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Hi Guys,

I just did a ATF drain and fill on a 2018 Pilot 6 Speed. I drained out a little over 1 gallon and a refilled a little over a gallon of new ATF.

I can't find anywhere in the owners manual how to properly check the ATF level. On the dipstick there are two dots indicating the high and low marks with the word HOT between those two marks.

I have been sticking the oil level after driving it to get the engine up to temperature with the engine off. The side of the stick opposite with the word HOT is above the full dot and the side with the word HOT reads just above the low dot.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Pat
 

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You're doing it right. Warm engine, parked on level ground, turn off the engine, pull ATF dipstick for a reading. The "HOT" marking is to remind that the level should be taken only on a warm engine. When the engine is running, fluid is circulated up into the torque convertor that drains down to the pan when the engine is cold.

FWIW, I hate the transmission disptick in the Honda 6 speed. I always found it really hard to read, and would take reading after reading trying to get a good look. Bleh. Good luck!
 

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I’ve been struggling with trying to figure out how hot the engine should be. If I warm up at idle, then it reads within range. If I drive it around (20-30 mins) it appears to be overfilled. (It’s also 90 degrees here these days so that’s a factor too I’m sure.) For the life of me I can’t tell if I’m right in range or overfilled.
 

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I’ve been struggling with trying to figure out how hot the engine should be. If I warm up at idle, then it reads within range. If I drive it around (20-30 mins) it appears to be overfilled. (It’s also 90 degrees here these days so that’s a factor too I’m sure.) For the life of me I can’t tell if I’m right in range or overfilled.
There's a bit of leeway to make up for driving uphill and downhill. You should be fine. If the engine and tranny are cold, then fill to the bottom hole. If it's hot, then fill to the top hole. I would refill after parking and cooling overnight in the garage since the new ATF is in there too.
 

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you might the less than 5% of people that actually read their owners manual. less than 1% probably check their fluid. even less would know how to change it. so long as you know for a fact you didn't add more than you drained out that should help you sleep at night. when they say trans fluid hot I generally take that as a 10 minute drive shifting through all gears. the trans fluid is warmed and cooled by the engine coolant.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
you might the less than 5% of people that actually read their owners manual. less than 1% probably check their fluid. even less would know how to change it. so long as you know for a fact you didn't add more than you drained out that should help you sleep at night. when they say trans fluid hot I generally take that as a 10 minute drive shifting through all gears. the trans fluid is warmed and cooled by the engine coolant.
Totally understand. I just stuck the ATF right now after sitting overnight. It's 67 degrees right now and it's reading at the bottom hole. Thoughts? Thanks for all of you help.

Pat
 

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My cold reading this morning. Looks to be just below the top dot. 70 degrees outside temp. I did have to move the car from the street to driveway (engaged reverse and drive), but car wasn’ton more than 20 seconds. FWIW

I guess level looks a tad high? Will follow up with a HOT read after a test drive later this AM.

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I just stuck the oil right after a 25 mile trip (Hot). The level was right in the middle of the two holes.

As a reference, I stuck the oil this morning (Cold) after sitting overnight with a 65 degree ambient temperature and it was at the bottom hole on the dipstick.
 

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Hi Guys,

I just did a ATF drain and fill on a 2018 Pilot 6 Speed. I drained out a little over 1 gallon and a refilled a little over a gallon of new ATF.

I can't find anywhere in the owners manual how to properly check the ATF level. On the dipstick there are two dots indicating the high and low marks with the word HOT between those two marks.

I have been sticking the oil level after driving it to get the engine up to temperature with the engine off. The side of the stick opposite with the word HOT is above the full dot and the side with the word HOT reads just above the low dot.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Pat
This was from a 2016 SM.
 

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This was from a 2016 SM.
I think this is the key. After driving 15mi in 95F temps, I overcame my fear of the gauntlet of coolant hoses and was able to confirm the proper level. It does take some practice and reading new fluid can be tricky on the dipstick.

I needed almost 4 qts which is higher than what the TSB procedure calls for and about what drained out on first D&F.

Definitely the most challenging of three J35 6-speeds I’ve serviced…


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I have been doing this for past 3 years, drain trans fluid, let it drain as long as possible (usually about 20 minutes while I checked both air filters, tire pressures, maybe oil change), fill 4 quarts (yes, I know is slightly over but is really not much), never even bother checking fluid level after (I did at the beginning but after 2 to 3 times with same results, I stop checking). I believe 3.8 is the actual amount that is needed but I am just lazy.

