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Transmission trouble

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Old 03-20-2008, 05:07 PM   #1
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Default Transmission trouble

I have a 93 F150 4.9l manual trans. The odometer just turned over to 160,000 and I haven't had any flushes done or anything. I purchased the truck at roughly 140,000 (I don't know the previous history of the truck...whether or not it was well taking care of or not) so I know I might be due for some flushes. I first noticed my problem when it was cold and at first I didn't think much of it. When it started happening more frequent I started to get worried. When its cold outside if I dont let my truck idle for at least a good 10 minutes to get EVERYTHING warmed up on the truck it is a pain in the to get it into gear. Just the other day it grinded reverse with the clutch all the way in. 1,2, etc. are all VERY hard to get into gear. I mean dont get me wrong I can get it into gear but I know its not suppost to be the way it is. I called up a buddy of mine who works at a shop and he said it could possibly be the trans lube, he said its kinda common when its cold to take a while the get the lube warm. He said its like molasses when its cold and that my problem could be just that it needs to get warmer before I try and shift it.

I was j.w if anyone here might know anything about my problem? Is my friend on the right track? sorry for the long read but I hope someone can help point me in the right direction...

ps. could it be my clutch? and second I have a lot of play in my peddle. I can push the peddle down about 3/4 of the way to the floor and at like the last 1/4 i get clutch. I don't know if that could possibly mean anything? Thanks in advance for any help ..I always come to you guys first
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Old 03-20-2008, 09:34 PM   #2
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Limited experience with manual trannies here, but we'll give it a whirl -

Suggest it would be good to have a look at the fluid for anything unusual, with that many miles and an unknown history - probably good to go ahead and change too. Be sure to refill with the right fluid - the old standard was 80W90, or the like, which would cause stiff shifting when cold, but newer transmissions have used 10W30, ATF, or something else - not sure how the Fords have progressed specifically. There are arguments for and against flushing - I am one to avoid them.

With it grinding in reverse, would suspect the clutch is not fully disengaging. You should have a hydraulic self-adjusting clutch - first be sure the reservoir has plenty of fluid. Next, try to lift the pedal with your toe as far up as it will go, then push it to the floor - a couple of times. Next, it may have gotten air in the lines at some point and needs bleeding? It's also possible that either the master or slave cylinder is not holding. Finally, something could be wrong with the clutch/pressure plate/throwout workings.

Unless you were living the the upper regions of the Great White North, you should not be experiencing these problems to the degree you describe. Yes, manuals will be a little stiff when they're cold - but certainly not to the show-stopper point you indicate.
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Old 03-22-2008, 12:46 PM   #3
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Sound like clutch to me. The warming will help the gears come to a stop faster allowing it to shift into gears easier. The clutch should disengage fully at the most 3/4 pedal.
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Old 03-31-2008, 08:34 PM   #4
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ok, thanks, I'm going to get it looked at..I feel bad because I havent driven it in days and I miss it.Where is the reservoir located? I was told kind of in the area of the brake fluid but possibly lower, I looked and I could of sworn I didn't see one, but I'm sure I overlooked. Where is the slave cylinder?

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Old 04-02-2008, 07:04 PM   #5
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i got some pics up if anyone could help me possibly locate the transmission fluid reservoir?...



is it in any of these photos?

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Old 04-02-2008, 10:24 PM   #6
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Pic #2 - the clutch master cylinder appears to be just to the left (passenger side) of the brake booster, mounted on the firewall. If it's low or especially if it's dry, suspect air may have gotten into the system which may be causing your problems.

The slave cylinder is inside the bell housing between the engine and tranny, but it should have a bleed port accessible from outside - looks sorta kinda like a grease fitting. Hard to tell whether the slave is leaking, unless you see brake fluid droppings on the ground under the tranny/bell-housing, or the master cylinder is low.

With the Ford truck manual trannys that I'm familiar with - have to pull a plug off the side of the tranny to check the level. Should be two plugs on the tranny - one for level and filling, one for draining.

Don't confuse the tranny fluid level with the brake fluid level in the clutch hydraulic assembly.
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Old 04-05-2008, 01:10 PM   #7
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[quote=wde3477;61375]
Be sure to refill with the right fluid - the old standard was 80W90, or the like, which would cause stiff shifting when cold, but newer transmissions have used 10W30, ATF, or something else - not sure how the Fords have progressed specifically.


I checked the fluid in the reservoir that you said and it looked a little low, but on the cap it mentions brake fluid, to fill with only DOT 3 or DOT 4. Is that right? I know some of the same fluids are used for different stuff. I know you mentioned 80W90, or 10W30 is that the same fluid in the reservoir?
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Old 04-05-2008, 04:30 PM   #8
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Talking about two different fluids for two different systems here - the fluid that goes in the tranny itself which lubricates the gears, and the fluid that goes in the clutch hydraulic system which operates the clutch.

The clutch system fluid should be as you noted - a certain type of brake fluid.
The tranny fluid is what could be one of the many different flavors - 80W90, 10W30, ATF, etc.

Sorry for the confusion. It's always good to check and recheck to be absolutely certain what goes where.
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Old 04-05-2008, 04:50 PM   #9
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ohhhhh ok, I understand now ..Thanks
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Old 04-05-2008, 05:33 PM   #10
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I put some more fluid in the reservoir because it was a little low, I pumped the pedal a couple of times after but it didnt help.
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