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Taurus/Sable Transmission Problems



  • brokecatbrokecat Posts: 3
    to answer my own question -- going steady speed ( 50 - 70 ) after 10 mi or so, engine tach would jump 1000 rpm, car would jerk , hard , then OK for a bit , repeat. ( actually Merc. Cougar , maybe same transm. or not) 2 shops couldn't help ... FIXED. ( I hope ) after a winter of tip toeing around, less than 8 mi trips , Ford dealer found problem -- transmission range sensor 6L8Z 7F293
    only $ 80. for part, $200. labor. drove 35 mi right after repair, no problem. drove 90 miles today non stop, mostly 60 mph , no problem. fixed.

    Why the Merc dealer I bought car from new couldn't fix ...
  • tnoltetnolte Posts: 1
    I have a 97 taurus with the same issues only they are intermittent and sporadically it will downshift from 3rd to 2nd or to 1st
    same solution or diff?
  • tywitywi Posts: 10
    This car has a 3.6 v6, auto transmission. When the weather is cold 35 degrees or lower, it takes about 2 miles before the transmission will shift from first gear to normal drive gear. If I let the engine run in park for 5 minutes or more it does not help. This started at 70,000 miles and now I have 105000 miles on the car.Any help is appeared. :)
  • jw1961jw1961 Posts: 1
    I have a 2001 Mercury Sable with 120,000 miles, and was about to leave a red light and the car would not move, forward or in reverse. Sounded like I heard a faint pop then nothing. Could this be a sensor? Car was driving fine. Any suggestions before I take it to a shop.
  • neverfordneverford Posts: 1
    I've listed this problem on Cartalk as well. 2005 Taurus w/83,000 miles (only 8,000 past my warranty - maybe 4 mos in time). Transmission went and I had a remanufactured transmission installed to tune of $3,000, When I started the car to leave the shop, still in park, the car shook or vibrated and increased as the engine continued to run. It shakes in all gears, including neutral as long as it is standing still, ie, at a stoplight, before I put the car in motion. Once in motion, can't feel the shaking. The new tranny seems to be shifting appropriately. The tranny shop doesn't seem to recognize the problem. It definitely was not there when I took it in to the shop. Any ideas as to the problem. Couple of responses related to the torque converter and it disengaging, which I think I understand has to do with a clutch in the transmission. Appreciate any ideas.
  • rebeljewrebeljew Posts: 2
    Just a dumb question but does your break lights work? If not it could be a breaklight switch on or near top of pedel under dash.

