Trans. jerks when starting from dead stop - Honda Accord

Discussion in 'Wheels, Wings, Mud, and Water' started by toxcrusadr, Jan 29, 2018.

  1. Wildcat

    Wildcat Audio Sommelier

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    My trouble is trying to find a shop I can trust. I already have money set aside to have it rebuilt. For us it's not a big issue since we got the car pretty much for a steal, and it would be worth putting the money into. I thought about a salvage yard tranny, but how would I ever know if that one didn't have the same problem? Someone on the DriveAccord forum mentioned I should get a used tranny, rebuild it myself, then swap it in when it's ready. The rebuild kits don't cost much in the grand scheme of things ($250-$300). It's the labor involved.

    There is a "shift improvement kit" for some of these transmissions, but a trans shop would need to be comfortable with installing them properly. Using an external transmission cooler and filter might also be a good idea. The "cooler" for the tranny in the '02 is just a short piece of metal pipe, mounted near the bottom of the radiator. (I had to replace it, as it had rusted through at the weld on the support bracket.)
     

     

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  2. toxcrusadr

    toxcrusadr AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    I WISH I had time and knowledge to rebuild a tranny, but have way too many things in my life, and it's the wife's car - she's fairly ready to replace it anyway as she works at a hospital and wants reliable transport. I don't blame her, the car has 230k on it. Engine is fantastic though, knock on wood. I just wish the Honda transmissions weren't such a weak spot. Dammit. Otherwise this thing would just keep going and going.

    I'm going to tell the transmission guys to give it to me straight and if they don't think replacing solenoids or whatever is going to fix it, we may just have to sell it while it still runs mostly OK.
     
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  3. Wildcat

    Wildcat Audio Sommelier

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    Probably a good move there. The more recent transmissions are a lot better. I know for the V6/5-speed autos, getting a 2006 or later Accord would get into the new transmission design that does not have these issues. The 5-speed in my CR-V (with K-series 4 cylinder) is rock solid and the smoothest shifting of any car I've ever owned. Even the trans in our '04 Civic has no issues at 240k. (It's sidelined since the Bosch spark plug decided to shatter in the #2 cylinder, and now it has almost no compression on #2.) I think the problem with the V6 trannies back then was that they were not built for the power output of the engine. It's less of an issue for the 4-cylinder BAXA/MAXA trannies to have as many problems as the B7XA in the V6, but they're out there.

    Same here on the engine--the V6 in my daughter's Accord is still running like the proverbial Swiss watch, and still has quite a kick to it when it hits the VTEC range. If I can get this rebuilt and keep it running for a few more years until she graduates from the college, we'll be happy. Aside from the tranny, I only have one more sensor issue to track down (the evap system). Everything else still works--cruise, traction control, climate control, etc.. It has a few cosmetic issues, but given that it has to be driven through the bowels of Detroit to get to the college, that's fine.
     
  4. toxcrusadr

    toxcrusadr AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    We pretty much drive ours like an old lady going to church on Sunday. The wife likes to go kinda fast on the highway (I start nagging her when I see it get over 80). But it never gets floored - which makes it even more frustrating when the tranny doesn't last. OTOH we've never owned an AT car that went this may miles in the first place. Even the 92 Accord we sold off at under 200k.
     
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  5. Wildcat

    Wildcat Audio Sommelier

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    I don't sweat the speed or acceleration that much--Honda was into F1 racing, and made engines that redline far beyond what our cars are capable of. (The original S2000, in fact, had a 9,000 RPM redline, and the common advice to get the most out of it was to "drive it like you hate it". ;) ) I did my share of wide open throttle on my two trips this past year, especially in mountain areas, and it had no ill effect. Yet if I knew a particular transmission was a bit troublesome, I definitely would go easy on it.

