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Changing Transmission Fluid soon...should I change any other fluids too?

Old 07-13-2018, 03:17 PM
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Changing Transmission Fluid soon...should I change any other fluids too?

I've been noticing my transmission is shifting a little jerkier in the low gears. My transmission dip stick reads a bit low and the color is that dark amber/wine red color. Might be time to change.

Got the car at 56k miles, now 13k miles later it's only had A1 and B1 service but I thought I might as well change it now, regardless of MID. Main question is, should I change the transfer case fluid as well? And even the rear differential fluid? Or should I just change the rear diff fluid when MID advises me to? Thanks in advance everyone!
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Old 07-13-2018, 03:19 PM
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change all fluids.
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Old 07-13-2018, 03:44 PM
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Originally Posted by justnspace View Post
change all fluids.
Will do sir! Guess I won't be following the MID for those changes anymore. Slight bummer.
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Old 07-19-2018, 08:22 PM
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My A123 (oil, transimisison, transfer case) came up at around 50k miles. Rear differential (item 6) came a little bit earlier.
Maybe your previous owner didn't following the MID?
If you bought the car used it is always a good idea to change all fluids.
However I bought the car new and now at 80k miles I never see (item 5 coolant) come up. Not sure if MID is just wrong on this one. Maybe I should change it soon to be safe.
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Old 07-20-2018, 12:37 AM
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What coolant is everyone using?
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Old 07-20-2018, 01:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Lee C View Post
What coolant is everyone using?
Iím using the coolant recommended by Acura:

https://acura.bernardiparts.com/Acur...999-9011A.aspx

Although I havenít change the coolant yet I do need to top it up every year or so.
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Old 07-23-2018, 08:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Andy Cheng View Post
I've been noticing my transmission is shifting a little jerkier in the low gears. My transmission dip stick reads a bit low and the color is that dark amber/wine red color. Might be time to change.

Got the car at 56k miles, now 13k miles later it's only had A1 and B1 service but I thought I might as well change it now, regardless of MID. Main question is, should I change the transfer case fluid as well? And even the rear differential fluid? Or should I just change the rear diff fluid when MID advises me to? Thanks in advance everyone!
My 13' TL FWD just hit 5 years and 55k miles. I got the usual oil change but I also got the transmission fluid and brake fluid changed for the first time. I'm too lazy to ever look at my fluids but I can feel the auto tranny is definitely smoother going from park to drive, whereas before it could be a little jerky at times. I also switched to full synthetic on the oil change, not sure if that really matters.
I'm trying to go by the service manual so next oil change I'll probably get the power steering fluid and coolant changed.
Since I'm out of warranty I'm not going to Acura for service anymore, I found a very good local shop with reasonable prices.
BTW, last time I went to Acura, they told me my brakes were shot and I needed new everything.
I took it to these guys for a second opinion and they physically showed me exactly how much pad I had left, 8mm front and 6mm rear. Everything looked perfect.
I may never go to a dealer again for any type of service other than warranty.
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Old 07-25-2018, 09:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Cygnus_X1 View Post
My 13' TL FWD just hit 5 years and 55k miles. I got the usual oil change but I also got the transmission fluid and brake fluid changed for the first time. I'm too lazy to ever look at my fluids but I can feel the auto tranny is definitely smoother going from park to drive, whereas before it could be a little jerky at times. I also switched to full synthetic on the oil change, not sure if that really matters.
I'm trying to go by the service manual so next oil change I'll probably get the power steering fluid and coolant changed.
Since I'm out of warranty I'm not going to Acura for service anymore, I found a very good local shop with reasonable prices.
BTW, last time I went to Acura, they told me my brakes were shot and I needed new everything.
I took it to these guys for a second opinion and they physically showed me exactly how much pad I had left, 8mm front and 6mm rear. Everything looked perfect.
I may never go to a dealer again for any type of service other than warranty.
Thank you for the information! I generally only go to the dealer to get fluids I need when working on the car. Other than that I stay far away. Although dealerships generally do the best work and are specialize in working on whatever brand it is, they always felt like it's a premium service. Always try to find a trustworthy local mechanic that gives fair prices or even better, attempt to learn maintenance steps yourself.
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Old 07-25-2018, 09:51 AM
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Originally Posted by hyh View Post
My A123 (oil, transimisison, transfer case) came up at around 50k miles. Rear differential (item 6) came a little bit earlier.
Maybe your previous owner didn't following the MID?
If you bought the car used it is always a good idea to change all fluids.
However I bought the car new and now at 80k miles I never see (item 5 coolant) come up. Not sure if MID is just wrong on this one. Maybe I should change it soon to be safe.
Carfax reported a lot of trips to the dealer but you're right. I should have done everything once I got the car. I was just too excited to drive it than anything lol.
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Old 08-01-2018, 03:43 PM
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Yeah, while you're changing the transmission fluid, go ahead and change the transmission fluid. After that go ahead and change the transmission fluid

