Lincoln Town Car transmission

bi14d22bi14d22 Member Posts: 2
hi my name is michael i have a 1991 lincoln towncar with approx 150,000 miles on it. my problem is when you put the gear shifter in overdrive it will rev up to a high rpm and wont pull. but if you put it in drive it will shift to 3rd but no overdrive iam open for any help thanks michael


  • euphoniumeuphonium Member Posts: 3,425
    What happens when you press in the button at the end of the directional lever? If that button is stuck or disconnected, it could be why Overdrive is not functioning.

    Check the transmission oil level & top off as needed.
  • bi14d22bi14d22 Member Posts: 2
    this car does not have a button on the gear shifter. it has 1,d,and drive with a circle. in drive it will shift twice and when i put it in overdrive nothing it goes to high rpm and wont pull. ive check for a vacume hose on the transmission and it has none. ive changed the trans fluid and filter. i'm thinking that the overdrive is burned out
  • tcrick89tcrick89 Member Posts: 1
    Hi, I'm Rick and I am having a problem with the shifting in my TC. When I take off, it shifts fine from 1st to 2nd, 2nd to 3rd feels delayed, like it may be slipping and then into OD is fine. Could this be solved by just a simple tranny service? I just bought it 2 months ago and have had a host of relatively minor problems to fix. The guy who had it before me was 90 and only had put 5000 miles on it since 2000, so I'm sure I'm going to have some problems due to not being driven enough. It was garage kept. This car just turned 100K.
  • lazydogslazydogs Member Posts: 2
    I have a 99 Lincoln towncar,,,it is bumping between 30 and 50 mph...feels like a coil is bad..but no service engine light..could this be transmission ? or torque converter..
  • euphoniumeuphonium Member Posts: 3,425
    If "bumping" means "shuddering", it could be your transmission and converter need their oil changed - including the filter. If you're going to keep the car a long time switch to Mercon V, semi synthetic as it lasts a lot longer than the conventional tranny oil.
  • lazydogslazydogs Member Posts: 2
    hi,,thx for the has 150,000 miles..just changed oil in tranny and fuel filter
  • tgd1tgd1 Member Posts: 5
    We have a 1991 TC with 120,000 miles. Former owner is our landlady who took very good care of this car.

    Yesterday I was driving on the hiway after a weekend of putting close to 400 miles on the car over the course of 3 days. While I was in traffic the check engine light came on and went off 3 times. After the traffic lightened up I was going about 40 mph and tried to excel but the car did not respond and I lost speed. I pulled to the side of the road and stopped the engine. Upon restarting the engine, it did drive and I continued on a lesser road for a while but when I came to a red light, I had to practically stand on the brake to get the car to slow down as the engine was racing like mad. I put the car in neutral and kept my foot on the brake but the engine continued to race. I don't know if this is important, but I did use Speed Control earlier in the day. We ended up calling a tow truck to get us home.

    This morning it was fine - although I only drive one mile to work and that is obviously not a good determinator as to whether the issue will pop up again.

    Someone suggested that it could be a hole in a hose.

    Anybody else have any experience or information on this type of problem?
    We checked the transmission fluid and it seemed fine. I am probably 2 months behind in having my oil and fluid changes which I will now do this weekend.
  • euphoniumeuphonium Member Posts: 3,425
    At 120,000 miles, the Mass Air Sensor should have been either carefully cleaned or replaced. Inquire of the Landlady if she had it done.

    If coolant level is too low, the "check engine" light will come on, but that is only one of many possibilities.

    You lead in: "Re: tranny slipping ", but your verbiage didn't mention a slipping tranny so while inquiring of when the MAS was replaced ask about when the transmission oil was replaced.

    Some people sell a car when it needs considerable maintenance and some folk accomplish the needed maintenance so as to sell the car. ;)
  • tgd1tgd1 Member Posts: 5
    Thanks for the info. We are going to bring it to the mechanic tomorrow and I'll ask him to check the MAS as well as replacing all the fluids.
  • pmcclintockpmcclintock Member Posts: 1
    I had the same thing happen on my 1999 Town Car. It IS a real surprise when the Speed Control takes over and causes you to "Stand on The Brakes" in order to slow down!
    The cause for the "shutdown" and "speed-up" is a "protection mechanism" that is built into the engine (electronically) to prevet against overheating (in my case, because of a blown thermostat gasket) or low oil. This IS mentioned in the owner's manual which I FINALLY read! You know, it's like asking directions: Men don't do it, that is, until ALL ELSE fails!

