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Transmission shift issue.


Active Member
February 22, 2018
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Year, Model & Trim Level
99 exp sprt 4x4 4.0sohc
Good day, driving today andas I got on the last stretch of highway before home, the truck would not shift out of third, and the od started flashing.

Previous to this, I had some odd symptoms in the winter where it would not shift until it warmed up out of 4th to 5th and then operated normally. It then began to include the 3-4 shift as well In the cold only, since spring and warmer weather it has operated normally, but I would say it was shifting earlier now in these gears.

Previous to the actual problem today it felt like it did slightly slip going from 4th to 5th twice but then it shifted smoothly again afterwards... until the problem described..

200000 miles all original engine tranny. Serviced regularl, 5r55 trans. Only have a obd2 reader.

1 Odb2 codes also popped 3 days ago.. had the p1131-O2 bank 1 sensor 1, cleared that one... And halfway home today I got a p1132 heated O2 sensor circuit low variance bank1 sensor2.

Any help is appreciated.

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Gonna need the transmission codes. Do you mean it won’t upshift past 3rd into 4th and 5th?

Correct it will no longer go into 4th or 5th.

You might have a broken the 3rd gear band. (The 5r is a 3 speed with overdrive)
I assume there are solenoids involved as well.

I’m sure someone else will have a better idea soon enough.

is it safe to drive with O/D on (to avoid the flash) for a trip to town?

Safe? Yes. Odds are if it fails, you’ll just coast to the side of the road. Will it cause more damage? Eh, who knows. Around town trips? Probably not much. Take it easy. Your big concern here is heat, since your TC is not going to lock up...that fluid is going to heat up, and transmissions don’t like heat.

If you’re going to have the trans rebuilt, you don’t want to damage it too much more. If you’re going to junk this thing? Who cares.

From the symptoms described do you think a rebuild will be needed? if the 3rd gear band is worn out, is that considered a rebuild. Obviously this is all in theory until I get the codes.

Pretty much anything past the valve body really requires a rebuild. Pulling a transmission apart to fix a single issue isn’t really done. At your mileage I’m sure everything inside is fairly worn.

Gonna piggyback on the above post. At 181k with original fluid, the other bands and clutches are likely not far behind. This is one of those things where you might get lucky and it might be a VB issue or a separator plate gasket or similar...or it’s a full rebuild. 1 or 0, no middle ground. Most likely, rebuild.

200K on an original automatic trans ( I don't care make or model, especially for this trans), lets just say it don't owe you anything.
But it should be scanned and diagnosed(using the data pids) to see exactly what is wrong.

I have fixed everything on this truck and it is sad to give up on it now, but the rust from 20 years of Canadian winters has done its work, I cannot justify putting much money into this old truck.. Maybe I can try to sell as a parts truck to someone.

Thanks for the advice.

I thought it could be the seperatoe plate gasket, but it is wishfull thinking...just the trans really felt so good, but probably because I drove her so gently all the time.