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P1744 TCC Solenoid

new 5/04/2004, updated 01/16/2007


I really need some expert opinions here:

As you may remember, I had some problems with the SHO after I removed my SCT chip. One of them was a DTC P1744 for the Torque Converter not locking. Well, I bought a new TC clutch solenoid from Rock Auto, and installed it a couple weeks ago, hoping that's all it was. Well, the solenoid was definitely part of the problem. Now the car jerks when under mild acceleration or cruising at speeds above roughly 30 or so. It will jerk a couple times, with the RPMs jumping up slightly each time, until it finally settles down and the RPMs drop. The timing and the way the RPMs act leads me to believe that it's when the PCM is trying to lock the TC. 

My questions are these:
1. Is there any way to determine the cause of this (another bad solenoid, bad TC, etc.)?
2. What are my options for repair (full rebuild, or just minor parts replace)?
3. If the tranny is likely to fail, how long can I expect it to last roughly?

I just started a new job, and I don't have any money at this point, otherwise I'd just bite the bullet and rebuild the tranny without asking. I don't want to have to take out a $2k loan if I can just replace a part for a couple hundred dollars that will get me by for several months until I have the money saved up.

Daniel J. Holtman
Olivet Nazarene University
Department of Engineering

Sounds like the TC clutch or bushing is bad.

I'm afraid I'm not very familiar with trannies, never having taken one apart. I'm guessing the TC clutch and bushing reside between the TC and the transmission, and that replacement requires removing the tranny? 

Daniel J. Holtman
Olivet Nazarene University
Department of Engineering
I would get 1744's all the time, turned out to be the Torque Converter itself, the clutch inside the TC looked brand new after 50,000 miles of use. The seal/bushing has gone bad on one of my replacement tranny's but then to be honest, I think the shop replaced it when they rebuilt it. The bad seal/bushing is the one that will cause a lot of fluid to leak out at the bellhousing. There is another bushing that is made from nylon that Paul may be reffering to that is on the Pump Shaft made out of nylon or teflon that does not require removal of the transmission to replace and will also cause the 1744. Instructions are on the site for that operation. The TC and TC seal/bushing do require transmission R & R.

Carter Fuji
Latitude 35.23948924537855, Longitude -94.30673988764765
'97 ES Whoosh CarDomain Site
Supercharger Video Link 
Greenwood, AR
I'm not losing tranny fluid at least. I replaced most the fluid (8 qts.) and the filter when I replaced the TCC solenoid. Old fluid looked good and smelled fine. I replaced with Mercon V because I read a release from Ford stating that they recommend using Mercon V in all applications that had a Dexron III/Mercon specification.

Daniel J. Holtman
Olivet Nazarene University
Department of Engineering
Put the chip back in, its more then likely what held it together. The increase in LP will hold these together much longer. I yanked my Superchip just before carlsie 03 and at Carlise it blew up.

Sounds like you need a converter, converter seal and bushing and that does require removal. 

Kirk J Doucette
SCT Dealer

Haven't been on the list for a while, but always kept up with the website
great resource.

After paying someone else to read codes for me a couple times in the past,
finally bought a OBDII code reader today. The DTC that I have right now is
P1744, "torque converter clutch system mechanically stuck in off position"
according to my guide. I also read the TSB about this code on the website.

My tranny seems to be functioning perfectly, if anything in the past few
months I have noticed a harder 'jump' or firmer shift from 2-3 especially. I
did flush the fluid a few months ago, and recently I have cleaned the
intake, replaced PCV valve, etc. But no issues with the transmission at all.
Should I necessarily be expecting transmission problems with this code?

Any suggestions as to what to do/check next? I cleared this DTC but I am
assuming it will come back, maybe not.

W. Gordon Finley
97 ES, 78 k


Article No.

