We purchased this vehicle, last year. We had it about 2-3mos and it started having transmission problems, in the form of…. I was driving down a straight away, and someone appeared on my tail, so I “kicked it” to get them off, and after I got ahead of them I slowed down. that person again got on my tail, and I kicked it again and got ahead of them, after that about twice or 3 times, I got to the nearest town and came to a stop light.
When the light turned green I was going to make a left turn and I was stuck! I had to manually shift to first gear to be able to make that left turn. I parked the explorer and had to talk to a lady and then when I got back in to return home, I had to shift manually all the way. Once I was at a speed of 50-60 I could shift into D/OD. But if I dropped below that speed, I had to shift gears myself. Since then this vehicle has been setting. its been cranked a couple times and drove just a lil bit. the other day my boyfriend went to change the fluid and filter and he said everything with the fluid was good. he was goin to put some TranX fluid in it but he said it would not help the matters..
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I doubt it would help matters very much for a very good reason, electronics. From the sound of your problem, the issue is more than likely related to a number of sensors and solenoids.
We know the basic problem after outracing the other vehicle a few weeks ago, you have had to shift your Eddie Bauer by hand. Since shifting by hand works, it is a pretty good bet that most of the mechanicals in the transimission are in reasonably good shape. If they were not, then you wouldn’t be able to shift by hand.
Since that is the case, let’s look at some of the places where there may be problems. First, I suspect that if you were to look at the Throttle Position Sensor in the Eddie Bauer, I think you would find that it may be either open or short. A TPS sensor that is in bad shape can behave in the way your SUV is acting. Also, believe it or not, if the Mass Air Flow or Manifold Air Pressure sensors are bad, they can also contribute problems like you describe. Then, there are sensors that look at the crankshaft that might also be bad. As you can see, there are plenty of ways for this problem to happen.
Another area to look at — the one I think is your SUV’s primary problem — is at the solenoid stack. There are anywhere from two to four solenoids that control your vehicle’s choice of gear. If the solenoid pack or packs for the gearshift is shot then you will have to shift by hand until the solenoids are replaced. In addition, it is possible that the loom that carries their wiring has gone bad and if that is the case there could be multiple wires shorting out, as well. That could also imitate solenoid failure. If that is the case, the problem becomes tougher to solve because the technician will have to look at each wire in the loom to find out where and which wires are failing and then when the signal is stopping.
In addition, it could be that age and corrosion have attacked some parts of the overall communications loom for the transmission and if that is the case, it will have to be replaced, as well.
It’s funny but electronic problems in today’s transmission seem to be the ones that are causing many or the problems that technicians see. And, it is equally funny that the problems can emulate mechanical problems such as a failing torque converter or failing clutches and bands or even failing gears.
My money is on an electronic failure. To find it, the techician will have to run an OBD-II diagnostic, as the first step to see where the problems might be. And, if it appears that the sensors are failing, the tech will then have to take an old-fashioned volt-ohhmeter and ohm out each line that might be reported as failing to see where the problem is.
My suggestion would be to replace the sensors and solenoids and the wire looms to make sure that everything works correctly. Unfortunately this is very labor-intensive and it might easily approach the cost of a rebuilt transmission or about $3,500 or so. Yes, it is expensive, but, if you want to keep the SUV on the road, then you will have to pay it.
First, get it into a good, independent shop and have them give it a thorough diagnostic. It might just come down to a failing, in-line fuse somewhere that I am not even thinking about right now. That is certainly a much-less-expensive alternative. Let me know what happens.