Question about 2003 Ford Thunderbird

3 Answers

2003 Ford Thunderbird

Engine running rough, missfiring, stalling, shifting hard, not downshifting at correct time. No visible fluid leaks. Recalls concerning valve cover gaskets and wiper shaft seals addressed and supposedly repaired by TN dealer 3 months ago. Car ran great for 3 months. Now the same problem has returned. Similar problem occured 1.5 yrs ago with engine light on and no start condition (some stalling had been occuring). One dealer replaced throttle body, same thing happened the next day. Another dealer found fault codes and either replaced module or reset, not sure which. I have tools and mechanical experience with outboard motors but need instructions to troubleshoot and repair this problem. I do not own any type of diagnostic code reader but would consider buying recommended one to help fix this problem.

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  • sparkchecker Jul 27, 2008

    Thanks for the quick response.

  • sparkchecker Jul 27, 2008

    Thanks for the quick response. I will get the car scanned.

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Hi Spark, I'm merc cruiser and omc certified also. You sound like your in a pickle. This car has a lot of problems with mass air flow sensors and throttle position sensors. You can check the mass air flow sensor by simply unplugging it and drive the car .If the symtoms go away, you got it. replace and go.You may also be able to clean it if you have a security torx bit set. Just remove it and spray with carb clean, nothing else. And don't touch the fine wires in there with anything.The throttle postion sensor is a little more tech. The signal wire needs to be checked back to the computer for the correct voltage. There are three wires on the TPS. One will have 4.5 to 5.0 volts all the time.I think pink or yellow. One is ground. I think black with a white tracer, The other is the signal wire. Most of the time it is the center pin position on the plug. Usualy blue oe gray. With the car running at idle take a dvom only and check the voltage at the power wire, should see around 5 volts. If not let me know and we will go in another direction. If good ,next check to see if the signal wire has voltage.This is the important voltage because this tells the computer where the throttle blade is. You should see below a volt but not zero on this reading at idle. I've seen some at 1.1 and had no trouble.As you rev up the engine the voltage should go up with it with no drop outs or glitches.You can also check it with the key on engine off so you can go all the way to full throttle and see if the voltage goes all the way up with it.Should go up to reference voltage, around 5 volts at full throttle. Let me know what happens or if I've confused you more. I will be happy to walk you through the maze. Before you do anything see if you can get one of those cheapo code readers and get the codes first.Some parts stores will plug it in for you and let you know what the codes are. Just write them down and let me know what they are.The TPS will cause all kinds of weird problems including transmission shift problems . Hope this helps and talk to you soon....Thanks Dan

Posted on Jul 27, 2008

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Hi..
Check for any visual air leak.
Check for any visual electrical problem.
On battery Alternator, terminal and connectors.
Check the ingnition coil 6 cyl ( Coils 8 cyl.)
For any malfuntion or loss of spark.

But I recomend get the car Scannned to see if there any Diagnostic CODE.
IF you want to buy One you can do. you will use with your car and maybe friends.
But if Not. Some AUTOPARTS, make a diagnostic without charge for that.

I will able to help with the right especification or information about any CODE. if you can get the code number.
I hope this help to start diagnistic your problem.

Posted on Jul 27, 2008

  • Juan Guillen Jul 27, 2008

    If after you have the car SCANNED . I will able to help as more I can.

    Contact me.

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  • LORETO LACARON
    LORETO LACARON Jul 27, 2008

    Automatic Transaxle has been a very good transmission. It is well built and has had few reported problems.

    It is possible the transmission filter is getting clogged up. What
    you should try is dropping the transmission pan and removing the
    transmission filter. Install a new filter and transmission pan gasket.
    Put the transmission pan back on and refill with new transmission fluid.

    Before you drop the pan you can disconnect the lower transmission
    line at the transmission fluid cooler and put it into a suitable
    container. Start the engine and let it idle until you pump out three to
    three and a half quarts of automatic transmission fluid. Reconnect the
    line and then drop the transmission pan.

    Now do not get a transmission flush. A transmission flush at this
    mileage would be a dangerous thing to do.

    If you do a lot of stop and go or city driving, you should service
    the transmission every 30,000 miles or two years. If it stays hot and
    humid most of the time then I would cut that in half. Also if you do
    mostly city driving you should keep the transmission out of overdrive.
    A transmission in overdrive during city driving causes the transmission
    to run hot and will wear out quicker. Keeping it out of overdrive will
    pump the transmission fluid through the transmission cooler quicker and
    help keep the transmission cool.


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