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Transmission stuck in 2nd or 3rd


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Friday, I take the family out on the town. On the way home, tranny slipped a bit shifting 2nd-3rd. Weird, I'll keep an eye on it. Sunday, we did a lil errand run. Trans slipped 1st-2nd-3rd while trying to get into traffic (so a steady mash of accelerator). Ran fine the rest of way unless had to press hard to pass or what not. Get home and weird smell but very faint, can't really determine. Almost electrical mixed with fluid. Unload the car and wife runs to friends house. On the way back, she fears not making it home because of slipping and lack of power. I meet her, shut off car and restart. No issue until close to home and mashed it. Hard downshift, slippage, no shift, rev limiter, then power restricted around 3000 rpm, sluggish. Mash, no shifts, let off and ease on, no shifts. Manual mode, no indication of gear, flipping paddles like a pinball machine, nothing changes. Still 1/2 mile until home, shift neutral and remains in gear. Park in driveway, smell returns still subtle. Shut off car, restart. In park to drive, forward move. Manual has indication and will cycle 1-2, forward move. Neutral, forward move. Reverse, forward move. Park, wants to forward move. In park, rpms limited to 2000 because engine is loaded but unable to move. Climbed under car, no leaks, no wires, nothing out of ordinary. Put on ramps and climbed under while running. Had my father control brake and shifter. Starts the car and tries to lurch forward like being placed in gear. put in reverse and I heard a hissing noise from transmission like something should have been spraying out, couldn't pin point it.

 

Things I have tried:

1. Disconnect battery more than 10 minutes

2. cycling gears

3. checked trans fluid - seems low but driveway is 5* incline and on ramps so fluid ran to rear of trans

4. run SCT device for DTC and no codes

 

Items of concern:

1. evidence of leak from trans fluid fill cap, nothing fresh

2. battery has crack on top (will explain in another thread) that apparently has leaked down onto the starter motor, shifter linkage, and trans fluid return (the one on the top?) but not on anything electrical for transmission

3. new vehicle warranty is bumper2bumper 36k 3yr and powertrain 50k 6yr?

4. how the heck can I get the car to dealer if its stuck in gear in my driveway? No reverse, no neutral, can't be towed on anything but flatbed, but no tires will rotate.

 

Car stats:

1. 2010 SHO 38000+ miles

2. tune by Torrie

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Returned to stock, no change. New battery too. Only way to get it moving anything other than forward is

1. Shift park

2. Start car

3. Place shifter in anything else

4. Turn off car

5. Push!

 

Now it's ready to drive to dealer or get loaded on the truck. Dammit, wasted over 10 hrs nothing accomplished and now to battle warranties

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Not gonna hijack here, but mine had a smell to it about a week ago when I got out, and then the other day, leaving a light it completely slipped out of gear. Almost hit the rev limiter and then had to drop it into manual and back to auto to get it to engage the gears. Scared now :-(. Did they rebuild or get you a new one?

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  • 2 weeks later...

So after the first week without the SHO or a rental and knowing the parts needed to be ordered/backordered, I wait. Last Friday they finally decided to get me a rental, ford escape. Thank goodness, cuz the lightning nor the svo are adaptable for 2 car seats. Today, week 2, they finally got all parts and finished rebuild. Test = failure. Slipped 1st-2nd. Now to troubleshoot. They should have just opted for replacement...

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Every gear, including park, the car moved forward. Didn't actually move in Park because of the trans lock function, but was definitely loaded and would lurch forward that 1/4 inch like being initially put into gear. The only time it would shift gears is in Drive, even then it might make it to 3rd. No reverse at all, that moved forward as well.

 

I was thinking something along lemon law for repeated car failure, time to research. The dealer asked, initially, if I put into Park while driving. He said the techs claimed it was damaged real good.

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Stayed up wayyy too late researching. From what I have been reading, I am outside the Lemon Law rights period of 24 months or 24k miles. This is for both Georgia (where I reside and register) and Florida (where I purchased). Bought the car in Sept '09 and has 38.5k miles on it.

