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my two 1989 ford f150s both have reverse and first but no other gears. both have the aod. I replaced the one transmission and same results could it be the torque converter? I am stumped.
 

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It wont up shift if the throttle valve cable is not adjusted correctly.
 

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Where the cables attach to the throttlebody there should be a u shaped plastic piece holding a grooved end of the cable.when you remove the clip it will move because it is spring loaded but try moving it little by little and see what happens.Drive normally and see if it will shift.
 

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i thought that was for the downshift into OD action. it should upshift on it's own. i've had to do that in my 89 crown vic, without a cable for a few weeks, and it worked just fine, but no passing gear... was the filter changed in either trans?
9/10 times when someone changes the filter and bolts the new one in they over-torque the filter in, and bend an up-shift tab in the valve body. it causes this problem you're having... if it were the torque converter, it would fail to work at all. had that problem too...
 

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It was my understanding tv pressure had to pass line pressure to allow an up shift.I may have that backwards I have not done a tranny in over 10 years longer for an aod.
I do remember not having it set correctly and it not upshifting or a late upshift.
 

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it could be the late upshift, but i do remember mine shifting. the TV cable is just like the old kickdown rods, but adjustable...
 

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question

my two 1989 ford f150s both have reverse and first but no other gears. both have the aod. I replaced the one transmission and same results could it be the torque converter? I am stumped.
What are the odds that you will have two 89 fords with the identical problem? can you give more info? You said you replaced the one, with what, the other? or another trans?
 

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I had replaced the transmission with a working one. I saw it run and it shifted fine... I put that transmission in but with the old torque as the motor was seized in the one I took the transmission out of. I have two fords identical and they both seem to be the same problem. the fluids look fine and it does nt shift manually either. I did not change the filter on the valve body and I cant imagine three fords having the same problem... I havent tryed the throttle valve cable but wil.. if it doesnt remedy the problem I dont know.. I dont imagine a new transmission will be in the forcast lol
 

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by the way I havent even tryed to fix the one truck just the one I replaced the tranny in... I have done two tranny changes in the one truck and its the same problem both times...I amm growing tired of changing trannies however there must be some reason for it not to shift into a higher gear. I do know there is a round transmission plug in but I dont see it being an electronic shift...I assume it could be the valve body yes however I cant see it in 4 different transmissions....I blew out the cooler lines and I have done a proper change with the correct oils... I did not change the filter in the last trnsmission I have in the truck currently tho and havent opened it up.
 

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unless the bands need to be adjusted...
 

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it could be the late upshift, but i do remember mine shifting. the TV cable is just like the old kickdown rods, but adjustable...

I had the understanding that the throttle valve cable also controlled line pressure. The kickdown rods provided an automatic forced downshift with little regard to governor speed.

Removal of the throttle valve cable will greatly shorten transmission life. I made the same assumptions you have made when I was younger and then would up replacing the transmission after only a mile of driving.
 

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Hey there Trusty Ol Ford,

I am confused at this end by your statement below:
I had replaced the transmission with a working one. I saw it run and it shifted fine... I put that transmission in but with the old torque as the motor was seized in the one I took the transmission out of.
I am understanding it to mean, you used the tranny off the vehicle with the seized engine but am unsure how you saw it run and shift fine?


The TV Cable is a possibility and I am attaching adjustment instruction for an ‘89 fuel injected (as you haven’t specified your engine type).


Thinking out loud, the Shift Linkage setting is also critical for proper operation of the transmission and could also possibly be your problem, which is why I am also attaching the Shift Linkage Adjustment instructions.

If the TV Cable and Shift Linkage adjustments do not correct your issue, perhaps instead of another swap you might want to consider an overhaul and replacement of the Torque Converter.

Hope this helps.

Sidebar Note: Forward clutch failure was common in the AOD transmission as well as Torque Converter issues.

THROTTLE VALVE CABLE ADJUSTMENT
AOD Transmission With Fuel Injection


ADJUSTMENT WITH ENGINE OFF


  1. Set the parking brake and put the selector lever in Neutral.
  2. Remove the protective cover from the cable.
  3. Make sure that the throttle lever is at the idle stop. If it isn't, check for binding or interference. NEVER ATTEMPT TO ADJUST THE IDLE STOP!
  4. Make sure that the cable is free of sharp bends or is not rubbing on anything throughout its entire length.
  5. Lubricate the TV lever ball stud with chassis lube.
  6. Unlock the locking tab at the throttle body by prying with a small screwdriver.
  7. Install a spring on the TV control lever, to hold it in the rearmost travel position. The spring must exert at least 10 lbs. of force on the lever.
  8. Rotate the transmission outer TV lever 10–30°and slowly allow it to return.
  9. Push down on the locking tab until flush.
  10. Remove the retaining spring from the lever.
SHIFT LINKAGE ADJUSTMENT Shift Rod


  1. With the engine stopped, place the transmission selector lever at the steering column in the D position for the C6 or the D overdrive position for the AOD and E4OD, and hold the lever against the stop by hanging an 8 lb. weight from the lever handle.
  2. Loosen the shift rod adjusting nut at the transmission lever.
  3. Shift the manual lever at the transmission to the D position, two detents from the rear. On the F-150 with 4WD and Bronco, move the bell crank lever.
  4. With the selector lever and transmission manual lever in the D or D overdrive position, tighten the adjusting nut to 12–18 ft. lbs. (16–24 Nm). Do not allow the rod or shift lever to move while tightening the nut. Remove the weight.
  5. Check the operation of the shift linkage.
 

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