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Discussion Starter #1
Question for the folks on this forum...did a search on this forum trying to conclude which automatic transmission cooler is best performing/most reliable.

The brands I saw noted most were: (is one better than other)
1. Hayden
2. B&M
3 Honda OEM cooler

I currently have a Magnefine AT Filter installed...will this cause any install problems on any of the above brands? Do you have to remove the stock ATF cooler that comes with the Odyssey before installing one of the above? With 177,000 miles on original tranny is it even worth buying a cooler at this point?

Also, I noted some of the B&M coolers at amazon.com also have a built in fan but these were in the $200 range but looked like the ultimate cooling machines.

I change my ATF every oil change and run a mix of 50% Honda Z-1 and 50 % Amsoil Uni ATF with one bottle of Lubegard Red.

Thank you for your thoughts and help.
 

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An auxiliary transmission cooler is worthwhile at any time. If you DIY the installation, the cost is very reasonable.

Some things to look for when choosing a cooler:
- Stacked plate design
- 20,000# capacity
- builtin thermostatic bypass

If the Magnefine is in the way of the cooler plumbing, it can be easily fixed. I assume you have a Gen 2 Ody from the miles. The stock cooler is inside the radiator and is left there. In winter, it can act as an ATF warmer.

HTH

Good luck!
 

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ATF Inlet & Return Photo

Didn't know where to put another tranny cooler post so I just picked this one. I am preparing to install a Tru-Cool 4452 ATF cooler & will use the famous "Mel" pdf guide. I called Tru-Cool and the 4452 is still the one the co. recommends for the 2nd gen Ody. As good as Mel's guide is, I was still a bit confused about which is the Inlet line vs the Return line. I think I know which is which now & I am posting a picture here because even with all the discussion of coolers, I couldn't find a good actual photo. If I am wrong, please someone correct me so another Ody clubber doesn't rely on an incorrect picture.

Inlet & Return.jpg
 

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Go to page 2 of this link on the Handa website: [url]http://handa-accessories.com/odyssey/odyatf.pdf[/URL]. It has a great diagram to help you understand where the ATF is going, and how it comes back to the A/T.

Given how [email protected] hot the ATF gets on a Gen 2 Ody (even with the worthless Honda OEM A/T cooler), I'm a big fan of the Tru-Cool 4544 from a price, performance, and ease-of-installation perspective. I did install a Tru-Cool 4739-1, but that beast is difficult to fit properly.



I may move it to below the bumper bar to get a clear shot of air, plus gain room to install a 9" electric fan. Next time I ever do this on a vehicle, room permitting, it'll be the Tru-Cool 4544 for this guy.

OF
 

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So you have 2 Odys. One got the big cooler & the other will get the 4454?

I have seen the diagram. In fact, here it is next to my picture. The bend in the lower (return) hose is a bit different on my pic but I think the comparison shows that I have them labeled right. I will have a better perspective after I get the bumper off, I'm sure. Just wanted to post the pic I took for others to see.

Cooler sidebyside.jpg
 

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I purchased two of the 4739's awhile back, and just had a he11 of a time trying to figure out getting the first one in on my wife's 2002 EX. I threw away the OEM cooler, since my diagnostic gear showed that it did virtually nothing to help cool the ATF under anything but the most ideal conditions (like a cool day...during steady rainfall). I'm going to attempt to install the other Tru-Cool 4739 below the bumper bar on my 2003 EX, and the OEM cooler will also join its compatriot in the trash. The OEM ATF coolers were a patent waste of money.

Knowing what I know now, I should have purchased a pair of Tru-Cool 4544's. Less expensive, more than enough heat exchange capacity, dimensions permit easier installation and no extra fittings needed (the 4739 requires a pair of Dorman right-angle flared compression fittings with 3/8" hose nibs...not at all easy to find). Installation would have been just as easy as jesujoma noted. Several folks on this forum have indicated good results with that model.

After a couple looks, I think you're pic is correctly labelled, if you mean "ATF Inlet" to indicate flow of ATF into the radiator in-tank cooler.

