• Welcome Visitor! Please take a few seconds and Register for our forum. Even if you don't want to post, you can still 'Like' and react to posts.

Transmission Jerking... Should I flush? Replace? or Something Else?


muwaha

Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2020
Messages
76
Reaction score
2
Points
8
Location
Hazel Green, AL
Vehicle Year
1991
Make / Model
Ranger XLT
Transmission
Automatic
Hey All,

I have a 1991 Ford Ranger 3.0. V6.
It has the original engine and original transmission.
I know very little on the mechanical side of cars (I deal with more electrical, I'm not great at it, but I'm learning as I go).
I've been fixing more electrical issues than mechanical.

Anyways the reason for this post is that when I'm going down the road, I feel the transmission jerking. If I put the truck in neutral, and rev the engine, no jerking, no engine shaking, etc.
When I have it in Park (idling), no jerking, shaking, etc.
When I have the gas pedal pressed, and just cruising down the road, I feel the transmission jerk. It gets worse in OD and the gear before OD.
I've had an issue of when it goes into 2nd gear the transmission just gives completely out. Like the truck just acts like it's in neutral for 20 seconds then 2nd gear engages.
So after this incident, I filled it with transmission fluid (no visible signs of the transmission leaking, but I do have an oil leak but can't find where).

Ever since I filled the transmission fluid, the transmission has been jerked.. Maybe there's too much fluid now?
I'm already looking at pricing for a new transmission, but I figure I ask here to see if someone can help me.
 


Rock Auto 5% Discount Code: F9A1A579ACFAD1: October 1st, 2021

franklin2

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 24, 2019
Messages
1,398
Reaction score
490
Points
83
Location
Virginia
Vehicle Year
1984
Make / Model
Bronco II
Transmission
Manual
Too much fluid can be bad. The fluid level in the reservoir in the pan gets too high and gets into the spinning parts above. This whips the fluid and makes it foamy, so then the oil pump starts sucking foamy fluid.

I would get it fully warmed up, take it down the road a little ways and back, and then on level ground, in park, the engine idling, pull the tranny dipstick. Wipe it with a rag, stick it in there again and see how much is in there. If it's over the full mark, that is too much.

There is a trick to get the extra fluid out if you want to build it. You need some small nylon line like goes to a ice maker, a short piece of rubber vacuum line, and a container with a lid. Poke a hole in the lid that the nylon line fits tight into, and the nylon line needs to be long enough to be stuffed down the dipstick tube of the tranny to suck the fluid out. The nylon line will go to the bottom of the container on the other end.

Then punch another hole into the lid that the rubber line will fit tight into. It only needs to stick through the lid about a inch or so. The other end will hook to a vacuum port on the engine.

Start the engine, it will put a suction on the container, and when you stuff the nylon line down the dipstick tube, the suction will draw out the tranny fluid out of the trans and fill the container.
 

muwaha

Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2020
Messages
76
Reaction score
2
Points
8
Location
Hazel Green, AL
Vehicle Year
1991
Make / Model
Ranger XLT
Transmission
Automatic
When you say vacuum port, do you mean like a suction port (that blows air into the engine? or a port that blows air out of the engine?
 

franklin2

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 24, 2019
Messages
1,398
Reaction score
490
Points
83
Location
Virginia
Vehicle Year
1984
Make / Model
Bronco II
Transmission
Manual
A port that when you pull the line off and stick your finger over it, it sucks on your finger. This would not be anything around the aircleaner where air goes into the engine. It's going to be a small line, either plastic or rubber that goes to the intake manifold. Your brake booster has a large vacuum line, and you should have some smaller ones here and there also. Just remember where to put it back when you are done.

Or you can go to the store and get a mighty vac hand operated pump and do the same thing. Harbor freight sells one for $25.00, the picture is below. It already comes with a can, but it's small. You would just have to dump it more often if you have to get rid of a lot of oil.

 

muwaha

Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2020
Messages
76
Reaction score
2
Points
8
Location
Hazel Green, AL
Vehicle Year
1991
Make / Model
Ranger XLT
Transmission
Automatic
For me that would probably be best.
Thank you! It might be a week before I can do this.. Thankfully I don't have to go out much.
 

cbxer55

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 9, 2009
Messages
1,423
Reaction score
330
Points
83
Location
Midwest City, Oklahoma
Vehicle Year
1998
Make / Model
Ford
Engine Size
3.0
Transmission
Automatic
I have a large syringe, bought from Pep Boys a few years ago. Holds like 5 ounces. I put said thin hose on that, stick it down in the dipstick tube, and suck 5 ounces or so out in one stroke. Mine was overfilled once, that's how I dealt with it. Never had any issues when it was overfilled, I only found it during a normal fluid level check a few weeks after I had the fluid and filter changed at a Valvoline joint. Think I got it back to normal after about 32 ounces was removed. It was noticeably above the full mark on the dipstick, warm and running.
 

renton

Member
Joined
Oct 17, 2015
Messages
46
Reaction score
1
Points
8
Vehicle Year
2005
Make / Model
Ford
Transmission
Automatic
Did you use the correct fluid? When is last time your transmission fluid was changed. I've gotten extra few years out of worn transmission with fluid change and lucas transmission additive. Jusr don't flush it.
 

muwaha

Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2020
Messages
76
Reaction score
2
Points
8
Location
Hazel Green, AL
Vehicle Year
1991
Make / Model
Ranger XLT
Transmission
Automatic
I actually found the issue to be one of my spark plug wires on the distributor to be lose and causing a misfire (I found out by trying to check the transmission fluid and the distributor is right next to it, my hand touched the spark plug wire on the distributor, it came off and I got shocked lol.

but I'm concern though that I used a funnel to pour fluid down the tube, but majority of the fluid ended up on the concrete under the truck..

