Proper Honda/Acura Automatic Transmission use and service is sometimes overlooked. A new replacement automatic transmission is an expensive proposition and not at all uncommon. Honda’s most recent service guidelines call for ATF (automatic transmission fluid) to be changed “as needed.” What’s that? We recommend your ATF be changed every 15,000 miles (Honda does not use a serviceable filter). While it may seem excessive, our goal is preventing transmission failure (a new transmission can run upwards of $4,000–5,000). We also recommend using only Genuine Honda ATF in all 5-speed automatics. Four-speed automatics can still use conventional Dextron III.
Another way of preventing premature failure is proper transmission operation. Four-speed automatics should be driven in D3 around town and D4 on highway/freeway. Some 5-speed automatics have a D4 option and in that case D4 around town and D5 on the highway/freeway. If your vehicle is equipped with overdrive, you want the OD OFF around town and ON on the freeway/highway. This prevents unnecessary shifting, and unnecessary wear and tear. If you have any questions or concerns regarding transmission service or operation, please contact us.