2001 Tribute trans problem.

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  #1  
Old 09-21-09, 03:49 PM
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2001 Tribute trans problem.

2001 Tribute ES V6 4wd 132K miles, bad rebuild on trans at about 80-85K, better and cheaper rebuild at about 100K, no problems with drivetrain since then...OK that's done..whew.

Dropped in-laws off at airport in Las Vegas this morning...got distracted and was in wrong lane on freeway (about 65mph), started to slow down to move over then saw long line of cars in that lane, so hit the gas (not floored but almost) to move up and slide in. Trans shifted way down (out of OD and down to 2nd?) revs went way up prob close to 6 grand. Moved over and seemed like car didn't respond to throttle the same when speeding up and revs were higher than normal for speed (like maybe TC is not locking up?). After stopping at a traffic light quite a bit later (I think) "O/D Off" light started flashing and revs went much higher than normal for part throttle accel. 1-2 shift seemed hard, and 2-3 I lifted off throttle to make it a little smoother. Stopped and turned off engine while getting gas, O/D off light went out but came on a few miles later, shifting same as before. Checked fluid level while getting gas, it was good...nice and clean, no burnt smell or blackening.

Had to get home no if's, and's, or but's..we were about 60 miles from anything even if we turned around and went back. Drove slower than normal about 55-60 all the way, just couldn't do less...if it killed it..so be it.

I did a little searching and saw everything from a rebuild to a solenoid to a speed sensor. Some sounded pretty knowledgeable, but I still trust the guys here more. I know we have some Ford techs out there, and this is just a fancied up Escape..so how about it? Short of the rebuild I can probably handle just about anything else myself if someone has an idea.
 
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Old 09-21-09, 03:59 PM
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Ok..add'l info

Had to try it..so disconn battery for 30 min (yeah I know, wishful thinking). Went for a drive around the block, had hopes as 1st gear felt stronger (more connected sorta) but still wouldn't shift til RPMs were way higher than normal. Manual shifting made no diff, turning on 4WD for a straight section made no diff. Oh, and btw, reverse is just fine.

I think thats about it..but if ya need more info..I'll get it to ya ASAP.
 
  #3  
Old 09-21-09, 06:31 PM
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The trans is a CD4E made by another company for Ford. They are trouble to say the least. It sounds like the up shift solonoid but it's hard to say. These are the same tranny's as what the Coutours / Mystique's had.
Go to contour.org and get info. The guys there are great.
There are Ford techs there too.
 
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Old 09-21-09, 06:35 PM
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Thanx SH..I'll be looking tomorrow...
 
  #5  
Old 09-22-09, 05:28 AM
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Ford trannies aren't my thing (except towing the dead ones to the tranny shops, thank you Henry), but the first things I thought of were shift solenoid and speed sensor.

Square Head: Would either of these set a code either with or without a CEL lit?
 
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Old 09-22-09, 08:27 AM
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Exclamation Cd4e.

Originally Posted by the_tow_guy View Post
Ford trannies aren't my thing (except towing the dead ones to the tranny shops, thank you Henry), but the first things I thought of were shift solenoid and speed sensor.

Square Head: Would either of these set a code either with or without a CEL lit?
No CEL light would come on. In 1995, the PCM was only OBD I. Not overly safisticated by then. These units run really hot always. I had a 1995 GL for 10 years. I never has a trans issue with it. I did install an aux cooler on it and it made a huge difference on temps. I also ran Lucas synthetic trans fluid in it too. 1 bottle per fluid change. Things too look for:
-fluid color
-operating temps
-bang shifting
How old is the fluid? Even if it's still red but old, it's lost the viscosity that protects against wear.
 
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Old 09-22-09, 10:26 AM
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Thanks, Square. Reason I asked was my OBD-I GM will set tranny codes without lighting the light.
 
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Old 09-22-09, 10:47 AM
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Went back and looked for a couple of receipts...couldn't find the tranny rebuild ones..prob cause they were in VA..so no need to keep. But found one right after I got it to CA, that was 120K miles and tranny was done just before leaving VA..so the second rebuild would have been about 115K miles or later. Wife used to drive 600 miles a week just to and from work..so I was prob off on my initial post of when things were done.

