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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Re: 94 explorer transmission modulator question

I went ahead today and replaced the transmission modulator on my 1994
EB 4x4 Explorer. Thanks to help her I was made aware of a service
panel on the floor above the transmission.

I removed both front seats and the center console. I then pulled back
the carpet on the passenger side starting from the passenger foot area
until I had enough back to expose the center area where the service
panel is. The service panel is merely a metal plate about the size of
a 8.5 x 11 piece of paper.

I was then able to reach down to the transmission on the right side to
address the modulator replacement. There is not a lot room. Just
enough room to get a small 10mm wrench in to remove the 2 nuts. Once
the first nut was removed I was then able to push back the heat
shield. The second nut removed the stud from the transmission and the
hold down flange that secures the modulator in place.
I then was able to merely pull the old modulator out....but very very
carefully paying close attention to the small metal pin approx. 1inch
long that acts as some type of push rod.

I cleaned the pin and put it in the new modulator and then carefully
installed the new modulator paying close attention to the pin thus
kind of holding the modulator up until the very last second before
being inserted into the transmission.
The new modulator popped in and was obvious when it was in position
because of the popping/click noise it made when inserted all the way
in the hole.

Reconnect the vacuum line, screw in the stud down by the nut with the
retainer flange and then push the heat shield onto the stud and put
the final nut on.

Now place the service panel cover back in place and screw it down with
the 4 screws. Please note that when you are removing the panel be
careful not to pull up one side more than the other as you will bend
the panel making it not seal properly when reinstalled.

I performed the replacement and did not reset the computer. Maybe I
should have but I did not. I test drove the vehicle and noticed a
big difference for the amount of gas pedal that is required before the
transmission will downshift ..even when going up hill slowly the
transmission shifted effortlessly without having to give more pedal
pressure to cause the downshift.

The symptom I was having that caused me to replace the modulator is
The transmission will not go into overdrive until a lot of time has
passed or I put the transmission in neutral while driving down the
interstate and revving up the engine and then putting it back in D and
after a second or two the transmission will go into overdrive.
I have noticed that my explorer tachs real high which I attribute to
the lack of overdrive. Even driving around town I am experiencing the
high rpm even though the transmission is in D.

I will take the vehicle out on Sunday and see if the modulator solved
the overdrive problem or not.

Thanks everyone.... I will post an update about the overdrive.

Sam Cederas
Raleigh, N.C.

Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Re: 94 explorer transmission modulator question

Well like I said in the previous post I had a chance to test drive the
explorer after replacing the modulator valve on the transmission.

I noticed a difference with the overdrive but something kept on
telling me that the overdrive was not working like it should and even
though the overdrive is coming on...I felt like something still was
not quite right.

Well today I decided to replace the transmission fluid and filter
because after thinking about it...the last time the fluid was serviced
was by a jiffy lube type place that pumped in new until what came out
was clean looking. This did not replace the filter and I forgot about

Well what a bitch to get the pan to drop off the tranny. The
catalytic heat shield was a pain in the rear to deal with but I
eventually got the pan off being extremely careful not to mess with
the integrity of the pans mating surface, etc.

The bottom of the pan was not very dirty at all in fact only had a
slight residue on it. I cleaned the pan until spotless and cleaned
the mating surface on the tranny and the pan.

I removed the old filter and was utterly shocked to see what was left
inside for a screen..virtually nothing. There was a trace of the
screen left with the rest being a gaping hole. The filter was
definitely damaged and probably clogged inside.

The old filter had a spout type assembly that hangs on the bottom of
the pickup acting like an extension of the pickup hole on filter. I
was not able to remove that and the new filter did not come with the
one. I had no choice but to install the new filter without any
extension coming down from the pickup hole. Just a slight 1/4 inch
spout comes down from the pickup hold on the new filter.

At this point I had been working on this for 1 hour. I was making
sure I took my time and walked away several times frustrated to take

In order to keep the gasket in place during installation I put the
gasket on and screwed the screws through the holes in the gasket which
were slightly smaller than the holes in the pan. The gasket hole
sizes were perfect thus allowing enough tension with the screw being
screwed in to allow me to turn the pan around and put it up to the
mating surface without any screws moving. I was then able to hand
screw each screw gently with using the torque pattern (criss crossing
inside outside, etc.) until I felt a tiny bit resistance.
I then proceeded to torque each one down in sequence to specified

I then tried to get the heat shield to snap back onto the pan however
I was unable to negotiate that. I ended up leaving the heat shield in
place without it snapping around the pan. I will do it at some other
point but for now no vibration noise and it is working like it is
supposed to.

I then added fluid ran the engine..added fluid, etc until complete.

A drive home from the location I performed this maintenance provided
me with extreme pleasure. The transmission now functions like it did
years ago. I consider my transmission endeavor to be complete now. I
can now focus my attention on replacing the A/C hose and/or installing
manual hubs.

Anyway I thought I would post my results here as others have done.

Thanks to all who replied to my posts and ones in which I stumbled
across via google search.

Sam Cederas
Raleigh, N.C.
94 EB Explorer 4x4
165k and going....

Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Re: 94 explorer transmission modulator question

Congrats, Sam.
A job well done is worth the aggrivation.
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