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I bought a 2003 ZX5 2.3L PZEV Focus with 29k miles which drove very nicely. It had a slight oil leak and still had the 36k warranty so I took it to the dealership (Frontier Ford in San Jose). They said they had to pull the tranny to reseal it. Fine. 5 days later my wife picks up the car at closing time on a Friday evening. 1 mile from the stealership the O/D OFF light flashes and the check engine light comes on, and wife calls me. I told her to pull over and turn off the engine. Long story short after some talking on the phone she drives 2 more miles, I come over and sure enough the tranny shifts erratically and jerks. I checked the engine oil and tranny oil and they were both WAY OVERFILLED. I did the tranny check with engine idling, and tried it with tranny in Neutral and also tried it in Drive. Way overfilled both ways. Tranny dipstick was barely warm. It should read lower when cold, right?

So I drove it gingerly back to the stealership parking lot and left it there for them to fix it on Monday.

Are Ford dealerships THIS INCOMPETENT? They obviously didn't even TEST DRIVE the car.

Could overfilling the tranny cause this? I checked the work order and it shows several quarts of tranny fluid.

I was looking forward to enjoying the car.. barely put 20 miles on it since buying it.

Could it have permanent damage being driven 2.5 miles two times before being parked at the dealership?

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Jason C SBB said:
... I checked the engine oil and tranny oil and they were both WAY OVERFILLED. I did the tranny check with engine idling, and tried it with tranny in Neutral and also tried it in Drive. Way overfilled both ways. Tranny dipstick was barely warm. It should read lower when cold, right?
Right.
Are Ford dealerships THIS INCOMPETENT? They obviously didn't even TEST DRIVE the car.
Not all of them, but, yeah, apparently this one is. I've had roughly similar experiences at Honda dealerships, Toyota dealerships, Ford dealerships, Chrysler dealerships...
Could overfilling the tranny cause this? I checked the work order and it shows several quarts of tranny fluid.
Yes, I would say it is a definite possibility. Another possibility: pulling the transmission is a big job, generally entails dropping the "K" member and the whole powertrain drops out the bottom. Lots and lots of things get disconnected in the process. They may have missed re-connecting something. It's a fairly common goof. Not test-driving a vehicle after a repair of this extent is inexcusible.
Could it have permanent damage being driven 2.5 miles two times before being parked at the dealership?
I greatly doubt that.
 
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