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2008 Explorer transmission shifting issues

justthesix

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01' Mustang/08' Explorer
Hello everybody! This is my first time posting to this forum as I'm a newbie. I recently purchased an 08' Explorer V6 and it seems to be having some odd transmission behavior and I was looking for some help.

Just reached 100k miles - I am the second owner and the previous owner had a small business they ran and it was used as a company vehicle (owner was very meticulous about standard maintenance.) He said it was used for company business travel, some in town driving (30-45 mph,) but a lot of highway driving (65+ mph.) When I took it on a test drive the temperature on the dash was on C and I didn't notice anything odd, but after taking it for a quick test drive I guess the transmission wasn't to full operating temperature and this is why I didn't likely notice what I'm about to explain until after it got up to operating temperature.

When the vehicle has just been started from a cold start and driven the transmission seems to respond fine. After the vehicle gets up to operating temperature I notice a sort of shudder, only between 2nd to 3rd and 3rd to 4th gears. If I lightly feather into acceleration it shudders (hard shifts?) into the next gear harder then if I give it moderate acceleration. Also, if I put it into park and immediately put it back into reverse without taking my foot off the pedal it shifts hard into reverse and is a couple seconds delayed in response. It doesn't appear to be slipping and I am not smelling any funky odors and the transmission isn't making any noises itself, but this concerns me. I do not have any codes stored in the ECM as I checked it with my code scanner.

I did research and apparently Ford says this is a sealed transmission that isn't supposed to ever need a transmission fluid change.. I understand that a sealed system isn't exposed to other elements that a conventional one is, but in a conventional transmission system fluid intervals seem to vary between 30k to 50k miles on a lot of other makes of vehicles. I am interested to know if anybody else has/had this issue or knows what causes it and if anybody has any recommendations or possible solutions.
Anything would be kindly appreciated :)
 



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TourGuide

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Year, Model & Trim Level
07 Limited
I own an 07 V6 which I purchased with about 96k on the clock. I had the trans fluid flushed right away after I bought it and it seemed to shift better (more smoothly etc.) as soon as I did that. I now have about 139k on the clock and I recently had it flushed again because of unusual shifting behavior. Things like not going into reverse right away or engaging drive and occasional hard shifts between gears. Anyhow, like before the trans flush smoothed things out.

My experience with these 5 speed transmissions on the V6 is that they need the specified fluid change interval in order to work at peak performance. As long as I own mine I won't go more than 40k without a flush.
 






Tech By Trade

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07 Sport Trac
Go get the pcm upgrade with the new shift patterns for the transmission. Couldn't hurt to drop the pan and change the filter as well. Be sure they use Mercon V, if they don't you will be rebuilding in months if not weeks. If the transmission hasn't been flushed with that mileage I don't think I would chance frying the transmission by doing a flush.

P.S. You could try pulling the hot wire on the battery for 20 min so the computer resets to default and learns your driving patterns but this is only a temporary fix.
 






justthesix

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01' Mustang/08' Explorer
Today i did a drain and fill on it and changed the filter and o rings. Took the plug out of the bottom of the pan and 5 1/2 quarts drained out. Replaced with wix filter and mercon v fluid. The fluid was more brownish red then anything and dirty, but there was no metal shavings and it didn't smell burnt. The magnet in the bottom of the drain pan had light sludge deposit and when i took out the filter there was sludge deposit on the top where it rides against the valve body.

After i got it all back together and confirmed the fluid was full I drove it around and got it up to operating temperature and it started doing the same thing. I live in a small town and there is only a few stop lights for stop and go type driving, so it didn't seem to shudder as badly. Although I live close to a large town and today afterwards i went there and there was a lot of stop and go driving - this seemed to make the shuddering worse. Especially from 3rd to 4th gear to the point that when it was shifting from one gear to the next the vehicle basically shuddered hard enough to make the factory tire jack in the back vibrate noise from the metal it was touching. Still no funky smells, slipping or noises and no codes or dash lights.