No really, I'd recommend a 3x3 "flush" which consists of doing three drain and refills of the ATF, usually putting a few miles on the car in between to mix everything around. A lot of guys on here will do that if they purchase a used Acura to get new fluid in the transmission. You shouldn't do any sort of power flush on a Honda or Acura transmission but doing the 3x3 replaces a good portion of the fluid which will help more than doing just a single drain and refill.

With the 4G, you can actually get about 3.5 quarts out; even 4 quarts if you give it a few hours to drain. With three 4qt drains and refills in a 10 quart capacity transmission, you'd end up replacing 78% of the fluid. 40% of the fluid the first time, 24% the 2nd time and 14% the third time.
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Old 08-31-2018, 01:38 PM
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Don't forget the brake fluid, if it hasn't already been done have it changed.
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Old 08-31-2018, 06:13 PM
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Originally Posted by JT4 View Post
Don't forget the brake fluid, if it hasn't already been done have it changed.
I have a 2013 Acura with 62k still on original brake fluid. Never changed brake fluid on any of my previous cars. What is the importance of getting it drained and refilled?
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Old 09-02-2018, 12:27 AM
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Because brake fluid absorbs moisture, which can lead to brake failure.

Moisture from your brake fluid can cause failure | Northwest Herald

From that article:

Your brake fluid will accumulate moisture over time. In fact, according to a report by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 20 percent of the cars it tested had brake fluid with 5 percent moisture content. 3 percent moisture content in DOT 3 brake fluid reduces the boiling point of the fluid by more than 100 degrees.

“When the moisture in the brake fluid boils because of the tremendous amount of heat generated by the brakes, you can actually lose the ability to stop,” McAllister said. “Plus, moisture can cause corrosion of the wheel cylinders or brake calipers and eventually cause a leak.”
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Old 09-02-2018, 12:33 AM
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So basically that would be an entire system flush like the dealer has been trying to pursue me to do. Guess Iíll take care of that as soon as possible.
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Old 09-02-2018, 12:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Kinuto View Post
So basically that would be an entire system flush like the dealer has been trying to pursue me to do. Guess Iíll take care of that as soon as possible.
Rule of thumb, always do a flush on brake systems, never do a flush on automatic transmissions.
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Old 09-02-2018, 12:42 AM
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Dealer tried pushing the Transmission flush on my car but I told them to only drain and fill the transmission. Donít know if the dealers actually flush the system or if itís just a drain and fill.
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Old 09-03-2018, 12:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Kinuto View Post

I have a 2013 Acura with 62k still on original brake fluid. Never changed brake fluid on any of my previous cars. What is the importance of getting it drained and refilled?
I typically get about 60k miles out of brake fluid (my mechanic bases his recommendations on fluid discoloration, not mileage) If you drive a lot of highway miles without using the brakes much, that'll happen.

But most manufacturers will tell you 30k at most between brake fluid changes. Which, if you drive your TL like I don't, is probably too long.