    When someone told you it may be a bad hose, they were correct!

    After you fix the cause, you will enjoy many more miles from this fantastic vehicle!


  • tgd1tgd1 Member Posts: 5
    Thank you both so much for the feed back. We brought the car to the mechanic today and at first he was trying to tell us that we needed a new transmission but with the info we got here, we were able to give him "our" theory about what the problem might be and he said "oh yeah, you could be right" and he fixed the problem along with a few other cosmetic issues, did a fluid and filter change all for just over $100.

    Now - we are looking at a new sound system as ours doesn't work. Any advice on this?

    L & B
  • euphoniumeuphonium Member Posts: 3,425
    Re: Sound system..........

    Most common fault is a blown fuse which may have some other minor functions connected to it. Do you have any other minor outages such as lights someplace?
    If so, you may just need a new fuse in the box under the drivers side of the dash.
  • 2008ltc2008ltc Member Posts: 4
    I own a 1988 Lincoln Town Car Signature Series Sedan with 156,000 miles
    on it for a long time since I had it from 2004 until now the car would drive
    pretty smooth but the overdrive would always shift or change hard
    now it is shiftting but only when u reach over 40 u can not rush it or try to pass
    some one because it will hestiate and then later change ,
    would a filter and fluid /strainer change suffice for this car or am I looking at a transmission over haul , the car is in such pristine condition I want it to drive like it did in 1988 and especially being that this march will mark its 20 yr old birthday

    open for the effective economical solution
    email me hglaw@ureach .com
    Daryl In NC Lincoln town car lover
  • rhtransrhtrans Member Posts: 84
    If you have a Rwd... most likely its time for an overhaul. Those units are deceptable to governor pressure loss through the valve body plugs and governor housing from normal wear and tear. They are notorious for firm o/d shifts due to the torque converter having a dampner in it that provides a form of lock up instead of an on/off clutch controlled by a computer like most vehcles, so it's locked when it shifts to 3rd which does does affect the 4th gear shift feel some especially it has alot of miles. But Anyway..there is a throttle valve cable that runs from the top of your engine to the transmission that affects shift time and feel. If it's out of adjustment...just a little to can cause late hesitating 4th gear shifts also. I'd definitely check that first especially if someone has been working on or around the top of the engine. It only takes a little bit to be out of adjustment. If you loosen it to much it can damage the transmission in time..k
  • 2008ltc2008ltc Member Posts: 4
    thanks so much for your informative reply , I do have rear wheel drive with 58,897 miles showing , 5 . 0 liter V8 , I will definitely have the infromation you supplied to me when going to the repair shop once again thanks so much

    [email protected]
  • euphoniumeuphonium Member Posts: 3,425
    rhtrans knows what he is talking about.

    Due to only having 59,000 miles on the car...........

    My only suggestion is to suspect you have the original transmission oil in the tranny and suggest it and the filter be replaced as well as making other adjustments.
  • barenbaren Member Posts: 1
    I like to do my own repair. Recently I recieved a recall notice. Where can I find out what parts I need to change for fire prevention due to faughty cruise switch?
    When looking on Lincoln websites all I get is the run-around.Help! :mad:
  • euphoniumeuphonium Member Posts: 3,425
    Just had the cruise switch installed on our 94 Sig. Done by the dealer in 20 minutes and NO charge. Free!

