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PTU Leaking again - repaired warranty by Ford - question about changing PTU fluid

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Probably about 14 months after the PTU had been repaired, it was leaking again. I think it's been going on for a while because the last time I had the car in, I told them it smelled like burning oil but they said they couldn't find anything. It was discovered during an oil-change when the tech pulled the cover and could see that PTU fluid was leaking onto the exhaust pipes, so that's where the smell was coming from.


Plus something happened that people may find interesting, and that is that when they fixed it and I picked the car up, I realized that when I punched it that the front end would start hopping, front tires spinning and I had to fight some massive torque steer. It happened every time I punched it, so I immediately took the car back and had the service manager ride with me. I punched it, and he said "Whoa, yeah, that's not right. It shouldn't be hopping and spinning like that."


So they figured out that during the PTU seals repair, they did not seat a cable fully into a receptacle so no power was going to the rear end--so essentially I had an overpowered FWD car for a little bit. I have seen some forums where people were wondering how power is managed to the rear wheels, so this might be a clue--whatever cable didn't get plugged in is responsible for "activating" the rear-end so that it gets power.


Another thing that concerns me is that this is twice now that the PTU seals have failed, and apparently this is a common problem. I drive the car spiritedly, but I don't race it. I've read that the fluid has a tendency to fail in the PTU (due to heat from what I understand), and somehow the PTU seals fail and start leaking then. I know the Police Intercepters have a cooler on the PTU and a sensor to detect if the fluid has been exposed to an over-temp condition. Ford says our PTUs are life-time sealed, but I've gathered that some people like to change the fluid at 15-30k intervals and even go as far as putting in a drain plug. I'm wondering if I should start changing the fluid and install a drain plug?


Has anybody done this?



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I don't believe that anyone has installed a drain plug, but I did have my fluid changed at 25K miles. It really needs changed because of the small amount of fluid in the PTU. I did not know that the PI PTU's had a cooler. When I had my fluid changed they also did a BG cleaning of the PTU and I would recommend it every 20--25K miles.

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2013+ with the PP is liquid cooled and has the drain plug. There is also a "life monitor" for the fluid. It's a PITA to change the fluid either way. To fill mine you have to drop the cat to access the fill plug. I agree with mj changing the fluid is a must if you want to keep your PTU in working order. On the non pp and pre 13pp cars you can use a suction pump to pull the fluid out and then refill. Kinda like doing a fluid swap on a diff without removing the cover. Installing a drain plug isn't really necessary. Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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The info on the PTU drain plug, as well as the PTU being liquid cooled for the PP pkg, as well as the P.I. variant's of the Taurus SHO / P.I. (2013+) is accurate.


I have recently drilled out the PTU cover on my 2010 and installed a drain plug. It is currently however, NOT liquid cooled.


As a result, I have chosen to adopt a twice per year fluid change of the PTU, regardless of mileage accrued. Once in Spring, once in the Fall.


FMC will claim that the PTU fluid is a "lifetime" fluid, however, I can tell you with a high degree of reassurance, that that is horse crap.


Change the PTU fluid. Simply stated.


You will thank me that you did in the long run.


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^^+1. I can't Imagine what they mean by lifetime fluid. Unless lifetime now means 100K or less. Here is the diagram for the 13+ PI and PP. I don't have an actual pic of the unit. There's not much to see from under the car. In a few weeks when I install my DPs I will change the fluid and get some pics of the unit.


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