96 ford t-bird transmission

arlason68arlason68 Member Posts: 1
edited March 2014 in Ford
when shifting at low speed my transmissions shakes and slips i've taken back to ford several times and they just keep putting ( special fluid )inside i'll fix it myself if anyone knows what the problem is


  • jerrym3jerrym3 Member Posts: 202
    If it's a shudder that you feel between 3rd and 4th, welcome to the club. I know of very few 94-96 owners that don't have that "shudder".

    The only way I could get around the shudder was to not let the car go into 4th until it was warm. That seemed to work on mine for quite a while.

    Eventually, I had to get the trans rebuilt. Started sliding out of gear at high speeds.

    Trans has been good since last November. Starting to act up again. Going into the trans shop next week.

    Terrible tranmissions in these mid 90's Ford products.
  • mrtbird97mrtbird97 Member Posts: 1
    I have a 97' 4.6 with 70k.
    My trans. prob. has been a delayed shift from 2-3,after a while of stop & go driving. It's been driving me nuts, of course Ford wouldn't do anything about it. my question is: If/when I do get an overhaul, am I in for more of the same problems after a while, since they use the same type of parts? I can't see spending the $ if it's going to continue to act up due to a poor design, whether it's new or not.
    Another matter: I've been getting a terrible rattling noise from the engine on acceleration, only after the car is warmed up. Yes, I use 91 octane gas, even used fuel injection cleaner many times. Between the shifting and the rattle, the car basically runs like crap. I love the style of the car and hate to give up on it. any advice here??? Any thoughts or ideas would be appreciated.
  • kinleykinley Member Posts: 854
    caused me to drain the transmission and torque converter replacing the fluid with Mercon V Semi Synthetic. It was spendy at the time, but it has lasted four years and forty thousand additional miles. The car is a 95, T Bird, 4.6L, over 66,000 miles. At 70 mph on freeway = 25.3 mpg.
    The passenger seat is more comfortable than in our 94 Towncar Signature.
  • sgreensgreen Member Posts: 1
    Before diving into details of my question, some follow-up for those with fewer miles on their '96's. I've got 148k as of this weekend's trip back from visiting my brother and parents in Tulsa, OK (returning to Columbus, OH). Generally working great.

    Intake Manifold. Had it replaced at about 60k, after it cracked on the interstate. Replaced under recall (30k warranty expired, but recall existed). Almost paid full price for the repair, but got on the internet and found the recall notice. I bought the car second-hand, and hence didn't receive the notice. TIP: Before shelling out for any repair, always search the internet for recall notices. Could have cost me $1,200 had I not found the recall.

    Blower Motor. Replaced at about 120k. Sporadically worked, and sometimes did not work. More often than not, didn't work. Ran over bumps in the road (especially curb in parking lot at work) to jiggle it to get it to work. Amazing what you'd do when you're desperate for A/C. Finally just up and replaced it last winter - couldn't get it to turn on to defrost my windows - even worse problem than no A/C in middle of Summer. ~$200 in repair shop. Didn't have time to do it myself - travelling on business at the time.

    Alternator. Replaced about a month after blower motor went out ~$250 in repair shop. Broke down on interstate, didn't have my tools with me, didn't know where a parts store was, but mechanic was kind enough to work Sunday to get me back up and running. Highly recommend this guy, if I could only remember his name or where he worked...

    Front Brakes. About my 4th set as of this weekend. Began shimmying severely on interstate a few days ago. Checked for flat tire on front passenger side, where problem appeared to have come from, but no flat (I did have a slow leak in the same tire I was nursing for about last 2 weeks). Took it in to have slow leak repaired (nail too close to edge for shop to willingly repair, so replaced under road hazard). Had tires balanced too while I was at it. Mechanic showed me a problem - rotor (and everything in its vicinity) was super-heated. Water boiled when applied. I thought it was the bearing on their way out - heating everything, warping the rotor, causing the shimmying. But, looking closer, found it was piston in brake caliper stuck. Was able to drive home (800 miles) without problem, confirming bearings were not the culprit - sporadically sticking cylinder in brake caliper. Will replace caliper this next weekend and while I'm at it, the hub assembly. Attempted earlier, had rotors turned, but shop's lathe broke on the first one and dug into rotor. Got replacement rotor for free and second rotor at cost. New brake pads and rotors installed and working fine. Couldn't compress the 'faulty' break cylinder without draining brake fluid from that side. Reassembled, replaced amount of brake fluid drained and bled lines without problems (and did it by myself, thank you very much!)...

    Transmission. Yeah, I know what you're talking about! Isn't really slipping yet, but shifts really hard in 2-3 and 3-4. Used to only shift hard at slow speeds (2-3), but now out on the highway when hitting a steep hill at 60-70mph, does the rumbling shift (would sound really cool, if I didn't know it was the transmission). If you didn't know any better, would think you're driving the scored edge of the road - you know, that strip down the side of the interstate designed to wake you up if you're sleeping and steering to the right - off the road and onto the shoulder? Early on, I tried a transmission conditioner, which worked for a while. Tried it again a second and third time, but hasn't repeated its effectiveness (sigh!).

    Anyway, on to my serious question...

    I'm wanting to replace the hub assembly on my right front wheel (wheel bearings, lug nut studs, the whole shebang is one assembly - they don't just sell wheel bearings alone anymore;-( It's $85 at NAPA, $89 at Autozone, and $96 at O'Riley's. Make sure you don't get the one with antilock braking, if you don't have antilock brakes, otw you'll end up back at the store to get the right part.