As far as I can tell, there is no evidence that the transmission was ever flushed and the filter changed.

Is there a particular type of ATF that I need to use? Unfortunately I'm trying to learn this stuff, so I apologize for my ignorance.

I know I have an oil leak, but I do not know if it's at the Oil Pan Gasket Seal, or if it's the seal between the engine & transmission (which is where I've isolated majority of the oil dripping from).

I do not have the equipment to pull the engine out to check everything and replace the seal, so I'm getting quotes from my local mechanics (they've dealt with me for years and tend to give me discounts).

As for the type of fluid, I've been using, Prestone ATF w/Stop Leak.

As for oil, (If you're curious), Super Tech Synthetic 5W-30 (I have the ranger book, and it recommends 5W-30). If there is a particular oil brand/type and transmission brand/type I need to use, Please let me know. I want to preserve this truck as much as possible.
 

19Walt93

Well-Known Member
Ford Technician
V8 Engine Swap
Joined
Nov 13, 2018
Messages
2,761
Reaction score
1,830
Points
113
Location
Canaan,NH
Vehicle Year
1993
Make / Model
Ford Ranger
Engine Type
V8
Engine Size
351
Transmission
Automatic
2WD / 4WD
2WD
Total Drop
3"
Tire Size
235/55R16
My credo
If you don't have time to do it right will you have time to do it over?
I think on a 91 you'd want Motorcraft Mercon V but it should be stamped on the stick. In 91 we were using Mercon/Dexron III but Mercon V has since replaced it. I wouldn't flush a transmission, drop the pan, replace the filter and whatever fluid drains out. If it's real dark, run it a while and change it again. No additives or cleaners, just fresh clean Motorcraft fluid.
 

muwaha

Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2020
Messages
76
Reaction score
2
Points
8
Location
Hazel Green, AL
Vehicle Year
1991
Make / Model
Ranger XLT
Transmission
Automatic
Thank you @19Walt93 for the info.

Maybe I am misusing the terminology. Basically what you suggested (dropping the pan, replace the filter and drain the fluid) is what I meant by a flush..

Again I apologize for my ignorance. If a flush isn't that, then what would a flush be consider? (just curious at this)
 

19Walt93

Well-Known Member
Ford Technician
V8 Engine Swap
Joined
Nov 13, 2018
Messages
2,761
Reaction score
1,830
Points
113
Location
Canaan,NH
Vehicle Year
1993
Make / Model
Ford Ranger
Engine Type
V8
Engine Size
351
Transmission
Automatic
2WD / 4WD
2WD
Total Drop
3"
Tire Size
235/55R16
My credo
If you don't have time to do it right will you have time to do it over?
They cut into the cooler lines and push fluid through the transmission. Any contamination in the transmission ends up in the filter- which they do not change. Snake oil companies like BG will add a "cleaner" to the trans, flush it for a few minutes, then refill it and add a "conditioner". Ford has never approved any fluid additives.
 

Dirtman

Former Middleweight Moss Fighting Champion
Supporting Member
Joined
May 28, 2018
Messages
19,344
Reaction score
13,272
Points
113
Location
41N 75W
Vehicle Year
2009
Engine Type
2.3 (4 Cylinder)
Transmission
Automatic
2WD / 4WD
2WD
Total Lift
It's up there.
Total Drop
It's down there.
Tire Size
Round.
My credo
I poop in the furnace.
Ford has never approved any fluid additives.
That's not entirely true, ford gladly sells 10ml of XL-16 transmission fluid additive for $80 bucks to fix their stupid noisy 6R80's...
 

muwaha

Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2020
Messages
76
Reaction score
2
Points
8
Location
Hazel Green, AL
Vehicle Year
1991
Make / Model
Ranger XLT
Transmission
Automatic
Thank you for the info. So when I just drop the pan, drain, replace the filter, and refill.. Would the technical term be "transmission change" like the same concept of Oil Change?

I know this is a little off topic, but is there a way I can tell the model of my transmission without having to drop it?
 

Dirtman

Former Middleweight Moss Fighting Champion
Supporting Member
Joined
May 28, 2018
Messages
19,344
Reaction score
13,272
Points
113
Location
41N 75W
Vehicle Year
2009
Engine Type
2.3 (4 Cylinder)
Transmission
Automatic
2WD / 4WD
2WD
Total Lift
It's up there.
Total Drop
It's down there.
Tire Size
Round.
My credo
I poop in the furnace.
I know this is a little off topic, but is there a way I can tell the model of my transmission without having to drop it?
Well the options for an automatic transmission in a ranger of that year were limited to the A4LD so not too hard to tell which model it is. :icon_thumby:
 

muwaha

Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2020
Messages
76
Reaction score
2
Points
8
Location
Hazel Green, AL
Vehicle Year
1991
Make / Model
Ranger XLT
Transmission
Automatic
Well the options for an automatic transmission in a ranger of that year were limited to the A4LD so not too hard to tell which model it is. :icon_thumby:
Thank you for letting me know!
 


Top