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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently had my ATF Fluid drained and filled with Honda DW-1 at about 90K. ATF Changes in my 2011 have been at 60K, 75K and 90K, all drain & fill (not flushed) with Honda DW-1 fluid. This is the first time I've had my mechanic tell me the fluid was discolored and this is my 6th Honda. Hearing this, I was reminded of late last winter when there was a burning smell after driving a couple miles up a snow covered (packed snow) mountain road. The smell came from the front-end of the Pilot and I remember telling myself the transmission had probably heated up. I assume this to be the likely cause of the fluid discoloration many months later as I don't tow anything & think I treat the tranny very well. Assuming this driving event did heat up the tranny, any reason why this would be? Anyone run into this before? Maybe it was due to some traction issues? My Pilot is 4WD and has all-terrain tires. I plan to do another D&F with my next oil change by the way. Thanks all.
 

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I recently had my ATF Fluid drained and filled with Honda DW-1 at about 90K. ATF Changes in my 2011 have been at 60K, 75K and 90K, all drain & fill (not flushed) with Honda DW-1 fluid. This is the first time I've had my mechanic tell me the fluid was discolored and this is my 6th Honda. Hearing this, I was reminded of late last winter when there was a burning smell after driving a couple miles up a snow covered (packed snow) mountain road. The smell came from the front-end of the Pilot and I remember telling myself the transmission had probably heated up. I assume this to be the likely cause of the fluid discoloration many months later as I don't tow anything & think I treat the tranny very well. Assuming this driving event did heat up the tranny, any reason why this would be? Anyone run into this before? Maybe it was due to some traction issues? My Pilot is 4WD and has all-terrain tires. I plan to do another D&F with my next oil change by the way. Thanks all.
Non full synthetic DW-1 is more susceptible to heat. You might consider changing to a full synthetic ATF. I'm sure if you ask some here, you will get some suggestions. If that's an option you would consider. Otherwise you probably would want to drain and fill much more often.
 

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2008 Piot SE FWD, 2015 Pilot LX 4WD. 2005 GSX-R1000
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I think, he may mean Valvoline Maxlife ATF.
It's not genuine Honda, but many people use it with stellar results in their Pilots, Hondas, etc. YMMV
Walmart has it for ~18/gallon. I'd do a few drain and fills with that perhaps?
 
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2008 Honda Pilot EX-L 2013 Honda Pilot EX-L
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Are you having issues with your transmission?
Did they give you any recommendations along with telling you your fluid was discolored or was that it?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
At this point, I'll be continuing to use Honda Spec fluid in the event the tranny should fail in the future. Honda can and has provided "Good Will" replacements beyond warranty and using another manufacturers fluid could jeopardize this in my opinion. My old Acura's automatic clutch was good-willed at 97K, for example, but the dealer had done 100% of the service up to that point.

I can't say I'm having any issues with the tranny but this is my second Honda SUV that seems to get some minor torque converter rumble at certain speeds, possibly due to the (overdrive) gear? Recommendation this time was to do another drain & fill in the near future to get some additional fresh fluid into the system. One D&F only replaces about 1/3 of the fluid, as you all know, due to the hydraulic clutch. Fluid was good at 60K and 75K, so this is recent.

Not sure why driving up a snowy hill would cause excessive heat buildup in the tranny. I also have the OEM tow package, so there should be an external cooler.
 

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At this point, I'll be continuing to use Honda Spec fluid in the event the tranny should fail in the future. Honda can and has provided "Good Will" replacements beyond warranty and using another manufacturers fluid could jeopardize this in my opinion. My old Acura's automatic clutch was good-willed at 97K, for example, but the dealer had done 100% of the service up to that point.

I can't say I'm having any issues with the tranny but this is my second Honda SUV that seems to get some minor torque converter rumble at certain speeds, possibly due to the (overdrive) gear? Recommendation this time was to do another drain & fill in the near future to get some additional fresh fluid into the system. One D&F only replaces about 1/3 of the fluid, as you all know, due to the hydraulic clutch. Fluid was good at 60K and 75K, so this is recent.

Not sure why driving up a snowy hill would cause excessive heat buildup in the tranny. I also have the OEM tow package, so there should be an external cooler.
I don't want to sound argumentative, but I have serious doubts that Honda will replace an almost 10 years old transmission.
It sounds like you have a very nice 2011 Honda Pilot. I'd do all I could to keep it going. Ask them now what they will do if it goes out on you. They haven't been to generous on extenuating circumstances lately.
 

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Not sure why driving up a snowy hill would cause excessive heat buildup in the tranny. I also have the OEM tow package, so there should be an external cooler.
With all the reports and posts found here and elsewhere describing some of the negative long-term effects of VCM operation on the engine, trans, etc perhaps your trans is exhibiting these accumulative effects....of course this is just my opinion as various factors may also be involved. Few more drain&fills and monitoring ATF temps would be my prescription.
 

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At this point, I'll be continuing to use Honda Spec fluid in the event the tranny should fail in the future. Honda can and has provided "Good Will" replacements beyond warranty and using another manufacturers fluid could jeopardize this in my opinion. My old Acura's automatic clutch was good-willed at 97K, for example, but the dealer had done 100% of the service up to that point.

I can't say I'm having any issues with the tranny but this is my second Honda SUV that seems to get some minor torque converter rumble at certain speeds, possibly due to the (overdrive) gear? Recommendation this time was to do another drain & fill in the near future to get some additional fresh fluid into the system. One D&F only replaces about 1/3 of the fluid, as you all know, due to the hydraulic clutch. Fluid was good at 60K and 75K, so this is recent.

Not sure why driving up a snowy hill would cause excessive heat buildup in the tranny. I also have the OEM tow package, so there should be an external cooler.
I would do 2-3 more drain and fills with driving in between each. Take note of the fluid condition each time. I don't think you have any reason to be concerned. I doubt Honda would replace the transmission as a goodwill gesture but you never know.
 

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Mine shifts hard into reverse from park when it’s cold or on an incline. So does every car I’ve ever had that was an automatic transmission so I don’t stress about that.
 

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Probably the park pawl disengaging on an incline (use the parking brake to prevent) or if cold maybe taking some time for the trans to build up pressure. As they age the tend to do that.


Mine shifts hard into reverse from park when it’s cold or on an incline. So does every car I’ve ever had that was an automatic transmission so I don’t stress about that.
 
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