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  #1  
Old 03-06-2011, 12:49 PM
Fordzilla80 Fordzilla80 is offline
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Default O/D Off Light Flash

Here are two versions of the same info, the first being a short version for those who just want to know what to do, and a long winded version for those who want to learn a little info, and/or are completely unsure of what they need to do to help us accurately solve your O/D Off light concerns.

If your O/D Off light is flashing within your gauge cluster in the dash, it is important that you note EVERY unusual symptom the trans exhibits, as well as have all current transmission codes read. Simple scanners (such as Auto Zone's scanners) can NOT read Ford transmission codes, so you will need to either take the truck to a trans shop, or gain access to someone who has a higher level code scanner that is capable of reading Ford trans codes. If you take the truck to the shop, do NOT listen to what the tech thinks your issue is. Transmission technicians are NOT trained in every individual quirk a specific model of transmission has, just in the general repair/maintenance of transmission parts. The automatics found in Rangers/Explorers have many quirks that are not easily recognized by those techs not experienced with these specific trans, therefore the actual problem is usually not fixed correctly. Instead, write the code on a piece of paper, and post the code, as well as all of the noticeable symptoms in a new thread here in the Drivetrain section. Without the code and symptoms, it is nearly impossible for us to accurately solve the problem at hand, therefore you should acquire this info before posting a new thread. It helps us get an answer to you even faster, and keeps us from having to ask you for this info.

Now, for why the O/D Off light comes on and starts to flash, and why your trans shifts so hard when the light is flashing.

The O/D Off light within the gauge cluster serves as a Diagnostic Trouble Light for the transmission. Think of it as something similar to the Check Engine Light, but for the transmission. When this light flashes, it means that the Transmission Control Unit has sensed a problem within the trans and/or it's circuitry. Whenever the light is tripped, the TCU puts the trans in "Fail Safe" aka "Limp Home" mode, which means that the TCU directs full fluid pressure through the transmission to prevent slipping, and allows the vehicle to "Limp Home". This full fluid pressure causes the transmission to exhibit an extremely rough shift within the first two gear ranges. This is absolutely normal and in no way means that your transmission has failed. When you have this light, it is important that you do not drive the vehicle long distances. Instead, pull over at the next safe moment, put the truck in park, and shut it off. This shuts the light off, and takes the trans out of "Fail Safe" mode. Start the vehicle back up, and safely merge back onto the road. If you start the truck back up, and the light is still flashing, then you may have a more serious condition, therefore this next bit of info will not apply. You will need to try and remember what the trans did before the light came on, as you will not have a second chance to figure out what happens before the light comes on. If your light went off and has not returned, continue on. Note everything that the trans does, from it's shift patterns, to the RPMs at shift, etc. If there are any differences in the transmission's habits that you feel aren't normal, make a mental note of the exact difference, and under what conditions it came up. When/If the O/D Off light starts to flash again, try your best to remember what exactly happened before the light started to flash. Did the trans slip? Did it "hunt" for the next gear? Did overdrive not kick off when you got to the steep hill? All of these small details are extremely important to leading to the exact cause of the issue. Once you have the symptoms written down, take a trip down to the trans shop or find somebody with a higher level scanner that can scan Ford transmission codes. Have the code read, and write it down. If you go to the trans shop, do not listen to what they suggest unless you're sure they know all about the Ford 4R44E-5R55E transmissions. Transmission techs are NOT trained on the specific quirks of each model transmission, only in the general repair of certain symptoms. This can lead to you paying for parts you do not need, and is a waste of time/money that you probably don't have. Once you have the trouble code, write it down where you can keep track of it, and then post the code as well as your specific symptoms here in the Drivetrain section under a new thread. Without the code and symptoms, we really cannot help you accurately solve the issue at hand. This information is extremely valuable to us, and to you as well. Unfortunately, the 4R44E-5R55E have many little issues that come about upon higher mileage, especially when the trans is not properly serviced in it's life. Trans techs do not have the time nor patience to closely study the problem and symptoms at hand, therefore they decide that it's much easier to throw common problem parts at the trans in an effort to fix the problem. This rarely fixes the problem, and it usually shows back up a short time later. Now, some of you may find it easier just to have the trans rebuilt. That is perfectly fine, however if your issues persist even after the rebuild/parts replacement this guide is the most important thing you can follow, and is the ONLY way to accurately solve the problem right the first time.

