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How much is too much transmission fluid in a 2011 Honda Pilot? My transmission light was coming on and noticed that the transmission fluid was underneath the bottom fill line about 1/4 inch. Once I added fluid, the engine light and blinking 'D' went off. However now my transmission fluid reads approximately 1/4 inch above the top fill line. Will that damage the transmission? What is the tolerance for transmission fluid levels? Is there any wiggle room? - Jim
 

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How much is too much transmission fluid in a 2011 Honda Pilot? My transmission light was coming on and noticed that the transmission fluid was underneath the bottom fill line about 1/4 inch. Once I added fluid, the engine light and blinking 'D' went off. However now my transmission fluid reads approximately 1/4 inch above the top fill line. Will that damage the transmission? What is the tolerance for transmission fluid levels? Is there any wiggle room? - Jim
If that's a 1/4" above the top mark hot 60-90 seconds after you shut the engine off, you should be fine. Mine is at the top mark or slightly above depending on the day of the week and the phase of the moon. You can always stick a 1/4 plastic tube down the dipstick tube and take out enough to get it between the two holes using a turkey baster. Or just unwind the drain plug and let some out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
How much is too much transmission fluid in a 2011 Honda Pilot? My transmission light was coming on and noticed that the transmission fluid was underneath the bottom fill line about 1/4 inch. Once I added fluid, the engine light and blinking 'D' went off. However now my transmission fluid reads approximately 1/4 inch above the top fill line. Will that damage the transmission? What is the tolerance for transmission fluid levels? Is there any wiggle room? - Jim
If that's a 1/4" above the top mark hot 60-90 seconds after you shut the engine off, you should be fine. Mine is at the top mark or slightly above depending on the day of the week and the phase of the moon. You can always stick a 1/4 plastic tube down the dipstick tube and take out enough to get it between the two holes using a turkey baster. Or just unwind the drain plug and let some out.
Thanks a lot I really appreciate your insight on the matter. Gives me a lot of peace of mind as I was reading some horror stories with people overfilling and using too much oil in the transmission. I’d be curious to know the tolerances of what Honda allows and how much is too much, but at any rate your comments make me feel a little better. Thanks a lot for weighing in. - Jim
 

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Was the 1/4 above within 90 seconds of turning off a hot engine and transmission? You could still be low.
 

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The engine is certainly at operating temp, but is tranny fluid at proper temp to accurately check fluid level 60-90 seconds after engine off?
 

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The engine is certainly at operating temp, but is tranny fluid at proper temp to accurately check fluid level 60-90 seconds after engine off?
The idea is to have fluid pumped throughout the transmission. When you turn the vehicle off, the ATF begins to drain back into the pan.
 
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The idea is to have fluid pumped throughout the transmission. When you turn the vehicle off, the ATF begins to drain back into the pan.
Yep, that part I fully understand. So.....both engine and tranny temp have less importance than 60-90 sec timing, even thought it says "HOT" on the dipstick? 🤷‍♂️
 

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Yep, that part I fully understand. So.....both engine and tranny temp have less importance than 60-90 sec timing, even thought it says "HOT" on the dipstick? 🤷‍♂️
I assume if it's hot the fluid expands. It's seems to be splitting hairs, but ya, it effects level. I would think going through all the gear shifts would be important.
 
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thank you all for your replies. So what I did was drive on the freeway for about 20 minutes to bring the transmission up to temp. When I got home I turn off the engine and then about 60 seconds or more later I started checking the dipstick several times. That’s what I noticed the oil was about a quarter inch above the top marker line. So, yes, I believe the transmission oil was warmed sufficiently before I checked it.
 

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I'm definitely splitting hairs Mr. Grease. But who knows at what TFT allows for the prime TF expansion point yielding the most accurate level check? The Honda 6 speed TF level check discussion does seem quite popular on both the Pilot and Ridgeline forums. Maybe that's why the manual now says have the dealer check the level. 🤷‍♂️

My presumption is, the original factory fluid fill was done correctly. I also presume that about as much fluid that will drain back to the sump will have occurred overnight after say +/-12 hours of sitting. When I check TF level cold next morning before starting, I observe TF level +/-1/4" above the top mark and checking again after running around town, TF level is just below the top mark.......which seems logical (fluid still up in the tranny). Sure, warmed fluid is draining back to the sump, but not as much warmed fluid has drained back after 60-90 sec of sitting as the amount of fluid that has drained back after sitting overnight. To me, that seems logical as well. Both checks (hot/cold) are in our level garage.

I much prefer checking TF level cold......don't get that sudden reminder there's hot parts close to the dipstick.:eek:

Would this be a better TFT to accurately check the TF level? Take precautions if checking TF level at these temps.
 

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Maybe that's why the manual now says have the dealer check the level. 🤷‍♂️
Anything to make it so difficult that the general public is left to wonder.
And oh yes, the hot EGR pipe and catalytic converter. Honda says, "Don't want to let us service your transmission? Go for the ATF sick big boy." BAM!
144236

Lol, no concern for your safety. A longer dipstick tube would have been nice.
But we got the loud beep on the lift gate, every time we push the button.
 

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So what I did was drive on the freeway for about 20 minutes to bring the transmission up to temp. When I got home I turn off the engine and then about 60 seconds or more later I started checking the dipstick several times. That’s what I noticed the oil was about a quarter inch above the top marker line. So, yes, I believe the transmission oil was warmed sufficiently before I checked it.
Like crossing the street and looking both ways...inspect both sides of the dip stick before determining too high or too low.
 

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Like crossing the street and looking both ways...inspect both sides of the dip stick before determining too high or too low.
Are you expecting one side of the dipstick to be lower or higher than the other?
 

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Honda should have labeled the back side of the dipstick, the side you do not look at, “this side intentionally left blank (to keep you guessing)”
 

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Sitting in level garage for about 18 hours 54F ambient. Same level as when I bought the truck. Four tranny D&Fs, carefully measured amount D&F'd each time. 👌
 

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Sitting in level garage for about 18 hours 54F ambient. Same level as when I bought the truck. Four tranny D&Fs, carefully measured amount D&F'd each time. 👌
Your saying you measured what came out and put the same amount back in?
 

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Yes. And by doing so, cold level has remained the same.....just above the top mark and 60-90 sec checks just below the top mark.
 

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So if you checked it hot, it be between the marks, being a 1/4 inch over top fill mark when it's cold?
I wouldn't say your not putting the right amount, obviously it's working for you.
Me, on level ground with a left rear jack and let it drip, I almost can pour in the whole gallon jug of VML. Some say they can.
 
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