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Kalamykid, Shop Owner/ Tech
Category: Lincoln
Satisfied Customers: 4446
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1988 Lincoln Town Car: hard shift..1st to 2nd and 2nd to 3rd..harder

Customer Question

I have a 1988 Lincoln Town Car with a 302 and AOD. Lately the transmission has a hard shift from 1st to 2nd and 2nd to 3rd. Its harder from 1st to 2nd though. The fluid has been changed and is very red just like how it came from the bottle. I also replaced the transmission filter but that did not help.
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Lincoln
Expert:  Kalamykid replied 7 years ago.
the first thing to check will be the passing gear cable where it hooks up to the throttle lever. The plastic grommet was bad about breaking and the cable coming loose. Let me know if the grommet is in tacked and we can go from there.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Hi. I just checked the tv cable and it looks good. It looks like it attaches at 2 points on the throttle and both are in good shape with no cracks or splits.
Expert:  Kalamykid replied 7 years ago.
Was there anything in the pan as far as metal or clutch material?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
No. It was really clean as far as that goes.
Expert:  Kalamykid replied 7 years ago.
Does it have a harsh 1-2 and 2-3 shift always?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
I would say about 95% of the time. Sometimes the 2nd to 3rd shift is smooth though.Even the valve body (I think that's what its called) looked clean when I changed the filter. I should add that I had the transmission flushed at the local castrol quick lube when I first got the car about 6 months ago. I'm not sure if that means anything but I just want you to have as much info as I can give you.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
By the way, I disconnected the battery over-night and that did not help
Expert:  Kalamykid replied 7 years ago.

There are three things that can be causing this problem.

1. A broken spring or stuck valve in the valve body.

2. Incorrectly adjusted passing gear cable, or the cable is faying and sticking in the sheath.

3. The retaining snap ring that holds the intermediate one way clutch has broken and come loose.

Disconnecting the battery will not have any affect on the trans as it is not an electronically controlled trans. the first thing to do would be to check the passing gear cable to make sure it moves freely. If the cable checks out then the valve body will be the next place to go as the one way clutch problem would have put metal in the pan.

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Might have to take it to a transmission shop then. Just one more question. If it is the valve body, how much $ should I expect to pay to have that repaired. And also, how much should I expect to pay for a complete transmission overhaul? I know you can't give me a definite price but what's a fair price for these? Thanks
Expert:  Kalamykid replied 7 years ago.
So I can give you a close price you will pay, what state do you live in?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Raleigh, North Carolina
Expert:  Kalamykid replied 7 years ago.
To replace the valve body, will be around $350.00, but I would suggest that you have a trans go shift improver kit installed at around $250.00. To rebuild the whole trans you are looking at some where around $1500.00. Do not let the trans shop you take it to talk you into just rebuilding the trans, Be peresistant that they install the trans go shift improver kit first.
Kalamykid and other Lincoln Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Thank you. I am going to accept your answer now. Thanks for your help.
Expert:  Kalamykid replied 7 years ago.
If you need any more help just come back to this string and post a message. You do not need to open a new question as long as it is for this same problem.