    So, why do it yourself? :confuse:
  • maxx512maxx512 Member Posts: 3
    Car has about 142000 miles, owned 1 mo. pd. $200. Great car but on trip 150 miles from home the car decides not to shift above 2nd gear. Fluid is kinda burnt looking but no particles notes in fluid.
    Any luck of maybe a fluid and filter change would help? And maybe another something to look for or is an overhaul in order for it? Also what is the trans. name so I could look for a rebuild kit. I have done rebuilds in past on C-4 and C-6 but many years back and my son is wanting to get his hands dirty and cut!! So this might be an opportunity for him to learn a little auto mech.
    Thanks for any help from a very informative forum!!
  • maxx512maxx512 Member Posts: 3
  • euphoniumeuphonium Member Posts: 3,425
    Fluid is kinda burnt looking (If kinda burnt - it's burnt)

    When you change the tranny fluid remember to drain the torque converter as well. Remember to install a new filter while you're in there.
  • 2008ltc2008ltc Member Posts: 4
    I want to thank all those who replied to my inquiry about the tranny slipping on my
    1988 Lincoln Town Car Signature Sedan, Well I had a worn out linkage gomment
    that only cost ten dollars, and it was located near the top of the engine
    the guy snapped it right in no time and it is shifting fine

    once again thanks for all your assistance :shades:
  • 89boss89boss Member Posts: 1
    I just recently bought a 89 Lincoln TC Signature Series from a gentleman going into the service. For the first two days the car drove fine I just had to replace a radiator cap. But then the radiator hose busted then the car started running hot then the transmisson started slipping. I've replaced the hose, but the car still runs hot and the tranny is even worse. It won't shift smoothly, while driving it idles real high and loudly then it jerks into 2nd,3rd. It runs hot after only moments on the freeway my guess is from it not shifting gears correctly. Please any help in this situation would be greatly appreciated. Thank You in advance.
  • euphoniumeuphonium Member Posts: 3,425
    Excessive heat is the transmission's enemy. Hoses are like shoe strings. When one goes - others fail as well, including the coolant lines running to and from the automatic transmission. When the radiator cap was replaced it caused the proper amount of pressure to be exerted on the cooling system.

    Replace all other hoses under the hood especially the little by pass hose on top of the engine. Clean or replace the coolant lines running to the transmission. Now that the transmission fluid has been overheated, replace the fluid in it and the torque converter. While the pan is off, replace the transmission filter as well.
  • axiomowneraxiomowner Member Posts: 76
    47K miles. I've already had the tranny oil serviced by the dealer. (Sometimes), When at gliding at 20mph and I give a little gas, the gear shifts down and the RPMs go higher than they should for longer than they should. Then, gear goes up and RPMs go way down and car loses oomph until I either give more gas or wait a few seconds for the car to come alive. It almost seems like it is skipping a gear. Again, it's not all the time. But, annoying when it does happen. It's been doing this since I bought it 2 years ago.

