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Old 05-07-2021, 03:01 PM   #1
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1999 F53 4R100 trans.

Hello guys and gals! Sorry for a bit of a longer post but Iíve got a situation and need some advice.

Iíve got a 1999 Winnebago adventurer 34H on the F53 chassis. It has the Ford Triton V10 and (I believe) the 4r100 transmission. Anyways, 2 weeks ago we were coming back from a camping trip with our quads (4 quads on an all aluminum trailer). We were in a fairly hilly part of AZ (traveling from Payson to Phoenix along the 87) and had several grades to climb. We were going up a 6% (maybe 7%) stuck behind a semi going 20mph at 2500ish RPM. No shifting issues. No sounds. Pulling the hill just fine. All of a sudden, huge billows of smoke. Pulled over 2ish miles up the hill at a brake check area and noticed we were dumping trans fluid. Called AAA and got towed home.

Anyways, I havenít really looked things over too terribly much as of yet, but as of now, I believe I just overheated the transmission and it was over flowing. Iíll dig a little deeper into it Monday/Tuesday next week and find out more.

Pending that is/was my issue, Iím adding a Transmission temperature gauge for sure. Iím also looking at an external cooler. (With or with out fan??) Was also looking into a deeper ďcoolingĒ Trans pan (Derale 14208). My question is, are BOTH the larger cooling pan AND the external cooler (with or without fan) necessary? Or am I good with just one or the other? What is recommended to help cool the trans in this beast?!

We are leaving in 2.5 weeks from Phoenix to Northern California towing a 2019 Jeep Cherokee on a dolly (curb weight of approx. 3,600lbs) I really donít want to run into transmission issues again.
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Old 05-07-2021, 05:23 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Derpydennis View Post
Hello guys and gals! Sorry for a bit of a longer post but Iíve got a situation and need some advice.

Iíve got a 1999 Winnebago adventurer 34H on the F53 chassis. It has the Ford Triton V10 and (I believe) the 4r100 transmission. Anyways, 2 weeks ago we were coming back from a camping trip with our quads (4 quads on an all aluminum trailer). We were in a fairly hilly part of AZ (traveling from Payson to Phoenix along the 87) and had several grades to climb. We were going up a 6% (maybe 7%) stuck behind a semi going 20mph at 2500ish RPM. No shifting issues. No sounds. Pulling the hill just fine. All of a sudden, huge billows of smoke. Pulled over 2ish miles up the hill at a brake check area and noticed we were dumping trans fluid. Called AAA and got towed home.

Anyways, I havenít really looked things over too terribly much as of yet, but as of now, I believe I just overheated the transmission and it was over flowing. Iíll dig a little deeper into it Monday/Tuesday next week and find out more.

Pending that is/was my issue, Iím adding a Transmission temperature gauge for sure. Iím also looking at an external cooler. (With or with out fan??) Was also looking into a deeper ďcoolingĒ Trans pan (Derale 14208). My question is, are BOTH the larger cooling pan AND the external cooler (with or without fan) necessary? Or am I good with just one or the other? What is recommended to help cool the trans in this beast?!

We are leaving in 2.5 weeks from Phoenix to Northern California towing a 2019 Jeep Cherokee on a dolly (curb weight of approx. 3,600lbs) I really donít want to run into transmission issues again.
My 1999 Newmar has transmission cooler in front of the radiator. There are 2 small coolers plus the air conditioner radiator in front of the engine rad.
I'm surprised yours doesn't have one. Never had over heating pulling long hills towing our crv.Click image for larger version

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Old 05-07-2021, 06:41 PM   #3
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Our 99 Winnie Brave 35C (20.5k F53) had a huge trans cooler up front. Never had any issues. Heading up interstate 8 heading towards San Diego in 100 degree temps at 6 percent grade. We pull a steel side loader with quads and typically had full holding tanks. Perhaps the fan clutch is not functioning and 20mph did not allow enough air flow to keep things cool? You should have been able to clearly hear the fan lock up and really roar several times.

I also use full synthetic trans fluid and engine oil. The stuff is next level protection when you are pushing everything to the max. The new F53 comes with synthetic trans fluid from the factory for a reason.

Check the fan lock up function and change out that burnt trans fluid (full flush) before your next trip. Remember the torque converter holds a few quarts that donít come out when you pull the pan. Assuming the o rings didnít cook and the trans still shifts solid, it might live to fight another day. It really is a solid transmission despite being a bit old school and not having enough gears.

