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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

We have 2004 Odyssey EX with around 120k miles on it. We bought it new in March of 2004. Within the past year, we had the dreaded blinking "D" light and had the 4th gear pressure switch replaced. The blinking light recently recurred, and we just heard from our mechanic that the error code indicates the 4th gear pressure switch again.

We have had no real symptoms other than a bit of a "clunk" sometimes when putting it into gear after a cold start. Shifting seems fine, or at least we haven't noticed anything out of the ordinary.

I've been digging through threads here on the forum in an attempt to figure out what we're up against, but I haven't been able to arrive at a consensus. Can anyone offer some insight?

What are the odds of this part would go bad twice if there wasn't something else going on?

Is there something else that might be triggering this problem?

Are we likely looking at a transmission failure in the future?

Etc., etc., etc.

Thanks!
 

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It is entirely possible an after market switch would fail again. Wgat is the fluid change record? What is the analysis of the failed switch? I would make sure the switch is replaced with an OEM part, do a 3x drain anf fill and possible replace the transmission filter.
 

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Check the circuit as well. Like the ground and PCM connections.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Just a quick update... Mechanic replaced the switch (again) yesterday with an OEM part and it seems to be okay for now. Of course, it seemed to be okay six months ago, too...

Actually, a bit of info I had left out... We first had it replaced six months ago and it was fine for five months. Then, about a month ago, we got the blinking green light one time. We took it in, but it hadn't recorded an error code so they just chalked it up to a random glitch.

Then, after sitting at the airport for about for days a week ago, my wife started seeing the blinking more often, so we took it in and the 4th gear pressure switch error code.

It seems to me that the random tripping of the blinking green light a month ago (but without a recorded error) and the fact that we started having this problem in earnest after a period of four days of downtime might be significant. Or maybe they're just coincidence... So frustrating.

Anyway, we've been instructed to drive as normal and report back any anomalies to the mechanic.

P.S. We've followed the mfg maintenance schedule to a "T" on this thing.
 

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I'm, trying to replace mine, but there are two switches right next to each other that look identical. I pulled the left front wheel and the plastic wheel well liner and both are easy access from there, but which one? BTW, they should be about $57 for the part and a bit over $2 for the o-ring.

Anyone with a "real" (not the Haynes #$%& that I have) that can scan and upload a photo?
 

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Going by the picture in the OEM manual which isn't very good looks like the 4th gear pressure switch is toward the front of the van, toward the bumper. Right behind it toward the firewall is the third clutch pressure switch.
 

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Here is a scan from manual if it helps. I am assuming you have a 2002-2004 Odyssey.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for the feedback thus far. Just a quick update that the newest switch (2nd replacement, yes both were OEM) just gave us the dreaded blinking light again... I believe that the error code was P1740. It's still driving fine with no obvious shifting issues or anything like that. I'll mention the 3x drain/fill and new transmission filter as well as the circuit (ground/PCM connections) when I talk to him later today.

Any other suggestions of things we should be checking? Thanks!
 

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just because the computer is throwing a code for the pressure switch doesn't mean there's anything wrong with the switch or the associated wiring. It only means that the computer saw a pressure reading that was outside a range that it expected to see in normal operation.

Rather than just replacing switches, the shop could put a guage on it and actually measure the pressure to see if it falls within spec.

My guess is your solenoid screens are plugged with 3rd gear clutch material. :(
 

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I agree with Wade. There must be something causing the switches to read bad / fail. I think your best bet now would be to clean the screens and trans fluid change. Maybe that will buy you some time.
 

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I agree with Wade. There must be something causing the switches to read bad / fail. I think your best bet now would be to clean the screens and trans fluid change. Maybe that will buy you some time.
I'd be curious to know what the normal operating temperature is for an Ody transmission. I'm willing to bet the fluid runs much hotter in the ody than in say, a Civic, or even most automatic transmissions out there from various other automakers.