    I also wonder if your trans was repaired or rebuilt correctly when it was first worked on, and if they put the correct fluid in it. I had our '88 Accord tranny rebuilt in 1995 and I had issues with it on longer freeway drives on a slight incline--it would lose power, and would even spray (?) tranny fluid onto the side of the car. Yet when it cooled for a bit, it was fine. It worked OK around town, but it still wasn't quite the same as when it was new. (And I partly blame myself for it going bad in the first place, as I'd used Dexron rather than the Honda fluid when I did the maintenance. That was back before I knew better. ;) )

    One thing that some owners do is Honda's recommended triple drain and fill. It eats through 9 quarts of fluid, but the idea is that you drain it, fill with three quarts, run it for a few miles, drain, fill with three more quarts, run it, drain, and fill with a final three quarts. The tranny holds about 7 to 8 quarts of fluid, so this will change out most of it. With some, it clears up a problem completely, especially on a tranny that was neglected over the years. It won't cure something wrong internally though, such as burned clutch packs or defective torque converter.
     
  6. toxcrusadr

    toxcrusadr AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    I'm pretty sure this shop knows what they're doing for a couple reasons. I've been with the same independent mechanic for 30 years now. In fact I gave him a certificate for taking care of us through half a million miles on 5 cars, two trucks and one riding mower. He sends all transmission work to these guys. I did call when I thought the fluid was low a couple months ago to see what they had used, and they said Honda recommends Honda fluid. I had reminded them that they rebuilt it and so I have to assume that's what they used in it. They wanted me to bring it in to see what was leaking but when I checked it as described in the manual, on a flat surface, it wasn't low so I never did add any. Need to check it again.
     

     

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  7. olson_jr

    olson_jr AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Saw this poster the other day, of course, it was from a MT Guy.

    Screen Shot 2018-01-31 at 12.23.54 PM.png
     
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  8. HiFi in WYO

    HiFi in WYO The universe is a big place, perhaps the biggest. Subscriber

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    Tox - when's the last time you replaced the coils?
     
  9. toxcrusadr

    toxcrusadr AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Coils? You mean the shift solenoids? I was reading all about those yesterday. I'm going to guess the trans. shop did that when they rebuilt it a couple years ago. Maybe not, have to ask them. The problem at that time was that it wasn't shifting into overdrive so it may have had a bad one then - but it has several so maybe they replaced the one that controlled the upper gears and not the other, or they replaced both with crap parts.

    Or are you talking about ignition coils, and what would that have to do with it.
     
  10. Wildcat

    Wildcat Audio Sommelier

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    Good to know. :thumbsup: It's hard to find anyone trusted. I tend to do most of my own work, but I'm not equipped to do a transmission.

    I know the manual recommends differently, but many of us will do a 3 quart drain-and-fill every 30,000 miles, or as I'm doing with our two newer CR-Vs, every two oil changes (which is ~20,000 miles). It's cheap insurance, and easier than an oil change as there's no filter to change.

    I was going to do the 3x drain and fill on my daughter's 2002 but I figure something internally is messed up, so why waste it until I know what's wrong? Its main problem is a delayed/hard upshift into 2nd, and harsh downshift into 2nd. It's also had an issue where it feels really bogged down, as though it were in 2nd or 3rd gear; I'm told that could indicate a clogged internal filter.

    A few bad rush hours in my last MT car cured me of ever owning another MT... ;)
     
  11. Wildcat

    Wildcat Audio Sommelier

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    There are solenoids and control valves. They can all go bad of course, but your transmission most likely would have thrown error codes if that were the case. They would typically be reused unless they were found to be faulty. OEM Honda replacements are the best of course, but off-brands can vary from good to poor.

    A bad ignition coil on a Honda causes a constant misfire on one cylinder, and would cause a P030x code (P0301 for cylinder 1, P0302 for cyl 2, etc.). In Hondas with TCS or VSA, that system is also disabled until the coil is replaced. Don't ask how I know this. ;) I've replaced probably half a dozen as cars passed the 200,000 mile mark. At that point each coil has fired literally hundreds of millions of times.
     