    There exists a hex nut that holds the hub assembly in place. Over the hex nut is another part. It's hex-shaped and conforms to the shape of the hex nut and flanges out at the base into a circular shape to cover the hub housing. It looks like a retainer clip of some sort. I've gone at it with a screwdriver to pull it off. No success. Used the 36mm socket to loosen it. No success. I've used the 36mm in the opposite direction (righty loosy, lefty tighty). No success. I don't want to use a mallet on it, given it could screw up things on that wheel. I've tried everything. My friend, who works as a mechanic (hey, he's never on the internet, so - he's not that great of a mechanic from what I can tell) hasn't seen this type of retainer clip before (he was expecting a simple cotter pin) and wasn't able to pry it off or loosen it with the socket either.

    My question - What the heck is it? More importantly, how to I get it out of the way so I can replace the hub assembly? And just in case, do I need to be careful with anything about it so I can re-assemble it without needing to come back and post that as a separate question later?

    Thanks in advance for any advice that you can provide, and best regards.

    [email protected]

    p.s. If you're unable to answer this question, any suggestions of where else to post this question would be greatly appreciated. - Thanks.
  • alcanalcan Member Posts: 2,550

    1989-96 Vehicles

    The front wheel bearings are of the hub type design. The bearings are an integral part of the hub assembly and are pregreased for the life of the bearing. There are no adjustments to be made and they are not serviceable. If a bearing is suspected of being worn or damaged, the hub assembly must be replaced as a unit. Whenever a hub nut has been backed off or removed it must be replaced with a new nut. Never reuse an old nut and never use an impact tool to install the new nut.

    Remove the center grease cap and loosen hub nut about 2-3 turns.
    Raise and safely support the vehicle on jackstands.
    Remove the tire and wheel assembly.
    Remove the brake caliper, then suspend out of the way with a piece of wire.
    Do NOT let the brake caliper assembly hang by the fluid hose.

    Matchmark the rotor and wheel hub bolt to assure the parts are installed in the proper location. Remove the push-on nuts from the wheel stud, then remove the rotor.
    Remove and discard the hub nut.
    Remove the wheel hub and bearing assembly by pulling it straight off the studs. If the assembly cannot be removed by hand, use Front Hub Remover T81P-1104-C, to remove the hub and bearing assembly.

    To install:

    Install hub and bearing assembly and a new hub nut. Only hand-tighten the nut at this time.
    Install the rotor and push-on nuts. Make sure the rotor marks line up with the hub bolt marks.
    Install brake caliper assembly. For details, please refer to the procedure located in Section 9 of this manual.
    Install the tire and wheel assembly. Tighten the wheel lug nuts to 85-105 ft. lbs. (115-142 Nm) using a torque wrench.
    Carefully lower the vehicle.
    Tighten the center hub nut to 238-250 ft. lbs. and install a new hub grease cap, using a suitable tool as not to distort of damage the cap.
    Once torque has been applied to hub nut, do not back off the nut for any reason. The hub nut must be replaced with a new nut each time the nut has been loosened. Serious damage and or personal injury will occur if the hub nut is not replaced.
  • kinleykinley Member Posts: 854
    Thank you Alcan.
  • swschradswschrad Member Posts: 2,171
    is that once the grease is gone, the life is over.
  • kinleykinley Member Posts: 854
    So, just wait for the tragedy?
  • swschradswschrad Member Posts: 2,171
    but when it starts squeaking or sounding/feeling rough, you are going to have to make a replacement. periodic regreasing buys more time in lubricatable parts IMHO.
  • kinleykinley Member Posts: 854
    I ask the tech to check the pads and the bearings.
  • digonlinedigonline Member Posts: 1
    The "shudder," which can take place between the 2-3 shift or 3-4 shift, is a common problem with the Ford AODE or 4R70W automatic transmissions. I bought a '97 Crown Vic in 2002 with 33k miles on it that had the same problem. After a lot of research, I found that the majority of the cases can be resolved with a relatively simple and inexpensive fix: go to your Ford dealership and have your tranny & torque converter *completely* flushed, then refilled with Motorcraft Mercon V synthetic tranny fluid. Make sure they flush it completely and refill it with the synthetic fluid. Refilling it with standard tranny fluid isn't likely to help much, if at all. This is something you should plan on doing about every 2 yrs or 30k miles, whichever comes first. It's good basic maintenance you should do for any car. It only cost me about $100-120, and the shudder went away immediately and hasn't returned.

    Here's the TSB for it:

    Good luck.
  • vidtechvidtech Member Posts: 212
    what years were these shuddering transmissions installed on t birds?
  • mullins87mullins87 Member Posts: 959
    I read the TSB a few years ago as my '95 Cougar had the same problem. I may be wrong, but I think it went all the way back to '92 and pretty much included all their RWD cars with the 4.6L V-8. I'm not sure when the tranny changed, but I know it went up through '97.
  • opera_house_wkopera_house_wk Member Posts: 326
    except for the 5R55E in 97. They say that the formula can cause the clutches to delaminate.
  • kinleykinley Member Posts: 854
    Mercon V semi synthetic was installed in our 95 TB 4.6L, 01 Sep 00 and 34,000 plus miles later nothing has delaminated around here except an old pair of skis. No shuddering.
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