$2500+ to fix my T-45 tranny issues!!?!?!? Need help!!!

Discussion in 'SN95 4.6L Mustang Tech' started by Craig Mack, Dec 4, 2003.


  1. Craig Mack

    Craig Mack Busted Buffing the Bishop Founding Member

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    My transmission in my '97 Cobra has been acting up bad. Here is a basic overview of the problems. My car has 46k miles btw.

    1)Horrible grind on 1-2 shift at mid-high rpm (i can feel the damn thing grinding all the time tho)

    2)Grind when going into reverse at a dead stop

    3)gear whine (some is normal i guess)

    Thats the basic overview. I'm really p!ssed right now. Ford did a "diagnostic" on it, and said I have a bad clutch/throwout bearing. There could "possibly" be a bad synchro regarding the 1-2 problem, but they don't know. Apparently all they do for the tranny "diagnostic" is look at the clutch. In order to take the tranny apart to find the actual problem, aka do the real diagnostic I was looking for, is going to be $900 in labor alone. $500 for the clutch, and hundreds more if its the synchro. It could "possibly be a bent fork". So basically, i'm looking at $1500+, payed $70 for a diagnostic that didn't tell me anything I DIDN'T already know, and have a POS tranny to boot. About the reverse issue, he says its normal for mustangs to grind when going into reverse, what the hell? My Maxima didn't grind, my friends mustangs and camaros don't grind. I HIGHLY doubt I am supposed to get a nasty grind when putting it into f'ing reverse. When he told me it would be $900 just to take apart the damn transmission, I laughed and told him I could get a rebuilt t-45 for that much or less. He and the mechanic told me a rebuilt one would cost me at least $3000. :rolleyes: :mad:

    Well, it appears that I just got :owned: by Ford. I'm out $70 and have learned NOTHING that I didn't already know about problems. :bang: I did not expect to have all these problems with a tranny that has 46k miles on it.

    So my question is, where do I go from here? I refuse to pay that much for what they would do. Please help me out here.

    :bang:
  2. fakefvc

    fakefvc Founding Member

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    Can't you buy a new one for less than that?


    Sponsored Ad

  3. Craig Mack

    Craig Mack Busted Buffing the Bishop Founding Member

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    You mean the tranny? A guy I know said he could get me a rebuilt T-56 for $1300, so I assume the lesser T-45 wouldn't be near $3000.

    :bang: :bang: :bang:
  4. inertia

    inertia New Member

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    i say get a new tranny for about $1,200-1,600 and tell that guy to take a hike! :fuss:
  5. Aaron 4.6

    Aaron 4.6 Founding Member

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    D&D was selling new T-45s for $999 as I recall...
  6. stallion98gt

    stallion98gt New Member

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    u need to look long term: what are your plans with ur cobra ?..if you wanna go S/C u will need a strong transmission..u might as well upgrade since you will change your transmission...I would get a T56 or something similar which can handle around 600HP...just buy a new one...drop the old one...replace with the new one...less labor than dropping/rebuilding /putting back...my 0.02... :shrug:
  7. ghost4.6

    ghost4.6 New Member

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    the first thing the grind in rev. is normal you have to either push the clutch in 2s and then go in to rev. or out in 1st or 2nd gears and then go to rev the reason is the t-45 does not have synchos in rev. and as for the grinding in the 1-2 try taking your foot put it under the clutch pedal and pull up on the pedal so it readj. and you can try and changing the trans fulid to a good syth.
    like royal purple
    red line
    gm synchromesh

    or spend 1600-2000 and swap in a tremec tko trans and that way it has the beef to put up with some real power
  8. Isaac-1

    Isaac-1 Founding Member

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    Thats what you get for going to the dealer $500 for what is probably a stock clutch, that is insane. You can buy a GOOD aftermarket one and have it installed for less than that. For that matter you can get a FRPP KIng Cobra clutch for about $160 - and about another $160 for install from a typical transmission shop. As totalcost the labor on changing transmissions, you have to remove the transmission from the car to change the clutch so there should be no additional cost involved. www.ddperformance.com sells T-45's for $1169 and T3550 for $1199

    Ike

    p.s. T-45's don't have synchros on reverse do tend to grind going into reverse, the solution is to first shift it into any other gear before shifting to reverse, this was "fixed" with the T-3650 on the 01 and newer GT's (with all the other problems with the T3650 I am glad I have a T45 though)
  9. Huck

    Huck New Member

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    Their analysis, though limited, sounds about right. The worn clutch could be causing most of the grinding, because it's dragging too much to let the synchros work properly, or it could be primarily the synchros cause your grinding on shifting. And they can't tell that without either taking the tranny apart, out of the car, or replacing the clutch, putting the tranny back in, and seeing how it behaves (a LITTLE cheaper if they're fine...a LOT more expensive if they're not, and the tranny has to come out AGAIN).