I hate doing this, but here is a link to another forum, with some really good info on the 4R44E-5R55E transmissions, that goes even further into the reasoning for O/D Off issues. If you are not technologically or mechanically advanced, this isn't necessarily the link for you, unless you're really interested.

http://www.rangerpowersports.com/for...on-218541.html

Last edited by Fordzilla80; 04-13-2011 at 08:34 PM.
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  #2  
Old 03-15-2011, 08:29 AM
Mecosta Mecosta is offline
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Default Re: O/D Off Light Flash

Thanks Fordzilla80. Your post helped me out in getting my OD Light Blink repaired. I took my 01 Ranger to the dealer in Mt. Pleasant, Michigan (Krapholh)---I know, a funny name. Anyway they diagnosed my problem as needing a new valve body kit with new gaskets and a filter replacement. I asked for the source code on how they determined that this was the problem and they gave me the code of PO733. They also told me that the information was in Ford's TSB in their 3-22-10 bulletin. I hope that after giving these folks $550 it takes care of the problem.
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  #3  
Old 03-15-2011, 08:50 AM
Fordzilla80 Fordzilla80 is offline
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Default Re: O/D Off Light Flash

Glad to hear it man. That is one of the most common fixes Ford uses. The code according to my info reads out as an incorrect third gear ratio, meaning third gear position didn't match up to the computer's preset parameters. Keep an eye on the problem, and if it comes back, take it back to the dealer.
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  #4  
Old 03-15-2011, 05:08 PM
bassplyer92517 bassplyer92517 is offline
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Default Re: O/D Off Light Flash

Had this happen to my truck when I first got it, freaked me out because I thought the transmission went out. Wish I had seen this thread. I scanned it and it gave me a weird code for the transmission that had nothing to do with the problem. Turned out to be a faulty speedo sensor, quick fix.
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  #5  
Old 03-15-2011, 06:22 PM
Mecosta Mecosta is offline
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Default Re: O/D Off Light Flash

Thanks Guys!!!
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  #6  
Old 03-15-2011, 08:02 PM
Fordzilla80 Fordzilla80 is offline
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Default Re: O/D Off Light Flash

Quote:
Originally Posted by bassplyer92517 View Post
Had this happen to my truck when I first got it, freaked me out because I thought the transmission went out. Wish I had seen this thread. I scanned it and it gave me a weird code for the transmission that had nothing to do with the problem. Turned out to be a faulty speedo sensor, quick fix.
I was in the same boat with my truck. Got the light maybe two weeks after I bought the truck. Didn't know what it was at all. Looked it up on Google, and seriously freaked out because 3/4 of the posts were about the transmissions seriously failing. But my truck only had 42,000 miles at the time, so I called BS on the trans being complete crap. I started to surround myself with knowledge about the light and why it comes on, and after getting like 9 different quotes from transmission shops around town all saying the problem was something else than the last shop had said, I decided to study the problem myself. My problem ended up being a faulty connector. Still haven't gotten it fixed though.
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  #7  
Old 03-15-2011, 08:15 PM
wvcat wvcat is offline
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Default Re: O/D Off Light Flash

I had a flashing OD light on my 04. My code reader wouldn't read the code so I just payed attention to what was happening with the trans. When I first started the truck the light was off. After hitting about 50 it would come on and I noticed I had no od and no engine braking when it should be in od. I thought maybe a solinoid was bad so I dropped the pan and ohm'ed them out, all checked out ok. After reading my manual and looking at possible causes I figured my OD band was broken or worn out. To my suprise adjusting the od band fixed it. It's been doing good but I have noticed it does come on sometimes if I leave the truck set for a few days. If I drive the truck daily it doesn't come on. I think my problem is due to neglect. The previous owner didn't do filter and fluid changes and the truck has 157,000 miles. I think it will be ok after I drive it enough for the new fluid to "clean" the trans components and valves. I plan on changing the fluid again after I get about 1000 miles on it. All the other gears have always worked normally.
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  #8  
Old 03-15-2011, 09:11 PM
Fordzilla80 Fordzilla80 is offline
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Default Re: O/D Off Light Flash

It's strange, funny problems like that which lead to all the hate on the web for these transmissions. Good to hear you decided to take care of the problem yourself as well.

