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Old 04-08-2012, 01:19 AM   #1 (permalink)
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I'm new here. My first post so I apologize if this is talked about elsewhere. Some of the stuff here is GREAT. I hope to contribute like so many others have.

I got the A13 code about 2 wks ago @ 36,427. That would be oil change, tire rotate, ATF and transfer fluid change. I got 7 yrs of free oil changes and the rotate I'll do myself. I called my dealer to get service pricing. They didn't say it needed the transfer fluid changed like the manual says, but instead needs rear diff changed. Manual doesn't say it needs rear diff done (which I did myself @ 18,029). Today I picked up Super Tech 80W-90 gear oil at Walmart. They didn't have SAE 90 or the name branded stuff. It is GL5 as required in manual. It comes in a 1-qt "squirt" bottle. Also, people talk about using 80W-90, but my manual says to use 80W-90 <0 degrees and SAE 90 >0 degrees.

I saw the great writeup and pics for the ATF change from Armystrong, but that was for a 2005. Others have asked over there about differences for a 2009 but no response.
I'm debating having dealers do ATF drain and fill ($75) since I'm due for the free oil change and I have the seat belt recall to do too. Don't know how much the xfer fluid change will cost.


So my questions:
  1. Do I follow the dealer's schedule and change rear diff, or my manual and change xfer fluid?
  2. Is Super Tech good to use, and do I use SAE 90 or 80W-90? Can I just squirt it in?
  3. Do I use 1/2" ID tube to fill ATF?
  4. Anyone with bad experiences using ATF-DW1 instead of Z1?
  5. Has anyone had any leaking issues when reusing the crush washers?
Thanks in advance and for everyone's great input in the posts.
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Old 04-08-2012, 08:56 AM   #2 (permalink)
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1. If you already changed the VTM-4 fluid follow your own schedule. It's every 30 so next one for you will be 48k.
2. That one not sure but my '06 calls for 80w-90. I just used mobil 1 75w-90 which is the same GL5 requirement I believe. Buy one of those $2-$3 bottle attachements which is basically a long hose that allows you to squeeze the S*t out of the bottle to force the fluid up the tube into the transfer case.
3. Just use whatever long fill tube you can find to reach the tranny fill hole.
4. The DW1 is the newer synthetic stuff and so far nobody has addressed issues with it.
5. That's your own call. No you don't need to pay honda $2 a piece for thin slivers of crush metal. Find your size and buy it at your local auto parts store.
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Old 04-08-2012, 02:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by samc View Post
1. If you already changed the VTM-4 fluid follow your own schedule. It's every 30 so next one for you will be 48k.
2. That one not sure but my '06 calls for 80w-90. I just used mobil 1 75w-90 which is the same GL5 requirement I believe. Buy one of those $2-$3 bottle attachements which is basically a long hose that allows you to squeeze the S*t out of the bottle to force the fluid up the tube into the transfer case.
3. Just use whatever long fill tube you can find to reach the tranny fill hole.
4. The DW1 is the newer synthetic stuff and so far nobody has addressed issues with it.
5. That's your own call. No you don't need to pay honda $2 a piece for thin slivers of crush metal. Find your size and buy it at your local auto parts store.
Thanks sam. I was leaning on following the MM and service manual. I'm still a bit leery of using ST oil so I'll try another store, plus I think I should be using SAE 90. Z1 may be hard to find now so I might be stuck with DW1 anyway. I changed the washer when I did the rear diff but Iíll see about the ATF and transfer case.
Thanks again.
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Old 04-09-2012, 01:05 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Are you sure it is ATF and not VTM it is calling for? The only reason I ask is that the manual calls for a VTM change at 7.5K and every 15K thereafter for heavy driving which might match up math wise.... at any rate...

My two cents:
- If you can do engine oil DIY you can do ATF, VTM and the transfer case----they are all drain and fills with crush washers....saves some decent coin
- VTM...drop the spare and it is right there---drain bolt first to assure you can get it off, drain through drain bolt then fill ...with new washers. Get a hand pump. It takes about 3/4 of the gal you get from Honda.
- Transfer case will take around a liter of 75w-90. I use Mobil 1...get a hand pump for $10.
- No issue with DW-1....it is the new standard so a dealer won't sell Z1
- Crush washers are a buck or two...why risk it? The $$$ you will save by DIY makes up for it many times over.
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Old 04-09-2012, 11:11 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I do plan on doing everything myself, and Iím sure itís the ATF and not VTM. Look at the code and page from manual. I did the VTM @ 18K and I donít do heavy driving, so I think the next change is around 45K - 50K. Iím still confused about the gear oil to use in the transfer case. According to the manual, I should use SAE 90 since itís >0į F. But I canít find that grade oil. Everyone has 80W-90. And to add the confusion, I called Keenan Honda to ask about the gear oil. The guy in Parts said they only stock the oil in drums so itís an after market purchase. But what he said next surprised me, that I donít need to change the transfer fluid. He said they donít do that service until about 90K Ė 100K and that the MM telling me to do so is overkill. Normally they might try to sell you a service you donít need, not the other way around. Refreshing. I think I will probably change it anyway, but that was odd.

If anyoneís interested, I'll try to post pics of my fluid changes.
Thanks nick for your input.
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MM Code A13-_a13.jpg   MM Code A13-_om-p477.jpg   MM Code A13-_sm-transfer-fluid.jpg  
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Old 04-10-2012, 06:38 PM   #6 (permalink)
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75w-90 is the oil you are looking for. The SAE is the society of automotive engineers... The "w" represents the characteristics of the oil at cold temps. So SAE 90 and SAE 75w-90 meet requirements as long as they are also GL4/5 as well. So you are good at all temps. Again, I use Mobil full synthetic. Probably not as key as an ATF drain/fill, but I do them earlier than 80k...
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Old 04-10-2012, 11:33 PM   #7 (permalink)
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transfer assembly fluid should be change at 45k, 75k, 105k.
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Old 04-13-2012, 12:43 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Well, my order for ATF & crush washers (& brake fluid) came today so hopefully I can get the work done soon. I still gotta find a better brand transfer case gear oil other than the Walmart brand I got, maybe Sears or Pep Boys?
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Old 04-29-2012, 08:07 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Any consensus on the quality of Super Tech (Walmart brand) 80W-90 gear oil? I'm not sure when I can go to another store to look for the name-branded stuff. Has anyone used this stuff before? It is GL-5 so is it ok to use?
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Old 04-29-2012, 08:43 AM   #10 (permalink)
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My own bias is for synthetic in the transfer case. It's not something that gets replaced often or needs a lot, so it's Mobil 1 for me.
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Old 04-29-2012, 12:13 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I personally wouldn't use Walmart branded fluids in my SUV but that's up to you. I think I said it above but I uses Mobil1 and my transfer case is not blowing up in smokes.
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Old 04-29-2012, 10:16 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Not sure the Wally World price on their brand fluif but I saw Mobile 1 75w-90 at Pep Boys for 9.99 this weekend.
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Old 04-30-2012, 07:01 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Thanks for the advice guys. My Pep Boys didn't have Mobil 1 so I picked up Valvoline. That should be better than Walmart I hope.
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