Anyway that would mean prob less than 15-17K on the fluid, and it was checked, drained and refilled by the tranny shop about 2 weeks (500-1000 miles?) after the rebuild. Don't know why they do it, but they said that was part of their policy. They included an extra pan gasket in the rebuild price, I do remember that. And I remember making the appointment and waiting while they checked it out, dropped the pan (even brought it and showed it to me, like the wine guy in a fancy restaurant), and refilled it. This was a local well recommended shop and I trust they actually did do everything they said, I could even see them putting the pan back on.

I've got a pretty good Actron OBDII scanner...when the O/D light is flashing again (its still off from the battery disconn), can I get the code if there is one? Or is a different animal needed? I've seen conflicting info on that...
 
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Old 09-22-09, 05:01 PM
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Ok, on a local drive to get the light back on...no codes from the scanner. Also appears to not have 2'nd gear...

So... any Pro mechnics think its something I can do (TSS or similar) or should I take it and get the band checked? (Another thing I saw as a problem with these symptoms.)
 
  #10  
Old 09-22-09, 07:25 PM
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Exclamation

Does your OBD II scanner read OBD I codes?? If not, your not getting any info.
If the tranny has no second gear, you are starting to have major failure internally. The clutch pack is likely damaged and or the valve body is malfunctioning. What type of fluid did the shop pour in. The fluid needs to contain Mercon for Ford. If they put in Dexron III for GM, it's wrong and likely a big issue.
Do you have warranty? I think your going to need it.
 
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Old 09-23-09, 06:45 AM
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No, warranty is expired. It was for 12 months 12K miles, and its been more than 2 yrs and about 17-18K. They were an independent back in VA anyway, so it would be a little tough...lol.

Why would I need an OBDI capable scanner for a 2001 vehicle?

I did some research after my last post and I'm thinking I may have a broken band. Apparently the one for 2-4 (or 2-O/D) was a weak point and if it breaks it can show exactly what I'm getting. Delayed shift from 1st to what I now think is 3rd, and higher than normal rpms for indicated speed since I never get 4th (O/D). Most of what I read was for various cars and Explorers. Most people indicated they had a rebuild, but those were on trannys with 75-80K or more. Others just replaced the band and associated parts and reported they were good to go.

I think I'll get it down to a shop in the next few days and see what we can do. I'm not just gonna throw parts at it and hope. The last trans I worked on was a '71 Turbo 400..and that was 30 yrs ago!

Wonder how much the hauling around of the 3 large inlaws affected it...esp in the mountains?
 
  #12  
Old 09-23-09, 10:17 AM
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i am a 'front end' guy at the local dealer.
the trans guy is in another shop.
i do know that that trans does have a lot of solonoid problems.
dont worry to much about what who ever used for fluid.dexron 3 is mercon.ford has recently gone to mercon 5.whitch will work in your trans.
if the o/d lite is flashing- there is a code. the code will give a system to start with.
 
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Old 09-23-09, 11:31 AM
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Ok thanks, Newtofta. I'll have questions for your specialty after I deal with the trans issue....lol. No, I'm not worried about the fluid, I'm sure the shop did OK, its been fine until I did the let off the gas, then floor it again thing I described in the OP.

Can someone explain why I'm not getting any code, even when the O/D Off light is flashing? My scanner is a Actron CP9135. Maybe its only for engine and emissions?

Is there a special or fancier scanner to get the tranny info? Remember no Check or Service engine light is lit. Will it probably be a dealer only thing?

Its not vital to get it fixed right away, just trying to get as much info as possible before I take it somewhere. We have a Ford dealer and several good tranny shops and mechanics. No Mazda dealer except in Las Vegas and I'm not going that far.
 
  #14  
Old 09-23-09, 11:52 AM
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i have a small hand held code scanner from'mac' tools.
do you have a parts house localy?
here most will scan the car for free-in hopes of selling.
the pcm controls eng & trans-does your scanner come up with any thing?
there is a fuse that supplys power to the dlc.(the connector for the scanner to plug into-sorta sqare with a \_/shape)
 
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Old 09-23-09, 12:05 PM
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Nope...it connects and everything...it just comes up with "No Codes". Some of the searching I did said that if its a mechanical problem (like a band?) it won't throw any codes. We have an Autozone, Checker and Carquest, but I'm not sure if what they use is much better than mine..

