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Stock 1995 - 2001 Explorers Questions related to non-modified 1995-2001 Explorer, Mountaineer, Ranger and '02+ Sports and Sport Trac. Problem solving, maintenance, TSB, service bulletins, owner reviews, specifications.

Torque converter lock up failure

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Old 07-25-2011, 10:58 AM   #1
yavapaires
Dewey, Az
1996 XLT
 
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US Torque converter lock up failure

Has any one had this problem? Just got back from a trip from Omaha to Prescott Az. and back. Everything ran fine UNTIL I got just past Santa Rosa NM. 0100 in the morning, climbing hill on I40, the torque converter unlocked, and refused to lockup over top of hill. I stopped, disconnected the battery cable to reset the computer, then resumed travel, good, until the next hill, same thing. Long story short, did this a number of times, said the hell with it and went to AZ. Torque converter seemed to have a mind of it's own. Some times you can kick trans into neutral, shut off engine, restart, shift into drive and converter will lock up sometimes it won't. Returned by way of Cortez, Co. and converter was unlocked most of way through CO. over Wolf Creek Pass. Upon reaching lower elevation in eastern CO, converter locked up fine and functioned just like it should all way home. Why would elevation have effect on this? By the way, gas mileage was 21 MPG from ABQ, NM to Flag, AZ with converter acting up, 25 MPG from FLG to Cortez, CO. 19 MPG from Cortez to Alamosa. and 26 MPG from Alamosa to Limon, CO Anyone got any suggestions?????
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Old 07-25-2011, 11:35 AM   #2
Turdle
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Sounds like mountain driving to me. In my experience the torque converter would only lock when I shifted out of overdrive.

Not to mention those mountains make for very high transmission temperatures.

The only other thing i can think of is a touchy throttle position sensor--maybe?
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Old 07-25-2011, 01:05 PM   #3
BubbaFL
Central Florida
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When's the last time you changed the transmission fluid?

I haven't had any transmission problems with my Explorer, but changing the fluid in my wife's Windstar solved what I thought was a "torque converter going bad" or maybe electrical problem (unlocking and re-locking itself while cruising at highway speeds on flat terrain).
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Old 07-25-2011, 01:58 PM   #4
yavapaires
Dewey, Az
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Going to do the fluid and filter change. I have owned the EX for about 5 months, and the fluid is looking a little old. No burnt smell, but getting discolored. Thanks.
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Old 07-25-2011, 02:00 PM   #5
yavapaires
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I think you may have a point about the TPS. I noticed that it started sticking when closed. It didn't do it before starting on the trip. Thanks
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