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Ford Explorer Transmission Questions

regal2regal2 Posts: 4
I have a new 2006 Ford Explorer with the V-8 engine. When coming to stop the car lunges or clunks when down shifting from 2nd to 1st gear. I have no codes that show up on the dash. What can be the problem? Other than that problem car shifts normally.


  • I don't know what the problem is but it sounds very similar to what my 2006 V8 Explorer is doing. Just started a week ago at about 16K miles. I've noticed that the clunking gets worse as the transmission heats up (almost no problem for the first 5 miles in the morning.) I have not been to the dealership yet...hoping to acquire more info before taking them on. Anybody else out there?
  • I have an appointment next Tuesday, I will let you know what they find
  • I have the same problem with my 2002 Explorer V6. I can't tell if the sound is coming from the transmission or the driveshaft.
  • hklinehkline Posts: 4
    I got the same truck with the same transmission (V8) in November of '05 after my '97 Explorer was totaled. I had this shifting issue from the start. They ran TSBs, and at first thought they could clear some codes, or reset some computer timings, but those didn't work. I wound up getting a brand new transmission, and, no surprise, it's stil shifting horribly. I've taken this truck in six times already to be fixed, to no end. I'm seriously considering enacting the Lemon Law, but I'm in some way hoping that there will be a recall (as Ford is notorious for) sometime in the near future. Make sure you keep taking your trucks back when they're not fixed properly; and if it doesn't start up immediately, keep a close check on it . . . the problem will undoubtedly return.
  • regal2regal2 Posts: 4
    I did bring it in last week for repairs. The dealer told me they installed a software patch. It has resolved the problem, I no longer have the downshifting problem. I will see if the paper work gives me any details on the repair and post my findings for you. In turn you may be able to share this info with your dealer and they can install the same software patch.
  • hklinehkline Posts: 4
    I had a few of those patches installed, also. And they worked well for a little while, until the downshift jerking started again anywhere from 3 days to 2 weeks later. That's when they figured out those patches weren't working, and finally gave my truck a new transmission. I'm planning on calling the dealership and talking to the service manager, since the last time they worked on it and then sent the survey, I reported less than 100% satisfaction, and they called to find out why. I'll find out what he recommends, because having to take this truck back and forth to the shop is not only wasting my gas ($$), but additional mileage as well that shouldn't have to be put on it. Updates forthcoming. HK
  • Just got my '06 V8 Explorer back from the dealer. They cleaned the valve body and installed patches or code changes. So far so good. The problem was not new to the service guy and he said this fix works about on about 7 of 10 vehicles with similar troubles. Says next step (if necessary) is to replace the valve body.
  • hklinehkline Posts: 4
    I just got mine back from the dealership. They kept it a couple days, and are going to order a valve body to put in. I asked them why, since this was already done in January at another dealership. They told me there is an "updated valve body" that was put into circulation in August, so they're going to try that. It's on back order though, since Ford outsources all their parts to third party manufacturers (so much for QC), and there is a larger demand than the source is currently providing. Hoping this prevents any more visits back. If this doesn't fix it, I'm going to trade the thing in for another vehicle.
  • reckreck Posts: 12
    We have a new 2006 V8 Limited Exlorer, 2000 miles, first shift point knocks, jerks, whatever you want to call it ... they reprogrammed..worked for two weeks, then they put a new valve assembly in..they had vehicle 1 week, got it back, a week later, same issue! took it back again today (three times now)don't know what they are going to do.. but we are VERY FRUSTRATED! It is most noticeable when you accelerate from a complete stop....also, when going from a complete stop, the rpm's seem to roar and then it seems to engage (trans) adversly affected the gas mileage also, the time when they put the valve assembly in the gas mileage was wonderful.... now if they only could fix the issue.. i am about ready to contact Ford to take the car back! any suggestions from anyone?
  • groobsgroobs Posts: 1
    I see that some of you have down shifting problems. I have a 2003 Explorer XLT my issue occurs in the up shift between 2-3rd gear. I noticed this issue last year when it started to get cold. There is a delay betwn the 2 gears and then the engine catches and shifts. I have had it to the dealer they said it is a transmission issue. Ford had a rep out to look at it said the issue was not bad enough to fix. Now this year samething my O/D off light came on the the truck is shifting worse than ever. Any thoughts?
  • reckreck Posts: 12
    Well- we took it to the dealer again (3rd time) they said they skipped a step in the reprogramming - evidently what ford engineering told them to do they thought they did.. however, WHEN THEY REPROGRAM the transmission, make sure that they get the fluid temperature up to 175 degrees,,,, they said that they did not did not get it up to that temp the first time. so make sure they do this step --so far it is working beautifully.....lets hope so!!! i told them to fix it right or keep it!
  • reckreck Posts: 12
    here's an update-guess what--its doing it all over again! that "repair" only lasted one week! am going to dealer tomorrow and it won't be pretty... want to tell them to keep it.. any suggestions from anyone how to go about making the dealer keep this one and giving me a different vehicle?i have never run into this before..... any suggestions?
  • hklinehkline Posts: 4
    Well, I took mine in and got the new "updated" valve body, and surprisingly, it seems to have solved the problem so far. No jerking, hard shifting, etc. I'm giving it the "week-long" test though, because I know nothing else has worked yet, and I'm hesitant to complacently think things are perfect now. Hoping this is gong to be it, though . . .
  • reckreck Posts: 12
    been there done that still did not work-they said that ford is stumped also... leave it to me! took it in this am--- they are keeping it - ford wants to put in a new trans.. I said no way- i am not safe in tius vehicle...spoke to gm of dealership-he is going to work with regional ford rep - to get us into a vehicle we will be happy with...they said tonight that they are replacing the pcm board??? but ford thinks its futile... they have to go thru the motions... and asked us to have patience.... UGH!!!!
  • Our 2002 Explorer Sport Trac is having the exact same shift problems as groobs's.
    It was shifting rough, delaying between 2nd and 3rd gears.
    I had the Transmission serviced as per the maintenance schedule.
    The problem continues and now the O/D light is flashing on and off when I drive it.

