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Old 05-24-2012, 03:24 PM
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Question Auto trans drain-and-fill newbie questions

Background: bought my 97 EX Wagon two months ago. I have started doing maintenance myself, learning as I go.

I am considering doing a transmission drain-and-fill this weekend but I have some questions. I did some searching but couldn't find the answers in earlier threads.

a) I am not sure when the ATF was last changed. Can you accurately judge the state of transmission fluid just by looking at it/feeling it? I see mine is still red without any real black contamination. It feels slick and slippery. Should I change it anyway to be safe?

b) The instructions I have read both online and in my Haynes manual state that I should use a new washer when I screw the drain bolt back in. Do I have to get this washer (edit: was "bolt") via a Honda dealer or can generic ones be purchased at an auto supply store?

c) When replacing the transmission drain bolt, is it necessary or desirable to coat the bolt with anti-seize compound or oil?

d) Is it necessary or desirable to change the transmission fluid filter at the same time? I have not read much about transmission fluid filters so I'm not sure what to think (or even how to change it.

Thanks.
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Last edited by Pajamarama; 05-24-2012 at 04:01 PM.
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Old 05-24-2012, 03:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Pajamarama View Post
a) I am not sure when the ATF was last changed. Can you accurately judge the state of transmission fluid just by looking at it/feeling it? I see mine is still red without any real black contamination. It feels slick and slippery. Should I change it anyway to be safe? No you cannot, change it is best

b) The instructions I have read both online and in my Haynes manual state that I should use a new washer when I screw the drain bolt back in. Do I have to get this bolt via a Honda dealer or can generic ones be purchased at an auto supply store? Any auto parts store

c) When replacing the transmission drain bolt, is it necessary or desirable to coat the bolt with anti-seize compound or oil? It would not hurt but not necessary

d) Is it necessary or desirable to change the transmission fluid filter at the same time? I have not read much about transmission fluid filters so I'm not sure what to think (or even how to change it. There is no trans filter that can be changed

Thanks.

It is very important to use Genuine Honda Fluid not auto parts store fluid.
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Old 05-24-2012, 03:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pajamarama View Post
c) When replacing the transmission drain bolt, is it necessary or desirable to coat the bolt with anti-seize compound or oil?

Thanks.
have never heard of using anti-seize on an oil drain plug; these plugs have plenty of residual oil left coating the threads

and the magnetic tip of the plug will be coated with black gunk from tranny wear; don't let it worry you. wipe it off.
could take a photo, pre-wipe, and post up if worried that the gunk amount is excessive...but there's nothing to do with the info/opinion once you get it.
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Old 05-24-2012, 04:24 PM
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If you don't know the history, won't hurt to change it.

no external filter that is serviceable.

you can use the same drain bolt and probably the washer too...wouldn't hurt to pickup a washer just in case.

use genuine honda fluid.

don't need to put anything on the drain bolt threads.

capacity is 3 quarts on a drain/refill.
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Old 05-24-2012, 05:17 PM
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If you're gonna buy the ATF from a Honda dealer parts counter, those washers are less than $1.
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Old 05-24-2012, 05:55 PM
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If you're gonna buy the ATF from a Honda dealer parts counter, those washers are less than $1.
I called my local Honda dealer's parts counter and the DW-1 is $8.23 a quart. Gonna buy it but it definitely goes against my cheap nature...

I find it hard to believe anything at my Honda dealer -- including a simple washer -- could be under a dollar. Honda's list price for that washer was over $2 and I bet that's what my dealer will charge me.
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Old 05-24-2012, 06:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pajamarama View Post
I called my local Honda dealer's parts counter and the DW-1 is $8.23 a quart. Gonna buy it but it definitely goes against my cheap nature...

I find it hard to believe anything at my Honda dealer -- including a simple washer -- could be under a dollar. Honda's list price for that washer was over $2 and I bet that's what my dealer will charge me.
Not sure about on fluids, but I know my Honda dealer originally quotes ridiculous prices but if you just say thats too high they drop the act. As I said I'm not sure if this would go for fluids, but my head bolts for example they originally quoted me $160 and I just said that was too much and they dropped it to $80 or so.
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Old 05-25-2012, 09:32 AM
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Wow, well, I picked up a handful of washers for the oilpan drain bolt a couple years ago and they were about $0.20 each.
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Old 05-26-2012, 06:20 AM
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I've seen Honda Trans fluid at carquest for $7.99 ? Not much of a savings but some.
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Old 05-26-2012, 12:54 PM
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Armed with the answers I got here, I did the drain-and-fill last night. Seemed to go without a hitch. This was my first ATF change so I don't have a lot to add to the body of knowledge on this topic. However, I have added pics because everyone seems to love pics.

- Picked up the drain plug washer at my Honda dealer for the low, low price of $3.50. Since I didn't know exactly what it was, I didn't try to get a cheaper replacement. But Seriously Honda - $3.50? I kept the original and will know better next time.
- Parked the car when I got home, put it up on jacks and emptied the pan. The fluid was very warm -- luckily not quite hot enough to scald me. I did a poor job of containing spillage in my driveway. Oh well, live and learn.
- I originally thought my fluid was pretty clean but that is because I had never seen new DW-1. New fluid is much lighter. I have attached a pic of the old and new fluids. Now I am very glad I changed it.
- As I was warned, drain plug magnet end was coated in metal shavings. Pic attached. Wiped it off and coated the threads in new oil.
- My long trumpet shaped funnel wasn't even long enough to reach the dipstick hole. Will have to add some tubing to the end for next time.
- I panicked when I started the car up after the change -- the car wouldn't go into reverse! Holy cr*p -- I broke my transmission! Turns out I had forgotten to remove the chocks from under my rear wheels.

Seems to drive fine now. Thanks to everyone who gave me answers and courage to do this myself. Fellow newbies, if I can do this -- anyone can!
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File Type: jpg 2.jpg (40.7 KB, 13 views)
File Type: jpg 3.jpg (76.1 KB, 14 views)
File Type: jpg 4.jpg (68.8 KB, 12 views)
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Old 05-26-2012, 12:54 PM
 
 
 
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