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EricFromCT, Ford Technician
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 3797
Experience:  20 years dealership exp., ASE A1-A9 L1 L2, Ford Lincoln Mercury Senior Master, Diesel Certified
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Mercury Sable: ... My 2003 Mercury Sable stopped at a

Customer Question

Hello... My 2003 Mercury Sable stopped at a traffic light and then would not move when I put it in forward or reverse. Car was stuck and had it towed. Any thoughts? Is this the transmission going out?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Ford
Expert:  EricFromCT replied 2 years ago.
HI. This very well could be a sign of the transmission going out. But first, a low fluid level can do this. I would first check the fluid level in the trans. It is possible that maybe a leak has developed. Also another thing to check would be the filter in the transmission. If the filter is plugged then you will not be able to go in any gear as well. Make sure the shift linkage is hooked up and working correctly as well.
Expert:  EricFromCT replied 2 years ago.
Please have these items checked and let me know the results. Thanks.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I spoke with the mechanic that looked at it. He said that it does have a transmission leak, but it is due to the "pump going out". Therefore, he said refilling it with fluid won't help. Does this make sense?
Expert:  EricFromCT replied 2 years ago.
If the fluid pump goes out then no pressure will be made in the transmission and nothing will work. The mechanic sounds correct.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Is the fluid pump a part of the transmission because he said I need a new transmission. Cost estimate is $1,600.
Expert:  EricFromCT replied 2 years ago.
The fluid pump is internal to the transmission.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Does $1,600 sound reasonable to do that job? Does the whole transmission need to be rebuilt?
Expert:  EricFromCT replied 2 years ago.
There are a few options. The pump can be replaced inside the trans. The whole thing does not need to be overhauled, unless when the mechanic is in there, and he finds metal or other worn parts that indicate the whole thing should be rebuilt. You could also just have him install a remanufactured trans. 1600 is reasonable to put a pump in it. And is actually cheap for an entire overhaul. A remanufactured trans will cost about 2500-3000 for the entire repair.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Is there anything I can have him try to make sure that is truly the problem? It is an older car, and it may not be worth it to fix the issue. Can I have him refill with fluid and check to see if there is a leak. Or is it just as he said.... not worth it to try anything... definitely the pump.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
He is not a transmission shop, so he is referring it out.
Expert:  EricFromCT replied 2 years ago.
He should have at least verified that there is enough fluid in the transmission by now. To verify a pump not working you need to use a pressure gauge and install it into a port on the transmission and see if the pump is making pressure.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Yeah he did verify, and said there was not enough fluid, and concluded that the pump went out. I guess what I am asking is can I have him refill with fluid to see if the car will drive and then see if could be just due to low fluid in the system and a leak.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Or should I just be resigned to the fact that I need to replace the transmission.
Expert:  EricFromCT replied 2 years ago.
Sounds like he already did that. But yes, have him fill the trans to the proper amount, verify the shift linkage is working correctly and see if the car moves.
Expert:  EricFromCT replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for viewing my response. Let me know if you have more questions, and please rate the service provided.