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Steve
Steve, Service Manager
Category: Ford
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Experience:  25+ years experience as a professional technician ; ASE L1 master Technician
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1999 Ford Explorer: slipping..reverse..the module, but my husband

Resolved Question:

I need help with my 1999 Ford Explorer Transmission. It is slipping bad when I put it in drive, but reverse is okay. People tell me it may be the module, but my husband can't find it. Can you send me some pictures of what the 5R55E transmission looks like on the inside and out? It is a 4.0 v6.
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Ford
Expert:  Steve replied 7 years ago.

Hello!

THis is a vedy sophisticated elkectronically controlled transmission assembly. HTre reason you cannot locate a separate control module is because the tgransmission is controlled by the same module as the engine; when the same module controls both the engine and transmission it is referred to as a Powertrain control module. it is extremely unlikely that the powertrain control module is causing the symptoms you describe.

Your transmission is experiencing an ionternal fault of some sort; there are literally hundreds of possible component failures possible that can result in this type of symptom. You can be experiencing a low line pressure condition from a number of possible internal failures, a worn clutch pack or broken band, internal hydraulic leakage, a valve body malfunction, or even a broken component in the planetary gear set.

If you want to get the vehicle on the road again for the minimum amount of money possible, what I would suggest is to have he vehicle towed in to a shop with a competent tgransmission technician to be tested and porofessionally diagnosed before you do anything. This transmission and control system has self diagnostic capability for a number of componentss, and there are specific diagnostic proccedures and tests that can be run to check the internal components for proper operation.

THese tests require some special equipment, and a thorough working knowledge of how all of the internal components work together to be able to interpert the results of the various tests required. At a very minimum, you will need a transmission hydraulic pressure gauge set and a dealer level scan tool with transmission software to be able to even begin the first basic diagnostic test sequences required to narrow down the area that the problem is occurring in. The reason I suggest that you have this testing done right away is because if you attempt to diagnose or fix it yourself, the process of disconnecting, adjusting, or disassembling anything can cause false failure information to be stored in computer memory; if this occurs it makes the diagnbostic process MUCH more time consuming and therefore much more expensive sincce the technician then has to follow all tthe false trails left by the previous repair attempts to eliminate them as possible causes of tthe problem.

Once the root cause of the p[roblem has b een diagnosed accurately, at that point you can tehn decide on the best course of action to take to repair the vehicle. If it is something you think you can handle at home (such as replacing he entiore rtransmission assembly as a unit) then you certainly ahve the option of taking it back home and doing so yourself, knowing that it DOES need to have an entire transmission replacement. If, on teh otehr hand it turns out to be an easily repairable internal component then it will be already at the shop that has the special tools and equipment required to disassemble and repair the unit. (Internal transmission disassembly and repair almost always requires many expensive model specific tools to do the job without damaging other components... that is why i recommend a transmission shop or the dealership as tehy have these specialty tools; most general repair shops do not.

I hope this is helpful to you and saves you lots of $$$; if this answers your question please click my accept button! Thanks!

I have provided for you below some very general information about your particular transmission, so you can get an idea of just how complicated this system is and why an accurate3 professional diagnosis is needed before attempoting any kind of repairs:

_______________________________________

 

The PCM and its input/output network control the following transmission operations

  • Shift timing.
  • Line pressure (shift feel).
  • Torque converter clutch. The transmission control is separate from the engine control strategy in the PCM, although some of the input signals are shared. When determining the best operating strategy for transmission operation, the PCM uses input information from certain engine-related and driver-demand related sensors and switches.

In addition, the PCM receives input signals from certain transmission-related sensors and switches. The PCM also uses these signals when determining transmission operating strategy.
Using all of these inputs signals, the PCM can determine when the time and conditions are right for a shift, or when to apply or release the torque converter clutch. It will also determine the best line pressure needed to optimize shift feel. To accomplish this the PCM uses six output solenoids to control transmission operation.

 

Troubleshooting an electronically controlled automatic transmission is simplified by using the proven method of diagnosis. One of the most important things to remember is that there is a definite procedure to follow.

NOTE: Do not take any short cuts or assume that critical checks or adjustments have already been made.

Follow the procedures as written to avoid missing critical components or steps.
To properly diagnose a concern have the following available:

  • TSBs.
  • Wiring Diagram. These publications provide the information required when diagnosing transmission concerns. Use the Diagnostic Flow Chart as a guide and follow the steps as indicated.

PRELIMINARY INSPECTION

  • Know and understand the customer's concern.
  • Verify the concern by operating the vehicle.
  • Check the fluid levels and condition.
  • Check for non-factory add-on items.
  • Check shift linkages for proper adjustment.
  • Check TSBs regarding the concern.

DIAGNOSTICS

  • Perform on-board diagnostic procedures Key On Engine Off (KOEO) and Key On Engine Running (KOER) .
  • Record all Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTCs) .
  • Repair all non-transmission codes first.
  • Repair all transmission codes second.
  • Erase all continuous codes and attempt to repeat them.
  • Repair all continuous codes.
  • If only pass codes are obtained, refer to Diagnosis by Symptom for further information and diagnosis. Follow the diagnostic sequence to diagnose and repair the concern the first time.

 

Diagnosing electronically controlled automatic transmissions is simplified using the following procedures. It is important to remember that there is a definite procedure to follow. Do not take short cuts or assume that critical checks or adjustments have already been made. Follow the procedures as written to avoid missing critical components or steps. By following the diagnostic sequence, the technician will be able to diagnose and repair the concern the first time.

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Steve, Service Manager
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 5494
Experience: 25+ years experience as a professional technician ; ASE L1 master Technician
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