I know when it went out the other 2 times..there weren't any lights on at all, flashing or otherwise.
 
  #16  
Old 09-23-09, 02:21 PM
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does the scanner actually display'no codes'
when you plug it in, it lites up?
give you any options
true. a mechanical failure might not set a code.
but-if the o/d lite is flashing- there is a code.
 
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Old 09-23-09, 02:48 PM
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Yep..it does what its supposed to, and what it did when I had issues in the past...plug it in, it lites up with the brand and program version (I think), then says "linking" or "connecting" (I think...sorry..it was yesterday) then when I hit "read" it comes back "no codes".

btw..just so's ya know..I was an electronics and computer tech for 24 yrs in the Navy and used to be a big motorhead a while back...so really..I kinda know what I'm talkin about...lol.

I'd be fine if they had never mixed computers and mechanical stuff together...I'm pretty good with one or the other...but jeez..not both at once...
 
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Old 09-23-09, 07:13 PM
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Sorry about the OBD-1 mix up. I was thinking of another thread!!!
When the o/d light flashes, there's a code. Funny you don't have one?? Did you try driving with the O/D off? Does the tranny react the same?
If it's skipping 2nd gear, there's an issue. The over-revving as well. The other bad thing about the CD4E, the filter is in there for life. It can only be changed when the housing is apart during a rebuild.
 
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Old 09-23-09, 07:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Gunguy45 View Post
Yep..it does what its supposed to, and what it did when I had issues in the past...plug it in, it lites up with the brand and program version (I think), then says "linking" or "connecting" (I think...sorry..it was yesterday) then when I hit "read" it comes back "no codes".

btw..just so's ya know..I was an electronics and computer tech for 24 yrs in the Navy and used to be a big motorhead a while back...so really..I kinda know what I'm talkin about...lol.

I'd be fine if they had never mixed computers and mechanical stuff together...I'm pretty good with one or the other...but jeez..not both at once...
that is why i am a 'front end' guy-not trans-driveability-at the time computers were introduced to the auto electronics,i had no idea it would come to this!!
 
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Old 09-23-09, 07:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Square Head View Post
Sorry about the OBD-1 mix up. I was thinking of another thread!!!
When the o/d light flashes, there's a code. Funny you don't have one?? Did you try driving with the O/D off? Does the tranny react the same?
If it's skipping 2nd gear, there's an issue. The over-revving as well. The other bad thing about the CD4E, the filter is in there for life. It can only be changed when the housing is apart during a rebuild.
most of the time ,if there is a mechanical failure-broken band,etc
the pcm will see the wrong rpm,versus vehicle speed, at the pcm requsted gear/clutch application-& set a-code(incorrect gear rartio-etc)
 
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Old 09-24-09, 09:50 AM
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Pretty sure I tried turning off the O/D when I was coming back from LV after the failure. As I remember, it didn't make any diff. Basically 4th is the O/D right? It seems like my RPMs were correct for the speed when I would turn the O/D off in the hilly areas on prior trips, or when it would kick out of O/D under load.

Thats why I'm kinda thinking I lost 2nd and 4th/OD.

I read somewhere (which of course I can't find now!) that I can unplug something on the trans to put it in "Limp Home" mode, which is supposed to be 2nd gear? Then if it doesn't go into 2nd, means its the band? I'd really hate to make what may be a relatively cheap repair into something worse. But since I had to drive it 80 miles this way..how can it get worse?

As I said...next week I'll probably go talk to my new trusted mechanic who has done some work for me, see if they do auto tranny work. Pretty small shop, not sure if they do or not. At the least they should have a good recommendation.
 
  #22  
Old 09-24-09, 02:46 PM
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let us know-the final out come
 
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Old 09-24-09, 03:02 PM
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Jeez..thats it? Come on guys..just tell me to go unplug or replug something and it will be all better....lol

This sucks...I don't want a new car payment...but I sure would like a small pickup. Kinda hard to trade in something that needs major repair though.

I'll let ya know.....
 
  #24  
Old 09-24-09, 07:34 PM
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Originally Posted by newtofta View Post
let us know-the final out come
Yes, get it diagnosed and let us know.
The computer PCM should put it into limp home mode on it's own. That's what I have read.
 
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