I now change the fluid 1 to 2 X a year, did 3X flush last year only because it was not shifing as smotth as I like (compare to before) but that did not make any difference, I have 34000 miles at the time. Had dealer perform transmission software update two months ago(around 37000 miles, I gave Service writer $20 bucks and told him transmission shifts funny after long driving on highway like hour or two) and disable VCM right after, not sure if is in my head but it sure feel better after the software update and disabling VCM.
 

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I have been doing this for past 3 years, drain trans fluid, let it drain as long as possible (usually about 20 minutes while I checked both air filters, tire pressures, maybe oil change), fill 4 quarts (yes, I know is slightly over but is really not much), never even bother checking fluid level after (I did at the beginning but after 2 to 3 times with same results, I stop checking). I believe 3.8 is the actual amount that is needed but I am just lazy.
Interestingly, TSB 17-014 for the 2016-17 TC judder fix says D&F with 3.3 qts. The procedure calls for doing it hot and I doubt a tech will let it drain until it stops dribbling. It’s possible the DIY’er letting it drain longer and maybe doing it cold where you get more out (?) is why it takes more fluid than specified. In any event, my procedure is now considered “qualified” LOL.

I’m under a CPO drivetrain warranty until 100k miles, I’ll reinstall the muzzler after it expires. Don’t want it attached if it has to get towed to the dealer…


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Interestingly, TSB 17-014 for the 2016-17 TC judder fix says D&F with 3.3 qts. The procedure calls for doing it hot and I doubt a tech will let it drain until it stops dribbling. It’s possible the DIY’er letting it drain longer and maybe doing it cold where you get more out (?) is why it takes more fluid than specified. In any event, my procedure is now considered “qualified” LOL.

I’m under a CPO drivetrain warranty until 100k miles, I’ll reinstall the muzzler after it expires. Don’t want it attached if it has to get towed to the dealer…


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I understand the warranty, but if your rpm gauge is fluttering up and down when the cruise control is set, the VCM is destroying the transmission.
 

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Grease, can't imagine VCM causing RPM fluttering; I can imagine the coarser power pulses might aggravate an already slipping torque converter. From description, possibly something amiss with the lock up (pressure control, internal leak, or actuator), and not related to the "judder" TSB that appears related to the initial converter lockup not applying smoothly.
 

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Grease, can't imagine VCM causing RPM fluttering; I can imagine the coarser power pulses might aggravate an already slipping torque converter. From description, possibly something amiss with the lock up (pressure control, internal leak, or actuator), and not related to the "judder" TSB that appears related to the initial converter lockup not applying smoothly.
I had the fluttering rpm issue too like a lot of other owners here and after the S-VCM was installed, the car runs smoother with no rpm fluctuations and no hesitation. So it is definitely related to the VCM system
 

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Hi Guys,

I just did a ATF drain and fill on a 2018 Pilot 6 Speed. I drained out a little over 1 gallon and a refilled a little over a gallon of new ATF.

I can't find anywhere in the owners manual how to properly check the ATF level. On the dipstick there are two dots indicating the high and low marks with the word HOT between those two marks.

I have been sticking the oil level after driving it to get the engine up to temperature with the engine off. The side of the stick opposite with the word HOT is above the full dot and the side with the word HOT reads just above the low dot.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Pat
Actually the manual does mention checking the ATF level for both the 6 speed, (with shift lever) as well as the 9 speed.
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Not particularly helpful for the DIYer but in Honda's mind they covered it.
 

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I understand the warranty, but if your rpm gauge is fluttering up and down when the cruise control is set, the VCM is destroying the transmission.
Fortunately I’ve only observed that once or twice. Usually if I’m driving with CC, it’s 75mph+ here in TX and RPMs are steady.

It did have 54k mi on the ODO when I bought it, so no telling on the history. It had transmission service at 25k due to a “jumpy shifting “ per the service history.


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... and after the S-VCM was installed, the car runs smoother with no rpm fluctuations and no hesitation. So it is definitely related to the VCM system
OK, then maybe we should elaborate on "fluttering rpm"; once a second"? 5 times a minute? On hills? Level ground? Freeway cruising? 100rpm? 300rpm? In the same RAMP range (i.e. 2000 ~ 2100)?
 
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