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AX4S only 1st and reverse. When shifting from 1st to 2nd it goes into neutral

(1999 Ford Taurus)
in Chesterfield, MO on November 02, 2017
1999 Ford Taurus. 165,000 miles. AX4S

About 15 month ago it developed a "funny" when shifting from 1st to 2nd. Hard to describe. More of a noise/sound. The gear shift would "over-hang", shift at the wrong speed with a funny noise (HummmmoFFF).

About 3 months ago the noise improved, but the shifting quality changed. Depending on how hard you accelerate, there is a "clunk" when going from 1st to 2nd.

Starting today I only have two gears. Reverse and 1st. If I leave the transmission in drive, when the 1st-to-2nd shift comes, the transmission drops out of gear (like it’s in neutral, engine revs, no transmission noise/no bang/no clunk, nothing, just engine revs).

If shift column select 1st gear, it stays in first.
No tranny noises.
Transmission oil level is correct.
Transmission oil and filter was changed 12 months ago.
Transmission oil is “Clear Pink”. Good color/no funny-burnt odor.
No codes are being set.

What is the problem? Valve Body?
What seems to make the problem better or worse? Keeping the column selector in 1st
How long have you had this problem? 1 week
Tags: ax4s, shifting, from, 1st, 1, goes, neutral, only 1st, ford, ford, taurus
Displaying 1 answer & 1 comment
Popular Answer
on November 03, 2017
First and reverse work together. You have issues with the remaining gears. I do not see any quick or cheap resolution for this -- very likely overhaul or replacement is in order.
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on November 04, 2017
I get it. I've researched many postings and online manuals, and all things considered getting 165K out of any AX4 transmission is "better than average". I found "ATSG TECHTRAN MANUAL" online. On page 31, twelve 'NO 1-2 Shift" conditions are listed. Several electrical conditions are indicated. I think I can check them.The others are "places I can't go". One the twelve is indicated in the early AXOD-E flavors of this transmission, "No 6. 1-2 capacity modulator valve. Stuck, nicked or damaged." Is this accessible with the valve body removed (in the engine bay). I was hoping I had enough symptoms to "pin-point". Thanks
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