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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
2005 Sable just operates in first, park, N and R. When it goes to shift from 1st to 2nd nothing engages and engine revs. If left in 1st position, it is fine but, of course stays in first. If in D or OD, it starts of normally with no slipping but just revs when shifting from 1st to 2nd. Car must come to a complete stop again before it will go again in 1st. I never had a problem at all with shifting or slipping. This just happened all at once. The only thing it would do strange on occasion is slightly accelerate when I left off the pedal. I have been reading some forums and the VSS seems to be a problem and sometimes the TSS. I have located the VSS under heat shield and exhaust near the firewall. I want to be sure this is the problem because I guess it is quite a job. If this is the problem, where can I find and aftermarket replacement or better yet, a part #?
Thanks in advance.

Update! I took it for a short ride after it cooled down and it went into 2nd and D but revved at high rpm. Went down to 1st, no slippage and normal operation in 1st only.
 

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Hi Bullet,

I will help you with what I can. I am not a mechanic per say, but I have been learning some lately and just recently finished a battle with my vehicle.

First things first.

How many miles on the vehicle?
Do you know what model the transmission is? (ax4n, axod, etc)
Do you know the motor in the car? (DOHC Duratec? SOHC Vulcan? etc)
When did you first start experiencing the problem?
Do you have a MIL illumnation? have you had the vehicle checked for codes? this can be done at if you don't have a scanner.
Do you have any problems with the Speedometer indicating wrong speeds, not registering speeds or "jumping around" or acting "crazy"?

I recently (last week) did a VSS on my 1996 Taurus. Due to a failure of my second vehicles Fuel Pump I had to enlist the help of a shop to finish this job. The biggest bear of this job is that there is NO room to play in. Also the design of the VSS is a plastic top pressed into an aluminum body. Many people, including myself have experienced situations where the plastic has separated from the aluminum leaving the bottom half of the VSS stuck in the trans case.

Sometimes this is an easy fix, pull a 10mm bolt, remove the entire VSS unit, install new, reinstall bolt. My unit was seized in the case because the o ring had hardened. a pry bar and hammer was the ultimate fix for this, attacking from the passenger side wheel well with the car up on a lift. I had to pay the shop to get in and do this because i lacked to tools and time.

If you are not experiencing issues with the speedometer than you may not be looking at a VSS. the VSS has a 2 wire electrical connector. IIRC one is to power the unit and the other is input for the PCM. The PCM then uses the information supplied by the VSS to display the speed reading on the speedometer (in my particular situation anyway. other VSS units use a cable attached to the Speedo to do this) and also uses the reading to tell the trans when to shift.

Have you checked the fluid level/condition of the transmission? if the fluid is low it can have adverse effects on shifting and cooling and everything else. Check the level once the vehicle has reached operating temp. Also check the fluids color, it should be a reddish color similar to sweet and sour sauce. you should not see very much black as this is usually a sign of something burning. Also you should not smell any burning on the fluid.

If possible, I would discontinue driving the vehicle (if you can and havn't already that is) until this is repaired. Small issues can often times lead to bigger issues if left un-repaired.

I hope this helps you get a bit of an idea of where to start. Like I said, by no means am i a certified mechanic, I have just been learning things as I go.

Good luck!

**edit** i just noticed you have your vehicle info updated in your profile.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
How many miles on the vehicle?
Do you know what model the transmission is? (ax4n, axod, etc)
Do you know the motor in the car? (DOHC Duratec? SOHC Vulcan? etc)
When did you first start experiencing the problem?
Do you have a MIL illumnation? have you had the vehicle checked for codes? this can be done at if you don't have a scanner.
Do you have any problems with the Speedometer indicating wrong speeds, not registering speeds or "jumping around" or acting "crazy"?


Hello issakar.
140,000 miles
I don't know the transmission model.
It is a SOHV Engine
It first started on the 4th of July.
Check Transmission light comes on.
Did not have it checked for codes. Hard to go anywhere in 1st. lol
Speedometer seems to be ok at the low speed of 1st.

I have it scheduled to go into the Ford garage Monday morning. I cannot find the VSS anywhere. It has be discontinued and there is no replacement. What's up with that?
Thanks...
 