Here's a recent photo of me:

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Old 09-03-2018, 04:53 AM
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There isn't a single vehicle manufacturer (or competent mechanic) in the world which makes a mileage based recommendation on when to replace brake fluid. The fact is, brake fluid is utterly and completely unaffected by mileage, however, time is a different story; whether you drive one mile or one-hundred-thousand miles per year, brake fluid will degrade at the same rate per unit of time.
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Old 10-27-2018, 04:27 PM
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I'm very skeptical about the need to change brake fluid so frequently. That post above referencing NHTS or whatever is of course theoretically accurate. I also know what hygroscopic means.
However I have never ever changed brake fluid on any of my vehicles and I have been driving and servicing cars for 50 years. If it is pale yellow and the system has been properly bled you are good to go.
It may be different if you are racing; I'm talking about regular driving to the grocery store etc. The dealers promote it because it's an easy way to sell service to you. They scare you by suggesting you may have a brake failure without the service. Take a look at the dealerships these days. They are palaces of tile, glass, chrome, fancy everything with wifi, coffee, magazines, and a huge property outside to maintain. They have all sorts of employees wandering round doing nothing useful. Of course they have to pay for all this by charging customers high fees.
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Old 10-27-2018, 04:34 PM
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Originally Posted by jim_c View Post
I'm very skeptical about the need to change brake fluid so frequently. That post above referencing NHTS or whatever is of course theoretically accurate. I also know what hygroscopic means.
However I have never ever changed brake fluid on any of my vehicles and I have been driving and servicing cars for 50 years. If it is pale yellow and the system has been properly bled you are good to go.
It may be different if you are racing; I'm talking about regular driving to the grocery store etc. The dealers promote it because it's an easy way to sell service to you. They scare you by suggesting you may have a brake failure without the service. Take a look at the dealerships these days. They are palaces of tile, glass, chrome, fancy everything with wifi, coffee, magazines, and a huge property outside to maintain. They have all sorts of employees wandering round doing nothing useful. Of course they have to pay for all this by charging customers high fees.
You can be skeptical all you want, but the fact is, many manufacturers (not talking dealership service departments, but the actual folks who designed and built the car) recommend periodic brake fluid flushes.

When you talk about the color of the fluid, it can look nice and clean and amber in color up in the reservoir, and still be thick, gray, and cloudy coming out of the bleed port on the calipers. The thing is, that emulsified brake fluid is the stuff which can easily boil right when you need your brakes the most, and that same stuff is also responsible for accelerated corrosion of the internal surfaces inside calipers. So, while you may have been lucky during your grocery store trips to never have needed to challenge the limits of your brakes for the last 50 years, that doesn't mean you won't need them tomorrow or the next day.
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Old 10-27-2018, 05:01 PM
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Originally Posted by jim_c View Post
I'm very skeptical about the need to change brake fluid so frequently. That post above referencing NHTS or whatever is of course theoretically accurate. I also know what hygroscopic means.
However I have never ever changed brake fluid on any of my vehicles and I have been driving and servicing cars for 50 years. If it is pale yellow and the system has been properly bled you are good to go.
It may be different if you are racing; I'm talking about regular driving to the grocery store etc. The dealers promote it because it's an easy way to sell service to you. They scare you by suggesting you may have a brake failure without the service. Take a look at the dealerships these days. They are palaces of tile, glass, chrome, fancy everything with wifi, coffee, magazines, and a huge property outside to maintain. They have all sorts of employees wandering round doing nothing useful. Of course they have to pay for all this by charging customers high fees.

Then guess you're lucky and don't have internal corrosion of brake calipers
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Old 10-29-2018, 02:53 PM
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Please post some pictures of your corroded brake calipers, lol.
It seems that folks want to believe whatever they're told or read on the internet. Why is that?
Show me the evidence.
We took apart the calipers on my friend's 1991 MR2, at the time 25 years old.
The calipers were fine and the fluid was fine. We did replace some of it.
And it's not an emulsion, lol.
We put the brakes back together and he drove the car out to Colorado and back.
Oh I just remembered another fact. I did the brakes on my daughter's Camry in 2009. She then moved out to Alberta where she drove the car for 9 years without having any work done on the brakes.
Last winter 2018 she drove the car back across the country in winter at -30C some days. No problem. The car turned past 200,000 km.
It just passed a safety check. No work on the brakes in 9 years. I don't recommend it, but that's what happened.
You can believe whatever you want to believe but don't confuse opinions or recommendations with facts.
Apparently some of the people offering opinions here do not even know how to change their own oil. (?)

