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Transmission Delay A4LD


February 6, 2010
Reaction score
City, State
Denver, CO
Year, Model & Trim Level
97 Explorer EB
My '93 Explorer has tranmission delay when initiating reverse to get out of my garage and back into drive to proceed down the street. Same thing happend after a 1 mile trip to the store and getting out of my parking spot. This is consistent. What are the culprits (bands, solenoids, ???). I did what I could for a DIY...replace filter/fluid, new vacuum modulator (it had a ruptured diaphragm), new valve body gaskets... and the problem did not go away. In fact it may have degraded even more. There was zero metal in the pan and the old fluid was in good shape. I can reach the two solenoids attached to the valve body (3-4 and TCC), should I replace them. After that, it may be internal to the case and time to visit the shop. Thanks.


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If I recall correctly, a delayed reverse is common and is a result of internal leakage but it more of a nuisance than something that will actually cause damage. If you do a search on the issue you will find the answer quick.

I've had the same issue with my Explorer since I bought it three years ago. Goes into into drive just fine but reverse has a delay and lurches. I suspect it has something to do with the fact I've got a leak somewhere though. I have to add fluid once a month or so but there's never any trans fluid under it.

Torque Converter

I have found some references to torque converter fluid flow back due to a bad cooler filter. This was for a GM transmission, does the Explorer have cooler filters? Maybe this is the problem.

The issue of slipping in the morning or after a longer time switched off, was addressed in the beginning to a faulty cooler return filter (the round spin-on one). The fluid in the torque converter could flow back to the pan via the filter, causing a delayed torque converter function. ( the torque converter is a fluid coupling and without fluid it can´t transfer the torque). So it needed to fill up the torque converter first, causing the delay. There is also a cooler return filter bypass valve, next to the filter, which could cause this same problem when not working properly.
So i don´t think your problem is related to slow gear application, but more torque converter related. Do you know if they changed the converter together with the tranny?

We could have different issues. I have never added fluid over the past 4 years. The delay occurs in both Reverse and Drive gears when cold. The transmission does not lurch. Thanks for sharing your issues - I have another post about the possibility of torque converter being the cause for the delay.

The only filter is in the A4LD's pan.