    Is this normal for Towncar? If not, any ideas?
  • stevecrowellstevecrowell Member Posts: 1
    i have a 1989 lincon town car with 27000 miles on it and when i put it in over drive it will go through the first two gears but not in ot over drive. when i put it in drive it will go though the first two what is wrong help please
  • fordfan_17fordfan_17 Member Posts: 175
    it probably neutralizes going into o/d yes/no? but when you pull down to regular drive it holds 1,2,and 3rd...... if yes the o/d band is burnt and the trans will have to come out. if the trans neutralizes in 3rd gear the direct frictions are burnt and even if the trans goes to 4th gear you still have no 3rd holding so either way it sound like a overhaul to me
  • chowdhurynycchowdhurynyc Member Posts: 1
    This is my 2003 TC- problem started few days ago, in slow speed or 1st gear car feels like sometimes it will die on me. I took it to mechanics shop, 1st day- they changed gas filter & oil change, problem didn't solve. 2nd day- they changed fuel pump, problem didn't solve. 3rd day- they changed transmission full oil & filter, and a little spring underneath the trans. (sorry I forgot the part name). So far I have paid them lots of money, unfortunately problem still exist. Tomorrow I'm planning to take the car to different mechanics shop. Any advice.
  • izaclown1izaclown1 Member Posts: 118
    How many miles on the car? Some times the mas air flow sensor needs to be changed but from my experience it make the idle and car starting have problems. I would try another mechanic. This one is shoot in the dark.
  • euphoniumeuphonium Member Posts: 3,425
    After installing a new MAF sensor, our 94 Sig ran smoother with more power.
  • ks153ntks153nt Member Posts: 3
    when driving at lower speeds (mostly going up hills and during shifting) I experience a quick vibration/shudder like I just ran over some warning bumps on the shoulder. Of course I did not. This is starting to happen more frequently. I'm leaning towards thinking it's the transmission. Any ideas? Thanks
  • fordfan_17fordfan_17 Member Posts: 175
    torque converter clutch operation have a trans shop check it out
  • ks153ntks153nt Member Posts: 3
    thanks fordfan. Will do. I'll let you know the results if you wish. KSNT153
  • dbrentsdbrents Member Posts: 1
    2005 TC Signature Limited. All of a sudden, the right turn signal (when activated) began to flash at a rate several times normal. I would normally think that a bulb would be out, but all lights are working and blinking OK (except the right side is too fast). I then thought maybe the flasher is bad, but wouldn't that effect both sides? I am now thinking that maybe there is a problem with the turn signal/multifunction switch on the steering column. Any ideas? Thanks.
  • euphoniumeuphonium Member Posts: 3,425
    Time to change the tranny oil & filter. If you plan tokeep the car for a few more years change to the Mercon 5 oil. Otherwise use the conventional fluid.
  • euphoniumeuphonium Member Posts: 3,425
    Is using the LEFT turn signal affected? If not, try using the Right lane changing signal. If that works OK, you may need to repalce the turn signal switch or if the Right lane change signal works - use it for signaling Right turns.
  • ks153ntks153nt Member Posts: 3
    ok;'s due for a tranny servicing (140K) anyway. thanks again for the response..will use the Mercon 5
  • gortiz3gortiz3 Member Posts: 4
    Sup Guys! Looks like we all have some good tastes around here when it comes to luxurious horsepower anyway there is a 1995 Lincoln Towncar Cartier I am looking to buy. Currently the odometer reads around 209,xxx miles. The paint is still a light tan glossy and the interior white leather shows some wear and tear, not too much. It even comes with a sunroof which works fine. All matching hubcaps, good tire tread (70%), AC and heater, power seats and all windows except one work. The price tag was originally $1900, but has been dropped to $1300.