    Any ideas?
  • reckreck Posts: 12
    whatever happened with your transmission? They insisted on putting a new one in our 2006, but still having same problem, filed lemon law paperwork, now when we take it in for same problems, they say they cannot duplicate our issues.... the good old run around.... am meeting ford reps soon... just curious how yours was working.......
  • They installed a software patch about a month ago and it seems to be ok. However, I am not confident things are 100%, if I put the car into 3rd gear instead of drive the trans really lunges. Say you back out of the drive way and want to shift into drive but it winds up in 3rd, this is when I notice the problem.

    It is obvious to me there is an issue with this new trans, seems since I started this chain alot of folks are having similar issues.

    I spoke to a friend of mine about the lemon law, it seems on the surface you have a real case. Stay firm and keep pushing
  • reckreck Posts: 12
    thanks, we're trying--we had it in again (5th time) Ford already has certified the final repair attempt per lemon law....and now dealer is playing games. The 5th time we had it in there, they said that there is no problems with it! It was obvious it was still doing the lunging...Ford also wanted to meet with us/dealer, the dealer is now giving us the run around on dates and gen said to file with arbitration.... we have 26 out of service days to date... at 30, they have no choice but to replace or repurchase vehicle....I hate the games they play!! :mad: if I can stay firm.... thanks for the vote of confidence!!
  • I am thinking of getting a new expolrer but I think that I would stay with the V6 because I drive about 20000mi a year. Is the down shift issue only with the V8 or is it in all new Explorers?
  • reckreck Posts: 12
    as far as we know its the v8---we love the explorer - this is our second.. however, i would not get ths transmission again...... good luck!!!
  • Just an update. Dealer changed valve body to new updated version about 2 weeks and 700 miles ago. So far so good.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    I have bad news for you, I'm afraid. When your OD light comes on, your transmission is in trouble. When it flashes, it's done for. That's what it's trying to tell you, to service the transmission - which could mean rebuilding it. Sorry.....but it happens to Toyotas also... They're machines. They break.
  • reckreck Posts: 12
    update - just got word on friday that ford is going to replace my explorer! huray - it took me 4 months... dealer said it takes about 3 weeks to get paperwork complete.. finally!
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    update - just got word on friday that ford is going to replace my explorer! huray - i

    You say that like you're irritated at how long it took. Just for reference, NOBODY replaces vehicles quickly, and some manufactures just won't ever. Ford does it quicker, and with more integrity than anybody I know of. Try to get Honda or Toyota to do that when their transmission is screwed up, and it was in 04 for Honda, and is currently for the Camry 07. Good luck with that.

