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Discussion Starter #1
i live in Western Australia and own a 1996 Taurus Ghia 3 litre Duratec.The car has done 101000 kms(63000mls approx).
I have been advised by a tranny specialist that these transmissions normally need a rebuild at the milage i have done.I have mentioned in previous discussions that a Ford dealer pulled out the tranny,checked it over and stated the clutch pistons and plates were all o/k.The only thing i can see on the work sheet was a piston assembly that was replaced! The transmission is at present working perfectly,and changes very smoothly.The only thing i do on a regular basis is to get it serviced(every 12,000mls) and add Lubeguard.
What i would like to know from any experts out there,if and when the time comes to have the tranny rebuilt has Ford modified any of the required parts needed to rebuild the transmission,and what should i be insisting be done.I would think by now any known faults would have been identified and upgraded parts be available.
I was thinking of subscribing to Alldata,do you consider it worthwhile?
I would appreciate any help.Regards Eddy
 
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The piston that was replaced is an upgraded piece. As far as I know, that's the only factory upgrade/fix that exists for the AX4N. Some transmission places will add a Transgo shift improver kit when rebuilding, simply for the increased oiling benefits.

With your mileage, and the piston replaced, I'd say you should be safe for a while. The 12k mile service is a good idea, as is an aftermarket transmission cooler.

Alldata is not a bad idea, I don't think it costs all that much to subscribe, and they usually update all TSB's and recalls on a regular basis.
 

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I had an intermittant neutral condition until I had the piston replaced. Since then its been 15000kms and I have had no further problems with the car.
If you do get to the point you need your transmission rebuilt, I would suggest against going to Ford. Instead try a experienced tranny shop. I can tell you a good one in Melbourne, but it might not help you unless you come here on holidays.

BTW they want about 3000 AUD for a rebuild and this site is useful. Type in that you own a 1996 Taurus LX (thats the US equivalent), and then it provides heaps of handy stuff regarding it. It even has a TSB section.

Julian
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you for your replies Bob & Julian.
I have installed a secondary oil cooler after reading about it on your Taurus site.I must say without the TCC i would not have the wealth of info i have now-Thanks to all who have helped.i saw an article on TSB 98-3-8 which stated that Mercon V should not be used in 1997 or prior Vehicles,is this still current ,as in Australia it is the oil used by Ford on the Taurus.any comments !!
 
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As far as I know, Mercon V is a semi synthetic fluid. The previous mercons were not. I can't see the harm in using a semi-synthetic, but I've never tried it.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Bob,(President)
you mentioned a Transgo shift improver kit that can be used when rebuilding
Is this an aftermarket kit or is it a Ford product.How good is it and do you think it is worthwhile?,if so where can you obtain it from and the cost.The reason i ask is that over here the transmission rebuilders have not a clue what i am talking about ,so if i can get the info/leaflet etc i might be able to get their attention!!
Thanks once again for any solid advice.Eddy
 

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I am gonna have a bash at this, bob can correct me or add stuff.

This is an aftermarket kit which firms up shifts, thereby reducing clutch slip, therefore heat - which of course is the doom of a transmission. It also corrects some of the manufacturing oversights Ford may have done, like the piston update.

I would also be inclined to say that I wouldn't go run out and rebuild the transmission unless you have any like problems with it. My transmission has survived much abuse (i am an 18 year old so go figure) and all that needed to be done is the piston. As bob said its best to continue the service regime you have and maybe the transmission cooler - which putting two and two together (from email) I believe you already have.

If you do need to rebuild and do want a shift kit, then try www.bulkpart.com and look under transmission shift kits for the ax4n. They do export but only for orders of more than 100 USD so you may have to contact them since it costs about 44USD from bulkpart.com.

Should add - the piston change for me, did fix most of the issues I had with the transmission that the shift kit would cover - but I can't tell if there are firmer shifts
 
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