hard 2nd gear shift (esp.when warm) | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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hard 2nd gear shift (esp.when warm)


New Member
April 20, 2010
Reaction score
City, State
Bremerhaven, Germany
Year, Model & Trim Level
2000 "Limited"-Edition
does anybody know the reasons for the following behavior of my explorer (mj 2000 with 5r55e transmission):

1. In the morning when the transmission is cold, it shifts perfect from 1st to 2nd gear (you didn't even feel the shift).

2. after 2-3 miles the shifting gets harder, as if something jams in the transmission.
From now on I have to speed up carefully until it shifts from 1st to 2nd gear. If I'm not carefully, it shifts so hard, that the OD-Lamp flashes.

I have overhauled the valvebody an checked all the solenoids (resistances are OK). I don't know if it is a valvebody problem, or maybe a problem with the OD-servo or intermediate-servo.

By the way: the overdrive is also not working.

Thanks for your help

Look up the dreaded 2-3 flare - 2nd gear is actually 1st gear in OD.
The problems you have are related.

Any metal in the pan/VB?
Sounds like it may be a servo issue (OD Servo).

No metal in the pan. Just the magnet-stripe was coated with thin grey and creamy stuff.

I have already ordered a new OD- and intermediate- servo-pistons. Hope I can manage the change without special tools.

I forgot - the downshift from 3 to 2 is also a little hard (can hear it sometimes more or less).

Do you know where I can find a complete description of what is going on in the transmission, when it shifts up from 1 to 5 an back from 5 to 1 ??