    Rebel Jew
  • rebeljewrebeljew Posts: 2
    I have a 98 Taurus V6 DOHC. The shifter started messing up about 2months ago every once in a while where it would be hard to get out of park and the button on shifter was hard to push in, but if you played with it a little it would come out of park. Now you really have to fight with it to get it to work. I checked to see if the break peddel when pushed disingagues the cruise controll and it does. Does any one have any ideas?
  • triv1triv1 Posts: 1
    my wife drives a 2000 merc. sable wagon 3.0 l dohc last week she leaked major trans. fluid, a puddle and a line of fluid for about 16ft. she parked it. I filled the trans 4 to 5 hrs later with new fluid car ran fine with only a small spot on the driveway. was wondering if certain tranny lines, seals etc. can overheat from long drives and be fine on short neighborhood drives? Anyone with similar experiences?
  • Driving about 30 mph and felt a slight click.. and all gears stopped working. Car kept running but couldn't go forward or back. Mechanic says fluid level is fine. He is researching Mercury problem reports but thinks transmission may be bad. Only 70K on the car. Not aware of any other symptoms or noises before it stopped. Any advice?
  • smokingjoe1smokingjoe1 Posts: 1
    edited August 2010
    did you get any help with the tranny question? if so, can you share... I have the same problem with my car. thanks
  • No help yet. The repair shop tells me I need a new transmission (used or rebuilt) which is pretty expensive. I am interested if there may be another explanation.
  • drewhwdrewhw Posts: 2
    Need to change transmission fluid. When I get under the car, the trans. plug does not look odvious as the oil plug does. Actually it looks as if there are two plugs, one lower and one a bit higher in another area of the transmission. can anyone give me an idea where the plug may be located? Thanks!
  • I was driving my 2005 Ford Taurus when it seemed to slip out of gear. I couldn't get it into any gear, even reverse. I took it to the Ford dealership and they told me it was the torque converter. After a little research I called them back and said it seemed this was a common problem. They asked me about documented upkeep which I had none since I do most of it myself. They quoted me $2,400 to fix. I took it to a mechanic who said he could fix it for $1,000. That pricetag jumped to $1,650 after they realized that my converter had gotten so hot that it exploded sending metal into the transmission which had to be cleaned. I am trying to track anyone having this problem. I have been in touch with Ford (blowing me off) and the NHTSA. I am forwarding more information I find to them. I have also created a Facebook page. Check out "F.O.R.D. Fault" if you have had similar issues.
  • Have the same problem, what did you do to rectify it ?
  • I have a 2004 Mercury Sable. It had 47,000 miles on it when the transmission quit working. It did not matter what gear you put it in, it was like it was in neutral. There was no shifting into any gear. I took it to Ford, and $1800.00 later they fixed the torque converter. At the time I questioned them because I knew of others that it had happened to also. I got no help from Ford.
    Today my daughter called me and said her 2003 Ford Taurus was doing the same thing. Put it in any gear and it just like being in neutral. I know that its the torque converter on this one too.
    Has anyone else had these problems and has anyone had any luck getting Ford to help out?
  • I have a 2001 Taurus. After driving about 3 miles the Check Transaxle light illuminates and stays on until I switch the car off. The light will not come back on until I drive another 3 miles. The tranny shifts fine and appears to be working normal. Any suggestions on how to repair?
  • I have a 2003 Ford Taures ses v6 12v sohc and its burping up transmission fluid as well but only if it's been sitting after a long drive. I just replaced my water pump and serptine belts at the local mechanic and he said just change it and add some treatment to it and if it keeps happen buy a new dipstick so it seals tight cause they wear over time. I got 171000 miles on this daily driver cause my other car is still about 25grand from being done. The engine is done but its time for a complete drivetrane over haul, race tranny custom axles, driveshaft,clutch, lsd, and every piece including the welded body and frame are brand new engine alone minus turbo puts out 512hp with GTR4202R it can do up to 1150hp hoping to break awd 4cylinder 1/4 mile and 0-100mph record. 4 years 100grand and counting. Hope this beater lasts me another year and a half. I think she will. If u got ur car from a responsible person they will last 220000 miles easy.
  • kjma2kjma2 Posts: 2
    Yep, just happened yesterday with less than 28,000 miles on my mom's (little old lady) 2005 Sable. Just won't move, like in neutral. Called a local transmission shop. He's done a "ton of them" - Torque Converter. Do you think now that Ford is back to making millions they might come clean? At least to build consumer confidence and good will?
  • kjma2kjma2 Posts: 2
    It appears to be a common problem with Ford/Mercury autos for this period. The splines strip out on the torque converter cog so that the output shaft no longer makes a connection. Possibly poor heat treatment/bad parts production. You can't expect that Ford would voluntarily take responsibility when a ton of these drive trains have had the problem; ours with just under 28,000 mi. but out of 3 year warranty. We got lucky though. On the phone the dealer quoted $2,400, A large transmission shop $1,800 and I got mine fixed by a transmission specialist in a small shop for $650.
  • rjr162rjr162 Posts: 2
    Ok, sister-in-law has a 96 Sable. It started doing the hard shift into first from a stop.

    I hooked up a Snap-On scan tool, and watched the shift solenoids as it wasn't a constant thing at first, but became more common and hit the point where when you were driving it would "drop out of gear" and into neutral, and then back into gear.

