5R55E Overdrive Flare | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

  • Register Today It's free!

5R55E Overdrive Flare


New Member
October 3, 2002
Reaction score
City, State
Dallas, TX
Year, Model & Trim Level
1997 EB
1997 Explorer 4wd with 165k miles. I bought the truck with 130k miles and it has always had a flare going into O/D. The flare is worse when the truck is cold and also worse if under hard acceleration. All other gears work fine and if I leave the O/D switch off the truck shifts great.

The truck has gone into limp home mode twice in the last 5k miles, both times when I was on the highway and the trans was shifting in and out of O/D due to traffic, etc. It eventually slipped enough to set off the computer.

I have always babied the throttle when the truck is about to go into O/D to avoid cooking the trans and have replaced the fluid twice. What is causing the problem and how do I fix it?

Join the Elite Explorers for $20 each year.
Elite Explorer members see no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links,.
Add an avatar, upload photo attachments, and more!

I checked the first time (year ago) by going to Autozone but I don't remember the code (sorry). I don't think it has any codes in memory now because a lot of cycles have gone by since the last error.

After reading a few of the threads I figured my vb gasket and/or epc are probably tired but I have never seen anyone refer to my exact problem so I wanted to see what the experts think.

I was planning to put in another (eBay, used, untested) valve body with new gaskets and right now the truck is in my garage and I'm trying to get the pan off (if you know any shortcuts to get the pan completely clear on a 4wd other then taking off the front driveshaft I would love to hear them). I'm going to sell this truck (bought another 1997 with only 20k miles) and I would like to fix the problem without spending too much time and money : )

Did you ever get the code again?

My problem is exactly like this. Does Auto zone do the computer checks for free or what is the price? I need something done. This has been going on too long.

The problem is one that is worrying me. I don't need jokes.

IIRC, you can get the codes pulled for free from Autozone.

Will it show a code if the OD light has NOT been flashing, because mine hasn't?

Give us a little more detail Colet47, such as vehicle age, mileage, history of problem, etc.

Have you adjusted the OD band? I'd do that first.

Do you only have this problem in OD, not on the 1-2 shift?

I'm strongly suspecting VB and/or EPC solenoid.

Thank you Glacier. I am woman and do not know how to adjust the OD band. I can do some things on my own. My Explorer is a 1999, 98000 miles and the problem has been going own for the last approx. 8000 miles. The only problem is just the OD. Like the previous guy said, I can turn off the OD and it is perfect.Just tell me where to go for the OD band check and I will.

I'd suggest you change the fluid..... as a starter..... this tranny is very fluid property dependent and those properties degrade over time. I'd also have someone adjust the OD band at the same time and see what happens...

Thank you both for the info. I will get this done and let you know how things turn out. Thank you again!!