I have a 1995 Ranger XLT with 3.0 V6, which has 4R44E auto transmission.
I was told during a recent scan (truck was having hard shift and O/D flashing light) that the torque converter was faulty. I ordered a replacement.
I installed it according to the instructions, making sure it "dropped" 3 times. After assembly, I have no shifting whatsoever, and no pressure/flow in the transmission cooler lines. I took it out, and did a side-by-side comparison with the old one. They seemed to be identical in their specs.
When I had the trans out, I spun the TC on the shaft with my finger in the pump pickup hole (behind the filter). Turning the TC on the shaft did create suction around my finger, though it wasn't a great amount.
So, I repeated the installation, again being careful to follow the instructions. Still no flow.
I could remove the transmission yet again, and reinstall the old toruque converter to see if it works, but I am not convinced it would make a difference, since both should have engaged the trans pump the same way.
So, I guess I'm looking for answers to the following:
(1) Is it possible the trans pump has failed, and if so, how hard is it to replace?
(2) Am I more likely looking at a problem with the vale body and/or control solenoids? I tried disconnecting the harness (on the advice of a Ford mechanic) and still saw no pressure. I also pulled the "check plug" on the side of the trans and cranked the engine - nothing came out.
(3) How easy/dificult is it to replace the transmission with a later model 4R55E or 5R55E? What issues do I need to be concerned about if I take this route?
(4) Are there any tests I have not considered that I could perform before I go through another removal, so that I might narrow down the problem?
As you may have figured, I'm fairly new to all of this.
Any help you can provide would be greatly appreciated
I gotta ask this, does the tranny have enough fluid in it for the pump to be able to suck up enough to begin to fill the torque converter????
To fill the converter, cooler & lines, the tranny pump would have to empty the tranny pan, so you'd need to be adding fluid as the engine idled & the tranny pump only puts out 1qt/15 seconds, so it would have to idle a while to fill an empty torque converter, radiator cooler lines, aux tranny cooler & interconnecting lines, for you to get any signs something was happening.
99 Ranger XLT 4dr 4x2 4.0L 5spd Auto 3.55L/S Payload Pkg2 Tow Pkg
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I tried idling and adding fluid little by little until it began to seep out of a "plug" in the top of the case. I figure this is some kind of overfill plug.
I started with 2 qts in the TC (and figure I lost about half when I installed it), plus 3 qts in the tranny (plus the one I flgured I lost). By the time I finished, I believe I had over 8-9 qts in the system total, which I think is way too much (from what I've read on the forums here).
Thanks for the input!
I think this trans is related to the A4LD, so, if it is, the pump is mounted on the 'rear' side of the bell housing. There are two flats on the hub of the TC that engage similar flats on the inner of the pump gear. The problem you describe is as if the pump gear is not being engaged when everything is assembled.
I would measure the distance from the front face of the TC, where the bolts are welded that engage the flex plate, to the hub 'flats' on both TC's. If the new one were to have a different style threaded stud welded on, without a 'stop' washer, it could allow the converter to be pulled too far forward when bolted to the flex plate, such that the hub no longer engages the gear. Though the TC hub-to-face measurement might be correct, the in place position depends on the nose of the TC fitting the center of the crankshaft and the welded washers on the studs being at the correct depth.
In short check the depth measurement on both TC's for comparison. You definitely have enough fluid installed if it is coming out the vent, so you should not be worrying about 'pump priming' problems.
Do you 'feel' the hub engage the pump gear when you install the TC into the front of the transmission? We usually spun the TC a little as we fed it into the pump bushing & seal. [hub doused with clean ATF, bushing oiled and seal lubed a bit to protect for dry start.]
It's not how hard you work, it's how much you get done. Simplificate and add lightness
After going through all the steps yet again, and a reinstallation of the old torque converter, lo and behold, I have pumping and shifting again!!
I can only ascertain at this point that what was mentioned earlier is correct - although the TCs appeared to be the same, perhaps the bolting was such that the pump was disengaged with the installation of the new TC.
So, long story short - days of agony and numerous quarts of fluid only to end up where I started.
