Re: 92 Explorer opinions
First i'd like to say the explorer is a nice vehicle if in good shape, The later95/6 models are much improved over the first models though, I've been waiting years for someone to ask me my opinion on the early explorers.
The transmission being only one of there problems.
As 351w, already mentioned, they dont drive good, they had frame problems that just seemed to cause vibrations harshness, and all sorts of probs. In the trade we call them the "exploder" with the 4.0leaker engine.
Every gasket on the engine is prone to leakage, valve covers, intakes, oilpan, rearmain cap and seal, possibly timing chain cover as well.
Heads do crack on the models up to 92, look underneath the valve covers at the right side of either head for that.
Radius arm bushings are usually worn, front balljoints prematurely rust then wear.
engine mounts ground out, i'll stop there.
These mostly were ford tsb's or recalls done on thousands of vehicles. Ford changed the tsb on the oil leaks several times, telling techs to use different sealers, and updated parts. If you get a engine that doesnt leak consider yourself lucky.
Listen for lower end noise too, caused by carbon on squish pads thanks to their feeble first intake gasket.
In 95 there were many explorers in the shop getting engine work done, i was so sick of resealing 4.0 engines that i took a year off and went to australia.
If the tranny is already slipping dont change the fluid at this time, it could be full of friction material that is still helping even though its not in the clutches.
Dont worry when you go to reseal the oil pan you will have to either take the tranny out, or engine to remove the pan, at that time you can have someone do the trans as well. Sorry, but i had to express myself, however i miss doing the radius arm bushings, they were a real moneymaker.