OF
 

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Still doing my "pre-op" for the cooler install. Let the van warm up for about 5-6 minutes from near cold so I could feel the hoses. From what I understand, the Inlet (Honda's term, OF, from the diagram posted by me earlier) should get warm to hot initially while the Return remains relatively cool. That's how you can be sure that you know which line is taking the ATF to the radiator; ie, the one that gets hot first. Funny though, NEITHER got what I would call hot even though the engine temp moved up to normal operating temp. I then pulled the dipstick and felt the oil on it ... just comfortably warm to the touch. I realize that at idle the tranny isn't getting a workout like in city driving but I have to pose the question, "Are the replacement trannys (like mine in around '07) actually doing a decent job of cooling?"
 

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ackack, the ATF hose that connects to the radiator on the driver's side of the radiator is the one that sends fluid back to the tranny. The ATF hose that connects further towards the passenger side is fluid coming from the tranny. I'm assuming you have a 1999-2004 Ody.

The problems with the 2002-2004 A/T's is a combination of installed pieces (bearing, washer, port plug) that can limit ATF flow to the third clutch, thus allowing it to overheat and causing its early demise. I don't know if those things are fixed in a rebuild.

With my thermocouples hooked up, I've found on a really hot day with the A/C running and idling in traffic, the radiator in-tank ATF cooler sometimes acts like an ATF heater. watt-man recorded similar results as well on his data logger, too.

OF
 

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I'm still going to install the cooler (arrives Monday). But I must admit that I was surprised that neither of the hoses got hot even though I found several posts here and at other sites that claimed that one way to verify Inlet vs. Return was to use this "hot first" feel method. Doesn't really matter I suppose, attempting this method was more for my general curiosity; I am confident I know which line is which after studying the diagrams and from careful visual inspection.
 

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If there's any doubt about which is the return line - with the return line disconnected have somebody start the van for a couple seconds and verify that ATF fluid comes out the return line.
 

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I was about to suggest that, too. I did this on my 1998 Accord prior to installing a little Hayden 676.

OF
 

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The shop that installed my ATF cooler, mounted it on the condenser it eventually wore a hole in the condenser. Make sure you offset it with something soft. I used strips of house pipe insulation.
 

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Thanks for the heads up. I am going to attempt the "Mel" method with brackets vs the cable-type ties through the condenser. I think the bracket method allows for a small gap between the cooler & condenser. Here's a photo from Mel's write-up.

Mel cooler photo.jpg
 

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I'm about to remove the temperature gear from my 2003 EX, and the common data I've seen is that if you drive carefully, even on truly hot days with in-town driving, the ATF temp slowly rises in our Odys. That's the good news. The bad news is that it keeps rising and rising and rising, even with an OEM cooler.

My data logger has recorded ATF outlet temps in excess of 250-deg F (fluid temp measured from the line that sends fluid to the radiator in-tank cooler). The OEM cooling setup returned ATF cooled down to just over 200-deg F...that's NOT cool. This happened while climbing up the Cajon Pass on a day in the mid-70's, no trailer. If I was towing something as light as a dozen origami unicorns on a papier mache trailer, I probably would have wrecked the tranny. The Honda OEM cooling setup is not up to any sort of mundane towing task, let alone pulling a bass boat or pop-up trailer.

Just finished driving our 2002 EX with the monster Tru Cool Max (4739) cooling setup. The cooler inlet hose is definitely much, much warmer than the hose returning ATF to the A/T. I also used the mel method of mounting. I'll probably transfer my temp gear to this one for some just-for-the-he11-of-it temperature readings before I mount the big filter, thermostat, and fan.

OF
 

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The shop that installed my ATF cooler, mounted it on the condenser it eventually wore a hole in the condenser. Make sure you offset it with something soft. I used strips of house pipe insulation.
Same happened to my condensor, those condensor tubes are thin.
 

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Anybody installed the Hayden #679? It specs out favorably and looks almost identical to the Tru-Cool 4544.
As the price it is in Amazon, the 679 seems to be the best value for the size among the few similarly made. I have been using B&M 70268 SuperCooler on all vehicles with good result; hope their quality is compatible.
 

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Thanks bruce2. I went ahead and bought it at OReillys Auto parts. I'll put it on in the morning. Looks like a nice unit.
 

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funfinder4 uses either the Hayden 678 or 679 and Valvoline MaxLife ATF. So far, so good.

OF
 
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