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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just wondering if anyone uses the O/D switch for engine braking? I used the O/D switch often with my previous cars for engine braking. I figure, hey this will prolong the life of the brakes.

But knowing about the Ody's tranny reputation, I am inclined not to use the O/D switch for engine braking. Don't want to put any more stress than necessary.

Thoughts?
 

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I think OD is designed to be used with towing. In effect, its design to save the life of your transmission. I am sure enabling OD often will not be good for your gas mileage. I don't know what kind of long term effect it would have on your tranny if you are switching OD on and off constantly.

The way I would look at this is to compare the cost of a new transmission versus the cost of new brakes.
 

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mindoro said:
Just wondering if anyone uses the O/D switch for engine braking? I used the O/D switch often with my previous cars for engine braking. I figure, hey this will prolong the life of the brakes.

But knowing about the Ody's tranny reputation, I am inclined not to use the O/D switch for engine braking. Don't want to put any more stress than necessary.

Thoughts?
Sorry for asking. Which switch is for O/D?

Regards
Bubbles
 

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Re: Re: Overdrive Switch - Anyone use?

bubblesintp said:
Sorry for asking. Which switch is for O/D?

Regards
Bubbles
It's the button on the side of the shift stalk that when pressed lights up D3 on the shift indicator and limits you to only the first three gears. In effect what they are describing is like downshifting a manual trans to effect engine braking.

I don't use the D3 button for engine braking but during a snow storm I use it to prevent it from going into O/D.
 

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I used it prior to the latest transmission firmware update to prevent my transmission from constantly hunting. When driving at 30mph (standard speed limit in the city), I would find the transmission would either hunt between 4th & 5th, or if it stayed in 5th, the transmission would lug. I dropped it into D3 when I'd get annoyed.

With the new firmware, the above two scenarios don't occur and it makes for a more sane experience.

I would now only use D3 for some assisted engine braking on longer downhills, so as to reduce brake pad/rotor heating.

From the manual: To use D3, press the D3 button when the shift lever is in the ‘‘D’’ position. This position is similar to D, except only the first three gears are selected instead of all five.
Use D3 when towing a trailer in hilly terrain, or to provide engine braking when going down a steep hill. D3 can also keep the transmission from cycling between third and fourth gears in stop-and-go driving.
 

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I had the firmware flashed too, I wonder if it will behave better in snow now. Something for me to try in a few months.
 

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Re: Re: Re: Overdrive Switch - Anyone use?

moxie said:
It's the button on the side of the shift stalk that when pressed lights up D3 on the shift indicator and limits you to only the first three gears. In effect what they are describing is like downshifting a manual trans to effect engine braking.

I don't use the D3 button for engine braking but during a snow storm I use it to prevent it from going into O/D.
Thanks, moxie! :)

Regards
Bubbles
 

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mindoro said:
Just wondering if anyone uses the O/D switch for engine braking? I used the O/D switch often with my previous cars for engine braking. I figure, hey this will prolong the life of the brakes.

But knowing about the Ody's tranny reputation, I am inclined not to use the O/D switch for engine braking. Don't want to put any more stress than necessary.

Thoughts?
Brakes are extremely cheap compared to engine parts and transmission parts.

I would not recommend engine braking in an attempt to 'save the brakes'

Financially speaking, it doesn't make sense.
 

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Re: Re: Overdrive Switch - Anyone use?

kenny1773 said:
Brakes are extremely cheap compared to engine parts and transmission parts.

I would not recommend engine braking in an attempt to 'save the brakes'

Financially speaking, it doesn't make sense.
I agree with you for most driving. However, engine braking may be safer on a long downhill grade where the brakes could overheat and fade. In this case, slow down at the crest of the hill and downshift the transmission before the van picks up speed. This reduces stress on the clutches. Once downshifted, the strain is on the gears but they can take it.
 

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roadcarver said:
I noticed that if the O/D is pressed in, and the OD light is on, it seems to accelerate faster?
Yes, the van will accelerate faster because it's in a lower gear.
 

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Re: Re: Re: Overdrive Switch - Anyone use?

davedrivesody said:
I agree with you for most driving. However, engine braking may be safer on a long downhill grade where the brakes could overheat and fade. In this case, slow down at the crest of the hill and downshift the transmission before the van picks up speed. This reduces stress on the clutches. Once downshifted, the strain is on the gears but they can take it.
Agreed :) as long as you downshift BEFORE you pick up speed.
 

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We just took a trip to the Central/Northern Colorado. I used the heck out of the D3 mode.

One poster said that it doesn't financially make sense to use the button. That's true if you drive on mild hills and flat land (see Lubbock, TX, where I live) but if it saves your brakes overheating and causing an accident while driving in mountainous territory then it makes great fiscal sense.
 

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Hello Mindoro,

I might point out that engine braking has been used ever since there have been engines in vehicles. I am not aware of any engine problems associated with normal engine braking.

However, the Odyssey transmission may be the weak link.

With that said, I use D3 all the time, as well as using D2 or D1 if the situation arises. Higher RPM does cut into mileage, but these engines don't come "alive" until you are at over 4000 RPM.

I am kind of "old school" on this. When pulling a load, put the engine in the RPM range where it develops its best horsepower and torque, and use the transmission to keep it there while adjusting the speed.

I don't know if lugging or performance driving puts more strain on the transmission, but lean toward lugging as a cause of more problems. The transmission "upgrade" seems to validate this. I believe it allows the engine to build more RPM's before shifting.

I find that the additional braking provided by dropping to D3 in town often keeps me rolling longer, and that results in increased mileage around town. Using D3 on hilly and curvy roads also seems to make sense to me.

Come to think of it, this may come down to a driving style difference. I learned to drive in vehicles that had manual transmissions and, in general, poor brakes. If I had learned to drive with an automatic transmission and good brakes, my driving style may have ended up different.

Tom
 

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My new (to me) 2007 Odyssey is hunting also. Did the transmission software upgrade fix this problem and is it a warrantied service?
 

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The firmware update certainly did for my 2007 EX-L. Since your's is a 2007, I would expect it would be "covered" as it is part of a honda initiative.

Do a search for judder and do some reading of more recent posts and you'll get a feel for how folks have perceived the update.
 

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mindoro said:
Just wondering if anyone uses the O/D switch for engine braking? I used the O/D switch often with my previous cars for engine braking. I figure, hey this will prolong the life of the brakes.
I do all the time, not just to be easy on the brakes but it prolongs how long fuel is cut off to the engine when slowing down. Typically its when you can foresee a long gradual stop ahead, and sometimes during rush hour too.

If your wondering if it make a difference in MPG, it does. Marginally, but its a consistent improvement. I proved it out on my Accord for when I had a Scangauge.

FYI, its not RPM (excluding excessive and prolonged RPM) that promote engine wear, its cold starts and idling that is the worst. More wear is technically occurs when sitting in rush hour traffic, the drive thru, and starting your cold motor every day vs a couple engine assisted stops. No worries…
 

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davedrivesody said:
Yes, the van will accelerate faster because it's in a lower gear.
I think what was meant by the question was, does the van pick up speed faster thru 1-2-3 gears with or without the OD button in.

The answer is no, it accelerates the very same thru the first 3 gears regardless of the OD button.
 

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I think what he meant is that if you are cruising at 30 in D3 and punch the gas it accelerates faster - it does.
 
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