    So when in park, the solenoids read:
    A: OFF
    B: ON
    C: OFF

    When in drive (or 1st), when the car *would* go the solenoids read:
    A: ON
    B: ON
    C: OFF

    As you drove slowly around the yard, the car would drop back into neutral and the reader showed the solenoids were in the first list.. when it started moving again it showed the solenoids were now in the second list.. and it would keep doing this for a minute or two before it just got "stuck" in neutral and wouldn't move (and the solenoids were back to the first list.. same as in Park)

    I tried switching solenoid A with solenoid C to see if that made a difference.. and it didn't. Also, there's no Reverse anymore (this was the case even before I changed solenoid A and C)

    The kicker to me is, if you unplug the main harness to the transmission (located right next to the side pan cover.. white plug, flat on one side, and curved the rest.. wires from this plug lead internally to the solenoids and TCS), you get drive back (I forget, but don't think reverse is there even with the harness unplugged).

    This sound like a sensor, solenoid, or broken wire to me.. but I don't have a factory service manual to find any diagnostic steps and/or suggestions as to what may be wrong.

    There are no codes, unless you unplug the harness which obviously spits out codes for solenoids A, B, C and also the Torque Converter Solenoid or whatever.

    Has anyone experienced this before, and what did you do to rectify the situation? I don't want to replace the transmission as it's a car she no longer uses, I'd rather mess around with the thing and try to fix it "the hard way" lol.

    Thanks for any info, input, help, links, whatever you can pass my way.
  • howiec62howiec62 Posts: 1
    My 2002 Taurus with 45,000 miles is also going through what most others seem to be. I was driving to work and slowing for red light. As the light turned green I stepped on the gas and all of a sudden I was not going anywhere. Only gear that worked was park. Engine was still running but the car wasn't moving ANYWHERE. I called a local trans. guy and his quote without even looking at it was $2600. Why hasn't Ford done anything about this?? It seems unless somebody is seriously injured they just don't care!! Any comments would be appreciated

  • torque converter is the culprit in about 95% of the transmission failures in the Sables. Its a $650.00 part with about $200.00 labor so around $850.00 if you have an honest shop. We were coming back from the Beach 2 yrs ago and the car just came to a stop like it was in neutral and wouldnt move in any gear. I had Ford tow us to Montgomery,AL Ford Dealership who made us wait 10 hrs to tell us it needed a $3300.00 transmission after looking at it for 5 minutes. I wasn't going to do that but decided to tow it home. Spoke to a Tow shop and they referred me to ALLEN ROBBINS TRANSMISSION SPECIALISTS in Prattville,AL. I spoke to the owner on the phone who told me that he was 99% sure he knew the problem and it would be around $650.00 + labor to fix it. Come to find out the guys shop was the authorized ford shop for the dealership there. The dealership closed their shop and he hired them all. He said that that transmission in the Sable and Taurus has always had problems with the Torque converter and the dealership only wants to replace transmission to fix it(more profitable) they dont want to fix the problem ie replace the problem part. They had us running the next morning after we towed it in that night. They worked on it that night till it was repaired and we were in a motel. That is the most honest shop that I have ever seen. They could of took us for alot of money but they were honest. So if you have problems with transmissions in Fords check the torque convertor that is the culprit in most of the problems with transmissions.
  • I too own a 2003 Ford Taurus that all of a sudden quit moving as if it were in neutral in late September 2010 with 146,000 miles. My Ford dealer immediately knew what the most likely cause was before servicing it. Their standard repair is to replace both the Torque Converter and the transmission fluid Pump Shaft, which is driven by the torque converter.

    Either the shaft binds and then breaks, or the torque converted is defective. In my case it was definitely a defective torque converter, but I let them replace both components anyway. They convinced me they knew exactly what to do.

    After circulating a flush chemical treatment to remove any particles that might adversely affect the operation of the valves in the transmission, followed by a 30 quart flush of transmission fluid and $1291 later, I was on the road again. I currently have 154,000 miles with no subsequent issues.

    I wished Ford would have covered some of the cost, as my dealership admitted that this is a very common problem on the 2003 Taurus. Depending on where you happen to get stuck, it could be a safety issue.