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How many miles on the vehicle?
Do you know what model the transmission is? (ax4n, axod, etc)
Do you know the motor in the car? (DOHC Duratec? SOHC Vulcan? etc)
When did you first start experiencing the problem?
Do you have a MIL illumnation? have you had the vehicle checked for codes? this can be done at if you don't have a scanner.
Do you have any problems with the Speedometer indicating wrong speeds, not registering speeds or "jumping around" or acting "crazy"?


Hello issakar.
140,000 miles
I don't know the transmission model.
It is a SOHV Engine
It first started on the 4th of July.
Check Transmission light comes on.
Did not have it checked for codes. Hard to go anywhere in 1st. lol
Speedometer seems to be ok at the low speed of 1st.

I have it scheduled to go into the Ford garage Monday morning. I cannot find the VSS anywhere. It has be discontinued and there is no replacement. What's up with that?
Thanks...
tech the vulcan and essex engines are OHV i saw even in a oil filters part number book SOHC and in middle of the store i was like HELL NO haha

Sorry anyways, ya seems like an issue with the forward clutch but the AX4N has more electrical stuff then my AX4S so i would say check the TSS and shifter cable for damage.

Also, the VSS is over on the passenger side of the car. it is connected on the end of the transmission right at the end close to the front passenger wheel well. I suggest searching our database for transmission posts that should have a pic of it. Ugh barring if this new werid forum layout crap didnt kill the links to all the old forum posts.

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
Thanks a lot for your time. I will try to find a pic but I think I found it. Looks like it is rough to get to.

I just rechecked fluid level and it is halfway up the hash-mark. Could this be a problem?
 

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Thanks a lot for your time. I will try to find a pic but I think I found it. Looks like it is rough to get to.

I just rechecked fluid level and it is halfway up the hash-mark. Could this be a problem?
halfway up the thatching should be a legit level. how does that fluid smell/look?

I'm doing a little more research for you but it is possible your car uses the ABS sensors for vehicle speed readings. not 100% on that info yet but it seems possible since the SHO used that same type of setup as well.

The VSS is a bear to reach from the top. The FSM says to raise the vehicle, drop the y-pipes of the exhaust and work from the bottom. That is usually not needed tho.

I will try and find a couple pix for you from when i did mine to show you what things sorta look like inside there.

Cheers!
 

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This post aides in locating the VSS.

http://www.taurusclub.com/forum/98-solutions-common-problems-how-articles/83984-vss-location.html

This is my post i started while doing the VSS on my 96 Taurus. Starting around post 8 you see the photos i snapped while doing the work. They may help you identify the VSS.

http://www.taurusclub.com/forum/82-...g-tranny-techs-1996-taurus-strange-issue.html

Also this post will help you in identifying the transaxle in your vehicle.

Ford Forums - Mustang Forum, Ford Trucks and Cars - View Single Post - How to ID the transmission

the label the poster is referring to is the label on the driverside door.

Like I stated before, I am not 100% certain if the 05 Sable is using the VSS model or the ABS model for speed detection. It sounds like it may still have a VSS according to the last link i posted for you to look at. I will continue to look around as i have time for ya and see if i can confirm it. I am fairly certain but i like to be closer to 100% certain before saying definitively yes to something :p

Good luck, keep us posted on how things go!

Cheerz
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I just called the Ford garage again. They say that the 05 does not have a VSS on tranny. There are 4 on each ABS wheel. There is a range sensor however. I lifted up heat shield under #2 cylinder, removed 10mm bolt and unplugged what ended up being just a 2-wire harness. It is still unplugged and made no difference, good or bad.
So this must be a different setup but the symptoms are the same.
Any ideas??
 

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Oh yea thats true some of the newer AX4N's got rid of the VSS. Hmm, I would say check fluid condition shifter cable condition and scan the tranny for codes. That is a very interesting problem I heard something similar on this forum that happened to a member and they fixed it with a not to bad fix. If it isnt a sensor then i would next suggest something in the valve body is having issues.

Ill keep thinking of ideas for ya.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Sounds good. I do think now I have the ax4s. It is coded 'X' on door and says metric on the pan. It is a 3.0 Vulcan, says that right on a sticker. There is a 2 wire lead that goes into tranny but seems to be pretty permanent. Where would I find a schematic of this tranny? I want to look into the range sensor, crank pos. sensor and whatever other sensor or solenoid there may be. Fluid looks great but I may drop the pan tomorrow, replace filter and check for shavings.

