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SSM 46412 - PTU Idler Gear

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February 27, 2017 MANUFACTURER COMMUNICATION NUMBER: SSM 46412 - PTU
Components: POWER TRAIN, EQUIPMENT

NHTSA ID Number: 10095858

Manufacturer Communication Number: SSM 46412

Summary

SOME 2007-2016 EDGE/MKX/FLEX/MKT/MKZ/MKS/TAURUS/TAURUS POLICE/EXPLORER/EXPLORER POLICE EQUIPPED WITH ALL WHEEL DRIVE (AWD) AND BUILT ON OR BEFORE 30-JUN-2016 MAY EXHIBIT A TICKING AND/OR KNOCKING NOISE COMING FROM THE DRIVELINE AREA. TO IDENTIFY THIS NOISE, REFER TO WORKSHOP MANUAL (WSM), SECTION 100-04, AND FOLLOW THE SYMPTOM CHART. IF THE SOURCE OF THE NOISE IS IDENTIFIED AS THE PTU AND/OR INTERNAL TO THE PTU, DISASSEMBLE PTU ASSEMBLY. REFER TO UPDATED WSM, SECTION 308-07. IF THE PTU IS DETERMINED TO BE REPAIRABLE, UTILIZE KIT GB5Z-7P258-A (PTU Idler Gear Repair Kit, about $315) AND THE INCLUDED INSTRUCTION SHEET. FOR CLAIMING, USE CAUSAL PART 7P258 AND APPLICABLE LABOR OPERATIONS IN SECTION 07 OF THE SERVICE LABOR TIME STANDARDS (SLTS) MANUAL.

77 Associated Products
Vehicles
MAKE MODEL YEAR
FORD EDGE 2007-2016
FORD EXPLORER 2007-2016
FORD FLEX 2009-2016
FORD TAURUS 2007-2016
FORD TAURUS POLICE INTERCEPTOR 2013-2015
LINCOLN MKS 2009-2016
LINCOLN MKT 2009-2016
LINCOLN MKX 2007-2016
LINCOLN MKZ 2007-2016

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OK, so this is not an actual TSB, right? This is just a memo to dealer service departments letting them know the possible symptoms and course of action for a 'ticking and/or knocking noise'. Darn, I was hoping to get my PTU overhauled for free. Not that my Edge has developed a ticking or knocking noise.... but if you listen reeeeaaall close....

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Would a driveline clunk on accelerator tip in be caused by this? Dealer used to tell it is normal. It is similar to what rear wheel drive cars get when the rear diff had too much play.

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Same kind of noise we're experiencing. Sounds exactly as omar said, like a sloppy rearend gear. Ours seems to be while turning, slightly uphill, and during a downshift.

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It definitely could. The problem is the PTU is the distribution interface, so it can easily be a weak point. Good thing, it is clutchless, so there is that at least! Tho a clunk on acceleration I would normally favor a mount, engine or transmission.

Would a driveline clunk on accelerator tip in be caused by this? Dealer used to tell it is normal. It is similar to what rear wheel drive cars get when the rear diff had too much play.

This does sound more like the PTU. There are Ford-noted situations where these events occur on light cruise going uphill for example. But again, check the mounts for play, just to be sure. Mileage is not a good indicator if the driving conditions qualify for special operating conditions under the Ford definition. I know the roads in my area keep getting bumpier and rougher, so I don't expect suspension/body pieces to last as long as on the classic American road.

Same kind of noise we're experiencing. Sounds exactly as omar said, like a sloppy rearend gear. Ours seems to be while turning, slightly uphill, and during a downshift.

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Any information on the symptoms chart mentioned? Is it something I can follow to know if it is really the PTU?

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The section they mentioned is very generic, and deals more with the driveshaft & RDU than the PTU itself, sadly. I had looked through it, and disappointingly though not unexpectedly, there is little knowledge to be had there. I mean they don't even show you the insides of the PTU in the FSM, so what do you expect! For the transmission, they can bore you to death with all the clutches, gears, sensors, but the PTU, nothing nada zilch.

 

Noise Symptoms

Once a symptom is classified as a noise, the particular conditions under which the noise occurs need to be identified. These conditions are identified and verified during the road test. For example, a noise may only occur while turning. The next step is to determine which systems on the vehicle are related to that condition. In this case, the steering system and wheel/tire system may be suspect. After identifying possible systems, a preliminary inspection of these systems should be done. If the source of noise is still unidentified, use a listening device (such as the ChassisEAR) to pinpoint the source. Once the source has been identified, determine if this source is related to the suspected system previously identified. If it is related, then complete the repair to resolve the customer concern. If it is unrelated, then it is possible that the source of the noise is a reactor to a noise being transmitted through a transfer path. If this is the case, repairing the reactor will not resolve the customer concern. The transfer path must be identified and a determination made if the noise is normal, but accentuated by the transfer path (conductor), or if the originator is the fault causing excessive noise to transfer to another component through a conductor. There is a relationship between systems identified as related to conditions and the noise transfer path. In some cases, the condition under which the noise occurs has nothing to do with the identified source. This relationship is important in the diagnosis of noise concerns. It is the first clue that the identified source of noise might be a reactor and that further investigation is needed to diagnose a possible noise transfer path concern. Based on the results from the road test, make a determination of which action in the symptom chart to take first

 

Front end noise while driving vehicle
Front suspension REFER to Section 204-00 .

Drive axle or differential REFER to Section 205-00 .

Brake system REFER to Section 206-00 .

Steering linkage or gear REFER to Section 211-00 .