    In an unrelated incident only 3,000 miles in late December 2010, my Camshaft Synchronizer Shaft Assembly "chirped" so badly in the cold, that the engine almost stalled and set a Check Engine Light Code.

    When they removed the shaft, it looked like a piece of varnished wood. That told me the 5W-20 Synthetic Blend specified by Ford was the wrong engine oil. I switched to Castrol Edge 5W-20 and the car runs better with a slight increase in mileage and no chirping.

    I would recommend you use the full synthetic oil of your choice in your daughter's 2003 Taurus, and NEVER use that Syn-Blend stuff again.
  • tywitywi Posts: 10
    The power door locks and the power mirrors stopped working. I check the fuse for the mirrors and it was blown. I replaced fuse and it blew out as soon as I put it in. What should I check for?
  • randa11randa11 Posts: 1
    Hiya folks. Driving 600 miles back from vacation our '03 Taurus (3.0L) just decided to stop pulling with no warning, only a slight shudder before complete neutral. Park still holds, so i assume it's the usual cause that i've read about here (torque converter splines). The yellow tag on this car has "AEZ4 / 1F1P-7000-aa. I happen to have a known working tranny from a '01 Taurus with the same 3.0L. The yellow tag on the '01 reads AEZ0 / 1F1P-7000-aa. They both have a"1Z" also on the tag. My question is can i swap them over as is? Hoping i can drop the '01 tranny in my '03. Thanks.
  • last year we purchased a 99 taurus with only 52,000 miles on it. We totally regret our decision but it is what it is at this point. Early this spring we noticed that sometimes the car would stall on us, because while the engine wanted to go, the transmission wouldn't. It was worse on hotter days and eventually last month, we had it totally rebuilt to the tune of $1800.00 (w/ new alternator) It drove fine (according to my husband) for about a month. Now we are in a heat wave and it's doing the same thing. The transmission loses all power and is stuck around 20 mph. It eventually kicks back in, or we turn it off and restart it. The rebuilt trans has a two year warranty on it but at this point, I'm wondering how well of a job the guy did! Does anyone know of any heat related 99 transmission problems? The car at this point has 65,000 miles on it .. new brakes, new struts, new alternator, new fuel pump, new tires, new battery, new transmission ... ugh .. what a waste of money.
  • gr12gr12 Posts: 1
    Same problem. Car seems hesitates, slipping out of first gear when accelerating from a dead stop, especially when going left or up a steep grade.

    Also, noticed a squeaking sound, and it has gotten worse lately. Vehicle has ~70k miles. Engine and pretty much everything else are in good shape, no indicator lights.

    Trying to figure out what to do. Local shop gave it a test drive and pounded the hell out of the accelerator (likely making whatever it is worse) and going "see, it's slipping gears" when it wasn't. It only slips that first gear.

    Transmission fluid is black, and was never replaced. Maybe past the time that can be done without doing damage.

    Looking for an idea. I mean, yeah, one could replace the whole transmission, but I'm not sure its even possible to find a warrantied certified transmission for the vehicle at its age (and I'd want that warranty if I'm shelling out that much).

    I don't think it needs all that. I'm trying to filter out experts versus thieves. The mechanic I trust says, "drives fine except that, but I don't know enough about transmissions to diagnose it." Well, at least he's honest.
  • We took our car to two other shops over the weekend, both claimed it sounded like the trans was gone again so we took it back to the trans specialist.

    He called today after having the car for three days and is now certain that our catalytic converters are clogged? This frustrates me, as we specifically asked him to check the cat's the first time the car was there and they were "fine" That was a month ago, now they are bad?

    He said he can do it for us for $500.00, when I told the price to another shop in town the guy told us the trans shop is probably cutting us a deal because he knew that he did wrong in the first place with the cats/trans ordeal but doesn't want to say so. Either way we don't have the 500.00 to put into it, after putting in 2,000.00 for a rebuilt trans/alternator.

    This '99 taurus is costing us approx. 300.00 a month to maintain .. if only we could go back in time and pass it up.
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