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Discussion Starter #1
Driving on highway at about 70 MPH on my way to work this morning, I noticed heavy smoke from under the car. I immediately thought this was the infamous coolant leak. I got off the highway at the closest exit and pulled the car to a parking lot. In order to drive this baby to a safe place, I literally pushed until the tranny was slipping and it died on itself. I spent $75 to have it towed to the closest shop. The manager called a couple hours later that the radiator needed to be replaced and all the flush/replace coolant and tranny fluid stuff. This is a repair shop, not a dealer. They are going to replace the radiator with a NAPA aftermarket copy. The total cost of all these is quoted at $920. My 2005 MDX is at 126,000 miles and I have been taking care of it very well for all the things that are expected to fail. The dealer did all the services at 100,000 miles two years ago. Radiator was the next one on my list to replace. Unfortunately, it came before I can get to it. Anyway, to summarize, the total cost for today is about $1,000.

If you are on this model and drive close to this mileage, it may be time to replace the radiator before it gets to you. Good luck and Merry Christmas!
 

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That's an awful lot of $$ for a radiator replacement IMO, have you checked for radiators on rockauto.com?


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Good advice. I have an 05 with 150k and plan to do this soon together with valave adjustment. Thanks for the warning and hope your MDX will be fine after the work is done by the shop. Merry Christmas
 

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The transmission hose attachment to the radiator blew right off while I was driving. The thread on the aluminum expanded or something. I had 174KM on my 2005 MDX. The tranny just stop working also. I guess due to lost of coolant and tranny fluid. I thought the tranny was gone for good. But it wasn't, there is a sensor to shut down tranny when it detects low on fluid. Any how I had my X towed back home. Took about 2 hours start to finish to replace New radiator and new tranny fluid. Total cost just under $300 CDN.

BTW you do not have to remove the front bumper to replace the radiator. I just remove the radiator fan. Slide the rad out and your good to go. Just have to be very careful. Very tight fit. I used flat cardboard to protect the fins on the new rad when you try to slide that back in place.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Back on the road again

The shop has a good reputation among several of my colleagues. They got it done quickly. Total cost breakdown - Radiator $285, Hose kit $64, Thermostat $29.5, ATF fluid $55.8, Radiator cap $12, Labor $400. Drove around today to various shops for last minute gifts. Had not run into any issues other than the coolant smell from the radiator failure.

Long way to drive tomorrow. Hope it will be okay.
 

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I had the same radiator failure in June. I replaced the radiator and drained the cooling system several times.There was no evidence of radiator coolant getting into the transmission after having done the drain and refill 4 times. I now have about 2300 additional miles on the car and the transmission seems fine, but there are still some traces of trans fluid in the coolant.
 

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AJS914 - yes, that's what a lot of people do. While the chances that any given car will experience the radiator failure that mixes your antifreeze and tranny fluid, it's cheap insurance to eliminate the possibility by installing an external transmission cooler. They're dirt cheap and not at all difficult to install.
 

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flooded tranni, 4 radiators in 3 months, still runs like a champ though!!

Thank you for the info i am considering the external tranni cooler.. I have an 05 Touring w 226,000 miles (still runs like a cadi, well maint.) except one issue i keep running into since i purchased about 4 months ago.. that vehicle.. since my day of purchase... has had 4 new radiators. At this point, as heartbreaking as it is, shes posted on craigslist, i've chased every issue, did all my research, replaced every other part, flushed every fluid, but i have to give up on this one for i believe due to the previous owner improperly installing an inner-cooler & un-installing before i bought the car, there's no saving this radiator failure even if i found the answer now.. Engine still acts like nothings wrong (these vtecs are something else man, never made a noise, never smoked, never stalled or died or broke down) however considering how many times shes overheated... as in hit the H as i was removing the keys.. i never let her "overheat" never saw a fume come from the hood.. I can tell there has been some internal engine damage not only from previous owners poor installation of a part that didnt belong on this precious beauty, but i now have a "slightly cracked head & blown gasket" ((this diagnosis is still being confirmed once re-diagnosed, somethings not right if its still my daily driver )) though its believable, my MDX has yet to experience ANY symptoms of a blown gasket or cracked cyl head.. so i guess well see :) Riding on radiator #4, each leak about every month. I love her but shes gotta go, the shops hate me because they have to warranty my labor :)))
 
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