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went to my local auto store and saw synthetic tranmission fluid for acura mdx,has anyone changed or used this type of fluid in their mdx.
 

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went to my local auto store and saw synthetic tranmission fluid for acura mdx,has anyone changed or used this type of fluid in their mdx.
So what is a synthetic oil for ACURA at local auto parts store and not dealer. For sure it does not say ACURA on bottle if it is for sale outside dealer.
 

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went to my local auto store and saw synthetic tranmission fluid for acura mdx,has anyone changed or used this type of fluid in their mdx.
I've been using Valvoline MaxLife Full Synthetic for years on my 2004 MDX. It does say it's suitable for Acura's z1 fluid.
 

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I'm waaay to much of a chicken to mess around with anything other than Honda/Acura ATF. Considering you only need to change ATF around 1-3 times on average during 150,000 miles of ownership, risk -vs- reward to too high on the risk side. It might be more of a benefit to put a larger trans cooler than switching to syn oil.
 

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i'am in canada..local auto store here is 'can tire' i checked the bottle it says replacement for z1 fluid.. ps just normal driving no trailer towing or anything such
 

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i'am in canada..local auto store here is 'can tire' i checked the bottle it says replacement for z1 fluid.. ps just normal driving no trailer towing or anything such
Z1 is the old standard for the fluid. The fluid needs to meed Acura DW-1 spec which is a fully synthetic ATF from Honda/ACURA. The canadian bottles clearly state synthetic on them!

You can buy a case from the dealer for around $90 which has 12 quarts, more than enough for a few fluid changes.
 

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For sure it does not say ACURA on bottle if it is for sale outside dealer.
I've seen OEM fluids on the shelf for sale at my local auto parts store. I didn't see any Acura labeled fluids, but I believe the store still had access to them.

Z1 is the old standard for the fluid. The fluid needs to meed Acura DW-1 spec which is a fully synthetic ATF from Honda/ACURA. The canadian bottles clearly state synthetic on them!
Actually, it depends on the year of the OP's MDX. Honda/Acura did not spec DW-1 until about 4-5 years ago. Yes, Z-1 is the old standard, but technically it still works. While the Z-1 fluid is no longer available, there are aftermarket fluids that state on their label that they can be used in a Z-1 application. A synthetic fluid should be better, but in some cases it isn't absolutely necessary.

I'm waaay to much of a chicken to mess around with anything other than Honda/Acura ATF. Considering you only need to change ATF around 1-3 times on average during 150,000 miles of ownership, risk -vs- reward to too high on the risk side. It might be more of a benefit to put a larger trans cooler than switching to syn oil.
After seeing how hard Honda and Acura transmissions are on the OEM fluid, I now prefer to change out the ATF a bit more frequently than the manufacturer's recommended interval. That's one thing that has prompted me to explore options other than the OEM ATF. There are a good number of aftermarket fluids that I would have no problem using over the Honda fluid in a transmission calling for Z-1. There are also a few that I wouldn't mind using over DW-1, but the ones I like cost more. I still plan to stick with DW-1 while under warranty, but afterwards I may look for something else. I was in the same boat as you about trying non-Honda ATF a few years ago, but after seeing people put more and more miles on aftermarket fluids without a hitch, I decided to give them a shot.

I think that an ATF cooler would help out a lot as well, but I believe a synthetic fluid would still offer superior protection over a non-synthetic. I think that synthetics hold up better to the localized high temps during clutch engagements, which occur far from the cooler. They are also more shear stable, allowing them to maintain their viscosity.
 

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I think that an ATF cooler would help out a lot as well, but I believe a synthetic fluid would still offer superior protection over a non-synthetic. I think that synthetics hold up better to the localized high temps during clutch engagements, which occur far from the cooler. They are also more shear stable, allowing them to maintain their viscosity.
I went thru 3 transmissions (in about 100K miles) on my 02 Acura TL using the Acura fluid...I'm not sure the brand of fluid matters as much as the transmission design (and it's flaws), maintenance, and how the transmission is used/abused.

My 04 MDX has a cooler. I change out the fluid every year with the Valvoline regardless of mileage....3 quarts drained, 3 quarts filled 4 times. So far, the transmission is solid.....I hope to keep my MDX (owned since new) for many, many more years......we'll see how it goes.....it's all guesswork.
 

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My $.02 is that the auto tranny is pretty sophisticated on this vehicle relatively speaking and to gamble on other fluids(boutique or not) isn't something I want to take a chance on especially since the OEM stuff has done good for the masses from daily driving in mountainous areas to towing for several thousands of miles. And considering this is something you only have to change out between 50k-100k depending on your type of usage, it's not a big ask or a big investment to use the more expensive/proven/specified OEM fluid IMO.

I have 5 other cars and they all have aftermarket or some form of boutique fluids(Redline, Amsoil, etc). However I learned that with more sophisticated and finicky transmissions like my BMW ZF unit, even aftermarket synthetic oils can play havoc on it in particular situations. I've witnessed it myself or else I'd still be using aftermarket synthetics on every car. Personally for the SH-AWD trannies and BMW ZF trannies, I play it safe and use OEM fluids.
 

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OEM stuff has done good for the masses from daily driving in mountainous areas to towing for several thousands of miles.
I suspect those with transmission problems were using the OEM fluid by default and followed the maintenance schedule just like I did with my 02 TL....I'm just not convinced it really matters what flavor fluid I use as long as the fluid is listed as suitable. Maybe I'm gambling but my bet is on keeping the transmission fluid cool and changed out often. The truth is I'll never know what's exactly the right thing to do because I don't have enough data.
 

