Transmission fluid

I just had my 2002 Accord EX V6 at a quicklube place and they wanted to change the automatic transmission fluid, showing me that it was now brownish
(instead of red), and claiming that transmission fluid should be changed every 30k.
I said no and when I got home I double-checked the owners manual and found that it specifies the first transmission fluid change at 120k miles / 6 years. I only have 37k on it so I have a couple of years left to go.
Does anyone feel that the transmission fluid should be changed more often than that? Is the color no longer a reliable indicator? I know things have improved but 120k miles / 6 years sounds like an awfully long time to me.
Bruce.
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It can never hurt to do it more often. But, if you do not want to do it yourself, get it done at the dealer. They make sure you get the right fluid, quick-lube will quickly ruin your tranny.
Bruce Chastain wrote:

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Ah, good point. I've heard Hondas use mostly Honda supplied fluids only.
Bruce.
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Are you having any problems with your transmission now? Honda has experienced an abnormal amount of problems with the trans in V-6 equipped models in the late 90's-early 2000's model years. They have and are warranteeing many that are beyond the normal period and have extended the warranty on certain models. Are you sure it was your fluid they were showing you. Quicklubes are infamous for substituting fluids and parts to justify their unnecessary services. The service interval in your owners manual is realistic. You may want to consider "severe service" intervals which are usually half the normal recommendation. In this case it would be 60k. A typical transmission service drains approximately 3 to 4 quarts from your trans and new fluid, ATF Z1 only, is used. Many non-Honda shops will suggest or coerce you in to a fluid flush. DO NOT FLUSH your transmission. It is highly unrecommended. Below is a copy directly from Honda's Flush and Additive Policy: Do not use transmission flushing machines. In the very rare instance where a flushing process is necessary (such as to remove improper fluids), a procedure is available which does not require special tools. Use of additives, solvents, cleaners or conditioners as part of a flush or as a performance enhancer is absolutely unnecessary and may affect transmission shift quality that would not be warrantable by Honda. Transmission fluid replacement (not flushing) should be recommended only at the mileage intervals specified in the owner's manual.
Howard

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Interesting. No, no problems at all. The trans still works perfectly and smoothly.

I think so but I'll double check the color of the fluid myself.

That's an interesting point. Because 95% of my trips are < 10 miles, "severe service" is probably appropriate.

Thanks for the warning!
Bruce.
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Bruce Chastain wrote:

I like to change it every 30k miles, but only use the real Honda ATF-Z1, and don't use a flush machine. The Honda procedure calls for drain, fill, drive, repeat for three times. Takes about 12 quarts to do.
John
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Do it yourself because changing AT fluid on Hondas is easier than doing an oil change.
And ONLY use Honda's fluid.
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DQoiSGVhZGtub2NrZXIgdmlhIENhcktCLmNvbSIgPHUxODYwMkB1d2U+IHdyb3RlIGluIG1lc3Nh Z2UgbmV3czo2YTdlNDI3NDI2YzY4QHV3ZS4uLg0KPiBEbyBpdCB5b3Vyc2VsZiBiZWNhdXNlIGNo YW5naW5nIEFUIGZsdWlkIG9uIEhvbmRhcyBpcyBlYXNpZXIgdGhhbiBkb2luZyBhbg0KPiBvaWwg Y2hhbmdlLg0KPiANCj4gQW5kIE9OTFkgdXNlIEhvbmRhJ3MgZmx1aWQuDQo+IA0KPiAtLSANCj4g TWVzc2FnZSBwb3N0ZWQgdmlhIENhcktCLmNvbQ0KPiBodHRwOi8vd3d3LmNhcmtiLmNvbS9Vd2Uv Rm9ydW1zLmFzcHgvaG9uZGEtY2Fycy8yMDA2MTIvMQ0KPg0KR29vZCBhZHZpY2UsIGJ1dCBpcyB0 aGVyZSBhICJjaGVhcGVyIiBzb3VyY2UgZm9yIEhvbmRhIEEuVC4gZmx1aWQgdGhhbiB0aGUgZGVh bGVyPw0K
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If one can not afford the fluids and parts, one should not purchase the vehicle.
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On Sat, 09 Dec 2006 23:37:09 +0000, Brian Smith wrote:

What an interesting, helpful, and incredibly stupid statement...
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LOL! I guess you've never heard that old line before, "If you're worried about the price, you can't afford it".
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On Sun, 10 Dec 2006 09:12:37 +0000, Brian Smith wrote:

Of course I have. It doesn't apply to parts for cars. It applies to high end boutiques and restaurants.
With cars, it is just plain stupid to not look to save some scratch where possible, so long as you are not sacrificing quality. Looking for the same product at a lower price is just simply common sense.
If you are willing (and stupid enough) to pay $200 for a $100 part, that's fine. It doesn't mean someone else shouldn't drive because they aren't willing to piss their money down a hole...
The guy just wanted to see if he could find the fluid a little cheaper somewhere else. That's called comparative shopping, and is one of the things that makes the free market work...
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Actually it applies to anything one wants to apply it against.
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Brian Smith wrote:

LoL - Brian, what are you doing in a Honda NG??
;0)
a
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karinhall wrote:

Wish there was, but not that I have found. Price is 6 bucks a quart. So, you are looking at about 80 bucks, plus a new crush ring or two. But, it works. I bought a used 90 accord that shifted rough. I did the fluid change ritual, and viola!!. Nice smooth tranny @ 151,000 miles. Previous owner feard tranny trobles so he sold it. He used Dexron III, his loss, my gain.
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karinhall wrote:

Wish there was, but not that I have found. Price is 6 bucks a quart. So, you are looking at about 80 bucks, plus a new crush ring or two. But, it works. I bought a used 90 accord that shifted rough. I did the fluid change ritual, and viola!!. Nice smooth tranny @ 151,000 miles. Previous owner feard tranny trobles so he sold it. He used Dexron III, his loss, my gain.
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Bruce Chastain wrote:

If it's brown looking, it needs to be changed. 120k miles..??? No wonder people seem to have trouble with some of those tranny's.. But you don't have to do it all at once unless you just want to. IE: you could change the fluid on your next 2-3 oil changes and end up with pretty clean fluid. Like they say, it's super easy, just like changing the oil.. That's what I'm doing in my case. I bought an accord that had brownish fluid. I changed it once, when I did the first oil change. And I'll do it again on the next couple of oil changes. By that time, it will be pretty clean. Just once will help quite a bit. Doesn't get all the old stuff out, but it will look a lot better than it probably does now. Brown fluid means it's semi burned.. The things must run a tad hot.. Being it's so easy to change, I wouldn't pay a lube joint too much to change it. If they want big $$$, I'd just do it myself, or find someone else. It's not like the average US car where you gotta drop a pan, change a filter, etc.. The honda you just open the drain plug and let it pour out. Just be careful not to overfill. Takes about 3 quarts + - to do a change if I remember right. The color is still a pretty reliable indicator. Forget what the manual says.. 120k is a lot of miles. Thats the whole lifetime of the car for many people. If it's brown, it's burned. No bueno for tranny.. :( I also don't like waiting a few light years to change oil. Even if synth oil.. Changing oil gets the dirt out. It needs to be done on a regular basis, along with the filter if you want long life from the engine. I see some people that wait nearly 10k miles to change the oil just cuz they are using synthetic oil. Sure the oil itself doesn't really wear out, but you still need a fresh filter, and if you are going to that much trouble, might as well get the dirt out of the engine while you are at it. And the additives do wear out. Once a filter gets clogged, the bypass kicks in, and you might as well not have a filter.. :/ I think the automakers are going overboard with all these super extended maintainence skeds. Another pet peeve of mine is all the new cars that lack zerk fittings on all the front end parts.. I'd like to strangle the engineer that came up with that idea. It's common for many new cars to eat up front end parts in 20-30k miles.. You can't grease em and purge the old grease, dirt, and metal particles. So the part just ends up grinding itself to death. Newer fords are bad about this. But other makes do the same these days. Well, I guess enough oil related whining for now.. :/ MK
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snipped-for-privacy@wt.net wrote: <snip>

that's not true.

believe it or not, it's the other way around. vehicles that have grease fittings almost always have /more/ problem with premature wear because grit gets pumped /in/ not out.

yeah. but that's nothing to do with the lack of grease fittings - it's because they're designed that way. think i'm joking? it's real easy to make something that lasts well. it's real hard to make something that lasts just so long, but then fails. and to do this requires a /lot/ of research. frod's r&d budget is huge. and most of it goes into this kind of life limitation because of some bizarre misconception that if their product lasts, they'll never sell anything new. the japanese have been proving that wrong for the last 30 years!!! it's quite incredible how detroit has no ability to learn by observing others. but engineers don't make decisions in detroit so maybe it's no surprise.

not honda. my crx was 305k miles on its original suspension.
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