After the shuddering started to happen I tested out shifting points by first accelerating slowly and then accelerating quickly, both times it shuddered about the same. Then I manually shifted it through each forward gear while driving and the shudder didn't really appear until I went from 3rd into D. I did disconnect the positive battery terminal for 20 minutes, but nothing seemed to change while driving.

It's driving me nutty as I am concerned over the smallest noises and abnormal glitches when it comes to vehicles. I don't know what else I can do except take it to the dealership and have the transmission computer updated, but then who knows if that will fix it or if they are going to unplug something else so I can come back a month later with another problem. Some shops tend to take advantage of women around these neck of woods. This sucks :(
 












justthesix

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I called the local Ford dealer and gave them the VIN #. They told me that there was only two recalls; one for a check engine light and one for the gas capless fuel door. I asked about getting my transmission software updated, and they said since there was no TSB that they wouldn't do an update. I drained and filled the trans fluid three times now, and the fluid is coming out nice and clean. Still shifts like crap in two gear once the transmission gets hot. I've only had it about a week and I'm already regretting it. Now either I buy a used transmission for $1300 with 76k miles or a reman for $1600. Will a new transmission have to be re programmed to work in my vehicle or is it plug and play type?
 






Threnners

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Yeah, my 2006 is in the shop right now for same thing - flipping out between 2nd/3rd, hard shifts, etc, but I am also getting the wrench & check engine lights. It is throwing a code for a 3rd Gear Ratio Error and the transmission is having to be rebuilt. Get a transmission shop to look at it pronto.
 






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2007 EXPLORER XLT
I have a 07 XLT w/ 100,000 or so. I get a bump sound when slowing down on low speeds (20 mph or so)... or when "city" driving between lights or stop signs.

I can control whether or not it happens.....depending on my cruising to a slow stop (it doesn't make the sound) or stopping quickly (it make's the sound)

I think the transmission solenoid control switch needs to be replaced. I've been told that this can "smooth" out the gear shifts; especially the low gears. The part is about 80 to 100 dollars... it can be replace when dropping the pan for a filter and fluid exchange.

Any comments or experience with this ???
 






cralor

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2007 EB
I'm having similar issues with my '07 EB v6 5R55S tranny. I've seen the Powertrain Wrench several times, but it is intermittent. I scanned my fault log and got P0741 -- Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Performance or Stuck Off.

I took it in today to see if it could get a look at. They did a quick test drive, but couldn't come up with any codes when scanning (??). Anyway, they said that if it comes back, my tranny will need to be replaced.

From my quick research on the fault code and discussion here, this doesn't seem to be the case. I just did a trip from NY to CA in June, and CA to MA last week. It's only been in the past week or two that I've been noticing things. I've got 86k miles on it now.

Recommendations? PCM update? Get my solenoids/tranny fluid looked at?

Thanks!
 






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I have a 07 XLT w/ 100,000 or so. I get a bump sound when slowing down on low speeds (20 mph or so)... or when "city" driving between lights or stop signs.

I can control whether or not it happens.....depending on my cruising to a slow stop (it doesn't make the sound) or stopping quickly (it make's the sound)

I think the transmission solenoid control switch needs to be replaced. I've been told that this can "smooth" out the gear shifts; especially the low gears. The part is about 80 to 100 dollars... it can be replace when dropping the pan for a filter and fluid exchange.

Any comments or experience with this ???

Went to the dealer....

They said there were no codes and that the transmission was running fine.

They told me that the downshift 2-1 bump when stopping was normal and "just one of those things."

Doesn't seem right.....
 






cralor

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Hmm...

I'm not getting the bump sound, but when depressing the gas pedal, I sometimes get a louder spin up. not the smooth humm, but more of a "vrooooom". Hard to describe. Shifting doesn't seem hesitant, sticky, or rough. It's just the loudness and perhaps lower power when it happens.

Went to the dealer....

They said there were no codes and that the transmission was running fine.

They told me that the downshift 2-1 bump when stopping was normal and "just one of those things."