     

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  12. HiFi in WYO

    HiFi in WYO The universe is a big place, perhaps the biggest. Subscriber

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    Ignition coils. Let me explain. Our 2005 F-150 started some ghost shifting, not shifting out of gear at the right speed and rpm. Thought our transmission was failing (at 145,000 miles) and we were preparing for the worst. Got online and searched the Ford forums, found out that bad ignition coils can screw up a lot of things, including the transmission. It will make you think it's dying. So, ordered new ignition coils (on the 5.4 each cylinder has its own coil), replaced them and walla (sp?) all better. At work, I have an older Dodge Caravan. Big clunking noise from the transmission occasionally and at any speed. Same deal - replaced the coil pack and issue is gone. Oh, and it will throw no codes - at least it didn't on either vehicle.

    As for the F-150, we're now 10,000 miles down the line and haven't had another issue.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2018
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  13. toxcrusadr

    toxcrusadr AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    I would think a 4-cylinder engine would run noticeably rough if one cylinder was misfiring...? It runs like a Swiss watch except for this shifting thing.

    I don't remember ever replacing ign coils though. On any of our Hondas. Distributor rotors though, went through several of those. They tend to implode at 70 mph somewhere in Outer Bum***k.
     
  14. HiFi in WYO

    HiFi in WYO The universe is a big place, perhaps the biggest. Subscriber

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    Well of course ... that's usually where anything falls apart.

    Our truck ran fine. So did the Caravan. You may not notice a random misfire because your computer will try an compensate for that. But if a coil goes bad or had an intermittent arc, I guess the rationale is it can send a jolt through the system that isn't enough to activate a code, probably isn't enough to feel while driving but is enough to cause the system or parts of it to go haywire.

    I'm not saying it's what's going on in your case (but if it is, it's a heckuva lot cheaper than a tranny) but I wanted to throw that out there as something to consider.
     
  15. Shadowdog

    Shadowdog Super Member

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    Plugged up muffler or cat. converter from an old exhaust system rusting internally can cause bucking under load or on hills that will make you think your AT's on it's way out or coils are going!
     
  16. toxcrusadr

    toxcrusadr AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    OK thanks guys I will keep those in mind while we're having diagnosis done.
     
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  17. toxcrusadr

    toxcrusadr AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    BTW, olsen_jr I loved that tranny diagram! Exactly how I feel giving up my Mazda MX-6 5-speed for the '15 Civic with CVT.
     
  18. Wildcat

    Wildcat Audio Sommelier

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    You will normally notice it when a coil goes bad--seems like the end of the world when that happens. :D It won't leave you stranded or cause other problems, but gas mileage and acceleration will be poor, and prolonged use might ruin the catalytic converter from the unburned fumes. I've probably had half a dozen fail between three cars, all due to old age. On the Hondas they just seem to die out completely. I'm surprised you haven't had to replace them yet, as 200k miles is about the time they start going bad. They're usually $40-$50 each and most auto parts stores would stock them. Simple to replace--one nut, one connector. Simple to troubleshoot without an OBD reader--start disconnecting each coil, one at a time, until you find the one that doesn't make the engine run even worse. The Denso coils are original equipment, but they'll cost more at the auto parts shops. (Rock Auto sells the Denso for $35.79 each for our Civic, but AutoZone wants $62.99, for instance.)

    A lot of that does depend on the manufacturer, and the type of coil. I think with the coils in the Hondas I've had, in my experience they wear out and the coil wire burns out/breaks inside, so it dies completely. It would also depend on how the car's computer compensates for any (let's say) "weirdness" in a malfunctioning coil, as some might throw off other systems in the vehicle, where others ignore it in a sense. I remember in one of my dad's late 80s GMs, he had a situation similar to yours. He had to replace the coil pack for some similar strangeness he had. It's not like the car was noticeably misfiring, but there was something else happening for which the coil pack ended up being the root cause, after a bit of detective work. This was not the coil-on-plug type, but an electronic pack with six terminals on it, so it cost a bit to have it replaced.
     
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