Ford Freestar Transmission Problems & Cost | AX4N / 4F50N

The Ford Freestar was equipped with the AX4N / 4F50N transmission.. But they aren’t without their problems though, so let’s look at some of the most common Ford Freestar transmission problems, look at cost estimates and figure out what you can do about them.

Need a replacement transmission? Get an estimate for replacement transmissions and local installation. Look up your transmission model by vehicle make and model.

What Transmission Do I Have?

Ford Freestar Transmission Models

Ford Freestar: AX4N / 4F50N Transmission

Ford Freestar Transmission Replacement Cost Estimate

Pricing varies by model. To be 100% sure on pricing, have your VIN# handy and use our Get An Estimate feature to look up your transmission by VIN#.

Replacement AX4N / 4F50N Transmission:

TransmissionStreet Smart Transmission
AX4N / AX4S2037

What are the DTC codes related to Ford Freestar transmission problems?

Trouble CodeDescription
P0711Transmission Fluid Temperature Sensor Circuit Range/Performance
P0712Transmission Fluid Temperature Sensor Circuit Low Input
P0713Transmission Fluid Temperature Sensor Circuit High Input
P0714Transmission Fluid Temperature Sensor Circuit Intermittent P0715
P0715Input/Turbine Speed Sensor Circuit
P0717Input/Turbine Speed Sensor Circuit No Signal
P0718Input/Turbine Speed Sensor Circuit Intermittent
P0740Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Malfunction
P0741Torque Converter Clutch Circuit
P0742Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Stuck On
P0743Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Electrical
P0744Torque Converter Clutch Circuit Intermittent
P0748Pressure Control Solenoid 'A' Electrical
P0750Shift Solenoid 'A'
P0751Shift Solenoid 'A' Performance or Stuck Off
P0752Shift Solenoid 'A' Stuck On
P0753Shift Solenoid 'A' Electrical
P0755Shift Solenoid 'B'
P0756Shift Solenoid 'B' Performance or Stuck Off
P0757Shift Solenoid 'B' Stuck On
P0758Shift Solenoid 'B' Electrical
P0817Transmission Fluid Pressure Manual Valve Position Switch Reverse with Drive Ratio
P0817Starter Disable Circuit
P0840Transmission Fluid Pressure Sensor/Switch “A”
P0960Pressure Control Solenoid “A” Control Circuit/Open
P0961Pressure Control Solenoid “A” Control Circuit Range/Performance
P0962Pressure Control Solenoid “A” Control Circuit Low
P0963Pressure Control Solenoid “A” Control Circuit High
P0977Shift Solenoid “B” Control Circuit High
P0978Shift Solenoid “C” Control Circuit Range/Performance
P0979Shift Solenoid “C” Control Circuit Low
P0980Shift Solenoid “C” Control Circuit High
P0982Shift Solenoid “D” Control Circuit Low
P0983Shift Solenoid “D” Control Circuit High
P0985Shift Solenoid “E” Control Circuit Low
P0986Shift Solenoid “E” Control Circuit High

Ford Freestar Transmission Recalls

None Found

Ford Freestar Technical Service Bulletins (TSB)

**Please note: Some of these TSBs may not be specifically for the Ford Freestar, but the transmission problems may still apply.

TSB 03-12-3 – Torque converter clutch not engaging and/or OBDII trouble codes P0741 or P1744
1996 – 2003 Ford Taurus – 1996 – 2003 Ford Windstar – 1996 – 2002 Lincoln Continental – 1996 – 2003 Mercury Sable
Problem – Drivability issues can result when the torque converter clutch will not engage when commanded. This can be caused by a number of issues including a worn out AX4S torque converter, or a sticking TCC solenoid.
Solution – Replace torque converter and/or TCC solenoid

Common Problems with the Ford Freestar Transmission

Lack of Response
Leaking Fluid
Low Fluid
Burning Smell
Grinding or Shaking
Whining, Clunking or Humming
Refuses to Go Into Gear
Torque Converter Issues
Valve Body Issues
Transmission Noisy in Neutral
Gears Slipping
No 3rd or 4th Gear
No 1st or 2nd Gear
No Reverse
Dragging Clutch
Trouble Codes / Check Engine Light

Can I drive with a transmission problem?

If your Ford Freestar can still make it up and down the road, you might say “It’s fine, I’ll just drive it until I can get it fixed”. But that is not always a good idea, depending on the symptoms. You see, there are a lot of (very expensive) moving parts inside of a transmission, and if something isn’t right, continuing to drive with a transmission problem could damage something else.