I hear ya on the Transmission maintenance. I'd guess at least 60% of the time this is the cause with Ranger transmissions failing. They're extremely finicky transmissions, and I feel that without proper maintenance, they're destined to fail early. In fact, today I did a speech in Effective Speaking class about how important maintaining your transmission is, and how much it can save you in the long run. It's sad that nobody really understands the importance of maintaining your vehicle. They think oil changes are enough, but they're not.
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  #9  
Old 03-16-2011, 04:15 AM
wvcat wvcat is offline
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Default Re: O/D Off Light Flash

Yeah I don't think people understand that synthetic fluid has a lifespan. Eventually it goes bad.
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  #10  
Old 03-22-2011, 12:09 PM
bassplyer92517 bassplyer92517 is offline
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Default Re: O/D Off Light Flash

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fordzilla80 View Post
It's strange, funny problems like that which lead to all the hate on the web for these transmissions. Good to hear you decided to take care of the problem yourself as well.

I hear ya on the Transmission maintenance. I'd guess at least 60% of the time this is the cause with Ranger transmissions failing. They're extremely finicky transmissions, and I feel that without proper maintenance, they're destined to fail early. In fact, today I did a speech in Effective Speaking class about how important maintaining your transmission is, and how much it can save you in the long run. It's sad that nobody really understands the importance of maintaining your vehicle. They think oil changes are enough, but they're not.
I agree with these transmissions, and I am not a fan of the way it shifts in the first place. But just out of curiosity, other than regular fluid and filter changes on your transmission, is there any other maintenance that should be done?
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  #11  
Old 03-22-2011, 04:08 PM
Fordzilla80 Fordzilla80 is offline
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Default Re: O/D Off Light Flash

Quote:
Originally Posted by bassplyer92517 View Post
I agree with these transmissions, and I am not a fan of the way it shifts in the first place. But just out of curiosity, other than regular fluid and filter changes on your transmission, is there any other maintenance that should be done?
In general, just keep the fluid and filter fresh, and make sure the trans fluid stays cool. However, on the Ranger transmissions, there's a few parts that should be checked around 100,000 miles, like a separator gasket under the valve body, and an EPC solenoid that likes to fail. It's not required, but it's recommended. I haven't really researched enough to know what needs to be replaced in these transmissions, but those are the two most common things I see come up.

Last edited by Fordzilla80; 04-13-2011 at 08:41 PM.
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  #12  
Old 03-25-2011, 02:09 PM
bassplyer92517 bassplyer92517 is offline
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Default Re: O/D Off Light Flash

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fordzilla80 View Post
In general, just keep the fluid and filter fresh, and make sure the trans fluid stays cool. However, on the Ranger transmissions, there's a few parts that should be checked around 100,000 miles, like a separator gasket under the throttle body, and an EPC solenoid that likes to take a shit. It's not required, but it's recommended. I haven't really researched enough to know what needs to be replaced in these transmissions, but those are the two most common things I see come up.
Thanks. I'll look into them when I get there. My truck is already 11 and only has 60k. So at this rate it will be another 10 years. lol.
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  #13  
Old 03-25-2011, 05:30 PM
Fordzilla80 Fordzilla80 is offline
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Default Re: O/D Off Light Flash

Quote:
Originally Posted by bassplyer92517 View Post
Thanks. I'll look into them when I get there. My truck is already 11 and only has 60k. So at this rate it will be another 10 years. lol.
I hear ya man. I'm at 47K.lol.
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  #14  
Old 04-01-2011, 10:29 AM
roninTim roninTim is offline
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Default Re: O/D Off Light Flash

Hey guys, just joined the site! I have a 2001 Explorer XLT V8 I just got a few weeks ago. I noticed the other day that O/D Light started to flash and have, like many of you, freaked out about the range of issues that could be going on.

When I get home tonight, I'm taking it for a short to drive to see if I can notice any strange behaviors in my vehicle. From what I recall of the last time, there was no speedometer issues, no check-engine lights, and no noticeable change in gears changing.

There is an exhaust issue near the manifold that needs attention which it will receive tomorrow from my local shop, but I was wondering if that maybe related somehow via a sensor to the O/D issue.

I'll update this once I get home and test it out, but any advice is welcome.
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  #15  
Old 04-01-2011, 10:51 AM
Fordzilla80 Fordzilla80 is offline
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Default Re: O/D Off Light Flash

I must say, i'm glad to see this article is helping people figure out what they need to do next.

As for your specific issue, I don't think your exhaust manifold issue would cause your O/D Off light to flash, unless you have some transmission wiring close to that side that maybe got too hot and burned up allowing for a no-signal from the connection. Let us know what symptoms you notice. Make sure not to drive the vehicle too long in this state, as things go boom under stress.
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