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Explorer & Ranger Transmissions, Transfer Cases, & Differentials Transmissions, Transfer Cases. A4LD, 4R70W, 4R44E, 4R55E, 5R44E, 5R55E, M5OD, BW 1354, Control Trac, GEM, AWD. Ford 8.8", Dana 35

Transmission failure (leaking fluid around bellhousing)

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Old 10-30-2009, 01:30 PM   #1
jclaudii
 
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Transmission failure (leaking fluid around bellhousing)

99 explorer 4x4 with 4.0 sohc 200+ thousand miles

Transmission stopped working with my mother-in-law and she pulled over. She said there was a ton of fluid behind her on the road and also at the pull over spot. I put three quarts in it and it only made it about a mile or so before it started pouring out between the engine and the transmission hitting the exhaust and catalytic converter on it's way to the ground.

What could it be, we plan on fixing it ourselves, or at least a majority of it. Could it be something as simple as a seal? Any thoughts or ideas?
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Old 11-02-2009, 01:18 PM   #2
jclaudii
 
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we'll I hope not everyone speaks up at once....Perhaps no one else has had their tranny's leaking their life fluid all over the place. Any ideas?
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Old 11-02-2009, 01:58 PM   #3
BrooklynBay
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Was she driving on an incline at a highway speed in overdrive? Sometimes the front seal blows out under a load when it gets hot. Check the coolant level in the radiator.
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Old 11-03-2009, 12:15 PM   #4
holter95
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My understanding is the bellhousing is supposed to be dry in the 5R55E. If you're leaking from there, you've got big troubles. If you already have had driveability problems, the trans is probably toast.

Get it to your local tranny repair shop immediately. You're likely in for a rebuild. ~$1500-1600 is the norm. Sorry for the bad news, but at 200K miles the 5R55E is on borrowed time.
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Old 11-09-2009, 11:30 AM   #5
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Well the mnl got a mini-van as her replacement vehicle, but she would like this one still fixed up as an extra for the family if we need it. Plus it's 4x4 in case the weather gets bad.

In anycase, I have not had a chance to lift the vehicle up some and pull the transmission. Once I do I bet I can get a better understanding of what happened. I saw that there are several people that have rebuilt their transmission and added a shift kit, I plan on doing the same. After all, how hard could it be? Thanks for any help/info on how to do this and where to get a repair manual for the transmission.
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Old 11-09-2009, 06:31 PM   #6
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What kind of minivan did she get? The repair manual for this transmission is either the Ford 3 ring binder or the ATSG soft cover repair manual.
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Old 11-19-2009, 09:10 AM   #7
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She got a 2001 honda odyssey. Not a bad little ride with lots of room and the dealer she got it from will fix anything for a $100 deductable for the next 3 years.

Anyway, I still have not had a chance to drop this tranny yet and see if it's an easy fix or not. I figure I'll start by removing the bell housing shield and looking to see if I can see where the fluid is coming from.

I figure if I have to remove the transmission, I might as well remove the engine and fix the timing chain noise since it sounds like a diesel.

If you guys run accross or have bookmarked any great sites or build-up, or rebuild how too's please pm them to me or pass them along so I can get ready to rebuild this bad boy this winter hopefully.
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Old 03-26-2011, 09:45 PM   #8
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We got the transmission out and found the pump seal to be in good shape. We went ahead and replaced it, checked the bolts around the housing and we are in the process to put it back in. We'll finish the top bolts in the morning. Then were going to drop the pan inspect the valve body and replace the filter. Only thing we can think of is a leaky valve body causing excess case pressure or something. Also, we did find the vent line to be clogged to the transmission. It is now open.

What do we need to check after pan is off tomorrow?

thanks!
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Old 03-26-2011, 09:51 PM   #9
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There isn't too much to check when the pan is off other than the condition of the valve body gasket, and the internal wiring harness.
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Old 03-27-2011, 05:36 PM   #10
drdoom
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Fire

Mine caught fire when this happened...the scanner says it has something to do with Torque Converter Clutch System stuck off. It caused the transmission to overheat when it slipped, and blew a couple of quarts onto the exhaust system. Just like you described, an oil slick on the street. I have been told the front seal cannot hold the pressure of the overheated fluid, and it blows right past. I am going to pull it down in a few days, to inspect it so I can get the parts on order for a rebuild.
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