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Transmission Problems

msmith66

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City, State
Indianapolis, IN
Year, Model & Trim Level
'98 Explorer 4.0 SOHC
Hello all, there seem to be several transmission experts here so I thought I would post my problem to get your thoughts...

98 Explorer XLT, 4wd, 4.0l SOHC, 153k. Last week while my wife was driving, at about 25 miles she got a flashing o/d lamp and the transmission went into limp mode. After a brief cooldown the o/d lamp went out and it drove normally until about 15 miles when the o/d lamp flashed again. She is a very easy driver and got it back home ok. I checked the codes and there were none stored. After cooling I took it for a 5 mile test drive and it worked perfectly. After inspecting the fluid I thought it could use a filter/fluid change. Much research about this problem reveals the separator plate problem so I thought I would watch out for that too after dropping the pan. The fluid was old and needed to be changed but it wasn't burnt.

I dropped the pan looking for broken parts and pieces of gasket but there were none. I looked around pretty closely but didn't take the valve body out. Everything seemed to be perfect inside. After replacing the filter and fluid I took it for a 45 mile test drive at highway speeds on a 92 degree day with no problems at all. The transmission shifts perfectly through all the gears, kickdown works perfectly, and the converter locks up just as it should.

I let my wife drive it to work again today - it is a cool day, under 80, and she got the flashing o/d light after about 8 miles of her trip. I have instructed her that if the lamp is flashing on her way home today to take it directly to autozone and not turn the car off until the codes are read - hoping that there will be one there.

I'm looking for any ideas that some of you might have. I'm thinking that the problem must be wiring or sensor related with an intermittent fault. Any ideas how to proceed with the absence of a fault code?

Thanks again!
 
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BrooklynBay

Moderator & long time member.
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msmith66

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Joined
August 17, 2009
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City, State
Indianapolis, IN
Year, Model & Trim Level
'98 Explorer 4.0 SOHC
Welcome to this forum! Not every scanner is capable of reading these codes. The codes should store in the computer's memory even after the overdrive light stops flashing.

Thanks Mod! We couldn't get it done today but I'm headed over to AAMCO tomorrow to get them read. For any members with an AAMCO in their area they have a coupon for a tran-scan $85.00 for free. http://www.aamco.com/check_engine_light/index.html

I am more and more convinced that I have a valvebody gasket blown however. It must be very minor. There is still some amount of engine braking in 1 but its just not what it should be.
 
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NYRICAN

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August 15, 2009
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City, State
NY NY
Year, Model & Trim Level
2003 XLT
Transmission head ach

I dont know where you live but iam in AZ I just had my transmission diagnosed by AAMCO for free I have 03 Sport trac OD button stop working,found broken wire in gear shifter,repaired it my self $00.00--- I know u see my point. GOOD LUCK:usa:
Hello all, there seem to be several transmission experts here so I thought I would post my problem to get your thoughts...

98 Explorer XLT, 4wd, 4.0l SOHC, 153k. Last week while my wife was driving, at about 25 miles she got a flashing o/d lamp and the transmission went into limp mode. After a brief cooldown the o/d lamp went out and it drove normally until about 15 miles when the o/d lamp flashed again. She is a very easy driver and got it back home ok. I checked the codes and there were none stored. After cooling I took it for a 5 mile test drive and it worked perfectly. After inspecting the fluid I thought it could use a filter/fluid change. Much research about this problem reveals the separator plate problem so I thought I would watch out for that too after dropping the pan. The fluid was old and needed to be changed but it wasn't burnt.

I dropped the pan looking for broken parts and pieces of gasket but there were none. I looked around pretty closely but didn't take the valve body out. Everything seemed to be perfect inside. After replacing the filter and fluid I took it for a 45 mile test drive at highway speeds on a 92 degree day with no problems at all. The transmission shifts perfectly through all the gears, kickdown works perfectly, and the converter locks up just as it should.

I let my wife drive it to work again today - it is a cool day, under 80, and she got the flashing o/d light after about 8 miles of her trip. I have instructed her that if the lamp is flashing on her way home today to take it directly to autozone and not turn the car off until the codes are read - hoping that there will be one there.

I'm looking for any ideas that some of you might have. I'm thinking that the problem must be wiring or sensor related with an intermittent fault. Any ideas how to proceed with the absence of a fault code?

Thanks again!
 
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msmith66

New Member
Joined
August 17, 2009
Messages
3
Reaction score
0
City, State
Indianapolis, IN
Year, Model & Trim Level
'98 Explorer 4.0 SOHC
Here's some more information -

The transmission shop did a complete inspection and read the codes for free with the coupon I attached above. The transmission had a stored code of P0741. This is the torque converter clutch. The tech independently verified my observation that the converter is locking up fine so I'm back to scratch. I have little to no engine braking in manual 1.

Can I associate these two problems enough to still suspect the separator plate gasket? Dig in, drop the valve body and inspect? If the gasket is not blown does it have to be replaced anyway after removing the valve body? If the gasket isn't bad replace the EPC?

Glacier991 writes about this code here ---> http://www.explorerforum.com/forums//showthread.php?t=150124

I am strongly considering replacing the entire valve body assembly using this part --> http://www.800700tran.com/prod.itml/icOid/80

For $70 how could you lose? Does anyone have experience with this company?
 
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BrooklynBay

Moderator & long time member.
Staff member
Moderator
Elite Explorer
Joined
November 11, 2005
Messages
55,303
Reaction score
736
City, State
Brooklyn, NY
Year, Model & Trim Level
88 89 93 95 96 Aerostars
They went up in price ($50 the last time I saw it on their site). Some members had good experiences while others have not. You could take a gamble for that price or just rebuild your old valve body. The valve body gasket should always be replaced whenever the valve body is removed unless it was on for only a short time. Always use a 1/4" drive In/Lb torque wrench on the valve body bolts.
 
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