5R55E rough forward shifts | Ford Explorer - Ford Ranger Forums - Serious Explorations
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5R55E rough forward shifts


Eat, sleep, breathe Explorers
December 12, 2011
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City, State
Taneytown, MD
Year, Model & Trim Level
1997 Ford Explorer XLT
i recently picked up a 2001 explorer xlt SOHC with 150k on it. i have owned enough of these to know that something odd is going on with the transmission. All forward gears shift harshly...the engagement from park to drive is also harsh. Reverse engages very smoothly every time, no slamming, jolting, or delay. As with anyone familiar with these transmissions such as myself, I instantly thought of the infamous "valve body separator gasket" issue. I cant be too such with this one and thats why im coming on here. The engagement from Park to Drive is extremely quick and is harsh, it will usually lurch the vehicle forward slightly even with brake depressed and idle at the normal range. The 2nd gear engagement which I know is just a false 2nd gear torque converter lockup is also noticeable which I have never experienced before in the 100+ of these 2nd gen vehicles ive driven. The 3rd gear shift is the worst, its a harsh kick even when driving like a granny from a stop. When you accelerate getting onto the highway, the 3rd gear kick feels like a band is about to break. There is NO slipping whatsoever from this transmission, the shifts are just overly firm to the point of where id call it harsh. The worst thing of all is when coming to a stop, most of the time (but not all the time) the transmission will downshift and slam during the downshifts. Most of the times its one slam, once in awhile its two slams. No O/D light blinking and the light is not burnt out. Trans fluid is NOT burnt...its not new, but its not very old either. The best way i can describe the shifting is that it shifts like the transmission is in safe mode. The only other thing I can think of is excessively high line pressure, but i havent a clue as to what would cause the line pressure to go thru the roof. Anyone got any ideas?