How often does a Ford Freestar transmission need to be replaced?

The overall lifespan of a Ford Freestar transmission largely depends on how well it was maintained. Factory design flaws also factor into this equation, along with how/how hard you drive. But on average, we’ve seen the Ford Freestar transmission last for between 130,000-180,000 miles. A high quality replacement transmission however, can last considerably longer if all of the factory design flaws have been addressed and the vehicle has been maintained.

How are Ford Freestar transmission issues diagnosed?

It is fairly easy to guesstimate what the root cause of your Ford Freestar transmission problems might be, but you won’t truly know unless you have the right tools and experience. A good mechanic or transmission repair center will be able to connect your truck to a computer and find out which diagnostic trouble codes (DTC’s) have been stored. Once they know what to look for, they can perform a visual inspection to verify the problem.

How is a Ford Freestar transmission replaced?

In order to replace your Ford Freestar transmission, the truck has to be lifted from the ground in order to gain access to all of the parts that will need to be unbolted. Then the transmission can be lowered to the ground (typically with a transmission jack), so the new transmission can be installed. Once it is in place, for the 6L80, the vehicle PCM will have to be reprogrammed / reflashed to accept the new transmission using the latest GM subscription.

Recommendations for Ford Freestar transmission issues?

To save time and get back on the road faster, have your 17-digit truck VIN# handy and you can get an online quote for a reman Ford Freestar transmission here, then find a local shop using our Find a Shop guide to install it for you.

How to Solve Ford Freestar Transmission Problems

Solution A: Buy a Used Ford Freestar Transmission

The quickest way to fix your transmission problems is to simply buy a used transmission or used transmission. These can be found at most junk yards, and they often come with a 30-90 day warranty. However, there’s no way to determine the actual condition of the internal components, so you could be spending a bunch of money to have the exact same problems. Plus, that warranty only covers the transmission if it’s defective, not the labor costs that you’ll have to pay.

Solution B: Buy a Rebuilt Ford Freestar Transmission

Another option would be a rebuilt transmission or rebuilt transmission. A local repair shop will remove your transmission, then install a bunch of new parts during the rebuild. The problem here is, the skills and experience of each transmission rebuilder will vary widely from shop to shop, so you could have problems from something that wasn’t adjusted properly. And the 1-2 year warranty might only cover you at certain transmission repair shops, in a specific geographical area.

Solution C: Buy a Remanufactured Ford Freestar Transmission

Many owners depend on their vehicle to commute and get things done. Their gasoline engines are designed to go 100’s of thousands of miles, so it makes sense to invest in a remanufactured transmission.

Need a replacement transmission? Get an estimate for replacement transmissions and local installation. Look up your transmission model by vehicle make and model.

What Transmission Do I Have?

What Problem Does Your Ford Freestar Have?

Let us know the year, mileage and problem you’re having as well as any trouble (OBD) codes you’ve found. If you’ve been given a quote or paid for a repair, we’d like to hear about that too!

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Les Herbison
1 month ago

There is absolutely no response when putting the shifter into gear.

I was driving normally on a residential street at approximately 25 – 30 mph. I stopped at a stop sign for a second or two and then proceeded to make a left turn. Everything appeared to be normal at first. Just as I was completing the turn, there suddenly was no drive power to the wheels.

There wasn’t any noise or clunk or anything else obvious. There is not any diagnostic light lit on the dash. I have owned the vehicle for about 7 months and there has not been any malfunction in the drive train. I replaced both front hub assemblies about 5 weeks ago. Everything seems normal as well as I can see under the vehicle while sitting here on the street. When I place the shift selector in “park”, it engages park and holds the vehicle in place. I checked the transmission fluid level and it is not low. If anything, it appears to be substantially over the operating range indicated on the dipstick

Geoge Swerdelian
1 month ago

Jerking and humming

4 months ago

2004 free star does not engage in reverse or forward

Tara mclean
8 months ago

Rpm are up. No engine lights on..

Tina L Petzel
9 months ago

2004 Ford Freestar SEL
I’m not sure if it went into limp mode or not. Coming home one night, I realized it was not going at speed, I applied acceleration but it continued to slow down. I came up my street going 20 mph, but my RPMs were at 3500. Next day it drove fine but then I lost all momentum. I turned the van off, restarted, and it drove fine the last couple of blocks. I know something is wrong with the transmission. Should I have it hauled to a transmission repair shop to have it checked?

