Transmission or a smaller problem

My 2005 ford taurus recently started to seem like the automatic transmission is going out. Every time I shift into second gear it jumps, unless I ease on the gas. And the other day I noticed 3rd gear is idling way to high almost 3000 rpms before it shifts to fourth. A buddy that I trust as a mechanic says it could be the transmission solenoid?? Is this expensive or a hard job to do? Also does anyone think it is just the tranny going out?

Hard to give an exact diagnosis, but you should IMMEDIATELY go to a good INDEPENDENT (not a chain) transmission shop for an evaluation. Most cars are scrapped these days because of failed engines or trransmissions. It starts with small slippage which the owner IGNORES, and in view of the age and value of your car could total it if you keep driving it.

weird?? the high reving in third gear has stopped??? I changed the transmission fluid and filter two days ago and the high reving has stopped? Could it be the fluid was old because it was nearly black not red when I drained it?

Black transmission fluid is certainly a sign of problems - either the transmission is wearing badly, or it has been neglected and is WAY past due for replacement.

I do a change about every 24 months. It costs very little to do it yourself, and provides a LOT of protection.

If you’re lucky, and you were just neglecting it, the damage may not be too severe. A family member got 7 more years after neglecting a transmission on a Crown Vic before the car died from an engine that was neglected (3 year old oil, low oil level, lots of moisture mixed in with the oil thanks to only doing short hops). Transmission never caused a problem once they started maintaining it.

Yeah, with automatic transmissions you really need to follow the instructions for periodic service. Change the fluid, replace the filter and vacume valve, and have the bands adjusted on a regular basis according to the owners manual and they will last a lot longer with less problems than if you just drive them till they break. Who knew?

thanks a lot these were big helps!

Do any transmissions still have band adjustments? The last one I had was a 3 speed torquflight on a 92 Plymouth.What is a vacuum valve ?