    They're telling you as much as they can 'til it comes apart. But labor expenses and parts costs are another thing. A dealership is NOT the place to get the best deal on repairs. On the other hand...they use Ford parts (much more expensive...maybe better...maybe not) and they work on Fords all the time. But then, most tranny shops work on Fords a lot, too.

    I'd shop around. But, other than getting cheaper (which they aren't going to do), they're being straight with you - it sounds like. I personally don't use dealers for much - don't trust them, for one thing, and don't like their prices. But then, I do most of my own work. Occasionally it takes me a long time (mostly due to lack of handy tools and an easier environment - crawling under a car and using hand tools is a lot more work than using a lift and all pneumatic equipment), and occasionally I f*** something up...but, overall, it generally saves me a LOT of money. And shop rates are generally at least twice what I get paid when I go to work...so I might as well do it myself. Even if it takes twice as long, which it USUALLY doesn't, it's like I'm paying myself. Of course, I'm also wasting my spare time. There are people that can do it better. But there are a whole lot of people that will do it worse, and charge me an arm and a leg for the priveledge. But if you don't want to do it yourself, you're pretty much stuck shopping for a reasonable garage you can trust. Good luck.
  10. stallion98gt

    stallion98gt New Member

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    :nice:..couldn't agree more than that
  11. PGreenSVT

    PGreenSVT New Member

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    The T45 is a piece of crap. It is well documented that there are problems with it crunching 1st to 2nd and 2nd to 3rd. I may be possible to aleviate some of the problems by not putting as much fluid in the tranny as it calls for. Tremec has a bullitin about that. They also have three new parts that are supposed to fix the problem and Ford knows all about that. If you're gonna do any serious driving or mods to your car do yourself a favor and dump it for a decent tranny. I have the same problem with the T45 in my 97 Cobra. Can't do anything resembling a quick shift from 1-2 or it crunches like a mofo. I'm saving for a viper T56 to swap into it. Till then I'm babying the POS.

    Just my .02

    Mitch :bang:
  12. ghost4.6

    ghost4.6 New Member

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    I think your thinking of the tr-3650 thats havinh those problems not the t-45
  13. mity2

    mity2 I like Pro3 and all I got was this crappy CT.

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    i think race prepped TKO is like less then that....
  14. Craig Mack

    Craig Mack Busted Buffing the Bishop Founding Member

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    Thanks for the responses guys. I guess I shouldn't have expected more from a dealership for $80. It just made me mad, becuase they told me everything I already knew, and then fed me BS about tranny prices. The mechanic deliberately said that T-45's would cost me $3000, after I told him I could find one for $900.

    As far as the reverse thing goes, I had no idea it had no synchros...that's kinda lame. But I can get used to putting it into reverse before I start the car, at least temporarily.

    The clutch....he said it was bad, but I have a problem with that, becuase it still grabs hard. I have ZERO slippage, and still bark loudly into second, and chirp third with no problems. Whether it be around town driving, WOT, or highway cruising, the clutch has gripped and engaged into every gear just fine.

    A part of the servicing was for them to check out my suspension too. It's really noisy, I get squeeks coming from the front end, and the rear axle. My struts are also making those dredded clunking noises. While I was at my SAT class, my dad went down to pick my car up. He forgot to mention the suspension, and they didn't even say anything about it. By the time I got to read their report sheet, they were closed. The sheet said NOTHING about the suspension, it's problems, or whats needed to fix it.

    I guess I learned my lesson, that you never take your car into a dealership for this kind of thing. I live in the Orlando area, and I know there are local Mustang shops around that could give me a much straighter answer, cut the $ BS, and help me out for real. It's probably what I should have done in the first place.

    But i'll say this...without StangNet, I would be screwed. It's basically my lifeline of information about everything Mustang. When I first started experiencing my tranny problems, I searched this site, and found that it was a pretty common thing in the T-45, and I went from there. Thank God for Stangnet.
  15. Ruffrider

    Ruffrider Founding Member

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    Just buy a Tremec 3550 and be done with it. Screw paying $2500 for the T45. It can't take a lot of abuse, and is too expensive to fix only to have to worry about it breaking again.
  16. ) y2kGT (

    ) y2kGT ( New Member

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    2500 to fix your.. that's insane.. New ones are cheaper than that ..

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