Transmission/transaxle Refer to the appropriate section in Group 307 for the procedure. Refer to the appropriate section in Group 308 for the procedure. GO to the Symptom Chart in the appropriate section.

Engine REFER to Section 303-00 .

Exhaust system REFER to Section 309-00 .

Body REFER to the Symptom Chart in Section 501-00 .

Rear end noise while driving vehicle
Rear suspension REFER to Section 204-00 .

Drive axle or differential REFER to Section 205-00 .

Brake system REFER to Section 206-00 .

Transmission/transaxle Refer to the appropriate section in Group 307 for the procedure. Refer to the appropriate section in Group 308 for the procedure. GO to the Symptom Chart in the appropriate section.

Exhaust system REFER to Section 309-00 .

Body REFER to the Symptom Chart in Section 501-00 .

Edited by WWWPerfA_ZN0W
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What this does say is that instead of having to replace the entire PTU there are now parts available to rebuild it. Big change from the previous Ford process.

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It also indicates there is a design change since it only applies to vehicles built before 30-June-2016.

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I guess now more than ever is the time to yank it out, get it opened up and check things out for excessive wear, and replace the thing with the idler if necessary. At the very least, it needs cleaned out and a drain installed.

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Now I'm really curious as to what's in the box with this 'idler gear' kit. Is it just a gear and a kiss on the cheek? Or is it all of the seals/deflectors/gaskets etc that will be needed to complete the job? Probability of ZappersLaw says it's as cheap and simple as it can be (you know, to Ford's $$ advantage).

 

If I'm going to yank this PTU out, I'd rather do it once instead of two or three times.


On that note, is it usually the idler that fails? Obviously sludge doesn't lubricate, but what exactly fails, and is an idler alone going to be enough to fix a not-yet-broken PTU?

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From the above communication:

 

IF THE PTU IS DETERMINED TO BE REPAIRABLE, UTILIZE KIT GB5Z-7P258-A (PTU Idler Gear Repair Kit, about $315) AND THE INCLUDED INSTRUCTION SHEET.

 

Note that it states "If the PTU is determined to be repairable", so this "kit" does not repair everything with the PTU. Also this communication is related to the knocking/ticking noise only.

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IIRC from the original PTU dissection posts, bearings and gears both fail, I would assume bearings go first. As to which gear/bearing goes most often, likely only Ford/Lincoln are in the know.

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Had my girlfriend try the local Ford dealership parts dept. today. I told her to make sure she took the VIN with her as they seem to always need it. Long story short, he input the VIN and the Ford P/N listed at the top of this article and he says that the part number does not cross/belong with the vehicle (08 Edge). So, what parts department do you all go through? I figured there would be an issue with this route. I really want to see inside the box and see what all comes with the kit.

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Anyone ever have experience with repairs or replacements or long term outcomes due to this? I'm chasing a clunk on accelerator tip in, pretty soft knock/clunk sound and getting more persistent. I can here it most of the time I go from reverse and into drive as well.

I have an old set of chassis ears, you know the alligator clips with microphones on them, put on the headphones and click between locations. It's absolutely coming from the PTU. If it comes down to yank and replace it would seem like the '17, '18 versions would be best and probably have fewer miles. I'm not opposed to repairing either, just looking for the best route when it comes up.  

 

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10 hours ago, Edge5280 said:

Anyone ever have experience with repairs or replacements or long term outcomes due to this? I'm chasing a clunk on accelerator tip in, pretty soft knock/clunk sound and getting more persistent. I can here it most of the time I go from reverse and into drive as well.

I have an old set of chassis ears, you know the alligator clips with microphones on them, put on the headphones and click between locations. It's absolutely coming from the PTU. If it comes down to yank and replace it would seem like the '17, '18 versions would be best and probably have fewer miles. I'm not opposed to repairing either, just looking for the best route when it comes up.  

 

 

Its not clear what year your Edge is.  PTUs are not backwards compatible. You have to get one for your model. 2007-2010, 2011-2014, 2015-2018 etc.  Everyone's financial tolerance is difference as well as their ability to make repairs etc. Personally I would not repair the PTU, I would replace it.  If you do replace/ repair the PTU now is the perfect time to install a drain hole.  A drain hole will infinitely make fluid changes easier.  We change the PTU fluid once a year or every 15000 miles.  With proper maintenance you should be able to get years of reliability out of it.

 

HTH

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My year is in my profile next to posts, but I see it's not on everyone's. Anyway it's a 2015 so 2015-2018 will work. The bulletin states: AND BUILT ON OR BEFORE 30-JUN-2016. I'm locating a lot of salvage 2018 Edge/MKX with 20K and under miles. F2GZ-7251-C

New best price is $682 with core. Used around $400. Not ready to pull the trigger yet, but I'll see how it progresses. FWIW I think my sound comes more from the PTU ring and pinion area. I had a few old GM rear ends that sounded similar.

Good advice on the fluid changes. My 2002 Escape XLT has over160K on the problematic CD4E and I'm sure regular fluid changes and flushes are a big part of why I still have zero issues.  

Edited by Edge5280
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So I lifted it and checked out fluid. Mine luckily has a drain, first service! Fluid came out darker than new, but clear. A dab of sludge on the tip of drain plug. Good I suppose for 40k miles. I'm trying to decide if the amount of play I feel and hear is just going to be part of the car now, kinda like some of the Dodge Charger owners are experiencing. Having a reference in degrees or whatever of ok/not ok driveshaft or wheel rotation play would be helpful. It wasn't there 10k ago. Hard launches, wheel hop maybe added some clearance to the gears in the PTU. Time will tell. 

VideoCapture_20200322-145002.jpg

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