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Discussion Starter #1
Does anyone have suggestions on best transmission preventative maintenance (besides frequent ATF changes)?

Particularly opinions on replacing the 3rd and 4th pressure switches in advance? These 2 sites/posts seem to strongly suggest it, to protect the 3rd gear clutch pack. It sounds like they drift over time, they won't throw codes, the shift quality change is subtle so you might not notice, and even a small drift can really affect clutch pack longevity due to pressure transition staging.


The only issue is the price is not as cheap - I found them for $60 each on AcuraPartsWarehouse. And the 2006 transmissions may have a 3rd pressure sensor (a 2nd 4th gear pressure sensor), so now that's $180 total. It's not throw away money, but potentially still worth it if it will add years of life to the transmission.

And if there is anything else preventative maintenance wise I didn't think of, I'm open to suggestions.

For background on current preventative maintenance and conditions
1) I tow a 3000 lb camper and live in Texas (so pretty hot)
2) I added the biggest transmission cooler I could find to the car, much bigger and better than the OEM sold towing cooler
3) I added a Magnefine filter before the cooler
4) I plumbed out the radiator ATF preheater/cooler. I see no value of it in the south, and don't want any chance of antifreeze in transmission.
5) I'm doing a single ATF drain and fill (only 2nd now since purchasing it used) at EVERY 7,500 mile oil change with Valvoline MaxLife ATF and Lubegard Platinum additive.

I'm debating trying to change the transmission internal filter element as the person on the 2nd website above showed where one was in nasty condition and restricting flow. He actually bypassed it since he was running a Magnefine, but it looks like it might need an adapter plate to do so. Wasn't sure if that was different on the Accord to MDX version of the transmission.

After both ATF changes, I noticed the transmission shift feels better, more firm and positive. The first change I let the ATF pump itself out, so I didn't remove the plug. On the most recent change I removed the plug. There was a decent sized mushroom of graphite looking paste clinging to the magnetic plug.

It was almost big enough that it would have been scraped off the plug as it was removed from the transmission. That was a little concerning, but may be ok if the plug was never wiped down on previous drain and fills, or if god forbid the ATF was never previously changed. My ATF fill plug was way overtorqued and it sounds like that was normal from the factory, so I do wonder if it was ever changed. The transmission fluid looked dark and overdue for change, but not 100k miles overdue.

Thanks.
 

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I'll bet that the fluid was factory, and that "mushroom" was probably normal for that kind of mileage. FWIW, I'd change my tranny fluid every 20,000 miles or so, and would have only a light coating of black grunge on the plug.

I think you've done pretty much everything you can do to ensure a long, happy life of your tranny. I'd be on the fence about proactively swapping out the 3rd and 4th gear pressure switches if they're not acting up. Besides the cost (reasonable) and time (looks easy enough) there's always a chance that you'd actually create a problem if you happened to get a bad part (or if something goes sideways during the replacement job).
 

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Wow, that's a good list. Thanks for sharing.
I also don't think it would be worthwhile to preemptively change the pressure switches.

And although you clearly said "besides ATF changes", make sure you aren't overlooking that basic item! Given the drain plug condition, I would be doing a couple more drain/fills to get more of the old fluid replaced. Or did your first change (letting it pump out) already exchange more than a simple drain/fill?

How often do you plan to change the Magnefine filter?

Do you mind sharing other preventative maintenance items that you plan on doing but are not on the owner's manual normal/severe schedules? (e.g. power steering fluid changes, fuel system cleaners, oil catch can, ...)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Wow, that's a good list. Thanks for sharing.
I also don't think it would be worthwhile to preemptively change the pressure switches.

And although you clearly said "besides ATF changes", make sure you aren't overlooking that basic item! Given the drain plug condition, I would be doing a couple more drain/fills to get more of the old fluid replaced. Or did your first change (letting it pump out) already exchange more than a simple drain/fill?

How often do you plan to change the Magnefine filter?

Do you mind sharing other preventative maintenance items that you plan on doing but are not on the owner's manual normal/severe schedules? (e.g. power steering fluid changes, fuel system cleaners, oil catch can, ...)
The pump out only got 3 qts, and I only did it once. Given that sometimes neglected transmissions (that aren't having obvious issues) don't like major changes, I decided I preferred doing only one drain and fill, to slow roll the entire ATF change, at every oil change. If the next change has more than a thin film of metal paste on the plug, I may reassess that plan.

People who have removed and cut open a Magnefine at the suggested 30k miles have said it looked new, and could easily go twice that. So unless my drain plug looks worrisome again, I plan to change the Magnefine every 50k miles.

The color of my power steering fluid looks fine, and I replaced the reservoir (that had some metal powder sitting on the screen). So I added a power steering cooler, and a Magnefine to it. In power steering service Magnefine does not recommend replacement, unless the pump or rack needs replaced. So I don't plan to do filter or oil changes on it.

This stuff is in the owners manual but I plan to do a coolant flush to be sure only blue antifreeze is in the system.

I'm go to do annual VTM fluid changes, which is about 15k miles for me. The first change I did made a huge difference.

And I'm going to do a transfer case oil change. This one if you use synthetic gear oil, I think is probably only needed each 100k miles, so may never need again.

After watching several YouTubeers disassemble engines after fuel system cleaners, I'm not convinced any of them work besides a token amount. I probably won't do that.

I have considered putting on an oil catch can. But it isn't super high on the list. Is it strongly recommend on Honda engines?

Besides monitoring tire and brake condition, I can't think of anything else.

Sent from my SM-N950U using Tapatalk
 

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I'm on the fence about the oil catch can. It makes a lot of sense in theory, but I'm not sure it's worth the trouble of installing/maintaining and removing for smog inspections (I'm in California).

Cheap Mishimoto knock-offs (~$20 on Amazon) look like a good value based on this video:
 
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