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5R55e reverse issue


New Member
April 16, 2015
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Year, Model & Trim Level
2001 mountaineer
I need your thoughts / comments / expertise! My 2001 mountaineer has the infamous 5R55E transmission. The truck has 115,000 miles on it and the transmission has been serviced every 30,000 miles or less. A few weeks back it had a 3 - 4 second delay when I put into drive (for the first time) and didn't want to move in reverse a few weeks before that when the temperature was well below zero (other than that really no issues). Last weekend I replaced the VB with a rebuilt one from CVB, replaced the D-rings and gasket on the reverse servo, a new Fram filter and lastly Mercon V fluid with a bottle of Red LG. The fluid looked great and there was just a little of the black slime on the pan magnet (no metal particles). I was also extremely careful that I torqued the VB appropriately. The only hiccup that I had was getting the reverse servo back up in the cylinder. I put a good amount of vaseline on the rings and put it in the freezer for a few hours before reassembling. It was still extremely tight as I had to gently tap it with a wood block to get back up into the cylinder so I could get the cover back on. After doing this work the transmission is shifting smoother, but now I have a more pronounced delayed reverse. When I put it into reverse and take off right away it starts to move and then I feel like a second "push" which it never had before. Couple of questions:

I noticed the reverse servo stem had up and down play (otherwise it looked to be in good shape); is this normal?

I called CVB and the guy I talked to thought that maybe the RS bore was worn and said that is normally the number one reverse problem with these transmissions. I reminded him though that the truck didn't have this issue before doing the work. Plus if it was worn; wouldn't it have been easier to re-install the servo?

Is the reverse issue that I'm dealing pointing towards a more serious issue, or is it probably no big deal that I should just live with?

Thanks for any comments / thoughts!


Idk if it helps but I just replaced the valve body gaskets and low/rev servo o-rings on my 5R55E. The servo was easy to reinstall. Did not seam tight at all, in fact I could operate the servo up and down with nothing more then my thumbs. I could hear air moving in and out of the VB as I did so it seams to have a decent seal.
My stem also had some free play in it so I guess that's normal.