Doesn't seem right.....
 






Threnners

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BTW, I got my truck back a week ago. Apparently my transmission has been balls the ENTIRE time I've owned it, because the thing drives COMPLETELY different than it ever has before. No jerks, no bumps, no crabby shifting, no clunking in reverse, NOTHING. Just smooth shifting. It's that drastic a difference. So, not a cheap fix, but one that worked out very well for my old bird.

(I am not technical, but the way I understand it the ratio error was causing the computer to send the transmission into fail-safe mode, which resulted in the lights and the clunking and the bad shifting/accelleration.)
 






nleipziger

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Threnners, who did the rebuild? A Ford dealer or independent shop and what was the cost of a rebuild?
 






cralor

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Thanks for the input Threnners. Fortunately, I don't think I'm there yet.

I'm having a good feeling it is this TSB on A/C condensation onto the tranny connector plug. My issues haven't been severe, and they are intermittent. Prolonged time away from my X has actually helped the issue, so my thoughts on it being this issue are reinforced. I'm going to keep my A/C off for a bit and see if things get worse.

In the mean time, I'm going to get this patch kit applied, because this should get done no matter what.
 






Threnners

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I went to an independent transmission shop that's been around for 40 years. $1900 for the rebuild.
 






tripplec

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2009 Explorer LTD AWD
The bump on slowing just before a stop is 99% for the splin binding in the drive shaft. Pulling it at the transfer case and greasing it is the cure. Common enough on Jeeps as well which I drive. Being AWD it may not be the rear one but it usually is. Labour only no parts needed. Good luck
 






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2007 EXPLORER XLT
The bump on slowing just before a stop is 99% for the splin binding in the drive shaft. Pulling it at the transfer case and greasing it is the cure. Common enough on Jeeps as well which I drive. Being AWD it may not be the rear one but it usually is. Labour only no parts needed. Good luck

My Explorer is a RWD 4.0 XLT.. would the solution be the same and where would the part be located?
 






Davidm53

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2016 Ford Explorer XLT
Fortunately no shifting issues, but a occasional bump usually on the downside. Decided to do the full Fluid, filter change at a new Aamco.
Brought the patch material with me and the techs pulled the connector and it was clean. They applied the sticky material over the connector, said it was the first time to see a fix for the connector.
The Ford material is almost like sound deadening material around speakers. The sheet is large enough to do 3-4 trans.

Shifts much smoother now, surprised me actually that it can be this smooth.

2006 Exp V6 89,000 miles.
 






tripplec

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My Explorer is a RWD 4.0 XLT.. would the solution be the same and where would the part be located?

The spline is the part at the end of the driveshaft which slides into the transfer case. In this case the rear. It can get dry and bind and the pressure of braking load up the pressure so it does on slide in/out as they're designed to do.

If you stop slowly and/or back off the brake just before the dead stop it release the pressure and you should not hear it. If you do or its before actually stopping its likely something else. Dropping into neutral while braking for the stop also relieve the pressure.
 



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Joined
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City, State
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Year, Model & Trim Level
2007 EXPLORER XLT
The spline is the part at the end of the driveshaft which slides into the transfer case. In this case the rear. It can get dry and bind and the pressure of braking load up the pressure so it does on slide in/out as they're designed to do.

If you stop slowly and/or back off the brake just before the dead stop it release the pressure and you should not hear it. If you do or its before actually stopping its likely something else. Dropping into neutral while braking for the stop also relieve the pressure.

Thanks... I only hear it when I'm stopping from +30 mph down to 0 in a short time.

If I ease the brake on the stop it doesn't happen or if I stop like a normal human being, it doesn't happen.

When I take it in for a pan drop and filter change soon (local independent transmission guy) will he know how to do this (is it a common repair/maintenance) or will he wing it and screw up something that he hasn't seen before....The mechanic is a good transmission guy (reputation is good in town) I don't want to insult his ability and ask if he's sure he can do it....if it is something very common.
 






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