    You should be singing Ford's praises, IMO. I think they've been pretty stand up. As they were for a friend of mine.
  • I have just recently purchased a 2006 Explorer EB - V8 and surprise... when the car shifts down to 1st gear, it's like I have been hit from behind. I have only had the car for less than a week. I have an appointment tomorrow to have it looked at. (now the problem seems to come and go) can anyone give me advice as to what to tell the service advisor to look for? It seems as if this is a standard problem on the 6 speed transmission. (And I wondered why I got such a good deal on this car!) Your help is appreciated!!!
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Mine does the same thing, the dealer says it's normal for that transmission. I don't like that, but am living with it for now. It does it badly when the transmission is cold, but gets much less severe after it gets up to operating temperature.

    I don't regret getting the car - they don't all do it, before my warranty is up - something will be done about it. You can be sure of that, but I'm patient, as long as I'm covered.
  • Just a follow up to my last post. I took the car to Ford this morning and the service advisor notified me that there is a bulletin about this transmission problem. They will do the software update and hopefully that fixes the problem. To the other poster who is living with it... I can't understand how you would spend $30K plus and not expect them to fix the problem... take it back... keep taking it back until they fix it.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Let me help you understand.....this is my 6th Explorer/Mountaineer, since 1994. I've been with them through thick and thin, through transmission fluid nightmares, cracking intake manifolds, leaking exhaust manifolds, rollovers and - lots and lots of great well driven miles. This doesn't scare me at all, I WILL get it fixed - but I'm waiting to see how you fare with this "software reflash". If it works for you, I'll send mine back in again. Meanwhile, it's a kick to drive, with that hot Mustang engine, and oh, so comfortable, a hallmark of the Explorer. These things used to agitate me more than they do now. I know sooner or later, they'll take care of it. Ford has been very good to me over the years, as has my Lincoln/Mercury dealer.
  • reckreck Posts: 12
    don't wait - we kept taking it back and declared it a lemon.... consequently, ford has agreed to give us a replacement vehicle of our choice.....whle the trans does not seem too bad at times.... it gets worse. Mind would not downshift and i almost had to use my emergency brake because it would not stop.... please don't let this go, its not safe. we have had downshift issues, hi rev before it gets into gear, me, it gets worse... we love the explorer... and will get another - just not with the V8 6 speed..... thanks and good luck!
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Well, if it gets worse, fine, I'll send it in. It only does it when it's cold, and in this town, that's only 3 months a year.... Next time it needs service, it'll go in with another ticket on the tranny....eventually, they'll get it right. By then, they'll have a lot more experience with this 6 speed transmission.
  • This is my 1st post,hope I am doing it right.I have a 1996 XLT Explorer Control track 4WD.It has 138,278 miles on it.I have had it about 6 six years.The transmission is shot.My problem is , is it worth putting in a new tranny?I know they are expensive and was not sure if it was worth it.Other than the tranny everything seems to be alright.Please help me out.
  • banker, I respect your outlook on this as mine is much the same. I have the 07 model Explorer Sport Trac w/V8 and I feel the same transmission lunge at times. I'm not really worried about it and let me explain why. I also have a 98 Chevy Corvette and it does the same thing although not quite as often. Anyhow, other than the occasional bump feeling that I get, the tranny has not given me a bit of trouble to date, 9 yrs later. So as far as the Sport Trac goes, I realize that this is a new transmission and i'm going to give them a bit longer to work out the problem. Glad to hear that Ford is fairly reasonable when it comes to replacing the vehicle.
  • I would say Yes it's worth it. 138K miles of service is good and while it won't be cheap to replace the tranny, it will be far less expensive than purchaseing another vehicle. It sounds like your Explorer has been well taken care of, it's teliable and still in good shape so replace the tranny. You might not go to Ford to replcae it or you will pay a premium for it and I think there are other transmission shops thqat could replace it cheaper.
  • i have a 96 explorer with 83000 mile and my transmission is starting to slipp(only when it is cold). if i am sitting at a stop and try to exclerate quickly my transmission slips. i can put my gas petal all the way to the floor, my engine will rev up but i go no where. i have never worked on automatic transmissions and no nithing about whats wrong. i had a diagnostic test done on it and they told me they did not pick anything up. i am thnking about changing it out myself with a rebuilt one. but if anyone has suggsetion please let me know. thatnk you
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Having driven the new Explorer around some more, I have determined that it only does this wierd shift when cold. Once the transmission gets close to operating temperature, (175 F) it smoothes out nicely, in fact, is as smooth as my Lexus transmission is. So, I'm not worried at all, and have stopped noticing it actually. I'm really liking the truck....
  • Just venting.

    Thirteen months ago I put eight hundred dollars into a tranny repair on my Ford Explorer 2003 @ 58,00 miles. OK...I accept that.