 

I was getting excited about replacing it with the Explorer Sport via Lemon Law...

 

I suppose that I should talk to the dealer tomorrow about options. They are extending the rental until Friday.

 

If anyone has more knowledge on Lemon Law or other options, please share.

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Good question, if it was rebuilt correctly the problem should went away. Which makes me wonder if the problem isn't mechanical? Rather electrical, module, etc. before off the car I would wait to see what the out come is. Maybe they'll end up throwing a new trans? And maybe they'll have to buy back under lemon law.

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I am going to talk to them and get better details. They told my wife yesterday that something still isn't right. I am going to see if they are driving it enough for the trans pcm to "learn and adjust". Can't that take 10+ miles of driving/logging?

 

You guys remember way back I had posted about a burning fluid smell sometime back? That ended up being a leaking PTU. It took them 2 tries to repair the leak. Ever since that 'fix' it would randomly shift violent like mounts were loose or something. It felt as if the whole drivetrain would 'rock'. Maybe I can use that as my out for Lemon considering that fix WAS within the Law period. It may be related...

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I know when I looked into the "Lemon Law" it really isn't much help. Since the manufacture is allowed to deduct something like 20 cents for every mile on the car it really reduces what your vehicle is worth. So depending on the mileage on your vehicle, it could really limit your ability to replace it with a similar vehicle. Good luck with it, whatever route you take, I know how much of a hassle it is when you have a vehicle that can't be fixed.

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I talked to the Tech today to get some idea of what he has found and is still troublesome. He asked what my initial symptoms were and I explained the slippage, 2 days later more slippage until it was 'stuck' in gear. He begged that I would bring it in as soon as symptoms occurred. I had to chuckle. If they expect it brought in on a Saturday morning and something happen, ha, before I troubleshoot, haha, and hopefully have an answer by Monday, hahaha. Unfortunately I had to go out to sea that week and it was parked anyhow since Sunday.

 

But he said the, forgive my recollection of conversation, first stage clutch was locked and caused a bunch of breakage. Something along those lines. So he replaced all broken parts, then experienced slip. After adjustments, the slip was none existant. Now he says it feels as if taking off in 3rd gear. I asked if he drove it long enough for the trans to learn and program, he acknowledged with great reassurance. Tech is very upset that he has to perform another teardown to investigate. I feel his pity. I informed him the only other issue I had was with the PTU fluid leak that was repaired/re-worked. He feels that its a completely separate system and shouldn't have any affect against each other. I say, nay nay. PTU has input shaft from trans. Input shaft has a bearing. If any of that particular assembly was inappropriately disturbed, it would lead to failure later on.

 

I had a bent axle in my ole 87 mustang that lead to the pinion gear driving itself INTO the differential. Anyways...

 

I asked the service manager, "When is it considered a loss?" He informed me that I'm outside the Lemon Law rights period and Ford would continue to have them attempt repair. I am at 3 weeks now. I am not sure what/when to do something bigger. I have had issues with dealerships in the past, namely Suzuki motorcycle, to which I wrote a letter with concern and they both called AND wrote back. (Guns 'N' Roses voice) "Where do I go now, where do I go-o-o?"

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well, after ONE month of no car or a clue...results...

 

Still no car. They claimed to finally have the transmission working great. Then they obtained a service engine light. They have determined the PCM is toast. Dealer has to submit a request for authorization to get a new one. So I wait for that, then I wait for the order to be placed, then I wait for the part to arrive, you guessed it, wait for the install and testing.

 

Now if they find that it has had a tune loaded, how do they determine if that tune was the cause of PCM failure or not? Also, could the PCM fault cause the damage to the trans? I didn't get the "wrench" on the instrument cluster until a mile from dealership for initial troubleshooting. Which was a week of fiddling around after discovering the problem.

 

If Ford says, NO it was tuned, or whatever, how much would the PCM cost to replace either at dealer or myself (provided I could)?

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