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Manual transmission issue. It's very difficult shifting into gears.

Discussion in 'Explorer & Ranger Transmissions, Transfer Cases, &' started by Expl0ring, December 14, 2008.

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    1. Expl0ring

      Expl0ring Member

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      Ok, just got a 1997 explorer sport (4.0) and was warned it has some shifting issues but not all the time. So yesterday it was shifting fine then all the sudden after i had been driving awhile it was a B!tch to get into first when at a complete stop (stick) so when i got to another stop i tested and it was a b1tch going into any gear from a stop, like i had to push really hard to get it to go in, but it didnt grind at all, or kick back out and it always went it, which i would think if the synchros were going that it would grind/kick out but it didnt do any of that. Also it only does it once the vehicle gets hot, and when i shut the vehicle off it goes into every gear fine, without any hesitation....

      Any ideas? anybody ever have a problem like this? Havent really dug into it at all just wondering if anybody else ever experienced anything like this.
       
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    3. my98nnj

      my98nnj Well-Known Member

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      Sounds like the clutch isn't releasing all the way (drag).
       
    4. Expl0ring

      Expl0ring Member

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      thats what i was thinking also, but i was told it could possibly be that the pilot bearing is hanging on the input shaft and not releasing...
       
    5. BrooklynBay

      BrooklynBay Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    6. gijoecam

      gijoecam Village Idiot Elite Explorer

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      I'm with those guys... Either a clutch that's not releasing )could be a leaking slave cylinder or master cylinder or hose), or a pilot bearing siezing on the shaft. Neither one bodes well for it.

      Try this: When it won't go into first, shut the engine off, put it in first, and re-start it. It's not a permanent fix, but it may let you limp it around for a bit.

      -Joe
       
    7. Premier

      Premier Explorer Addict

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      this is very typical of the mazda 5 speed. mine has been like this for over 60k miles. i put it into first when im coming to a stop, around 5mph. i have had my clutch replaced to try and fix it, but its not the clutch
       
    8. 91exploreron37

      91exploreron37 Well-Known Member

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      Sounds like the slave cylinder is going bad. These transmissions are notorious for that.
       
    9. Cstoliker

      Cstoliker Active Member

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      My 95 has had a similar problem but it is not as severe and is more consistent. Manley just have trouble getting into first while at a dead stop. So I pop it into first just before coming to a complete stop. This may work for you to.
       
    10. FU MONSTER

      FU MONSTER Member

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      stupid question but did you check the fluid reservior to make sure there was enough brake fluid in it. sounds like the begginings of a slave cylinder problem.good luck.
       
    11. Expl0ring

      Expl0ring Member

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      Yes this works for me, and its pretty consistant, and as of last night i drove around for about 30 mins, and it was TERRIBLE shifting into any gear while moving also..

      could it still be the slave?
       
    12. 4x4junkie

      4x4junkie Well-Known Member

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      Definitely sounds like the clutch isn't releasing all the way.

      A leaky slave is a likely cause, yes (allowing air to enter the hydraulic system from the reservoir).
       
    13. Expl0ring

      Expl0ring Member

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      I just got back from like a 10 minute trip and wow... it is absolutely TERRIBLE now.. idk what changed from the other day.. but now i have to about BREAK my wrist off to get it into first.. and then once im moving its not as bad.. but i still have to pull or push extremely hard to get into any gear... also my check engine light has been on since the vehicle was brand new and the coolant temp gauge hasent worked.. and now the light is off, and the temp gauge is working... but shifting is horrible now..

      wtf is going on??
       
    14. HahnsB2

      HahnsB2 Active Member

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      Everyone has already told you! You have a clutch hydraulics leak! Most likely the slave. It's not going to get better unless you fix it.
       
    15. gijoecam

      gijoecam Village Idiot Elite Explorer

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      As already mentioned... You likely have an issue with the clutch actuation mechanism... be it a hydraulic leak, or a bad master or slave cylinder, the problem is not going to heal itself and will only get worse the longer you let it go. Now, in addition to your initial hydraulic issue, you're putting excessive wear on your synchros and other internal parts of the transmission itself by trying to force it into gear when it won't go. If you EVER need to use excessive force to get a transmission to engage, there's something very wrong, and delaying the repair will only make it worse!
       
    16. Expl0ring

      Expl0ring Member

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      Ok, just got it to a shop yesterday to get the problem fixed, he drove it and said that its seems like a classic symptom of the slave cylinder being bad. He said that its a 6 hour job to get the transmission out. He said with labor, parts, fluids it will be $487 to do.

      Does this sound like a reasonable price to replace the slave???
       
    17. Blackhawk_Mech

      Blackhawk_Mech New Member

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      Mine has problems with first and second, mostly being second. And grinds on reverse, all the other gears work fine though. Its at 160k, im assuming the tranny is original.
       