    Today the dealer told me I need a new transmission. No second or fifth gear @ 71000 miles. I've owned it less than 2 years. My wife drives it 12 miles roundtrip to work a week. Then some weekend trips to NH.........we don't beat it.

    I still owe $10,000 on this. New tranny going to cost $3200.00 with a 36 month warranty.

    I'm at a loss, I was stunned with silence when the dealer told me this. 71,000 miles and it needs a new transmission. As much as I like the Explorers, (this is our 3rd), I don't know if I could buy another.

    Maybe it's time to go Toyota. I've got good friends who swear by them. I've been looking at the Ford Eddie Bauer models.

    Not now. And not again until Ford can build something that'll last a bit longer than 71000 miles. I know,........ it's the pick of the draw.

    Still sucks.

  • what type transmission fluid do i need to use? i just changed it and put in dextron 3 that what autozone guy told me but from somethings i have just read i think i should be using mercon 5
  • Can someone please help me? I have 95 explorer V6 and it is in the shop to get a new tranny and the mechanic is having a hard time finding a GOOD tranny to replace mine. He has said that for the 95 and 96 models of explorer its hard to find a tranny is this true? What is it with the 95's because i wanted to put some custom rims on my truck and was told I couldn't do that.
  • 1994 - 4WD - automatic transmission - person I bought it from say's that the transmission was removed and worked on by a pro-shop - Explorer came out of shop and now has occasional/often tranny slip when cold, on initial accelaration - then it's 100% - I have potentially isolated it to 2 or 3 external sensors or servo's - The way I get around this problem at present time is to let the car warm up in my driveway for some 10 to 15 minutes! - ANY SUGGESTIONS?!?!
  • jbuck2jbuck2 Posts: 12
    I am having the exact same problem with my 2006 Mountaineer. Also it seems to slip whenever I'm taking off from a stop sign. Have you had a solution to your problem?
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Yes, I have. The dealer replaced one recalled part , OPCODE 05T04B, they reprogrammed the PCM and TCM, and it's perfect now, a real joy to drive. No idea what that part is they replaced - if I had to guess, I'd guess a valve, but not sure. Prevail against your dealer to check it out. The first time, the dealer told me it was fine. The second time, I got the Transmission guy to go on a test drive with me and showed him. Seemed to help a lot.
  • reckreck Posts: 12
    we had just about everything done to this including a new transmision installed-Ford stood up to the plate and did the right thing - they gave us a new vehicle of our choice and we are loving it - we chose another explorer - different trans - it is so smooth we don't even feel it shifting... good luck - I am very impressed with how ford handled things... kudos to them!
  • I have a 1994 Ford Explorer 4wd. Had the tranmission changed in 2004, didn't use 4wd till recently, didn't work. Could it been from the repair of transmission or any suggestions?
  • tfmrtfmr Posts: 10
    What is a high-pitched whistling/squealing noise that I hear when I accelerate hard,like highway merging, only when the rpm is peaking (at around 3100rpm) just before gear changes (mainly 4th to 5th)? The sound goes away immediately when I feel the car changed gears.
  • My 96 ford explorer which has 170,000 miles has a tranny problem,heres what happen,i took off from a red light rather fast then about a half mile i stopped in traffic and when i went to go ,nothing happened,when i got towed home i checked tranny fluid which was 2 quarts low,i added fluid and still it wouldn't move unlees i step on accelerated hard meaning 4000 rpm's and it will move,anyone have any ideas on what could cause this,i'm thinking tourque converter,any help would be great,ty jeff
  • transmissions tend to "whine" when there is a lack of fluid. its a way of telling us that it's getting grumpy so to speak
  • does the indicator light up on the dash next to the button? If so, then i would have the 4 wheel drive transfer motor checked. its located on the backside of the transmission. if it hasnt been used in a long time, they tend to get gummed up. to fix this, have someone hold the 4 wheel drive button down that way the signal is constantly being sent, while at the same time have someone tap on the motor underneath with a hammer to knock it loose.
    if the light doesnt light, then it is most likely either the relay or the switch in the dash.
    hope this helps
  • i recently messed up my transmission on a 95 ford explorer xlt 4wd i have someone wanting to sale me a 99 expo 4wd for like 500 hundred dollars..the motor is shot but the tranny works..but will it fit my expo?
  • this morning when i went to shift into reverse, it didnt. when you change from reverse to drive and park to reverse, the idle usually leaps about 100-200 rpm. when i put the selector in reverse, the rpm's raised and held, but did not drop back down incicating the transmission has shifted. i tried it again and again. the next time however, it shifted like normal. what could be wrong?
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