Acura MDX SUV Forums banner

1 - 8 of 8 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
We're in the process of replacing the radiator preemptively before something fails. Turns out, the transmission cooler was installed aftermarket, is not heavy duty and not routed through both the cooler and the old radiator. I just had a discussion with our mechanic. His suggestion was to go ahead and route it through the radiator now for maximum cooling since we've moved to the desert where the average temperature exceeds 110*F (120-125*F some days) for multiple months in the summer. If it was an ideal world I'd switch to a heavy duty cooler and still bypass the radiator but it's not in the budget right now. His suggestion makes sense to me. Any thoughts?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
What did you end up doing?
We replaced the radiator and had our mechanic route the existing cooler through the new radiator as he suggested. For the limited use the car sees that should be good enough. Most of the time it's remaining in the garage and we use our 2008 Prius.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14 Posts
Ahh I see, thanks for the update. Other posts scared me enough to order an aftermarket ATF cooler. My shop quoted me $700 to replace the radiator and at 110k I think it should be good for a while. Fingers crossed the rad stays good until I can tackle it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,354 Posts
Just FYI: The thing inside the radiator is an ATF WARMER not a Cooler. For desert weather you by pass it, Not add it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Just FYI: The thing inside the radiator is an ATF WARMER not a Cooler. For desert weather you by pass it, Not add it.
At the time I misunderstood that. From some really old Honda and Acura threads I've read since, though, the routing through the regular radiator doesn't provide relief in the way of additional cooling but it does help stabilize the ATF temperature. I can't say anything definitive about that; I'm not mechanically inclined when it comes to that type of thing.

We have already settled in to the MDX only getting one run of 12-15 miles at 45 mph each way once every other week and 1 trip of 240 miles each way once a month at 70 mph. I don't think that's taxing enough for routing to make a big difference For the most part we rely on our 2008 Prius delivering 45 mpg as our daily driver for shopping and doctor's visits.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,354 Posts
I live in the so-cali area,-baja Mexico so I´ve known the 120°F summers all my life and I always by-pass the warmer in my cars if possible, My TL-S (With a 3000lb ATF Cooler) has been by-passed for 10 years now.
My MDX (With OEM ATF Cooler + 5000lb Aftermarket Cooler in series) for almost 4... No issues whatsoever and I did it primarily for off roading which I do a lot in baja, Those hill climbs in 1st gear for long enough would cook the ATF in no time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
I can definitely see bypassing it in those conditions. Ours was bought to use on regular, fairly flat roads at higher speeds primarily as a "bus" when we have visitors. I would have preferred a 2WD vehicle for that but my wife fell in love with the MDX while we were looking for the second car. Even with some neat places to explore here I seriously doubt this MDX will be seeing anything off-road.
It might see a spring or fall trip to Colorado but that won't involve any off-road or slow speed climbing either.

Is it pretty safe to say this "expert" at etrailer.com doesn't understand the MDX design too? Either that or he's just doing a poor job of interchanging "radiator" and "cooler" without specifying which radiator he's referring to. It seems to imply that there IS some additional cooling provided by the regular radiator in addition to the initial warm-up.


I think I'll check with my mechanic again about bypassing the radiator anyway.
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
Top