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Just picked up our Odyssey last Monday and finally spent some time last night getting "friendly" with the owners manual. I have always done my own maintanence on my vehicals so I was very happy to see half the manual dealt with this. There were three things that I found rather unusual though...

1) Among the items listed which cause the vehical to be maintained at "Severe" level is an outdoor temp of >90F. What's the scoop with that, wouldn't that cover most of the US (and wouldn't the cold extreme ensure almost the entire *world* be "severe")? Is this for real? No car I've ever owned has had this requirement, and other than temp we'd be fine at normal intervals. What does everyone else maintain their vehicle at?

2) ATF change...I've never owned a car that required a transmision fluid change. Why does Honda specify this? How difficult is it to do? How do you dispose used ATF?

3) Just about all the fluids say to use Honda fluids only...I knew Honda had special fluids (which is one reason I've stayed away from them in the past) but I had no idea it was this extensive of a list. Is this just scare tactics or is it for real?

Thanks.
 

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Yes, the "severe" schedules apply to most of us. Lots of folks think their driving is that of the "normal" schedule, but they really could benefit from the more frequent maintenance, especially if they want to drive the car to high mileage.

As to the ATF question, there again, most vehicles call for a change, by mileage, if "severe" service is indicated. The manual usually spells this out and one is really in a dream world in thinking it is not necessary. These days, an AT rebuild can run to the $3-4K neighborhood and a little maintenance (even overmaintenance) could save a lot of money in the long run.

You have quite a fine piece of machinery there and some fine care would seem to be indicated. Most fluids can be recycled somewhere in your area, either at a local auto supply or a disposal site, possibly sponsored by a local government. (that's the way it is here in my area)

Yes, specific fluids need to be used. That was never so clearly demonstrated as with the late model Chrysler automatic transmissions. Using the wrong (read not Mopar) fluids in those guys is almost a sure recipe for failure. I owned a Dodge Caravan prior to the purchase of my Odyssey and spent a lot of time on the Mopar technical support board. Many were the "war stories" relative to not using "specific fluids".

Just a few cents on the subject. Jerry O.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I have owned and maintained five other vehicals prior to the Odyseey. All have been maintained at the "normal" interval (usually 6 mos or 6K miles). I'm talking run of the mill GMs, Dodges, and Fords (yes, the Odyssey is my first foreign car). With the exception of the Sunfire which was totaled at 6K miles and the Ranger who's starter stuck and stripped the flywheel at 95K, and the Saturn which I still have (at 20K), all have provided ~ 10 years and 113-145K miles of trouble free service and ran well when traded in (with the same transmission fluid that they came with no less). I can't say I'm a great believer in service that isn't called for.

But honestly, I'm not asking to debate about PM intervals...the book says to do it at "severe" levels so I will, end of story. I'm just trying to figure out the philosophy. For example, why would Honda even bother with "normal" when they force everyone into the "severe" catagory anyway? Is there anyone here who services their vehical at "normal" intervals? Also what's the purpose of ATF (and just remembered, break fluid) changes? Does the Honda fluid break down relatively quickly or is this because everything has to work harder due to the Odyssey's size and lesser aerodynamics (i.e. are the smaller Hondas this way)?

Also, how do you change the ATF? If it's required, I would hope they make it easy. Is there at least a drain plug? Is their a filter too (manual says nothing about changing the filter)? I haven't looked underneath yet. Where do you fill it up? To change the break fluid does one just blead them until new fluid has been flushed through the lines? Thanks.
 

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As for ATF changes, there is an easy to reach drain plug. Most vehicles use the transmission dipstick for filling, so you may need a long funnel with a narrow spout. I don't remember seeing an external filter on the Honda. Though our Subaru and Saturn had an external tranny filter, I think most vehicles have mesh filters which require you to open up the case to change. I don't know about the Odyssey, but this usually isn't too difficult, just takes some time, creates a mess and is a hassle I'd rather leave to a dealer.


Anyone know the details for the Odyssey transmission filter?
 

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My dealer told me that the filter on the Odyssey is a screen which they do not typically do anything with. There is nothing in the owner's manual or the shop manual which says any different.

As to the refilling of the transmission, I think there is a plug on the top of the transmission for that purpose. Yes, I just went out and looked and, indeed there is a fill plug, which looks to be a 15 or 17 mm hex. You will need a funnel with a long spout on it to reach it, but, it should be an easy fill.

Jerry O.
2001 GG LX
 

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The proper way to service an automatic transmission is with a machine that connect to the transmission oil cooler lines at the radiator and or transmission. This is the only way to replace the oil in the torque converter.

They then fill the machine with about 10 quarts of oil. They start the engine and the pressure of the transmission is pushing the oil out on one line while it is sucking new fluid in the other line.

By just Removing the drain plug and or pan, you will be lucky if you drain 50% of it.
According to the manual, you drain about 2.9 quarts by removing the drain plug.

But a complete overhaul requires 7.5 quarts to fill the transmission for complete fluid replacement.

Best Regards from Montreal, Canada

<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Jerry O:
My dealer told me that the filter on the Odyssey is a screen which they do not typically do anything with. There is nothing in the owner's manual or the shop manual which says any different.

As to the refilling of the transmission, I think there is a plug on the top of the transmission for that purpose. Yes, I just went out and looked and, indeed there is a fill plug, which looks to be a 15 or 17 mm hex. You will need a funnel with a long spout on it to reach it, but, it should be an easy fill.

Jerry O.
2001 GG LX
</font>
 

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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">
1) Among the items listed which cause the vehical to be maintained at "Severe" level is an outdoor temp of >90F. What's the scoop with that, wouldn't that cover most of the US (and wouldn't the cold extreme ensure almost the entire *world* be "severe")? Is this for real? No car I've ever owned has had this requirement, and other than temp we'd be fine at normal intervals. What does everyone else maintain their vehicle at?

Thanks.[/B]</font>
Note that the manualstates that if you drive your vehicle Mainly-under the severe conditions---etc. These conditions could vary depending on where you live and the time of the year. I too, service my vehicles closer to the normal service conditions (except my pickup truck when I'm towing my travel traler on long vacations) and have never had any trouble related to servicing.
I have sold several of ny vehicles to my kids after I put over 100k on them, and they drove them for another 50-80K before selling them.
Dealers will almost always tell you that your area etc. is a "severe driving condition area". That way they get to see you twice as often.

Al
 
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