Ford F150 Transmission Service in Richmond, VA
Over the past four decades, Ford F-150 has been the best-selling truck in the United States. This has been so for a significant time by outselling every sedan, hatchback, SUV, or crossover you can think of. Today, the Ford F-150 is a staple of American cities and farms. This vehicle is well known for its tough design, strong engines, and top-line trims, which border on near-Lincoln levels of luxury; the F-150 checks many boxes for pickup buyers. It consistently boasts best-in-class towing, payload numbers and a nearly limitless combination of bed lengths, cabin sizes, axle ratios, and options. Unarguably, Ford F-150 is a powerful and durable vehicle. However, like every other vehicle, it has its problems, and a large part of these are transmission-based. Modern Ford F-150 transmissions fall into two categories: the 4R7 series, which includes the 4R70W (1993 models) and the 4R75W and 4R75E, introduced in 2003, and the 6R8 series – models that were released from 2005 feature this type of transmission. The common transmission problems experienced by Ford F-150 drivers will be examined in this entry and the solutions to these issues. But first it is vital to take a critical look on how to diagnose a transmission problem
How To Diagnose a Transmission Problem
Contrary to popular belief, an average driver can detect and diagnose the root cause of a transmission problem in Ford F-150 vehicles. For instance, it is fairly easy to determine mechanical malfunctions. They typically exhibit distinct sensations and sounds that act as indicators that a certain process isn’t working the way it is intended to. That said, not all transmission issues are easy to detect. Hence an experienced transmissions expert is recommended. Transmission centers like Speedy’s Transmission Shop can accurately diagnose the underlying cause of the problem using advanced computer diagnostic technology.
Common Problems With Ford F-150 Transmissions
Lack of Response or Shifting Delay
Many Ford F-150 drivers complain of hard or failed shifts while driving – this is a profoundly common transmission problem. Why does this occur? Since 1988, F-150s have featured an electronic engine control (EEC) system that feeds data to an on-board computer, which in turn instructs the transmission. Because the transmission is electronically controlled, it uses little spring-loaded plungers (called ‘solenoids’) to activate gear changes. Each solenoid has a coil of wire that wraps around it and allows the computer to control it. Excessive vibrations, heat, and age can cause those wires to fray and short out, leading to delayed shifts or a complete failure to shift. Speedy Transmission Shop offers an upgrade to EPC solenoids and solenoid clips that are significantly more resistant to heat and vibrations.
Another prevalent transmission issues found among F-150s is the overheating of the automatic transmission fluid. The ATF is the lifeblood of transmissions. It doesn’t only lubricate and clean the transmission's moving parts but also cools them to prevent wear and damage. If the fluid breaks down, the system runs too hot, which leads to increased friction and corrosive activity and the buildup of additional sludge and debris. Towing heavy loads and constantly shifting can cause the ATF to overheat, which can result in lots of bad things happening to the internal components, like premature wear and failure of the clutches, bands, valve body, seals, and torque converter. Since Ford 4R70W, Ford 4R75W, and Ford 4R75E are all prone to this condition, installing an auxiliary transmission cooler is recommended.
Slipping Gear or Failure to Engage Gear
A transmission is built to stay in a designated gear until a shift is initiated by the computer. If the transmission is spontaneously slipping in and out of gear (or simply popping into neutral) while driving, it can pose a severe safety risk. Slipping in-and-out of 1st, 2nd, or 3rd gears is a common problem with 4R75W/4R70W transmissions. So also is the inability to engage forward gears at all due to a cracked forward clutch drum. The primary cause of this condition is a design flaw in the snap ring, and the piston causes it to break when fluid pressure is applied to engage the clutch. To address this problem, you can upgrade your 4R70W, 4R75W, and 4R75E transmissions to 1-2 and 2-3 accumulator pistons, which can significantly extend the service life of the 4R70W / 4R75W forward clutch drum.
Clunking or Whining
Ever noticed a sound you are not familiar with while driving your F-150? This might very well be a sign of a transmission issue. Clunking sounds when shifting gears almost always lies within a transmission, while constant velocity joins, or the differential may be the source if the clunking is coming from the underside of your car. Some Ford owners also identity whining sounds like a common indicator. If your vehicle is emitting any other these sounds, you should take it to a good mechanic or transmission shop where the cause can be diagnosed and repaired before further damage occurs.
How to Solve Ford F-150 Transmission Problems
Buy a Used Ford F-150 transmission.
This is arguably the cheapest and faster solution to your transmission problems. By installing a used transmission, you can be back on the road under budget. And finding one is relatively easy as parts are often advertised online by private parties or at auto salvage yards. However, there are several drawbacks associated with these solutions: most used transmissions are harvested from wrecked and/or non-working vehicles, and most junkyards don’t have the equipment to properly test the functionality of each transmission. While some sellers offer a 30-90 day warranty, this doesn’t cover the installation cost, towing, or other charges that you’ll incur from a bad used Ford F-150 transmission. This is why it is crucial to purchase your used transmission from reputable auto shops like Speedy’s. At Speedy's all used transmissions are well tested to ensure optimal performance.
Repair Damaged Parts of Ford F-150 Transmission
To avoid the risks of buying used Ford F-150 transmissions, you can opt to repair the damaged or worn out internal components. While this option might be the least expensive, depending on the depth of the repair, it usually doesn’t address the root cause of the failure. However, Speedy's Transmission Shop doesn’t only fix broken parts but also replaces them, thus improving the transmission's life span. In addition to a free diagnosis, their experts will help you decide the best option for you.
Rebuilding Your Ford F-150 transmission
If your F-150 transmission parts can’t be fixed, you can choose to rebuild the system. Rebuilding involves painstakingly disassembling and inspecting the entire transmission piece by piece and replacing and damaged or worn out parts. Speedy's Transmission Shop master tech professionals with over 40 years of transmission experience are capable of rebuilding any F-150 transmission model.
Transmission problems are inconvenient, stressful, and typically quite expensive to resolve, so it’s a good idea to pay attention to any activity that seems unusual. By adhering to the recommended maintenance procedures and schedule, you can avoid many of these issues and ensure your transmission last longer, perform better and require fewer repairs over its lifespan. However, if you notice a problem, don’t hesitate to visit a transmission specialist. To diagnose, repair, rebuild, or upgrade your Ford F-150 transmissions visit Speedy's Transmission Shop located in Richmond, Virginia. Click here to learn more about our transmission services.