ZF6 Will Not Pressurize Cooler Lines - Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum
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Old 11-11-2013, 01:22 PM
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ZF6 Will Not Pressurize Cooler Lines

Alright guys, this weekend I found myself sifting through old threads looking for an answer and couldn't come up with anything. So I'm hoping to bounce ideas off someone who has been inside this 6 speed manual tranny. I recently purchased a 2001 F250 and spent alot of time getting things back to par. In the process of an engine swap my mechanic and I realized this transmission is not pumping fluid. For 5K miles prior to my engine failing I regularly pulled a roughly 8K pound boat over a 300 mile round trip journey to the coast with no problems. But now that I know there is a problem I'm concerned. Since finding this issue I've made the same trip twice stopping a few times to check the tranny with a infrared thermo and the temp IS NOT spiking AT ALL. Not even on steep grades. My mechanic is telling me there is probably a pickup that is displaced or a pump failure but enough fluid is being moved internally to avoid an overheat. I'm hesitant to tear a truck down that's in operation; I need to know where to start looking for an issue before we proceed.

My apologies for the wordy description, tell me if specific info is needed. But otherwise what's are the thoughts out there?????
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Old 11-11-2013, 01:36 PM
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Forgot to mention when I opened the tranny cooler lines and saw they weren't pressurized. It was obvious they were actually BONE DRY. It was obvious fluid hadnt been present in either the out going or return line for quite some time.
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Old 11-11-2013, 10:15 PM
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The pump may have gone out. Your best bet is to pull the trans apart and check everything. That is assuming you do have fluid in it.
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Old 11-11-2013, 11:16 PM
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does it actually need to pump fluid to be properly lubricated? the zf5 of the same year doesn't have a pump or cooler lines. I would say that if you don't lug the transmission for an hour at a time you don't need to worry about it.

I think the cooler lines there are for guys running snow plows and work like that where the fluid doesn't get moved around much at low rpms.
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Old 11-12-2013, 12:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steve604 View Post
does it actually need to pump fluid to be properly lubricated? the zf5 of the same year doesn't have a pump or cooler lines. I would say that if you don't lug the transmission for an hour at a time you don't need to worry about it.

I think the cooler lines there are for guys running snow plows and work like that where the fluid doesn't get moved around much at low rpms.
The zf5 and zf6 are COMPLETELY different transmissions. the Zf6 is designed with a pump, and will overheat when the pump fails.

OP... check the fluid level if it's low fill it up a see what you get.
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Old 11-12-2013, 05:04 AM
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The fluid level is proper on this gearbox and has been on multiple checks. This transmission isn't losing fluid fellas. It's parked inside on concrete.

Schlutzer this ZF6 seems to be running an outer case temp of 170-173;as my first post mentioned that under an 8k pound load. I would assume the internals would be reapectively close to that. But i havent installed a thermocouple&gauge yet. I had the same thoughts as you about the pump being necessary. Any idea what operating temp range is for this box?? Also once inside, where is the pump located?? Based off where the lines go into the case it seems it will be in the gear case.
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Old 11-15-2013, 11:16 AM
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Bump. Anyone have any ideas where to start looking besides pump failure??
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Old 11-15-2013, 10:33 PM
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not sure if it a smart move ,but what about applying light psi through the "outlet" line and possibly jar what could be blocking it?
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Old 11-16-2013, 12:39 AM
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The zf6 isn't a transmission that you rebuild at home from what I've been told. That's why rebuild kits aren't really out there. Ask around a few tranny shops about them doing it until you find one that actually knows the transmission.

Put it this way, I'm getting ready to make a 5 hour drive across the border because I can't find anybody in Canada with the proper equipment to rebuild this transmission. And so far only a handful that do the 6 speed in the US.

I would assume that 170-180 is decent since ATF can handle more than that, much above 200 I would get scared. I can't say if the pump is just for cooling or how much of a role it plays in lubrication. But if there's no flow, you may have hot spots that are a lot warmer

I did a lot of research before doing the zf6 swap on my truck and the only failures I consistently found were smoked trannies due to bad pumps, and input issues due to a failed pilot bearing. Everything else I found was odd issues or one guy doing 4wd clutch dumps that twisted his input shaft
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