1
      J (2002 - 2003) R1HD / M5OD-R4
      M (2000-2001) Mazda M5D4
      M (1997-1999) M5OD-R2
      M (1992-1996) M5OD-R1
      R (2002) 5R55W
      T (1992-1995) A4LD
      T (1996-2001) 4R55E
      U 4R70W
      V 5R55S
      X 6R60
       
    18. BrooklynBay

      BrooklynBay Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      That is odd. I wonder if it is really a 5R55W even though you have the "R" code.
       
    19. Glacier991

      Glacier991 EF Tranny Guru Moderator Emeritus

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      Fast way to tell the difference between a 5R55E and a 5R55W is to look and see if the bellhousing is part of the case or whether there is a joint where the bellhousing bolts on. The W uses a unitized case.
       
    20. BrooklynBay

      BrooklynBay Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      That is something I was wondering about for quite some time. On the A4LD, 4R55E, and 5R55E you could disassemble the transmission by disconnecting the bell housing. If the 5R55W is a unitized case, how do you disassemble it?
       
    21. spindlecone

      spindlecone B

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      Perhaps another way to tell, is the w has no dipstick, the E do's
       
    22. Glacier991

      Glacier991 EF Tranny Guru Moderator Emeritus

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      If you look at the 4R70W diary you will find the answer. A unitized case is more common that the A4LD 4R/5R setup. The pump serves as the front "end plug" for the cavity in the case where the guts are.

      I have wondered why FORD did the separate bell on the A4/4R/5R and the conclusion I came to was that by using a seperate bellhousing they could easily adapt it to many different engines.... that tranny saw a LOT of different engines in front of it before it was through.
       
    23. markhas1

      markhas1 New Member

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      5R55W vs 5R55E

      Does the W in the 5R55W stand for wide ratio? If so what different ratios does it use compared to the 5R55E (1st and 2nd)? Do the internals of a 5R55W fit in a 5R55E even though the case is different?
       
    24. dogfriend

      dogfriend Human-Animal Hybrid Elite Explorer

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      Yes, the 5R55W has a wider range than the 5R55E, according to this site:

      http://www.charlietranny.com/5R55E.htm

      http://www.charlietranny.com/5r55w.htm

      Don't know about how interchangable the internal parts are. My guess is not.
       
    25. BrooklynBay

      BrooklynBay Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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      This is a comparison from those links:

      5R44E/5R55E

      Used 1997-up in many Ford products with 4.0 L engines, and 2001-up with other engines.

      This is a computer controlled rear wheel drive transmission.

      Gear Ratios:
      2.47:1 1st gear
      1.86:1 2nd gear
      1.47:1 3rd gear
      1.00:1 4th gear
      .75:1 5th gear
      2.10:1 reverse

      5R55W

      Used in some 2002-up Ranger, and Explorer models. This transmission is similar in appearance to the 5R55N, but very few parts are interchangeable with it.

      This is a computer controlled overdrive (five speed) automatic transmission.

      Gear Ratios:
      3.22:1 1st gear
      2.41:1 2nd gear
      1.55:1 3rd gear
      1.00:1 4th gear
      .75:1 5th gear
      3.07:1 reverse
       
    26. Wrench

      Wrench Active Member

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      Anyone know the difference between the M5OD -R1,R2,R4. Is the R4 a stronger tranny? Any torque ratings available. Did Mazda use there own I.D. (M5D4)
       

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