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01 F150 5.4 won't reverse after newly rebuilt transmission

I have a 2001 F150 supercrew with a 5.4L engine, 110,000 miles. It is my husband’s daily driver for work. At the end of October, he started it after not driving it for about a week, and it wouldn’t go in reverse. It sounded like the gear engaged and the truck lurched, but would not move. We had it towed to our local mechanic, who advised we needed a rebuild, so we went ahead with it. Fast forward to today - the truck has sat for about a week, and when my husband went to go somewhere, he put it in reverse…and the exact same thing happened. It sounds like it engages, it lurches, but then will not move. Note: this is the first time the truck has sat this long since the rebuild.

I have a call into the mechanic, but am wondering if anyone has ideas for me. I’m frustrated that my $2000 repair resulted in the same issue a couple months later. The rebuild does have a 1 year warranty, but I’m starting to think the issue wasn’t the transmission in the first place.

Thanks for any advice in advance!

The brakes can rust into place sometimes. If you go forward big clunk? Then you can go into reverse?

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No clunk in drive. I’m parked facing my garage and only have a couple of feet of play, but it seems to go forward fine, but lurches then revs like I’m in neutral when I put it in reverse.

I presume this is an automatic transmission, right? And 2wd rather than 4wd? If automatic/2wd I think what I might do first w/this problem is disconnect the driveshaft and see if the transmission will go into reverse ok then.

Thank you for the reply! It’s an automatic, 4WD. Between the end of October when it was rebuilt and now, we haven’t had any problems, but now that it sat for a week, the problem is the same as the first time.

Since the transmission was a full rebuild, I’m stumped as to how the problem is identical.

Did you get any warranty with the rebuild ?

The original problem might not have been the transmission but something after the transmission, differential, brakes, driveshaft. That’s the motive for testing it with the driveshaft disconnected. It’s also possible it’s just a coincidence that the before and after-rebuild versions have the same symptom.

Thank you for the information. I’ll have him start with that when he tows it…again. :frowning: I’m hoping it’s not a ridiculous expense, given the $2000 I just put into it!

Another idea is they used the existing transmission solenoids for the rebuild, which is a common thing, and there’s a problem with one of those. Someone w/a Ford scan tool might be able to come up w/some clues.

Yes, a 1 year full warranty. It would be best if it is a solenoid problem, because the warranty should cover that. I’m afraid I’ll be SOL if it’s anything else.

The shop did say what broke that prevented no reverse before? You had forward gears before but only no reverse?

He said he thought the clutch had welded together before he looked at it (???) but never told me what he found on the rebuild. Unfortunately, I didn’t ask afterward what was wrong, since it was working again. Yes, I have drive, but no reverse.