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1968-2013 Full Size Vans Econolines. E150, E250, E350, E450 and E550

Torque Converter? ATF fluid change questions

 
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Old 04-21-2019, 07:49 AM
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Question Torque Converter? ATF fluid change questions

Happy Easter FTE,

I am changing my ATF on the AOD automatic 4 speed transmission from my 1989 E150 and I cant find the torque converter. I've read there is a plug on it that should be drained. I have a picture here of the bell housing and it doesnt seem to have the spot to look for it. Maybe im wrong. Can I get some help?

Here is a picture of the fluid i drained. Ive never done this before so does it look bad or ok?

Lastly, my dipstick says to use mercon oil, I bought some merc/dex fluid from vavoline. Is that ok? or should i splurge for Merc V which is alot more $.

bell housing. where can i find the drain plug for the torqu converter?

old fluid on white cloth
 
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Old 04-21-2019, 09:04 AM
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It's hard to tell how dirty the fluid is from the photo. The Merc Dex from Valvoline should be fine.

For my E350 vans, I use only Motorcraft. Rock Auto sells 5 gallon bags of Mercon V for under $100 including shipping. I am flushing my 98 next weekend and I just received the 5 gallon bag in the box from Rock Auto.

For my E150 I had the fluid changed at Jiffy Lube and they use Valvoline. As a side note, never ever go to Jiffy Lube. At best they are shiesters. Many people on this forum use Valvoline MaxLife. For your old van, use what Ford or Valvoline recommend.

I would get a manual for your van to find the torque convertor. I flush my own transmissions through the transmission cooler lines. Look in the tech folder for the procedure.
 
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Old 04-21-2019, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by coolfeet View Post
I would get a manual for your van to find the torque convertor.

I wouldn't.




This here is much better advice!

Originally Posted by coolfeet View Post
I flush my own transmissions through the transmission cooler lines. Look in the tech folder for the procedure.

It's even better with a link!
 
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Old 04-21-2019, 01:29 PM
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Do you see the sheet metal plate on the front of the bellhousing, near the exhaust pipe? If you remove that plate you'll see the torque converter inside the bellhousing.

The link that was shared above is an excellent way to change all of the fluid. It was written for an E4OD or 4R100, which are different. The AOD uses several quarts less fluid, and the AOD doesn't have a line in front and one in the rear. These are top and bottom. I don't remember which is out and which is in.
 
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Old 04-21-2019, 08:17 PM
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Guys,

Killer information. I just want to make sure i understand the information correctly. I bought a digital manual, but my laptop was stolen from my jeep last weekend (bad karma coming for that man)

the ford AOD hold 12.3 fl oz according to the Mustang forum.

1) I've already drained my pan
2) clean pan/gasket
3) replace the filter and (check o ring/gasket)
4) replace the pan
5) drain torque converter (optional)
6) fill pan via dipstick with new ATF till normal operational level
7) disconnect ATF cooler return line and clamp new clear tubing over the line to make a drain tube**
- is the return line the inlet shown in the picture??
8) start the engine (person1) & position the drain tube into a drain bucket (person2)
-with the engine on, shift through each gear. engine run time ~30 sec. stop the engine when air starts to drain from the tube.
9) return the ATF/ coolant line to the transmission and secure.
10) fill with new ATF fluid via dipstick till it is at the normal level.

Would running the transmission dry via the engine hurt the transmission? When i drained the pan, there was a small plug in the bottom, Is this from that factory dipstick? Does that mean my ATF is 30 years old?


AOD diagram 5- fluid outlet 6- fluid inlet (return line mentioned??)


B top - inlet
B bottom- outlet
A-dipstick hole
 
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Old 04-22-2019, 07:58 AM
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Originally Posted by wcwinans View Post
the ford AOD hold 12.3 fl oz according to the Mustang forum.
I think that should be quarts, not fl oz.

Originally Posted by wcwinans View Post
Would running the transmission dry via the engine hurt the transmission?
For an extended time, yes it will damage the transmission. If you shut the engine off when you see the first large air pocket it will be fine.

Originally Posted by wcwinans View Post
When i drained the pan, there was a small plug in the bottom, Is this from that factory dipstick? Does that mean my ATF is 30 years old?
That is the plug that fills the dipstick hole from the transmission plant to the vehicle assembly plant. Most likely this is the first time the pan has been off. The fluid could have been changed without removing the pan, but I also have heard from people that didn't know what that was so they put it back in the pan!


AOD diagram 5- fluid outlet 6- fluid inlet (return line mentioned??)


B top - inlet
B bottom- outlet
A-dipstick hole[/QUOTE]
 
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Old 04-22-2019, 11:23 PM
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Well that got messy very quickly. The bottom hole is defiantly the atf coolant return line. I figured that out the hard way.

So I'm at the point where I drained most of the fluid through the coolant lines. Now that alot of fluid spilled, do I just guess and fill slowly after I hook uplinee back on?

If it's drained now, do I have to run the engine again to allow the fluid to go through the components before final touch up addition of fluid?
 
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Old 04-23-2019, 08:37 PM
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If you pumped it out once, including spillage, you probably drained about 6-7 quarts. I recommend putting 6 quarts back in, then start the engine and pump out another 6-7 quarts. Then reconnect the lines, add 4 quarts and start the engine. Slowly add fluid using the dipstick reading to get the level correct.
 
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Old 04-23-2019, 09:31 PM
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The torque converter drain plug is on the front of the converter, accessed through the steel plate that bolts to the front of the bellhousing. If you don't see it, then rotate the crankshaft until it comes around to the opening. This is a lot less messy than the way you did it.
 
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Old 04-24-2019, 09:34 AM
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I dropped the pan and then hooked up the lines to the ATF to/from coolant and drained some out that way. I then added back amount through the dipstick. Ran the engine and checked the level. It looked good after sifting through all the gears. once warm its right at the hash marks. When its cold, its above the marks.. is this because the fluid isnt moving any more and sits at the bottom? I figured when the ATF fluid is warm it would expand and take up more volume, but i guess i'm wrong.

I'll double check the amount of fluid this afternoon. I'll run it and shift through all the gears then check the level.

When I do it again, I'll drop the pan and find the drain plug on the torque converter. This time the bolts on the shield to the torque converter were on there pretty good so i didnt do it. I'll have to put some penetrating oil on those bolts.
 
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Old 04-24-2019, 08:44 PM
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Checking the fluid level cold is absolutely meaningless. You can't tell if it is low, correct, or overfilled.
 
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Old 05-03-2019, 02:47 AM
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Originally Posted by wcwinans View Post
The bottom hole is defiantly the atf coolant return line.
That's different from the diagram.
 
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Old 05-03-2019, 02:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Mark Kovalsky View Post
Checking the fluid level cold is absolutely meaningless. You can't tell if it is low, correct, or overfilled.
Hard to tell at anytime with the later models with the wire dipstick with the plastic tip. Ford blew it on that.
 
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Old 05-05-2019, 05:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Fifty150 View Post
That's different from the diagram.
yeah, imagine how i felt when i turned it on
 
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Old 05-13-2019, 11:44 AM
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I though mercon v wasn’t being made anymore and we needed LV.
 

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