If anything, I guess this goes to prove that you need to double and triple check what someone gives you, to be sure it is the correct part.
You guys are great!
PS - After reading through many of these posts, I am now considering changing out the valve body and/or solenoids, to see if that gets rid of the trans occasionally "slamming" into gear and the O/D light flashing - but I'll wait a bit first to see if this latest fluid flush and fill made anything better or not.
I gotta ask, while I'm here: what is the difference in size between the standard and the Heavy Duty TC in these vehicles, and how do I know which one I have? Would that have made a difference in this particular application?
Last edited by MrMikey64; 09-13-2010 at 07:16 PM.
Reason: more info
I cannot think of a reason for slamming and blinking OD light caused by the TC. All the TC does is multiply torque and transfer said torque to the input shaft ... and run the pump via the TC shell and rear hub. It also has the lockup clutch built into it for no-slip operation at cruise.
None of the above are linked to slamming into gear, IMO. The only fault I know of that can come from a TC is clutch lockup failure. You have an electronically, well partial, operated transmission. It will throw and store codes for some of its failures. I think.
Have you had the codes pulled? I've been out of the business for a long time, so only know peripherally what they do. You may glean a load of information by reading the multi-paged thread further down in this forum 4R44e / 5r55e:
Well, as to the blinking light and TC, I had taken the vehicle into a transmission repair shop where they pulled the codes. The proprietor was the one who informed me that the problem was in the torque converter - something about low pressure and the TC was compensating, thereby creating too much torque, hence the slamming.
Having read further along (which I wish I had done before I started all of these repairs), I get the feeling this particular mechanic doesn't know enough about these systems, since he made no mention of faulty valve body or solenoid problem as the cause, which to me would make much more sense in what is causing the problem.
He simply told me he needed to rebuild (not replace, mind you) the TC, for $800 - and as long as he had the trans out, that should probably be overhauled as well, given the mileage (even though it only has 133K on the truck), for an additional $800.
He COULDN't be ripping me off, could he!?!?!?
I have since ordered a trans manual for this system, and will see about going through the diagnostics to find the real problem (if one exists, as it does seem to run a bit better since the fluid flush and fill).
The blinking light and slamming of the gears is an intermittent problem, and usually after the vehicle has been driven for awhile.
Last edited by MrMikey64; 09-14-2010 at 02:00 PM.
Reason: Additional Information
Since the last posting, the truck had seen little use until I needed it to tow a trailer - a 1,000 mile round trip, with half of that under load.
The truck performed beautifully. Very little slamming and only an occasional O/D light blinking.
A few days after my return, my sis borrowed it for a short drive. Within three miles, the truck stopped shifting entirely. Fluid is still full and clean.
Any ideas what I am looking at now??
PS: I have also potentially found a tranny from a '97 XLT with a 3.0 V6. Is there any problem with this one going into my '95 (I'm assuming it's a 4R44E as well)? I was thinking of installing it in the short term while having the original one rebuilt.
If you are in SJ,CA, my SIL has a body shop there, and knows the trans shop guys a few doors down. Check in w John @ACRS on Enterprise for a recommendation.
I was wrong about the codes, in that they do not get stored. I would check the fluid level very carefully as low fluid will starve the pump, and without pressure the servos and clutch packs cannot apply, causing failure to move.
You may have lost some fluid in the time since the last post. Get it up to temperature and check the level. There is a problem if the light is flashing and the transmission is slamming. It will not cure itself. Have you checked that the wiring is tight and not damaged? That could cause solenoids to work/not leading to out of control pressures or intermittent of pressure to the clutch/servo's.
Check the cross for the years at car-parts.com to see what is listed when you query for your vehicle. Other years trans will show up if they can be used.
It's not how hard you work, it's how much you get done. Simplificate and add lightness
I check with car-parts.com, and they only list 1995-1996 for that particular listing. I guess there must have been some change in 1997 (though the guy I'm talking to swears up and down that it is compatible).
I have checked the fluid level a number of times since it had the problem - levels are definitely where they need to be even warmed up.
I guess my next move will be to pull and inspect the wiring harnesses, and then drop the tranny if nothing shows up there.
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