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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Theoretically towing shouldn't wear out transmission. If more power is needed (pedal pushed more), transmission will switch to lower gear (it is like driving up hill).
If torque converter is locked, ATF flow should be the same, towing or not. The only way to overheat transmission is to keep it in mode of gear switching more often than usually (city driving?)
Transmission clutches designed to transfer more torque than engine can provide.
Any ideas about it?
I am still thinking about getting AWD Pilot for towing (once a month or so)
 

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Theoretically towing shouldn't wear out transmission.

It won't wear it out outright, but it does increase wear on it. More torque is needed to accelerate both vehicle and trailer. While the torque converter is unlocked, the heat created in the transmission fluid is greater because there is more mechanical work being done on the fluid to get that additional torque. That's why towing packages usually have additional transmission oil coolers to lose that extra heat. The clutches slip slightly as they engage, when towing they will slip more which wears the friction material faster, not to mention adding more heat as they slip. The gears have to absorb the additional torque, so there's more load on their teeth. Bearings have more load on them, and although the fluid lubricates them, more wear is inevitable.
 

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If torque converter is locked, ATF flow should be the same, towing or not.
Possibly true. But the TC will lock less frequently or for shorter periods of time when towing, especially on hills.


The only way to overheat transmission is to keep it in mode of gear switching more often than usually (city driving?)
No. I got close to overheating mine on an extended (12 mile) 6.3% uphill grade in summer, even with no gear changes (stayed in D3, & monitored with OB2 scanner). Torque converter apparently not locked in this condition, even though the speed & load were very consistent.

You can minimize wear on the clutches by accelerating slowly (towing or not), as it minimizes torque required, or choosing routes that require less stops or speed changes. Don't be dissuaded from towing, as long as you are not overdoing it (weight, hills, etc.). Every tow vehicle has its limits. I'll soon be putting a bigger ATF cooler on mine, as I'll be climbing mountains with a trailer again soon. With good care, I expect the tranny to last longer than most.

If anyone has good information about what can be done (how to drive) to maximize TC lock, I'd seriously love to know. I'm still learning myself. Also, is there any way to monitor whether or not the TC is locked using an OBD2 Bluetooth scanner?
 

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Is it supposed to lock in D3 at all?
 

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I THOUGHT it would lock in any gear if there was either a low-load on the drivetrain or consistent load such that it didn't feel the need to shift, but I was apparently wrong. Is there any info from Honda about this?
 

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Theoretically towing shouldn't wear out transmission.
Just wrong.
Think about this, adding another 1000lbs to your vehicle. The gears in the transmission are seeing more load. Higher load means higher stress. Ever heard of fatigue failure?
Simple test. Have a rod you can apply a load to the center. Spin the rod. At a very low load, it can spin forever without breaking, as you add weight, the number of revs til failure decrease. This is fatigue failure. The same happens in the gears and shafts of a transmission.
The extra load also causes more heat because of the TC slipping the clutch. This is where the heat comes from. But guess what, it also wears out the clutch.

Towing 100% theoretically and actually wears out transmission faster.
 

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I THOUGHT it would lock in any gear if there was either a low-load on the drivetrain or consistent load such that it didn't feel the need to shift, but I was apparently wrong. Is there any info from Honda about this?
Best person to chime in on this is XGS :p
 

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no no no ok guys ...just put a v8 in and mate with a 4L65E updated transmission ... No more towing issues

And yes they do exist a 3.5 v8 manufactured in cali until 2011

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honda_Indy_V8
 

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So to summarize, of course towing or even having high payload in the vehicle wear on a transmission faster than normal driving. Increased loading on the various parts to get more weight moving as well as the increased heat from the fluid having to work harder to multiply torque when the converter is not locked both work to wear components.

If you are concerned about this get a OBD2 port scanner and keep it up while towing, keep your trans fluid fresh and don't let it overheat.
 
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