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Advice on Transmission, possible failure - 2003 Explorer 4.6 L V8

Discussion in 'Stock 2002 - 2005 Explorers' started by AZMonte, January 13, 2020.

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  1. AZMonte

    AZMonte New Member

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    Hi,
    Long time lurker, first time poster.

    We have a 2003 Explorer 4WD with the 4.6L Engine and I think the 5R55W. We had issues with the common servo bore issue and replaced the servos 4 weeks ago. Adjusted the bands, and the truck ran better than it ever has. We put about 500 - 700 miles on the truck after this fix until....

    While accelerating onto a highway the truck completely lost power. The engine runs fine, but the transmission is in neutral in every selected gear except park. I noticed that the gear selector cable connection was loose and so I secured that. No change.

    There was no clunk or loud noise, just loss of gear and the truck acted like it was in neutral. No code, no O/D light flash. The car knows when it's selected in reverse as we hear the beeping sound when reverse is selected but it doesn't engage the gear.

    I'm thinking of replacing the Transmission Range Sensor but I don't think that part has an impact on whether the truck engages gears or not.

    Any advice is welcome. Thanks!
     
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  3. drdoom

    drdoom Well-Known Member

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    Do you have 4LOW?
     
  4. BrooklynBay

    BrooklynBay Moderator & long time member. Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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  5. AZMonte

    AZMonte New Member

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    I haven't tried 4Low, I'll give that a shot. The transmission was filled with the proper procedure, so I can only assume it is without any dipstick to check it.
     
  6. BrooklynBay

    BrooklynBay Moderator & long time member. Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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  7. TechGuru

    TechGuru Well-Known Member

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    Yep, must have 4 ramps or be able to squeeze under there....
     
  8. imp

    imp Well-Known Member

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    @AZMonte

    The Transmission Range Sensor is the KEY part calling for initial engagement of all gears: R, N, D, 3, 2, 1. It is simply a switch which turns the solenoids on and off which control the hydraulic fluid flow to the appropriate engagement parts. If it fails, becomes loose (held in place by screws), or falls off (unlikely), the transmission is idle. imp
     
  9. TechGuru

    TechGuru Well-Known Member

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    Wouldn't working/non-working reverse lights let one know if their range sensor is working or not?
     
  10. boominXplorer

    boominXplorer Elite Ranger Elite Explorer

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    Reverse lights and see if it will start in neutral would verify those. Then if it won't start in Drive or reverse then it's working as it should.
     
  11. AZMonte

    AZMonte New Member

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    I'll be switching out that range sensor tonight and will let you guys know the results.
     
  12. BrooklynBay

    BrooklynBay Moderator & long time member. Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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    The range sensor could be checked with a continuity tester in each range. On a side note, make a mark on the case, and the range sensor before you remove it just in case you have to reinstall it. This will ensure that it's aligned properly.
     
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  13. AZMonte

    AZMonte New Member

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    I switched it out last night and didn't see any change. I'll double check the fluid tonight and may ohm out the solenoid pack at the firewall connection to ensure it's OK. I can't imagine all of these solenoids will fail at one time, and if they fail you'll usually see a check engine light and corresponding code. I may be looking at a new transmission.
     
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  14. BrooklynBay

    BrooklynBay Moderator & long time member. Staff Member Moderator Elite Explorer

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