Hope it all works out in your favor,
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Old 05-07-2021, 11:54 PM   #4
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At 2500 rpms, and high coolant temp the clutch fan should have been roaring,even at 20 mph. 99 f53 chassis have a huge trans cooler, But no air flow due to no clutch fan pulling air will overheat the trans fluid and yrans fluid (depending on type) will expand with heat, the fluid probably came out of the top vent on the case. The 4r100 in that application is pretty stout, if the trans fluid is not burnt, just replace the clutch fan and see what happens.
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Old 05-08-2021, 03:41 AM   #5
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Transmission temps can be accessed with a Scan Gauge II and the correct X gauge code, or what ever they call it.

It plugs into the OBD II outlet down near the steering column.

Check the engine fan clutch. If its got dirt stains on it, its leaking out fluid around the shaft, and probably bad.
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Old 05-08-2021, 08:00 AM   #6
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We had the scan gauge and then moved up to the OBD MX+

Connects to a phone or tablet and provides a whole dashboard to view with whatever things you want to monitor.

Trans them is one that was available for our e450 v10 engine and transmission combo.

Have used it to reset codes on the wifeís car as well.

Comes with a bunch of extra monitoring points for fords and free depending on the model of the obd monitor.
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Old 05-08-2021, 08:04 AM   #7
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In 1999 Ford didn't put a transmission cooler in the radiator in the F-250 through F-550/ I do not know if the F-53 had one or not. If it does not, that is your problem. Replace the radiator with one that has a trans cooler. The correct cooling line routing is front of trans to the radiator cooler, to the aux cooler out front, then to the rear of the trans.
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Old 05-08-2021, 03:46 PM   #8
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I recently had to rebuild my transmission in my 1999 F53. The radiator does not cool the transmission on the 1999F53. It only has a small cooler in front of the AC cooler. I installed a 2007 cooler on mine. It cools 400% more than the original. You can look up my tale of woe about my motorhome if it will help you decide what to do.
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Old 05-08-2021, 05:11 PM   #9
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I don't know, but it sounds like you sprung a leak to me. But then I would have been all up under it finding out ASAP if it were me.
My last trip I spotted a drip during my walkaround at a rest stop and it was where my steel line transitions to a rubber line. I carry a pair of coveralls just for such occasions. In my case I was able to trim the hose, move the clamp, and be on the way. Had the hose or actual line ruptured it would have been a different story though.
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Old 05-14-2021, 04:39 PM   #10
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You might look into installing a "Transcommand" made by Banks. I installed one about 2 years ago in my 2000 Winnebago Adventurer 32V and now my trans doesn't get any hotter on long pulls with towing toad than normal driving. When more power than normal is applied the Transcommand locks the torque converter thus it does not heat up with the converter slipping.
You can monitor trans heat with ScanGauge.
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Old 05-14-2021, 08:24 PM   #11
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Most likely your tongue converter was not locked at that low speed. That will generate a lot of extra heat. If you had been able to maintain a higher speed where your converter was locked, you would not have generated all the extra heat.
If you have trouble maintaining a higher speed on grades, maybe add a switch on your converter lockup so you can lock it sooner.
Getting off the gas will slow the heat generating. Try to lose some weight so you can maintain a speed above the converter lock point.

Just my 2c... I did this on my old Ford diesel with e40d and it does help...
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Old 05-14-2021, 09:41 PM   #12
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Most likely your tongue converter was not locked at that low speed. That will generate a lot of extra heat. If you had been able to maintain a higher speed where your converter was locked, you would not have generated all the extra heat.
If you have trouble maintaining a higher speed on grades, maybe add a switch on your converter lockup so you can lock it sooner.
Getting off the gas will slow the heat generating. Try to lose some weight so you can maintain a speed above the converter lock point.

Just my 2c... I did this on my old Ford diesel with e40d and it does help...
Torque converter normally locks only in top gear, with low throttle input.
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Old 05-16-2021, 12:45 PM   #13
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Torque converter normally locks only in top gear, with low throttle input.
This is not true. The E4OD can lock in all four forward gears. In first and second it will only lock with enough RPM and pedal position of more than 75%. Third and fourth gears will lock almost all of the time.
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Old 05-16-2021, 02:14 PM   #14
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This is not true. The E4OD can lock in all four forward gears. In first and second it will only lock with enough RPM and pedal position of more than 75%. Third and fourth gears will lock almost all of the time.
Learn something new every day. Thanks for setting me straight.
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