UGH... help with transmission modulator install! | Ford Explorer - Ford Ranger Forums - Serious Explorations

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UGH... help with transmission modulator install!

mkd5003

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Well, after taking out the passenger seat, taking out the console (what a stupid design), pulling back the carpet, and taking out the access panel (another brilliant design by ford), I finally got the modulator valve out after about 45 minutes of busted knuckles and bitching. God forbid they give you enough room to actually ACCESS the trans through the access panel.

Well, now I can't get the new valve back in. The only way I got the old one out was to pry with a screwdriver, along with some other choice tools. I'm not sure if the valve is spring loaded or what, but it feels like there is a ton of resistance when I try to slide the new one in. If I push as hard as I can with the little leverage I can get through that hole, it goes in a couple 16th's of an inch. I really don't want to take off the exhaust as it's so rusted I'll have to completely replace it from the manifold back if I take it apart.

Anyone done this from above, and have any ideas on how to get the new valve in? Don't ask me why they would not just use two bolts with a gasket seal on the trans, rather than just shoving it in there.
 


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Glacier991

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the valve inside is probably hung up. If you look in the Diary in the Useful Threads you will see there is a Throttle valve and a pin.... somehow it sounds as it you are fighting that... take a look at it and get a good mental image you may want to make sure the rod is seating in the modulator as it should.

ps. Now you see why I said this may the ONE things shops are good at and reasonably priced in doing.

And it IS held in place by the bracket under the heat shield..... you did remove THAT, no ?
 




mkd5003

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I removed the one bolt holding the heat shield in place... and pushed the heat shield out of the way.
 




Brian_B

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The modulator valve has one bolt in a bracket that hold it in. If you removed the bracket it almost falls out. Going in is easy as well. There is a small pin inside that must line up with the hole in the new valve as it goes in.

Why do you have to access it from inside the vehicle glacier? On the rangers we simply reach above the pan and between the exhaust and do it. I have not worked on one in an X. I assuming ford decided to fix something that was not broken. Just want to know for later reference.

Thanks,
Brian_B
 




Glacier991

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Well unless someone screwed it up b4.... there is a bracket that holds the modulator in place... it is held by a stud that on it's end is also threaded for the bolt to hold the heat shield. It does double duty. it holds the modulator bracket and then it serves as the bolt for the heat shield nut. Check, you may have not realized it was there. The modulator is not JUST pushed in, it is also HELD in.
 




mkd5003

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Hm... I know I removed the heat shield, but don't remember seeing this bracket. I feel some kind of round, halfcircle piece of metal shroud around the hole where the old valve came out... maybe this is it? So it should have come off when I removed the bolt for the heat shield?
 




Brian_B

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Thats the bracket. At least on the older ones its a half circle that fits in the groove of the valve. The nut you removed holds the heat shield apparently and there is either another nut to hold the bracket or the threads are actually on the head of a bolt that holds the bracket in. Thats different than the older ones I messed with.

Either way, feel around the bracket for whats holding it. Unscrew whatever it is and there you go.
 




Glacier991

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removing the bolt for the heat shield does NOT remove the rest of the bolt holding the bracket for the modulator clamp. If I had an easy link to the pics I took and put in the Diary I'd post it. I don't. No wonder you had trouble removing the modulator!!!!
 




Brian_B

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Here are two pics from Glaciers diary. Hope its ok with him. These are linked to his thread.


15286Dscn4204.jpg


15286Dscn4205.jpg
 




mkd5003

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Yes. That's it. It was definitely a half circle piece... and yes, it was nearly impossible to get the old valve out, yet I did it somehow...

Also, the pin was not in the valve. I'm assuming it's sitting in the hole still? I will check on the ground just to make sure.

So there is another nut/bolt I have to unscrew to remove the bracket? It's so hard because I can't see anything in there.

Thanks for your help guys. It's my parents' car, and now that I've torn it apart, I kind of have to get it back together at least well enough to run.
 




Brian_B

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There is/was a small pin in the hole. Make sure you find it and get it back in correctly. If its not in the hole use a magnet on the ground. FIND IT! Without it....it does all kinds of weird things (If it shifts at all).

It should run fine if you get it back together with the pin in. glacier knows more about the A4LD than I do. I have helped rebuild a lot of older transmissions (mostly 3 speeds of all kinds) and a few AODs.
 




Glacier991

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Brian, thank for taking the time to find those pics. And worry not, those pics belong to this board to use to help others. That's why they exist. And if you cannot find the pin I can send you one. (I think I have an extra laying around)
 




mkd5003

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Ok, I got the new modulator in, however I did not see the pin anywhere. I assumed it was still in the hole, because when I stuck my finger in there, I could feel something in the center of the hole. It wasn't just an empty space.

When I put the new modulator in, I am not sure if it went in far enough. The bracket screws back on fine, and it seems to be in there, but I don't know.

Now the truck goes into gear ok... takes a little while longer than it used to though. I took it for a quick drive. It engages first fine and rides through that well, but it has a hard time grabbing second. Seems like it is hunting for gears. You can drive it, and just cruising around it seems fine, but if you get on it at all it has some trouble.

However, the pinging is gone and there is no smoke, so at least it's not pulling ATF into the motor anymore.

Any suggestions? I heard these transmissions are temperamental about new valves... is it just going to be like this no matter what?
 




Glacier991

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Well your symptoms are not unlike those you might get if the pin were left out. There is a valve, AND a pin. I'd hate to see you repull it only to discover the pin IS in there (probably is if you didn't see it fall out) still....

another strong possibility is that the valve is stuck or sticking from lack of use... you could find something to remove it, clean it and reinstall it and exercise it in and out a little.... and also know for sure your pin is there.
 




mkd5003

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I don't know. The pin is not on the ground, and like I said, I felt something in the hole before I put the new valve in. Would I feel something in the center of the hole if the pin were missing?

I haven't completely put everything back together yet as I wanted to test it first.
 




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Yeah...symptoms sound like a missing pin to me to. :(
 




Glacier991

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see my edit about a sticky valve above. Might also be a good time to add the Sonnax updated valve (see the Diary)

15286Dscn4256-med.jpg
 




mkd5003

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You think a new valve would stick?

How can I manually operate the valve without damaging it?
 




mkd5003

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Ok, I just took the new valve out. Those pieces in that last picture you gave me are not visible anywhere. When I feel inside the hole on the transmission, I feel some kind of hollow tube right donw the center, with a piece of metal on the outside edge of the hole as well. If I push on it, the whole assembly moves back inside the transmission. If the pin is not hollow, does it go into that hollow tube?
 


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mkd5003

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Well, I don't know. I may have lost the pin.

However, when I try to put the new valve in, it doesn't even want to go completely in. It doesn't slide all the way in like what is shown in the pictures...

Where can I get a new pin?
 




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