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01 Explorer dies in reverse only!

11-27-2011, 12:22 PM
I own a 2001 Ford Explorer and have had the regular wear and tear but this problem has me stumped. A few months back I had to change the auto body gasket because the truck would not go into gear. After doing this the truck ran fine, I also changed the tranny fuild and filter. The other day i went to back up into the garage and the truck stalled and died out. it started right back up and it runs fine in all other gears. (P,N, D, 1,2, 4x4 high and low) and the over drive is working fine. when the truck is cool and hasn't ran in a while i can start it and the rpms stay at about 1000 th 1200 and the reverse works great. Now when the eng. heats up to normal and i put in in reverse the rpms drop to about 4 to 500 and it stalls out and dies. I have cleaned the mass air flow sensor, the throttle body, and the IAC valve but still dying out. Im thinking it may be a vaccume leak or the IAC is bad and cleaning just wont do the trick. I have also read that it may be the back up light wiring that hooks to the tranny may be shorted out. im going to seafome today and check out the wiring. Anyone know of anythig elses that may be the problem? or delt with this before???:confused:

11-27-2011, 10:57 PM
How old is the battery? If it's more than 4 years old, it could be weak and causing the stall. Maybe the load form brake lights and backup lights, along with the low engine speed, is causing the stall. And just because the battery and charging system passes the test at the local parts store does not mean all is well.


11-28-2011, 07:28 AM
The battery is new and all the wires are fine. I replaced the iac valve and cleaned the reg valve. I even messed with the idle control and still stalling and dying in reverse. I haven't seen a vaccum leak and I seafomed the truck but still the same thing! Do u think the pcv could have something to do with this?? I will check the backup lights wiring but the lights work and so do the bresk lights....

11-28-2011, 07:38 AM
I'm trying to think of a correlation between everything working fine when cold but having the issue when warm/hot. The transmission fluid will expand a bit when hot, do you suppose there's a chance the transmission fluid is a bit overfull? I don't understand automatic transmissions well enough to know if that could cause an issue only with reverse, and I don't quite believe that could load the engine enough to drop the engine speed. Did you use the transmission fluid that the owner's manual calls for?

If the PCV elbow were bad that would basically cause a vacuum leak. Does the truck die as soon as you shift to reverse, or only once you start to move? What's the "auto body gasket" that mention you replaced? I suspect that's a typo, but I'm not sure if you meant "valve body", "throttle body" or something else.


11-28-2011, 06:07 PM
The truck did die at idle and while moving at first. After changing the ICA it still dies at idle but as long as i give it gas it will stay running, but as soon as i release the gas and hit the brake to stop, it will stall and die out. It kinda feels like when you drive a stick shift and your foot slips off the clutch, which makes me think it may be the to torque converter, but if that was the case wouldnt it be slipping or feeling funny in other gears? I talked to a friend of mine today and he said it may be a clutch plate in the tranny causing it. Im just not sure where to start. To answer your questions, the tranny fluid is fine and i couldn't get it at a better level if i tried, and yes autobody was a miss print, i meant to say i replaced the valve body gasket. ( On the after market part the gasket and plate are made together.)

07-15-2016, 11:23 PM
Did you ever discover the cause? I'm having very similar trouble.

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