I'm thinking the pressure needs to be adjusted as it is adjustable and it does have 191,000 miles on it: It was shifting kinda hard and I replaced the filter and what fluid came out of the pan. (old stuff was pretty bad looking but no burnt smell) Replaced the fluid that came out and checked cold and warm and the car was shifting way better and I put 50 miles on it and it was shifting wonderfully now.
Drove the car into town a day later and it suddenly would not shift up out of first gear. Stopped and checked fluid and it all of a sudden needed two more quarts where it was fine (like all of a sudden something opened up after running fresh fluid and the convertor sucked up a ton of fluid it was lacking? there are no leaks and this is about two more quarts of fluid than what came out of it!). So I put the fluid in right then.
Still no upshift until about a mile later and then it was just fine all the way home. Started up car the next day and had to go about a mile until it would upshift and then it shifted great after that but does feel like softer shifts than any other escort I have had. If you get it up to say twenty in first and then put it in nuetral and then back into drive it will go straight into second or third (which ever is appropriate for the speed) and you can accelerate for about 5 seconds until it goes back to first (coasting mode, not a hard downshift as if you moved the shifter into 1). It does this until it suddenly decides to start upshifting and then it shifts just fine, no slipping in any gear which tells me the clutch packs are good and it stays shifting fine until you have parked the car and it has cooled down.
Now I just replaced the motor in it from my junky 93 (192,000 miles and runs like a top) that was a standard. I did not have the downshift cable adjusted but it does downshift fine (once it starts upshifting
) and it is moving freely. Soooo, I am thinking that I need to check and adjust the fluid pressure as it is adjustable and is used to change the shift "feel". Any thoughts out there or experience?