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Need HELP! 2003 Town Car, 4.6L engine, 4R70W transmission, the problem is a stuttering feeling in high gear

tctrowbgd

New member
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Need HELP! 2003 Town Car, 4.6L engine, 4R70W transmission, the problem is a stuttering feeling in high gear, between 35-50 mph under a light load in 4th gear. Stuttering is not felt on a level road, under hard acceleration or in gears 1-3. Transmission torque converter has been replaced, per dealer recommendation. Problem still exists. What could be the cause?
 

04TC

Junior Member
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Tampa, FL
First thing I would do is check the transmission fluid level with the fluid warm and the engine running. To make sure there is not too much or too little amount of transmission fluid. Once with my 2004 I was having a similar torque converter shudder and I checked the fluid and there was too much. I took some of the fluid out and it fixed the problem. Make sure you (when parked) shift through all the gears and leave it in P. Then remove the dipstick, wipe it clean, reinsert the dipstick and then check the level. Who knows, there is some chance that could be the cause of the problem your car is having.
 

Nongmin

Member
80
26
18
Charlotte, NC
My first Panther platform car was a new '96 MGM. At 40k. it exhibited the same conditions you describe. Dealer diagnosis was a bad torque converter. Changed under warranty and it happened again, about 40k later. New dealer solution was changing the fluid and filter. which fixed the shudder.

Since then, I've had five more Panther platform cars, same basic drivetrain. I made a habit of doing the fluid/filter change every 30-35k and never had this issue again.

However, if you just had the tc replaced, you should have clean fluid and a filter. Sounds like something else is going on. If you had a shop do the work, let them answer your question.
 
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tctrowbgd

New member
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First thing I would do is check the transmission fluid level with the fluid warm and the engine running. To make sure there is not too much or too little amount of transmission fluid. Once with my 2004 I was having a similar torque converter shudder and I checked the fluid and there was too much. I took some of the fluid out and it fixed the problem. Make sure you (when parked) shift through all the gears and leave it in P. Then remove the dipstick, wipe it clean, reinsert the dipstick and then check the level. Who knows, there is some chance that could be the cause of the problem your car is having.
04TC, thanks for the comments / suggestions. I checked the transmission fluid per the directions you provided, and according to the dipstick, the fluid was right where it should be. My next step is to go back to the torque converter installer and talk with him about what other areas in the transmission he thinks might be causing the shudder.
______________________________
 

tctrowbgd

New member
4
0
1
My first Panther platform car was a new '96 MGM. At 40k. it exhibited the same conditions you describe. Dealer diagnosis was a bad torque converter. Changed under warranty and it happened again, about 40k later. New dealer solution was changing the fluid and filter. which fixed the shudder.

Since then, I've had five more Panther platform cars, same basic drivetrain. I made a habit of doing the fluid/filter change every 30-35k and never had this issue again.

However, if you just had the tc replaced, you should have clean fluid and a filter. Sounds like something else is going on. If you had a shop do the work, let them answer your question.
thanks for the comments / suggestions. The transmission fluid was changed just a few thousand miles before the torque converter was changed, so the fluid / filter is new. The torque converter change was at the suggestion of a Ford dealer. After the converter change (which he did not due due to costs) I went back to the dealer and told him the converter had been changed, but the problem was still there. He had no more ideas about what the shudder cause is. He scanned the car while driving it and found no codes or defective parts. Probably will wait to see if the problem gets worse.
 

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