2002 Ford Escape Transmission Fluid Type, Please Wait

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I recently bought a 2002 Ford Escape XLT with about 160k (kilometres) on it, I am noticing the “shudder” when shifting you get to the higher speed but otherwise it seems to shift ok for the most part.I have no idea when the last time the automatic transmission fluid was last flushed/changed so I am thinking of getting it done.I have seen lots of talk of whether you can use Mercon V or not in these transmissions.I took a look today at the Auto Tranny fluid dip stick and on the top of it says to use “Mercon V”, does that mean the truck came with Mercon V originally?Should I go ahead with getting a flush done and putting in Mercon V? will that help that shudder issue when shifting higher up?I hope I didn”t buy a money pit here…

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I used Mercon V in both my Ford Contours, and filled a 98 Ranger, a 2000 F-150, my previous Escape and now my Mariner and never had any problems. In fact, the first thing I noticed the shifts were smoother compared to the Mercon. As for the transmission flush, that depends on if, and how often the previous owner changed his fluid. If it was never changed the torque converter may have dirt deposits the flush will knock loose which may plug up the transmission.


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Mercon V was reformulated a few years back. The original Mercon V formula was not compatible with early Escapes that came with plain Mercon and caused some pretty nasty things to happen. The new Mercon V formula is fully compatible and is a superior product to Mercon in all Escapes of all years. Mercon V is also what you use in the power steering system, NOT “power steering fluid”. Hope that helps and good luck with your “new” Escape. :wave:
When Mercon V came out I contacted an engineer at Chevron (I”m a former Employee) and asked his opinion on using it. He said it is a far better fluid than the Mercon because it is semi-synthetic. He gave me a list of problems the manufacturers were trying to solve and why so many changed their formulas. Because of all the new hydraulic control system tolerances they were having more problems with flow at low temperatures. Also the transmissions are running much hotter because they are making them smaller and working them harder.




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