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Old 03-23-2015, 08:18 PM   #1
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5.4 V8 problems

Recently I have experienced a problem after towing my 23MB for a hour or more at a steady 65 miles per hour. When I slow up or for traffic and then try to accelerate again, the truck shudders and shakes as if its in still in a high gear, and cannot get back to first or second. I'm worried that maybe my transmission is going out. It only seems to do this when pulling my trailer. The truck only has 34000 miles on it. Has anybody ever had this problem?
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Old 03-23-2015, 08:34 PM   #2
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With only 34k on the odometer, are you still under warranty? Could also be the engine not getting enough fuel. You may want to change the fuel filter. Check your RPM's the next time this happens to see what the motor is doing when it shutters.
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Old 03-23-2015, 08:39 PM   #3
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In your F150, in Tow Haul more can you manually shift through the gears? If so, as test, can you shift it into first or second. On my Chevy, in Tow/Haul mode on the column drive selector there are "+ & -" that I can manually shift the gears, never owned a F150 but I would think you have that too.

Are you the original owner? 34k miles on an '07 is very low, do you know the history of those miles. Any chance there have been previous transmission issues?
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Old 03-23-2015, 08:57 PM   #4
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I've heard of this. If your towing in OD, the lock up clutch is welded together. Early symptoms are the drivers side floor boards bake the undercoating, paint off because the trans is so hot. Pull the dip stick and smell the oil. Another strange phenomenon with the 5.4 is if you have a coil pack or two getting weak, it screws with the trans. shifting. Not sure why but seen it happen. The strange thing is there is no check engine light when I seen this happen.

As far as the motor itself, indestructible. I've owed two of them. Towed an overloaded Sunline up and down RT 81 for years running flat out, wide open for hours on end. When climbing Fancy Gap, the motor would see over 6,000 RPMs, never burnt a drop of Mobil 1.
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Old 03-23-2015, 09:08 PM   #5
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The truck is an 07 so it's outlived the five year warranty. I bought the truck new and I really have not driven the truck accept for weekend lake trips, and now to pull the travel trailer. I will check the rpms the next time it happens and try down shifting to see if it stops. It does sound like the transmission may be getting hot. I would not think the rpms are very high because its almost as if it's trying to die.
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Old 03-23-2015, 09:13 PM   #6
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I had a 5.4l f150. Mine did a similar thing. 1st time service engine soon light came on. Turned out to be failed spark plug. Second time is when I was traveling about 60mph on the freeway had a little hill to go up gave it more gas and really started to shake and felt like no power. Let of gas and give it gas again and promblem went away. Until the next time i tried to lay into the gas a bit happed again this time i had noticed service engine soon light was flashing. Lucky i had my bluetooth obd2 scanner with and plugged it in error code said miss fire cylinder 7. Problem did go away but had also service engine soon light went away too. But i was taking it very easy with it. Brought it into the ford dealer and they where able to pull a code for the miss fire even though the service engine soon light wasn't on. Here is what i found out. I had the spark plugs replaced with the boots around 100k miles. The spark plugs that were used where autolite plugs. I was told the 5.4l didn't like those plugs and i should use Motorcraft plugs.. another thing to add was that before i changed plugs the transmission felt like it was slipping but it just had to do with poor combustion of the engine. Ran great with new plugs unless the motor was put under load then those autolite plugs would fail.
My solution was to sell the truck and get one without spark plugs. problem solved. Hopefully this helps you.
Sorry about spelling errors etc.. I'm typing on a phone and too tired to proof read . hopefully what I typed makes sense.
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Old 03-23-2015, 09:28 PM   #7
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One more thing. I have never had the check engine light come on when this happens. Just to see what happens, I may run a tank of super unleaded when I tow the trailer this week. We are making about a 70 mile trip to the lake this week. Man I hope I can get this fixed. I just can't afford a new truck right now.
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Old 03-23-2015, 09:40 PM   #8
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I know this is a different breed, but my 05 Silverado did the same thing twice to me while out West last year. First time was in Salt Lake City after we had finished towing and Had unhooked the TT. It wouldn't downshift. After the first stop we made, got back in, it was fine. About two weeks later, on the Ohio Turnpike, same thing happened. I manually downshifted it and it downshifted fine. Worked fine until I sold the truck last year. The service tech I talked to at the dealership told me a shift solenoid was probably intermittently sticking. He said that shifting manually was OK. He suggested that I NOT bring it in until it did it more frequently, or permanently so they could isolate the problem. Anyway, he assured me that the transmission was not failing. Never had any SES light come on either. Hope yours is a simple fix. (I thought I was the only one that had these weird problems with a vehicle!)
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Old 03-23-2015, 09:47 PM   #9
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With 34000 there is a lot of life yet in the truck. If i was a guessing guy i would put my money on a coil on plug going bad or maybe a spark plug.

Fyi When my truck reached 115k it started to make a ticking sound which started out quit and started to get louder over the years. It turned out to be the cam phasers ticking. I never fixed it but got quotes between 1500 to 2500 to fix. The last mechanic i talked to said i could get another 100k with the ticking at least that was his opinion. Not sure what year they upgraded the cam phasers. Don't let any of this scare you the truck ran pretty good all and all. Just wanted to inform you about the things i learned about the 5.4l. The company i used to work for has a 2006 with 245k which they work pretty good. With only minor issues. That truck does sound like a diesel with how loud the cam phasers are.
Goodluck
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Old 03-24-2015, 08:46 AM   #10
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My 04 started doing the same around 36,000. Talked to the tech at dealer. he told me the Trans fluid has a friction inhibitor in it and it gets weak. Suggested I change tranny fluid. I did and it went away. Truck has 126,000 on it now. Had expensive plugs changed at 110,000. ($800). Still runs great, and expecting another 100,000. I would add that it could be a coil and boot. A check on a diagnostic machine would tell you which one is bad or weak. One thing it did was use some Sea Foam in the fuel tank to clean up carbon.
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