90 Escort Auto trans won't shift up

Old 11-05-03, 02:02 PM
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Question 90 Escort Auto trans won't shift up

My 90 Ford Escort won't shift up from the lower gear to drive. It' will find reverse and will go forward but won't shift up by speed of the car or use of the gear shift. Anything I can check before going to the transmission shop? 1990 Escort LX 4dr hatchback, 1.9+ liter, automatic transaxle.
Old 11-05-03, 04:06 PM
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fluid level

Have you checked on the fluid level?While you are checking it smell it for a burnt smell.If car will not move in drive but will in reverse it could be a bad transmission pump.I had a Chevy do that to me.Engine would rev and truck would barlely move.
Old 11-05-03, 08:25 PM
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The fluid level, smell, and color, appear fine. The vehicle will go forward very well with no slippage. It just remains in the lower gear.
Old 11-05-03, 11:40 PM
mike from nj
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does 'park' hold the vehicle, i would look over the shift linkage if it doesn't. putting it in "2" prevents it from shifting from 2-3, like you have. maybe try pushing the shifter forward a little or even holding it between "D" and "N" to see if you get that last shift. it's worth a try.

is it staying in first gear, or second gear?
Old 11-06-03, 06:50 AM
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If the tranny has a vacum modulator...check for vacum leaks.

The modulator valve could also be stuck.

Also check the throttle presure linkage for proper adjustment.

The throttle pressure linkage manually overrides the auto upshift(govenor) and makes the tranny downshift. If the linkage is stuck or out of adjustment the tranny may not upshift.

Internal problems...such as defective govenor or stuck valve body valves could also be a factor.

Old 11-06-03, 07:33 AM
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Mileage? I agree with the others, but it could be internal failure....
Old 11-13-03, 03:50 PM
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It's most likely the linkage between the the transmission and the transmission detent. It is a metal rod that enters a plastic grommet on the throttle lever of the throttle bodt. This plastuc breaks and allows the rod to fall out...got a free car this way. Part is under $3 from Ford.

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