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It seems that there is a huge problem facing Acura owners who follow Acura recommendations and service requirements. Acura Dealers are ignoring the service manuals and bulletins from Acura regarding transmission drain/fill. They either want to do a 4x drain/fill or worse..... a flush under power, with BG ATF, and BG additives (every 30,000 miles). They are not just offering this as an option, they are falsely claiming that Acura recommends it.

Acura/Honda is very clear.... 1x Drain/Fill with Acura fluid only. Never use a non-Acura ATF fluid. Never use an ATF additive. And, never, ever perform a flush. Acura even states that you should not go to any dealership that tries to sell you these services. They void the warranty and can cause serious problems. Additionally, with the BG flush, dealerships are telling customers to ignore their maintenance minders.

Be vocal..... tell Acura dealerships that they will lose your business if they stray from Acura’s recommendations and requirements!
 

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I have +420,000 miles between my three Acura's and stuck with 1X drain/fill AT service at the dealership every 30K for around $100. Zero issue with my AT (06 TSX, +148K, 08 RDX +153K, 11 MDX +118K).
 

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175,000 miles on my MDX..... 1xDrain/Fill when the maintenance minder tells me. Runs perfect. Acura engineers vs dealerships with no expertise...... Acura engineers win.
 

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Been following Maintenance Minder on all my Acura/Honda’s for years with no issues every. Everyone one had 125K - 150K when sold. I do add PS and brake fluid flush to the service around every 30K because Honda doesn’t have that in the MM.
 

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My Acura tech said the Power steering fluid was lifetime. I think their definition of lifetime is leasing/owning an Acura for 3-5 years.
 
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I would replace power steering fluid (for those vehicles that have it) every 2-3 years.

Not an issue for the 3rd gen, however.
 

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Brake fluid is every three years (owner’s manual). I have one Acura dealership that I trust pretty well (Gettel Acura - Sarasota). They also told me PS was lifetime. I did change it at about 165,000 miles. Figure I’ll start doing it every three years with the brake fluid. It was cheap and easy. I bought the PS fluid from a Honda dealership and did the baster method. The fluid was dark, but to be honest.... I can’t tell the difference in driving. Then again, I didn’t have any issues, just thought I’d be proactive.
 

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These dealerships pawning these flushes/trans additives etc off of customers should be reported, all Acura has to do is send in a ringer for service, and they would be exposed.

I’m thinking Acura doesn’t have much leverage in the franchise agreements if they are allowing this to happen.
 

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Acura won’t do anything. It’s a symbiotic relationship. Dealers need Acura, but Acura needs dealers, too.

Ultimately, consumers need to be smarter and accept that the service advisor is a sales person. Consumers need to make the effort to understand what their vehicle needs, and have the backbone to tell the service advisor what they will (not) accept.
 
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Acura won’t do anything. It’s a symbiotic relationship. Dealers need Acura, but Acura needs dealers, too.

Ultimately, consumers need to be smarter and accept that the service advisor is a sales person. Consumers need to make the effort to understand what their vehicle needs, and have the backbone to tell the service advisor what they will (not) accept.

This statement is right on. Besides SUVs Acura's new car lineup is pretty bad. Service and used vehicle sales is how many dealers are surviving.
 

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My dealer has never tried to sell me anything but a 1x drain/fill which I did every 30k miles. However I had some weird shifting (fluttering TC) around 100k miles so I did a 3x drain/fill and that fixed the fluttering. I'm not sure a 1x is enough on these.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
BMW, Infinit, and others are “lifetime” fluids. Basically, it comes down to what one defines as lifetime. With Acura, the drain/fill extends what I think competitors would define as lifetime. 175,000 miles, and my MDX runs just as good as the day I drove her off the lot in October, 2009. The transmission has been flawless. My gripes would be the HFL unit draw which I experienced. I believe it led to a failed alternator and a dead battery. HFL was an easy fix. My other complaint is Acura cheating out on the side of the seats. My driver seat side has cracked. Other than those issues, my mdx has been rock solid.
 

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My dealer has never tried to sell me anything but a 1x drain/fill which I did every 30k miles. However I had some weird shifting (fluttering TC) around 100k miles so I did a 3x drain/fill and that fixed the fluttering. I'm not sure a 1x is enough on these.

@skinny2, I was wondering if you did the 3 drain / fills back to back in succession or how many miles apart?

Also, what is your mileage now?
I noticed some TC fluttering at around 138K, and was wondering if your method might fix my intermittent TC fluttering as well (around 33-38 mph)?
 

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@skinny2, I was wondering if you did the 3 drain / fills back to back in succession or how many miles apart?

Also, what is your mileage now?
I noticed some TC fluttering at around 138K, and was wondering if your method might fix my intermittent TC fluttering as well (around 33-38 mph)?

I did some short drives in between each drain/fill. I probably drove 5 miles total..mix of slow speeds and 55mph. I'm at 120k miles now...so it's been normal now for 20k miles.



Changing the fluid can only help. Whether it does or not is hard to say with your issue but it's where I would start. It's not expensive and easy to do. Just make sure you use the correct fluid. I bought quarts at the Honda dealer which was probably the most expensive route but it was convenient.
 

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After each gravity drain and fill, you should keep your foot on the brake pedal while you shift into each gear, then repeat.

Next manually shift as you drive, starting at its lowest gear and slowly drive up to 2500 rpm.
Shift to the next gear and slowly drive up to 2500 rpm.

After you've driven in all the gears, including reverse you need to let the tranny shift, by itself.

Put it in drive and slowly speed up and feel each shift.
The tranny will shift in to its cruising gear around 4200 rpm and the rpm will drop.
Find a parking lot and back up about 100 feet.

It's ready for its 2nd gravity drain and fill.
 

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@skinny2 Thanks. It seems with routine 30k mile drain & fill as @mrgold35 mentioned and, regular drain & fill as you've mentioned, AT seems quite reliable.
Thanks to both for sharing the info. Clearly, all MDXers can benefit from these tips.
 

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Plan on doing x3 drains / fills with Idemitsu Type-H Plus this coming weekend for both my '11 MDX and '06 Ody.
 
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