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Jeremy, Certified Diesel Technician/Electrician
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 3320
Experience:  ASE, NATEF Engines and Electrical certified, EPA 608/609
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I have a 2003 f350 auto 4x4 lariat 6.0 diesel. got it 6

Customer Question

i have a 2003 f350 auto 4x4 lariat 6.0 diesel. got it 6 months ago. whenever i am on a small incline it seems to miss like hell. recently i have noticed it feel like the torque converter is not locking in! it runs great on a hard excelleration but a dog on slight acceleration. its worse when not in tow mode. i do alot of boat towing...but i also noticed it feels like the drive shat seems to bump at stops,,like it has a bad u jopint or motor mount.. but they are fine.and so is the rear end and trans mounts. is there a recall for the trasns not locking the torque conver in? i watched the tach when this happens and it never changes ...its got to be the trans..or is it ? it has a new torbo., filters are clean ;and really a dog when cold! it doesent seem to down shift to get it moving when cold..any more info ,let me know.thx.Pat
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Ford
Expert:  Jeremy replied 1 year ago.

My name is ***** ***** I will assist you.

You are describing nearly a textbook issue with a bad injector. The converter isn unlocking because the engine is dropping torque which is causing the pressure in the transmission to go up and down which is what is causing the "popping" that you are referring to.

I would have the injectors tested and a compression test done with the Ford IDS tool and see which cylinder is showing the failure.

This is based on what you have described.

Now let's take this just another step here for just in case. If the the injectors do test good, then the torque converter itself is causing the issue most likely due to the solenoid. The solenoid may be opening all the way, but closing only partially causing the torque converter to "pop" and put stress on the output shaft and binding. I have seen this quite a bit on vehicles that tow a lot. Usually it is caused by a little piece of metal from transmission wear that gets caught in that solenoid and causes the torque converter to act up. The best way to really test it is to drive it, again with the Ford IDS hooked up, and monitoring the transmission output pressure and the torque converter lock/unlock commands. The tech can manually select to lock and unlock to replicate the issue and narrow it down. I usually find it to be the torque converter solenoid or the "A" solenoid for the main pressure off the pump.

If they do find a solenoid issue, have the fluid changed out as well as the filter so you are good for awhile. I would also have the cooler flushed to rid of any metal that is in the system. The metal isn't major. It is normal wear from a vehicle that tows. They tend to get metal flakes due to the extra strain on the parts and the little bit extra twisting on the gearing and bearings.

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Expert:  Jeremy replied 1 year ago.

Did you need any more assistance with this?