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Need help-Tranny leaking fluid 2005 F-150


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Kansas Big Dog

I moved my travel trailer to another area today. When I was unhooking the trailer I noticed oil drops all over the tongue of the trailer. And then I noticed the same on the back bumper of the truck. Checked the fluids and the trany was empty. Never noticed any thing pulling it today. We did have a hard pull for about 30 miles right before we got to our camping spot. Up and down hills in a 30 mph head wind.

 

I called a local garage (Chevy) and they brought some fluid and we filled it up (5 quarts) and no leaks. I drove to their shop and they put it on the lift and could not really determine where it had leaked. Not leaking now. The mechanic and I both believe that the fluid over heated and that's what caused it to leak. I think it was probably low on fluid too.

We don't know for sure. 

 

Looking for some other opinions on why it leaked, but is not leaking now.

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Craig Doherty

I'm no mechanic, but I would assume when you hitch up to the trailer and put a load on the transmission the leak will return.

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Kansas Big Dog
36 minutes ago, Craig Doherty said:

I'm no mechanic, but I would assume when you hitch up to the trailer and put a load on the transmission the leak will return.

 

I agree, from what I can tell from my internet research, most likely I have some seals that are leaking under high pressure. The 2 fixes I have found are having the tranny rebuilt $, or add some leak fixer to the fluid ($20). The truck is well worn, 170K miles. I only wanted to get a couple years out of it. So, leak fixer maybe the way to go.

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I just re-read that you used 5 quarts...do not mess around get it to a transmission shop for a review. Might be time for a rebuild...

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Get a Transmission shop to look at it sounds like you have a seal that is leaking under pressure better to have it fixed now then loose it under a load down the road which will cost much more

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14 hours ago, Craig Doherty said:

I'm no mechanic, but I would assume when you hitch up to the trailer and put a load on the transmission the leak will return.

 

Agree. I had the same issue with a Jeep Cherokee. Like everything else Jeep, when I googled the problem, it was a “known issue”.  The rear main transmission seal would leak under the pressure of towing a load. Take a look under your truck and see where the furthest forward you see oil. If it’s the very back of the tranny, that’s the leaking seal. Some of those are not to difficult or expensive to replace. Maybe you’ll get lucky, if you didn’t damage the tranny by running low on oil. 

 

While on the he subject of Jeep bashing, my wife and I rode in the back seat of a buddy’s Liberty recently. My wife saw bungee chords coming out of the bottom of both rear windows. She said “what are these bungee chords for” and by buddy yelled “don’t touch those”. They were holding up the back windows. Burned out window motors were a “known issue” on my Cherokee also. 

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I had a 2000 F150 that had same issue at 120,000 miles and month later transmission went out. Transmission shop said that was normal for Fords made between 1999-2006. I bought a new transmission from Ford for what the shop wanted to rebuild one. Gave the truck to one of my sons in 2017 and still running fine with 300,000 miles. No motor issues but did replace all linkages in front end. 

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There a vent on top right behind the bell housing 

it’s purpose is to equalize the pressure internally with the outside as the fluid heats up

 

if it’s plugged the pressure will blow fluid through seals

 

if the transmission is hot and you go down a steep hill it will blow fluid out this vent especially if the fluid level was overfilled 

 

it’s hard to get at without dropping the tranny sometimes it’s just a piece of u shaped tubing on some it’s a steel vent

 

 

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6 hours ago, bobman said:

There a vent on top right behind the bell housing 

it’s purpose is to equalize the pressure internally with the outside as the fluid heats up

 

if it’s plugged the pressure will blow fluid through seals

 

if the transmission is hot and you go down a steep hill it will blow fluid out this vent especially if the fluid level was overfilled 

 

it’s hard to get at without dropping the tranny sometimes it’s just a piece of u shaped tubing on some it’s a steel vent

 

 

Good point bobman, I had a similar vent on my RV's rear axle and sure enough, when it became plugged my axle began to leak fluid through the one of the axle wheel bearing seals.

 

Steve

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Fords of this vintage do have a problem when running at temperatures exceeding 220 for extended periods. If I were you, I would:

1. Have the tranny inspected and tested at a Ford truck shop.

2. Repair/replace the tranny - if indicated

3. Install a LARGE, DOWN FLOW transmission cooler and Transmission temperature sensor and gauge.

 

I did this on my Ford F350 and have been trouble free for over 100K miles. The temphas never risen above about 190 even when towing my Airstream in 100+ temperatures. I also installed an in-line transmssion fluid filter and run synthetic tranny Ford spec fluid.

 

Hope the prolelm is not serious, Mike.

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