My guess is that the "failure avalanche" that our 2nd gen Ody transmissions experience stems from:

1) Heat generated causes mild slippage
2) slipping causes damage as small bits of friction material gradually come off the friction bands. slipping causes more heat.
3) these bits start clogging screens.
4) clogged passages and screens cause more heat by choking off fluid circulation
5) by the time you get a Check engine light code and/or flashing D and you quickly move to clean the screens, you are only treating step #3 above but not the inherent problem from step#1: heat.

I think that's why you read that Magnefine filters can only buy you a little more time and miles before the inevitable failure. By the time you find metallic and non-metallic debris on the solenoid screens, it means damage is already done and cleaning those screens will only relieve that circulation restriction when the bulk of the problem is the heat.

It is a marginal transmission for that application - it should be much beefier given the heavy weight of the van, the fairly powerful engine (200+ hp is no slouch), and the fact it should be able to haul a decent amount of cargo in that roomy interior.
 

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***snip*** P.S. We've followed the mfg maintenance schedule to a "T" on this thing.
You have to service this transmission far more often than the Honda's schedule. Even then, there are no guarantees.
 

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I overmaintained my 2001 tranny = 3X drain and fill every 30K. The 1st tranny lasted 95K. The second lasted 55K.
 

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I overmaintained my 2001 tranny = 3X drain and fill every 30K. The 1st tranny lasted 95K. The second lasted 55K.
I picked this post to quote because it's amazing how much it seems to relate to hundreds of other members here including me. 2002ex. I just had my trans rebuilt on my own dime after 120k miles. I guess I'm lucky it lasted that long. I had Honda service drop the fluid every 30k miles. SHAME ON HONDA.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Okay, a bit more info. Still haven't been able to get it in for service (likely a 3x flush/fill and new filter) but will do so soon. In the mean time, I've been able to narrow down when the warning light comes on...

In recent days, I've observed 2-3 instances of the light starting to blink when decelerating at highway speeds. In one case, I had cancelled the cruise control and was just letting the speed coast down (I'm not sure if I touched the brakes) whereas in other instances I was braking due to slower traffic ahead.

I've read that the Odyssey engine will downshift in certain circumstances to assist with braking - I'm assuming that this is what was happening here.

Regardless of the root cause, I thought I'd throw this info out here in case anyone is able to help me narrow down what is going on, along with the best course of action.

Thanks.
 

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***snip***
I've read that the Odyssey engine will downshift in certain circumstances to assist with braking - I'm assuming that this is what was happening here.

***snip***
Yes, the GradeLogic program will downshift the transmission to assist braking. However, I believe it will do so only if you press the brake. Also, it will not flash any lights when doing so. Sorry to dash your hope that this was the explanation for the flashing D light.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Oh, I didn't meant to suggest that the engine braking was responsible for the blinking light - I have little doubt that something is amiss with the transmission. Rather, I was pointing out that the warning light seems to be triggered when downshifting (and decelerating) vs. when accelerating and upshifting.

I'm not sure if whether or not this is a meaningful observation that helps to narrow down the underlying problem, so I thought I'd throw it out there for consideration.

Thanks!
 

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Oh right, thanks. Every piece of information is useful. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
So here's the deal... We're out of town on Spring Break (have been for the past couple of my posts this week - including the one where I figured out that this is happening primarily on deceleration). As noted previously, we were unable to get the flush, etc. done before we left. Since our trip down, the blinking light has happening more and more frequently. We're driving home on Saturday and I don't relish the idea of getting stuck midway.

I'm assuming here that the error code is still P1740 - it has been each of the times we've had it checked in the past. Still no symptoms of transmission problems, such as hunting for gears, jerky shifting, etc., but the frequency with which we get the blinking light is unsettling.

If you were in our shoes, would you devote a morning of beach time to getting the nearest dealer to flush/fill, replace filters, etc. Or would you just hold your breath for 400 miles and deal with it when you (hopefully) got home?

I realize that nobody can give a concrete, predictive answer, but I'd love to hear what you'd do if you were in our situation.
 
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