    What concerns me is the acceleration. I'll gas it lightly and it'll take somewhat of a while to speed up. The first gear hits around 14-18 mph. Then I feel another at 26-28 mph. They are quick and you feel the pull. On my brother's 91 TC (160K miles) the gear shifts are smooth and you have to feel for them though. Also the engine's rpm (the 95 TC) will shoot up for some time before 3rd gear comes in then it levels off. Upwards 50mph+ its good. The lady claims her husband took care of it regularly. Is it wear and tear or is it something more simple? any help is appreciated. I need some wheels for work.
  • eeneeene Member Posts: 1
    My 95 LTC, which I LOVE, slips in and out of gear, causing the engine to rev up and then clunk back into gear. This happens intermittently, sometimes not at all for several months, then it starts again. It can happen at 70mph or 40, Usually when I am on the freeway! Sometimes, if I pull over, turn off the car, and then let it sit for a few minutes, restart, this stops for awhile. But, this has been happening for the last several years. I have had the transmission services regularly, but this does not take care of the problem. Is there something else I can do besides replacing the transmission?
  • gseterrygseterry Member Posts: 13
    Its hard to believe that the engine's health can cause some gosh awful trans problems.
    I took my 100K, 99 TC in for a trans tune up (Fluid, Filter and the Ford approved Valve Body upgrades) . Drove it home with the same issues, bucking and erratic shifts.
    Had buddy sneak it in to The Ford Lab (ain't it great living right here by Dearborn and the Glass House?) where they put the REAL Factory 'puter on it.
    #5 and #7 COP Coils were bad. Yah just 2, not the WHOLE set of 8 the dealer or ripoffs try to sell you. They checked the MFG codes on my original Coils and they were "D" = Really Early.
    Replaced them with 2 new ones from NAPA @ $38 each.
    I have been driving it ever since (clock shows 122K now) with NO ISSUES or complaints AT ALL.... Smooth like a TC should.
    Note here: When replacing the COP Coils (#5 and #7 are almost always the culprits) make sure you clean (brake clean) off the tops (where the apoxy is poured in to seal them) of ALL your 8 coils. Spray a healthy thick wet coating of Permatex Spray-A-Gasket - Sealant (Red stuff) all over this epoxied area. Let it soak in for a few hours. When it skins over/semi dry you're all set. It will soak in and seal the gaps in the epoxy (which shrinks with age) and keep the moisture out.
    Have a nice drive.
  • nwraaanwraaa Member Posts: 177
    When you Town Car was bucking and jerking did your computer send the service engine warning to the display panel? If so, why could you not take a basic code reader and retrieve the codes which in your case would indicate misfire at #5 and #7?
  • gseterrygseterry Member Posts: 13
    Have your ignition COP (Coil Over Plug) coils checked. #5 and #7 are notorious for failing first. The miss will drive the trans computer NUTS.
    I took my 94K mile - 99 TC in for trans work with this SAME problem.
    Lucky the trans shop is owned by a TRUE friend / REAL HONEST businessman. Tested all 8 with a spritz bottle of Windex. Just sprayed on top (where the epoxy seals it) of each coil.
    He only replaced the 2 bad (#5 & #7) coils @ $50 each (from NAPA) installed, instead of all 8.
    BTW: Its a $480+ job at the dealer for all 8. THEY don't want to just replace the 1 or 2 bad ones.
    Runs smooth as silk ever since.
    Note also the factory recomended trans fluid and SCREEN clean and change on a TC is 90K miles. A GOOD trans shop should also do any Ford recomended trans & valve body field upgrades out there at the same time too.
    Mine didn't need them because of the trans working perfect, so they (and the fluid change) weren't done.
    I'm at 124K today and still one happy smooth TC Owner.
  • novice25novice25 Member Posts: 1
    Hate to sound like a real novice but there's no way around it. What do you mean by coils and where can I find them. Having the same issue - as the car warms up it gets jerky, before I get the transmission checked I would like to explore the whole "coil" thing.

    Thanks in advance!
  • nwraaanwraaa Member Posts: 177
    Take a look at the engine and you will notice that you don't see the spark plugs. The spark plugs, however, are there. The enigne in gseterry's car has a coil, a black round item, on top of each spark plug. His engine also does not have tradidional spark plug wires.
  • jimbo369jimbo369 Member Posts: 2
    my 03t/c 150,000mi shutters at approx 42mph again at 52 . replaced fluid and filter about 3 times in last 100,000. very reputible mech checked and said coils good fuel filter semi clogged . I change it fairly regular but who knows.After changing fuel filter it did seem to to shift smooth.about 6000 miles later same thing ,changed filter but this time it didnt help.wondering if new MASsensor will help or is it time for a new tranny?????
  • nwraaanwraaa Member Posts: 177
    Before going for a new transmission, have the torque converter clutch solenoid and the shift solenoids replaced. Cleaning the MAS sensor as a routine maintenance item is a good idea but it will not stop the dreaded Ford transmission shift shudder.
  • wnwwnw Member Posts: 1

    Am having vibration/shudder problem with my 1999 Town Car (89,000 miles) , exactly as you desribed in June, 2008. Was it a torque converter clutch problem? My independent repair shop suggests same. What was cost to repair? Thanks.
  • jimbo369jimbo369 Member Posts: 2
    my mechanic which basiclly just works on towncars said it doesn't pay and just put a rebuilt trans in cost $800 time 4 hours problem solved. good luck.
  • 69novaman69novaman Member Posts: 1
    I recently picked up a 2006 Lincoln Town Car Signature ..60,000 klms .
    This is the first time I have owned a Lincoln so I am not sure what to expect. Is there any of you that can save me a buck by enlightening me as to what to watch for driving this model and year .. so far it the nicest ride I have owned !
  • euphoniumeuphonium Member Posts: 3,425
    Reading the Owner's Manual is a very good start. Reading the Maintence Schedule booklet is also recommended.

    Recommend Mobil 1 for the engine. If you just got the car, check all fluids for quality and quantity. The engine coolant will need to be replaced now if it hasn't been. Air filter?
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