Shane Bailiff
10 months ago

04 Ford Freestar. 119899 miles. Soon after purchase I replaced radiator because antifreeze got into transmission. New radiator and trans flush. Worked fine for hundreds of miles. Started to slip in low gears slightly. Once it got to 30 mph it was OK. Only did this few days. Belched a significant amount of fluid out going down the road. Towed home. Refilled fluid. Will ease around the yard but is slipping towards 2nd

Larry Everette Moore
1 year ago

I have somewhat of free movement in the column shifter going from Park to Drive, Then it hits a hard spot at Drive and won’t move into the lower gears. It does not move in Reverse, or Drive. I have replaced the Range Sensor on the Transmission, but it did not change anything.

1 year ago

I have a 2004 Ford Freestar And I have a code of P1715

Doug Morgan
1 year ago

Hi, My 2005 Ford Freestar has 175k on her and there was a rebuilt trans in it whan i purchased at 115k 7 years ago. fluid and filter changed last year, not burnt , very little material in the pan. no dtc codes. after 30 min city traffic or 15 min highway she holds in 1st gear to 3000-3700 rom before shifting sometimes,. never in other gears but more often than not when hot it hangs in first. slow start or fast start doesnt matter it just hangs up in first. once cooled it shifts fine again. The engine temp never passes half way . my assumption is shift solenoid but i am not the expert. thanks doug

David J Beaver
1 year ago
Reply to  Doug Morgan

I have the exact same issue with mine. Did you ever get a diagnosis or answer on here?

tarry stine
1 year ago

2005 ford free star the fluid pours right out of it when you put it in

tarry stine
1 year ago

the fluid pours right out of it when you put it in

Enrique Martinez
1 year ago

Does not work on reverse same times it work

Doug Morgan
1 year ago

After a good 30 minutes or more of stop and go city driving my 2005 Ford Freestar will sometimes hang in first gear over 3000 rpm before hard shifting into second gear. It shifts the rest perfectly.
It does not do it every time either. Fluid might have 10k and is full. When it cools down, it shifts fine and may not repeat issue for weeks or months. Van was formerly used as a runabout for a private school and I have had it for over 5 years. Mileage is 175k and trans was rebuilt /replaced by a national chain before my purchase. Thanks for your help.

Bill Mantor
1 year ago

Replaced transmission twice, radiator once. Still getting water into transmission. What the helk!!??

1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Mantor

Bill, there is a vent on top that the cap falls off and let’s water in. It’s right by the shifting mechanism.

2 years ago

2005 ford freestar…shifts great everyplace I go…then all of a sudden out of the blue it won’t shift out of first unless I let off gas… codes…..I know it has to be shift sensor but witch one
2 years ago

My 05 Freestar was running fine when I parked it in the spring when I bought a new car. Yesterday I decided to sell it so after checking all the fluids and letting it warm up I go in to pull it out and the transmission will not engage in any gear. The backup lights turn on when I put it in reverse but it acts like it still in park or neutral. Any ideas?

John Marchant III
2 years ago

I have a 2006 Ford freestar I drove it in the dryway shut it off then came out 20 mins later started it and put it in reverse or drive it would not move either way

Harold McWhorter
2 years ago

I have a 2007 Ford Freestar the transmission just disengage from the steering gear! Could not drive in reverse or drive nothing!!

Joseph Wood
3 years ago

I have 2004 free star. 3.9L, runs and shifts good but makes a rattling sound on drivers side front when excelleration? No codes showing

Mark W
4 years ago

I just replaced my Tranny with a remanufactured one for about $3000 installed, at about 118K miles. It feels great but after a long drive (about 300 miles, the tranny slipped again. Ugh. But what I have noticed is my Ford 500 has the same transmission and is doing fine at 160K miles. My Freestar when I get done with a regular drive or longer, has a sizzling sound like drops hitting a hot pan. It did this with the old and the new tranny. My ford has never done that. Just wondering if the Transmission runs hotter in a Freestar with the added weight. If so, A) why did Ford not add a better cooling system to it, and B) will adding an extra (aftermarket) tranny cooler do any good?

Richard McClain
4 years ago

2005 freestar 3.9 code po720 car shifts 1 to 3 been inside replaced all pistons, clutches, 2 different V/B new solinoids still gets same code and does the same thing car originally came in with this problem could use some help
thank you Rick

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