Last edited by jim_c; 10-29-2018 at 02:56 PM.
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Old 10-29-2018, 09:25 PM
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Originally Posted by jim_c View Post
Please post some pictures of your corroded brake calipers, lol.
It seems that folks want to believe whatever they're told or read on the internet. Why is that?
Show me the evidence.
We took apart the calipers on my friend's 1991 MR2, at the time 25 years old.
The calipers were fine and the fluid was fine. We did replace some of it.
And it's not an emulsion, lol.
We put the brakes back together and he drove the car out to Colorado and back.
Oh I just remembered another fact. I did the brakes on my daughter's Camry in 2009. She then moved out to Alberta where she drove the car for 9 years without having any work done on the brakes.
Last winter 2018 she drove the car back across the country in winter at -30C some days. No problem. The car turned past 200,000 km.
It just passed a safety check. No work on the brakes in 9 years. I don't recommend it, but that's what happened.
You can believe whatever you want to believe but don't confuse opinions or recommendations with facts.
Apparently some of the people offering opinions here do not even know how to change their own oil. (?)
Sorry, been there, seen it, threw it in the trash. You can cast as much shade as you want, the fact remains you leave brake fluid in long enough and you do get a water/brake fluid emulsion and will absolutely end up with corrosion inside the calipers.

Then again, maybe you lead a charmed life and the laws of physics don't apply to you.
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Old 10-30-2018, 11:11 AM
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Originally Posted by horseshoez View Post
There isn't a single vehicle manufacturer (or competent mechanic) in the world which makes a mileage based recommendation on when to replace brake fluid. The fact is, brake fluid is utterly and completely unaffected by mileage, however, time is a different story; whether you drive one mile or one-hundred-thousand miles per year, brake fluid will degrade at the same rate per unit of time.
Actually, wouldn't the fluid technically be "better" after 10k miles/year than 1mile/year? When breaking the fluid gets very hot and water starts to boil out, no? So used fluid will have less water than unused. Although the actual amount might be unimportant in the long run...
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Old 10-30-2018, 12:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Blaze9 View Post
Actually, wouldn't the fluid technically be "better" after 10k miles/year than 1mile/year? When breaking the fluid gets very hot and water starts to boil out, no? So used fluid will have less water than unused. Although the actual amount might be unimportant in the long run...
I don't think so; actually boiling water in your brake lines is the failure case - it shouldn't happen in "normal" use (driving to and from work and the grocery store), even with very old fluid.

You can probably get away with not changing the brake fluid for a lot longer than 3 years / 30k miles. (God knows I have.) But the poor sap who buys the car from you is going to have a repair bill.

Crap. I sold that car to my brother.
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Old 10-30-2018, 12:01 PM
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If you never drive in conditions that severely heat the brakes, like long descents on winding mountain roads where the brakes are being used almost continuously, you may never experience braking failure due to old, moisture contaminated fluid. But it's pretty scary if you do. Many years ago it happened to me, and that was with a MT car and using engine braking as much as possible on the descent. By the time I got to the bottom I had zero braking ability and had to use the hand brake to come to a stop. Replacing brake fluid every 3 years is cheap insurance.
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Old 10-30-2018, 02:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Blaze9 View Post
Actually, wouldn't the fluid technically be "better" after 10k miles/year than 1mile/year? When breaking the fluid gets very hot and water starts to boil out, no? So used fluid will have less water than unused. Although the actual amount might be unimportant in the long run...
Miles have absolutely zero impact on brake fluid, it is all about time. As for the "boiling out", doesn't happen, while the brake fluid may well boil, the vapor stays in the system and is reabsorbed into the fluid as soon as things cool off (regardless of whether you survived the boil event or ended up in the trees or off the edge of a cliff).
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Old 10-30-2018, 04:09 PM
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Ah nice to know. Regardless I did a total fluid change at each caliper a year or two ago, might as well do it again this spring. It was pretty fun tbh, I quite enjoy doing non-oil change work! I just hate draining the oil and having it go over everything -.- But I'll do brakes and other fluids all the time.
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Old 10-30-2018, 04:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Blaze9 View Post
Ah nice to know. Regardless I did a total fluid change at each caliper a year or two ago, might as well do it again this spring. It was pretty fun tbh, I quite enjoy doing non-oil change work! I just hate draining the oil and having it go over everything -.- But I'll do brakes and other fluids all the time.
Not a fan of draining oil either; in fact, even though I do my own oil changes, I haven't pulled a drain-plug since 1999. How? I bought an oil extractor and suck the oil out via a straw stuffed down the dipstick tube.
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