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Discussion Starter #1
2012 EX-L. 101k on the odometer.

Occasionally transmission balks while driving at various speeds. If in stoplight driving then can barely get started in 1st gear. Feels like a slipping clutch on it's last legs. Can get it rolling (barely) and then maintain speeds but car balks.

Very difficult to diagnose as cannot get it to repeat with frequency. Had Honda look at it and an independent shop separately - never showed symptom.

Of course drove it away and 1 hour later symptom came back.

Here's what has been done:
1) changed spark plugs - first thought symptom was a mis-fire so started down that path
2) flushed transmission fluid

Seems to show up on 2nd or 3rd drive after warmed up. Shows both at highway speeds as well as stoplight speeds so not consistent.
Symptom shows as a shudder or balk. RPMs jump up (as if in neutral) and then settle back down to rpms of gear and speed.
Worst time was stuck in stoplight stop-n-go and barely would get pilot rolling in 1st. Nursed it home and could not get Reverse to work. Drove it straight to shop. They diagnosed next day, ran perfectly. They kept it for 3 more days driving multiple times during the day - no issue.

Chasing a ghost here. Anyone else have this type of issue?

Early indication of tranny failing? Some sensor on tranny? Something else?
 

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What happens if you manually shift in to first/low and work up the box as speed increases?
Doing the atf fluid change, if done with Honda fluid was a good move.
How many miles/KMs on your Pilot?
 

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What happens if you manually shift in to first/low and work up the box as speed increases?
Doing the atf fluid change, if done with Honda fluid was a good move.
How many miles/KMs on your Pilot?
Hi Rocky. 101k on the clock.

Yes, Honda did the ATF fluid change. When running into the problem I do exactly that - roll up the shift lever from gear to gear to see if that helps. It doesn't unfortunately...
 

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Please elaborate on "flush". The correct method for a Honda flush is three drain and fills in a row driving a little in between each fluid change. By doing one drain and fill, you've only changed 33% of the fluid. And was Honda DW1 used?
 

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Please elaborate on "flush". The correct method for a Honda flush is three drain and fills in a row driving a little in between each fluid change. By doing one drain and fill, you've only changed 33% of the fluid. And was Honda DW1 used?
Honda dealership performed transmission service and used DW-1 but just called them and they only drained once. They claim they do a complete drain and refill. Used 4 qts. Looks like I'll do two more of these as next steps to get the proper total flush.
 

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Honda dealership performed transmission service and used DW-1 but just called them and they only drained once. They claim they do a complete drain and refill. Used 4 qts. Looks like I'll do two more of these as next steps to get the proper total flush.
Exactly. See if they can give you a deal on 8 qts of DW1 through the parts dept. Don't forget the crush washers for the drain and fill bolts.
 

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An intermittent issue like that sounds like a bad sensor/solenoid.
Yes this may be something to look at as well. IIRC there’s one problematic sensor to look for, but I can’t recall which one.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Anyone have experience with transmission speed sensor going bad and replacing this part? Looking at a few additional sites - maybe this is the issue?

Update from yesterday.
  • 2nd drive home (after warmed up) it was almost undriveable. Shuddered initially at highway speeds.
  • Got to stop lights. Manually shifted up through gears.
  • Starting up in first gear car struggled to get power, acted like a slipping clutch. Found if I came on and off the gas and floored it, the tranny would eventually engage and of course surge forward (felt dangerous driving it).
  • When up to speed car would shudder and "search" for gear, if I floored it, would eventually engage and take off.
  • When I got home, put it in reverse. Would not engage, just revved up rpms as if in neutral. Walked through all gears and back to reverse - would not engage.
  • Turned car off/on, then got it to go into reverse to get into driveway.
  • Once in driveway cycled through gears just to see if they would engage. Walked up the gears 1st - R. Would engage most of the time. Turned off.
  • Overnight, cold start - drove into work no issues (~30 min commute at highway speeds).
 

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Problem resolved and was expensive. Finally took it to transmission shop and told them to drive it until problem manifested itself. 3 days of driving they called me said tech was "scared for his life" when problem came up. It is disconcerted. Long story short - have a rebuilt tranny now ($2600). Pressure release valve was failing, parts going into tranny causing failures. Torque Converter was damaged as well. So...if you have above symptoms very likely it's going to be expensive.

Net, I guess Honda made crap trannies for this model as I'm stunned to have this level of failure at 100k on the clock.
 

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Problem resolved and was expensive. Finally took it to transmission shop and told them to drive it until problem manifested itself. 3 days of driving they called me said tech was "scared for his life" when problem came up. It is disconcerted. Long story short - have a rebuilt tranny now ($2600). Pressure release valve was failing, parts going into tranny causing failures. Torque Converter was damaged as well. So...if you have above symptoms very likely it's going to be expensive.

Net, I guess Honda made crap trannies for this model as I'm stunned to have this level of failure at 100k on the clock.
Wow! That’s horrible. It definitely shouldn’t have failed with such low miles.


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