Maybe an OSS (output shaft speed) sensor?
 

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Sounds good. I do think now I have the ax4s. It is coded 'X' on door and says metric on the pan. It is a 3.0 Vulcan, says that right on a sticker. There is a 2 wire lead that goes into tranny but seems to be pretty permanent. Where would I find a schematic of this tranny? I want to look into the range sensor, crank pos. sensor and whatever other sensor or solenoid there may be. Fluid looks great but I may drop the pan tomorrow, replace filter and check for shavings.

Maybe an OSS (output shaft speed) sensor?
Count the bolts on the transmission pan i think its 17 for ax4s and 19 for ax4n. Im pretty sure you have a ax4n becasue i think the last gen of bulls to get that tranny was the gen 3's. Back then the duratechs got the ax4n and the vulcans got the ax4s. The ax4n is a better tranny anyway. it has mroe electrical controls that can go wrong but it has computer controlled shifting. This helps make the transmissions much mroe durable, they can shift non syncronized vs my old bull has to go 1 2 3 4 back to 3 2 1 etc yours can jump over gears like a person driving a manual car could.

Are there any bubbles on the fluid? and unfortunately the problem could be a forward clutch issue but lets hope its something more electrical and cheaper to fix. Maybe you could check the connection on the TRS sensor on the transmission it is next to the shifter cable on the drivers side on top of the valve body. On this new of a taurus i would bet its a sensor or selinoid issue vs a gear or clutch issue, though at 140,000 you never know.
 

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Sounds good. I do think now I have the ax4s. It is coded 'X' on door and says metric on the pan. It is a 3.0 Vulcan, says that right on a sticker. There is a 2 wire lead that goes into tranny but seems to be pretty permanent. Where would I find a schematic of this tranny? I want to look into the range sensor, crank pos. sensor and whatever other sensor or solenoid there may be. Fluid looks great but I may drop the pan tomorrow, replace filter and check for shavings.

Maybe an OSS (output shaft speed) sensor?
I'm pretty sure the TR code "X" is for AX4N Transaxle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
OK, 17 bolt and "Metric AX4N" Stamped on pan. I am not sure which is the TRS but There is a 9-Pin module next to shift linkage and a 9-Pin connection going directly into shift linkage. I am not sure which is which, both go to main 'Brain Box'. The module connected towards front is vertical and the one in the linkage is horizontal. Right now it is very hard to get under the car (no jack or stands at the moment). I may be able to get the pan off but not sure if I can get it back on. The gasket is reusable. I am strapped for cash at the moment and the Ford garage wants appx. $70 to do an initial diagnostic which I am afraid will lead to further testing. So, I guess the tranny is an AX4N. A pic or schematic of it would be nice to identify sensors. Is there a way I can test these modules using a multimeter?
Thanks again...

Check! 19 Bolt Pan
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Seems to be nothing on passenger side. I snapped some pics. The one that concerns me is the last, blurry one. Too tight to get camera in.

From left to right:
1) standing at driver fender, harness goes to exhaust, it was under foil shield.

2) Driver fender, gear selector

3) From front, passenger side, 4 wires

4) From front, gear selector, 2 9-Pin connections (White one maybe a sensor?)

5) Driver Fender, Under location in Pic 1, small heat shield bolted down, 2-wire, cannot move with hand
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Does anyone know the pin locations and readings (ohms and volts) for shift solenoids on 9-Pin connector near shift linkage. I am getting 32 Ohms off of one hot pin and 3 other cold pins. I assume these are the 1-2, 2-3 & 3-4 solenoids. Am I right?
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Oh, forgot. Looking for ohm readings for EPC, MCCC, TCC and TOT. Also, where to apply 12V and how to perform tests.

Thanks a lot...
 

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From memory (I am not home and do not have access to my documents):

Shift: 15 to 20 Ohms
MLUS: 13 to 24 Ohms (with blue connector)
EPC: 3 to 5 Ohms
TSS: 100 to 200 Ohms

But do drop the pan and look at the magnet. My AX4N had the same problem, and from what I have seen so far, I am guessing it is a leaking intermediate clutch seal and what I got on the magnet is from the burnt clutch material. It is just a guess though as I have not yet gotten to open the sub-assembly.

I am sorry I cannot help you with the pins.
 
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