    18. 410Fortune

      410Fortune ELITE BRONCO2ERER Moderator Emeritus

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      if you are replacing the slave cylinder you better damn well be putting in a new clutch and turning the flywheel

      Clutch is CHEAP
      $487 is VERY fair, get it in writing and make sure it includes a new clutch, I have seen it double by the time they are done

      clutch job =
      new slave cyl and throw out bearing
      new clutch pack (driven disc, pressure plate)
      new pilot bearing
      turn the flywheel
      + labor

      6 hours is about right, although I can do it in 4 myself with hand tools, I would expect a competent clutch shop to be able to do the full thing on a 4x4 in 3-4 hours max

      Clutch is usually $500-1000 so your price seems very fair IF IT INCLUDES THE NEW CLUTCH
      I like the LUK gold series clutch or centerforce

      also your 5 speed may need a rebuild soon, many times the clutch is replaced and its still hard to get in the gears :) = synchros
       
    19. Expl0ring

      Expl0ring Member

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      No, $487 is to replace the slave cylinder, he said nothing about the clutch. The transmission shifted FINE, then the next day i couldnt get it into gear. im Sure the transmission is fine.
       
    20. wdwacht

      wdwacht New Member

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      Same @#$%^ Shifting issues

      Greetings, I have exactly the same issues even with a new clutch just installed and the internals check out. It's a beast to get into gear when it doesn't want to go; warmed up. The transmission guys said everything looks good, gears and all. And there was no evidence of fluid leaks. I'm wondering if maybe it's something in the shift linkage that hangs up, otherwise I've not a clue. This is my biggest complaint with my otherwise reliable lil buddy. Any ideas? I'm having it rechecked next week. And if a solution comes forth then for just $19.95 and a free Turnip Twaddler, no make that two Turnip Twaddlers, plus free shipping I'll send you the solution.
      enjoy the weekend,
      Will

       
      Last edited: April 3, 2009
    21. solitary ogre

      solitary ogre Active Member

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      my '91's slave is leaking slowly, i learned to put it in neutral while at a stop light or in slow traffic to ease the pressure off the hydraulics. instead of having to top up the reservoir with a couple ounces of brake fluid every week i now go about 3 weeks. eventually it will have to be done.
      my '88 bronco ll has 389,000 kilometers on it and it still has the original master and slave unit in it.
       
    22. wdwacht

      wdwacht New Member

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      Shifty Shifting Resolution!

      Greetings! Ok they fixed my truck after ten days in the shop. As it turns out the slave cylinder was the culprit! Dammit! It just wasn't working properly albeit it was not leaking and did not show any malfunction signs. Everything else was checked again and replaced under warranty except for the slave cylinder which turned out to be the bad guy. Now it shifts so smooth I could just ummmm well you know :D

      beers to you!
      Will


       
      Last edited: May 12, 2009
    23. Agata

      Agata New Member

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      I do own a FE 1997 4WD 4.0lt. I noticed that whenever the car gets hot it will be very difficult to shift it into gears.
       
    24. Commoncents

      Commoncents New Member

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      Hahnsb2 and you other slave cylinder lemmings need think of something new or go somewhere else with your bad advice. I guess any idiot can make a post. I have the very same issues as Expl0ring and just replaced the slave and master and the problem hasn't gone away! Yes i put fluid in it and bled it. It still is a bear to ocassionally get into gear. 94 Bronco 5 speed.
       
    25. uponthehorizon

      uponthehorizon New Member

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      well now i am joining the "difficult to be shifting" with the 5 speed manual transmission in my wife's 1998 4.0 explorer sport..".syncro's whirring up the rpm cause the input shaft is still spinning" shifting issue.
      My solution was to weld two tire irons together and weld those to the shifter handle and install a sunroof so my wife has the leverage she needs to shift. I added that giant chrome skull to the top so it appears to be an aesthetics choice rather than a "make shift " (pun intended) repair .
      but seriously, im gonnna get after this thing and see if it is the slave or if i can bleed it, or in any other way get around the full job, as if i pull the tranny it gets a clutch, pressure plate and throw-out bearing, input shaft, flywheel resurface etc.
      First thing i am going to do is change the tranny oil though, just because i have been meaning to do that and hope it helps the syncro's out if i have too drive it a few times before i actually resolve it.

      Any other suggestions or tips or fix's anyone has encountered would be appreciated. This just started in the last few days, though i always thought it was a "bit" difficult to shift since we we owned it ( we bought it used)
      Craig
       
    26. Ben Rothenhoefer

      Ben Rothenhoefer New Member

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      Did you ever figure out what the issue is?
       

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