Publication Date: MARCH 30, 1998

FORD: 1996-98 TAURUS

Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) P0741 or P1744 may be stored in memory. This may be caused by the Powertrain Control Module (PCM) unsuccessfully attempting to engage the torque converter clutch 5 consecutive times. The torque converter clutch may not engage if one or more of the following conditions exist:

Stuck converter regulator valve
Stuck solenoid regulator valve
Stuck bypass clutch control valve
Worn pump shaft or damaged seals
Incorrect Torque Converter Clutch (TCC) solenoid
Incorrect or damaged internal wiring harness
Incorrect gear ratio

Refer to the following Diagnostic Procedure for details.

1) For DTC P0741 and P1744, perform Pinpoint Test "C" and refer to Diagnostic Routines 240 and 340 in Section 07-01 of the appropriate Taurus/Sable or Continental Service Manual.
2) Remove the transaxle lower pan and check for excessive debris in the pan.
3) Remove the main control cover and main control.
4) Check for pump shaft wear or damaged seals.
5) Inspect the main control for a stuck converter regulator valve and solenoid regulator valve located in bore "A." Refer to Figure 1.
6) Inspect the bypass clutch control valve located in bore "D." Refer to Figure 1.
7) Clean the main control and make sure all valves move freely. Do not sand, stone, or file valves or bores in the main control.
8) Inspect for the correct TCC solenoid. Refer to TSB 97-13-12 for TCC resistance.  9) TCC resistance should be 0.98-1.6 ohms for 1996-97 Taurus/Sable and 1996 Continental; 13-24 ohms for 1998 Taurus/Sable and 1997-98 Continental.
10) If the transaxle has been exchanged, refer to TSB 97-23-7 .
To verify the concern has been corrected, the drive cycle must be done at least 5 times. The PCM will not set a torque converter clutch code until it fails to engage 5 consecutive times.

My car keeps throwing that code... And it definitely keeps slipping.
Whenever I floor it, usually between 2nd and 3rd gear it slips past the rev
limiter to 8000 rpms and won't shift....


Most common problem I have had with this code is the transmission fluid overheating. If it does, you may see fluid bubble out of the dipstick tube and of course it might spill onto the exhaust manifold and smoke a bit. The first indication of the overheating should be the OD light blinking on and off. Contrary to what I have said before, this doesn't mean certain doom for the transmission, provided the reason it occurred is not repeated (towing a trailer, high speed driving, long uphill grades, etc.). I would however get it looked into. In some cases the solenoid which controls that function or the wiring harness for it inside the transmission can be replaced without the costly transmission removal can be done. Ignoring it however, will under almost all circumstances mean certain failure of your transmission eventually.

Carter Fuji


Thanks, I appreciate the feedback. I'm going to flush the tranny this week
for starters. Next step will be to get it looked into.

W. Gordon Finley

FYI - drove for about an hour and the code came back, so how do I know if
this is a 'hard code' or if the TCC is acting up just enough to trigger the

And any opinions will be appreciated; if my TCC is bad, should I fix it, or
should I replace the tranny entirely? If I can replace the tranny for $1500
why would I want to spend $600-$800 fixing just the TCC?

Still no real symptoms of problems, but possibly the car is not 'hooking up'
on the shifts the way it should be, maybe feels like it takes a little
longer to get full power or engage fully when it shifts. I assume that
might be one of the symptoms of the torque converter clutch going bad. (?)

W. Gordon Finley

Somebody correct me if I am wrong, but the TC clutch is the device that locks-up the TC once you have attained a relatively steady speed. If you take your foot slightly off the accelerator for a moment you will probably notice the RPM's rise as the TC clutch unlocks. This is the same device that on most cars causes the annoying rise and fall of 300 RPMs during the summer as the AC compressor kicks on and off while you are cruising on flat level ground at highway speed.
As I stated previously, letting it go without a transmission cooler on mine caused the fluid in the tranny to overheat since it was always under the friction load of the TC impellers, forcing it to expand to the point of coming out the dipstick hole and of course eventually burning it to the point of rendering the lubrication factor of the fluid to nil. That will hasten the failure of a few other expensive components inside the tranny. Your choice really, but I can assure you the TC removal cannot be done without the removal of the tranny and as long as the tranny is out it wouldn't cost that much more to have it inspected as nearly half the cost is involved with the R & R. Just my experience.
Carter Fuji
'97 ES Whoosh



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