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I went thru 3 transmissions (in about 100K miles) on my 02 Acura TL using the Acura fluid...I'm not sure the brand of fluid matters as much as the transmission design (and it's flaws), maintenance, and how the transmission is used/abused.

My 04 MDX has a cooler. I change out the fluid every year with the Valvoline regardless of mileage....3 quarts drained, 3 quarts filled 4 times. So far, the transmission is solid.....I hope to keep my MDX (owned since new) for many, many more years......we'll see how it goes.....it's all guesswork.
I suspect those with transmission problems were using the OEM fluid by default and followed the maintenance schedule just like I did with my 02 TL....I'm just not convinced it really matters what flavor fluid I use as long as the fluid is listed as suitable. Maybe I'm gambling but my bet is on keeping the transmission fluid cool and changed out often. The truth is I'll never know what's exactly the right thing to do because I don't have enough data.
I don't think there was much more you could do about preserving the transmission of the '02 TL, as that generation just had poorly designed and failure prone transmissions. The '04 and newer MDX models should be more reliable, as I believe they may have had some design updates. I think with your maintenance routine, the transmission should give you many more trouble free miles. You might be overdoing it, but it doesn't seem like that much more effort to do the multiple drain and fills over a single one when you do the work. At least you know you'll have fresh fluid in there without a worn out additive pack and a minimal amount of particulate matter floating around in there. If you really wanted some more data about how well your routine is working, you could always pull a sample of the used ATF during your next transmission service and send it out for a lab analysis.
 

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I don't think there was much more you could do about preserving the transmission of the '02 TL, as that generation just had poorly designed and failure prone transmissions. The '04 and newer MDX models should be more reliable, as I believe they may have had some design updates. I think with your maintenance routine, the transmission should give you many more trouble free miles. You might be overdoing it, but it doesn't seem like that much more effort to do the multiple drain and fills over a single one when you do the work. At least you know you'll have fresh fluid in there without a worn out additive pack and a minimal amount of particulate matter floating around in there. If you really wanted some more data about how well your routine is working, you could always pull a sample of the used ATF during your next transmission service and send it out for a lab analysis.
Yeah....I've considered sending a sample of fluid to Blackstone for analysis and there is a very good chance they'll tell me I can extend the fluid change interval but I get the ATF for about $45 on sale at Autozone this time a year and it only takes a couple hours to do the change. I figure I might as well keep on my yearly fluid change since Blackstone Lab charges $25 for the analysis. I have sent in some samples to Blackstone on my 2015 vehicle so I can get some baseline readings...I'm pretty happy Blackstone.

I had to let the TL go last year when in came time to pop in it's 4th transmission.....I loved that car but could not justify dumping in so much money into an aging car. I have a good feeling about the MDX lasting for a lot longer but time will tell.....I like to keep my vehicles a long time, if possible.
 

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I'm just not convinced it really matters what flavor fluid I use as long as the fluid is listed as suitable. Maybe I'm gambling but my bet is on keeping the transmission fluid cool and changed out often. The truth is I'll never know what's exactly the right thing to do because I don't have enough data.
I agree with your statement. I think the key is to change it often and use a fluid that meets manufacturer's specifications.

As for gambling, some may choose to take that chance but some may not especially since the interval is so infrequent and the additional price paid for OEM fluid isn't that bad once you spread it out over 50K+ miles or more and you're pretty much guaranteed that there isn't going to be any weird anamolies down the road.

In my case specifically, I used Dexron VI which was suppose to be compatible with my GM tranny in my BMW but since I live in the snow states, it wasn't shifting as smooth in sub-zero temps while tranny was still cold. That experience has biased my approach in using OEM fluids for more sophisticated transmissions moving forward. YMMV

Keep us updated with whatever you use. It's always good to have good working alternatives. :29:
 

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I changed transmission fluid on every oil change, and that would be twice a year. It's only $20/change ( 3 qts of ATF-DW1). Torque Converter and Rear Differential, I'll do once a year. It's cheap insurance.
 

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I change transmission oil every second engine oil change. Believe me it is worth it, shifts much smoother...
Now while mdx still under warranty i am going with oem fluid, latter on will be using redline D6 oil.
 

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I've seen OEM fluids on the shelf for sale at my local auto parts store. I didn't see any Acura labeled fluids, but I believe the store still had access to them. .
Strangely enough, I went into a Carquest a few months back and they had Honda DW-1 Synthetic on the shelf. No idea where they were getting it from, but the price was shockingly low.
 

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Chinese counterfeits? :)
Probably not; but with all the counterfeit stuff that ends up in the hands of consumers, we may never really know for sure ;) .

I believe that CarQuest has some type of contract with the supplier WorldPac, who is a distributor of both aftermarket and OEM parts.

I was actually at an Advance Auto Parts store (which used to be a CarQuest store) near my house this weekend, and I saw OEM fluids there. I didn't pay close attention to what was on the shelf, but I believe I saw Honda, Nissan, and Toyota transmission fluids up there behind the counter.

Not sure if you already know this, but Advance Auto now owns CarQuest, so it's likely that you'd at least be able to order OEM fluids through the AAP stores as well.
 

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I used Redline D4 ATF on my wife's 2008 MDX. No issues and drives great. It currently has 99,700 miles on the truck. Typically every other oil change I drain the trans and it takes 4 quarts to fill it back to the full line on the dipstick. I plan on taking the truck another 100k miles as long as the body holds out, so far so good. I get a great price on Redline though Jegs Performance, no tax and free shipping.

I had a 2008 TL as well, sold last year, and the first 3x3 trans service I did at 50k miles and the factory fill trans fluid looked like driveway sealer, very un-nerving. I also filled and serviced it with D4 ATF and the car drove great up to 90k miles when I traded it. I am a firm believer in Redline products.
 
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