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  • F-550 Transmissions

    We just dumped our third transmission in less than 20,000 miles. My question is, is anyone else having problems with Ford automatic transmissions/ powerstroke? I admit that this truck was/is overloaded with full compartmentation and 400galon tank.... This truck is set up as a fast attack/brush truck. Yes i know we should have gone with a manual tranny but that is hind site.

  • #2
    Out of curiosity, which engine do you have... the old 7.3L or the new 6.whateverL?
    God Bless America!Remember all have given some, but some have given all.
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    • #3
      I would post your questions & nature of problem(s) you've had over in http://www.fordtrucks.com/forums/

      This is NOT affiliated with Form Motor Company. It is purely an enthusiast message forum, however there are some top notch Ford Mechanics along with some very knowledgeable enthusiast/owners posting there.

      Your questions would most likely get the best responses in either the Transmission, Differential, Axle and Transfer Case forum or in the Super Duty And Heavy Duty forum.

      Best of luck.
      Take Care - Stay Safe - God Bless
      Stephen
      FF/Paramedic
      Instructor

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      • #4
        We have a new F-550, 4 x 4, 6.0L Powerstroke and five speed auto light rescue. It goes about 15,500 lbs with a five person crew. No problem other than we have some new tranny cooler lines on order due to leakage. Ford shop says they have been a problem.

        You say you are overloaded. Does the rig exceed the axle gvw and the 17,500 lb gcw? If so you need to reduce weight.

        Have you tried running the trans in the tow/haul mode? This keeps the tranny from "seeking" between overdrive and the next lower gear.

        Stay Safe
        IACOJ

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        • #5
          more info

          A little more information. This is a 1998 F 550 with a 7.3l powerstroke. We are not over the wt. limit for the truck per the books. However by the seat of the pants may be a different story. We were told by evi that this was one of the first 550's that they had built. I should also note that this truck has 4 wheel drive with locking hubs. As for the tow/ haul the only switch i can find is Overdrive off. I will admit that this isn't used often enough due to lack of knowledge by the drivers. We are a Volly dept and this truck runs first due to everything except structures. Simple to drive compared to a engine or tanker. Thanks for the comments and links.

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          • #6
            The "overdrive" switch serves the same purpose on your four speed automatic. Check the owners manual under towing and hauling.

            I don't know that you would have fared any better with the manual. We had a 95 Chevy one ton with 300 gal of water and a utility box. The tranny held up but most of our guys could not comprehend that you don't ride the clutch. Averaged about two heavy duty clutches a year until we sold it.

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            • #7
              So far we have about 8,000 miles on our 2002 F-550 with the 7.3 powerstroke engine and automatic transmission and we have had 0 problems with it .

              Our 2nd F-550 2002 rescue with the 7.3 engine has had no problems either but our 3rd F-550 2003 rescue has had a couple minor problems but that unit has the new 6.0 engine and that engine still had some bugs to be worked out before they put it into full production

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              • #8
                I'd try finding a way to turn off the overdrive. For good. That may be your problem. Too much weight for the OD.

                My first volly dept had 93 chev 3500 with a 454 and 4 spd. stick. We also went thru clutchs like oil changes. Couple of the guys didn't understand you should use L when driving thru ditches and etc. Just too much weight to be driven hard. That truck would get crazy at 85.

                The truck was a donation.

                Stick with the Auto.

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                • #9
                  Ford has had some issues with the "new" automatics.There are a couple outfits that build a stronger unit for use in ambulances and other high use(FD)applications.The only thing I can suggest is to get the biggest tranny cooler you can get put on and in series with the factory cooler.Leaving the OD defeated isn't a bad idea either unless you do Interstate.This should be driver selectable on this truck.Multiple failures are NOT the norm,see if you can find out what failed and I can probably get you more concise information.T.C.

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                  • #10
                    Grandmaster 101, is the "new" tranny you speak of the standard issue Ford 4 spd or the newer Allison auto they are selling with the 6.0? We're getting one soon and are planning on getting the Allison.

                    As to the overdrive issue, I know there is an aftermarket kit for police Crown Vic's to default the OD into lockout (have seen it in an older Galls), in otherwords it is normally off when you start up and you hit the OD button to engage it.

                    As to driving w/OD disabled, depending on the gear ratio of the rear end and the top speeds you run on your area roads it may not be a wise idea. If you're running the engine in the high 3000 rpm range you are not being nice to both the engine and the tranny. Unfortunately with a low rear end and a medium speed engine you actually may need the OD to drive in your area.
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                    • #11
                      The F-550s come standard with a dana 135 rear axle with a 5.38 or 4.88 ratio i think . Thats a huge rear and low ratio
                      It would rev high at highway speeds without O/D

                      The new ford automatics behind the new 6.0 g2 powerstroke are torqshift 5 spd automatics . They still put the old 4r100 behind other engines such as the 6.8l triton v-10 and 5.4 v-8 .

                      I think you might be thinking of general motors they are the ones who use allisons in their pickups which is a smart move that makes their superior pickups even better ( 8.1 L and 6.6 duramax only get the allison)
                      Last edited by k1500chevy97; 11-05-2003, 09:53 AM.

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                      • #12
                        Ah 304 my friend,obviously you've dropped your reading glasses again.I refer to the E4od model,which around town you leave LOCKED OUT if you want the tranny to last.If you look CAREFULLY at the post,I recall mentioning something about doing Interstates.Now knowing that you wouldn't think of venturing onto the interstate; think of the OD as "prairie"gears.Allison in a Ford?Now we've sunken to a new low,puttin' Cheby parts in a GOOG truck.All locking Od out does is prevent the TCC solenoid from locking the mainshaft together.Now I know Ford is liking the high 4 low 5 gearsets.I don't but with a OD tranny they work.The E4OD can be "Bulletproofed" but it's costly particularly behind the 6.0 or the 7.3 because of torque input.Every 10 degrees you lower working tranny temps will effectively double tranny life so coolers are an important fact of life.T.C.
                        Last edited by Rescue101; 11-05-2003, 09:26 AM.

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                        • #13
                          No, reading glasses were properly installed and I read the whole post. I was under the impression that we were getting an Allison with our 550, but I guess the old man must be misinformed. As to venturing out on the interstate, that's not the only place were we get up to decent speeds (ironically our rescue pumper and tower will only do 60mph anyway). Two nights ago I was responding down Rte1 and I was doing 45mph (about 10 over the posted). There are also a lot of rural roads where the posted is 50mph in our state. Knowing how our two Ford E series ambulances scream with the OD locked out (I usually lock it out when driving in the city) it occured to me that perminantly disabling the OD as was mentioned in another post here might be a severly limiting factor.

                          As to the cooling, there I am 100% with you.
                          ________________________________________________
                          If you are new to posting please CLICK HERE for an essential lesson
                          ________________________________________________
                          A bad day in the boat is better than a good day in the office. And in my case the office is a boat!

                          IACOJ Fire Boat 1

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                          • #14
                            An Allison transmission on the new F550?

                            That's news to me!

                            God Bless America!Remember all have given some, but some have given all.
                            Google Is Your Friend™Helpful forum tip - a "must see" if you're new here
                            Click this to search FH Forums!

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                            • #15
                              Probably news cause it's another urban legend.Talk about givin' a guy heart failure!No,Ford's coming out with a new nightmare,new and improved over the E4OD.Can't wait to see how this pans out,hope it's better than the rear mains on the 6.0.T.C.

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