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Old 10-17-2008, 10:00 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Unhappy changing my transmission oil

hey guys of this great and useful site i was wondering if anyone has a link on how to change the mdx trans mission oil i'm gonna do it myself for the first time so i'm looking for any help possible i would greatly appreciate it to the fullest.
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Old 10-17-2008, 10:34 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: changing my transmission oil

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Originally posted by acuramdx718
hey guys of this great and useful site i was wondering if anyone has a link on how to change the mdx trans mission oil i'm gonna do it myself for the first time so i'm looking for any help possible i would greatly appreciate it to the fullest.
midnight's faq is a good place to start. The search function still sucks.

http://www.acuramdx.org/forums/showt...threadid=31409
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Old 10-18-2008, 06:02 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Yea, there was a decent link once, but I cant find it. Its not in my FAQ. Damn u search.
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Old 10-18-2008, 07:41 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Talking Here's how....

Look on the driver's side of the engine. To the right of the engine, toward the rear, you will see a plug labeled "ATF". This is the filler plug. It is NOT on the engine but on a "shelf" to the right of the engine and toward the rear of the engine compartment. You might hahave to lean in a little to see it but once you do you can't miss it. It might also be marked by a white painted line on it from the factory. Under the car you will find another plug with a hole in it that will accommodate a 3/8" socket. It faces the left front wheel. Take the fill plug out FIRST. It may be a beach because they can be really tight if never removed before. The remove the drain plug. I usually replace the crush washers with new ones which you can get from a Honda dealer. Once you drain out the 3 quarts (that's all that will come out) you can put three new quarts in, which you can also get from the Honda dealer. Actually it's 2.9 but who's counting. Torque on the bottom drain plug is 36 ft lbs. Torque on the filler plug (top plug) is 33 ft lbs. Just take your time. It's a piece of cake. I usually do the 3 quart change at every-other oil change instead of doing the drain-fill-drain-fill-drain-fill routine. Always use the Honda ATF-Z1 fluid. It's what they designed it for and they know best. That should do it. The first time you do it with the money you save you can purchase the shop manual for all the other fuild changes and inspections, and you will become "one" with your car. Let us know how you do.
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Old 12-30-2008, 02:38 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Unhappy Can't find fill plug

Hey guys,
I'm no stranger to working on cars, but I cannot locate the fill plug for the transmission. The only thing that I find near where you describe is this bolted on fluid line (I will attempt to attach a pic of it - using a mirror to help see around the side).
Can you give me some landmarks close by this elusive plug?
Thanks,
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Old 12-30-2008, 05:30 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Unhappy Fluid color

Well, I resorted to the old fashioned way of filling the ATF: through the dipstick tube.
All went well, with the exception of the fluid color. The fluid was dark with only a subtle hint of red. Should I be concerned?
The tranny shifted smooth and all felt good, but I thought it a good idea to do some high mileage maintenance (114K).
Anyone else experience the "harbinger of death" dark fluid?
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Old 12-30-2008, 08:05 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Fluid should be just about see-through pink--even when drained. If it has a 'burnt' smell to it then I'm afraid you could be seeing some serious transmission problems in your near future.
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Old 12-30-2008, 09:00 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Don't let the color freak you out. ATF-Z1 fluid isn't even see-through pink when poured out of the bottle let alone after it's been in your transmission. As long as it doesn't smell burnt, relax ,drive on.
Your filling procedure is the easiest. A turkey baster fits perfectly into dipstick tube.

Here's a good write-up:

http://acuramdx.org/forums/showthrea...=turkey+baster
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Old 12-30-2008, 09:02 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Unhappy

I was afraid of that...
Also, I noticed a film of fine metallic particles on the plug magnet. I would expect that if nothing was done to the tranny until now.
I will stick my head in the sand and keep draining & adding new every few thousand miles until a catastrophic failure occurs.
Will the new fluid turn dark quickly if the end is near? Again, it rides/shifts great right now.
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Old 12-30-2008, 09:09 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Your jumping to conclusions.
The metal on the magnetic drain plug is normal if not excessive. That's why it's there...to catch any metal shavings. The color will be dark dark red when drained. Again normal condition.
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Old 12-30-2008, 09:10 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: Can't find fill plug

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Originally posted by 02MDXer
Hey guys,
I'm no stranger to working on cars, but I cannot locate the fill plug for the transmission. The only thing that I find near where you describe is this bolted on fluid line (I will attempt to attach a pic of it - using a mirror to help see around the side).
Can you give me some landmarks close by this elusive plug?
Thanks,
I believe what you are showing is the oil cooler line that was put on the recalls back in 03. It's purpose was to add librication and colling to the second gear. This means you have one of the early transmissions. With the oil line mod you need to fill through the dipstick.

My 02 had this recall done early in it's life and subsequently the transmission failed and was replaced with a re-manufactured unit by Acura under warranty.

The remanned tranny has the mods internal so the oil line is no longer required.

If you are not having problems then just be sure to change the fluid often and maybe it'll go a long time...maybe not. There seems to be nothing you can do to prolong it beyond normal maintenance.
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Old 12-30-2008, 09:16 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Cool

Thanks for the reply & link Skoobahead.
I have renewed confidence! Yes, I used genuine Honda ATF-Z1,
There are some interesting funnel ideas there
"Necessity is the mother of invention!!"
These guys change the ATF like 3 or 4 times in a row to clear out the system (i guess?).
I suppose I should do the same, but the fluid is very expensive at $8.00/qt and 4 qt/change = $96.00 for a 3x change routine. Yes, a new transmission is 50X that cost. I guess if it's recommended to flush it thoroughly... so be it.
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Old 12-30-2008, 09:36 PM   #13 (permalink)
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MidnightMDX has a good philosophy which I also follow:
I change the trans fluid at every other oil change instead of the 3X drain and refill. It numbs the price of ATF-Z1 a little.

I don't know if all this draining helps but it's about all we can do as owners of this high failure rate transmission.
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Old 12-30-2008, 10:09 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Skoobahead
Your jumping to conclusions.
The metal on the magnetic drain plug is normal if not excessive. That's why it's there...to catch any metal shavings. The color will be dark dark red when drained. Again normal condition.
True about the drain plug. The first time I changed mine (at 30K) there was a significant buildup of particles, but as stated that's why they do it. Second and third times there were hardly any particles. Of course, I also just had my whole tranny replaced, FWIW.

As for the color, even used fluid should have the pinkish hue. It will look dark in quantity (especially against the black plastic of most drain pans), so the best place to look is on the clean rag after you wipe off the dipstick. That should look pink with minimal/none blackish color marks rubbing off.

Another trick is to take a piece of quilted paper towel and drop a few drops on the towel from the dipstick. If it absorbs into the towel the fluid is still good. If it remains *on* the towel as a drop, then you've got problems.
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Old 07-25-2009, 11:44 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Hey, just changed mine and made the mistake of taking the wrong drain plug out. Since there isn't a picture of the drain plug in this thread, here's mine. It shows the one I took off by mistake and the correct one. Everything else went smooth, thanks to the OP.

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