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Old October 19th, 2014, 08:27 AM   #1
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So I'm getting pretty amazing gas mileage on my road trip

...but the reason sucks

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Heading to Phoenix from Arlington, TX. Me in my car, my son in his 2000 4AT Prelude. 200 miles into the trip, his car starts slipping badly in 4th gear and smoking. He pulls over immediately. Pulled two codes, P0700 which is a generic transmission malfunction code and P0730, gear ratio incorrect. Quick Google search showed the P0730 is basically a death code for Honda automatics. Anyway, a rest stop was maybe a half mile up the road so my son followed me there, keeping it out of 4th gear. And it was otherwise shifting fine. So we figured there was a town about 20 miles up the road so he'd just leave it in 3rd and hopefully we'd make it without needing a tow. Made it there no problem so we decided gas up and to chance it and get to our first day destination in New Mexico. He left it in 3rd gear, tried to keep the rpms under about 4200, which kind of limited us to 60-65 mph...which really sucks when the legal limit is 75 and 80.

But on the plus side, we made it 400 miles to Las Cruces and I still have a 3rd of a tank. According to my trip computer, I still have enough range to make it to Arizona. Anyway, 387 miles from here to where we are staying in the Phoenix area, over 6 hours at 60-65 mph, not much over 5 if we could do 75 the whole way.

BTW, if anyone of you is in the Phoenix area and can recommend a good transmission shop close to Queen Creek/Gilbert area, I'd appreciate it. A friend of my son's is flying down on Friday to help him drive the rest of the way to Seattle where he is moving (which is why he is also driving) so we are under a tight time frame. Ugh.
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Old October 19th, 2014, 01:47 PM   #2
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I had one of those autotragic preludes (98)

Used to be on preludepower, those trannys were no good. Guess those H22's were pushing out too much torque for autotragic....

As soon as mine started slipping, sold it ASAP.
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Old October 19th, 2014, 10:36 PM   #3
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I'm always surprised with the highway mpg I get. I got 33 mpg on an 8 hour drive in my 6 speed to Buffalo NY mostly going 75-80 the whole way with pockets of traffic. Also had to go through nyc, ac on most of the time, stopped a few times, and drove around town for a bit. Didn't EPA adjust the highway mpg on these cars from 30 to 27? I don't get it....
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Old October 20th, 2014, 12:04 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigballer8526 View Post
I had one of those autotragic preludes (98)

Used to be on preludepower, those trannys were no good. Guess those H22's were pushing out too much torque for autotragic....

As soon as mine started slipping, sold it ASAP.
Supposedly the major problems were fixed by 99, my son's is a 2000 and has about 160k miles on it. He ended up driving it 800 or so miles in 3rd gear and got about 28 mpg keeping it between 60-65 and around 4200 rpms. Much better than I thought it would be.

Now to find a shop in the morning that can get it fixed right and in time for him to leave here on Friday. Oh boy!

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I'm always surprised with the highway mpg I get. I got 33 mpg on an 8 hour drive in my 6 speed to Buffalo NY mostly going 75-80 the whole way with pockets of traffic. Also had to go through nyc, ac on most of the time, stopped a few times, and drove around town for a bit. Didn't EPA adjust the highway mpg on these cars from 30 to 27? I don't get it....
I don't think the EPA changed it but mine has always done well on road trips. Speed limits are 75-80 all the way from a bit west of Dallas into Phoenix.
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Old October 20th, 2014, 06:03 AM   #5
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Supposedly. I don't quite believe it as it was Honda's first automanl/tiptronic transmission.

I would recommend searching preludepower and using the dedicated shops they recommend, or even selling the car at this point. It's a 14 year old car and a transmission rebuild is going to cost 2-3k, which is just about the value of the car at this point. You can get some pretty decent 7th gen accords for 5-6k these days. Whatever you do, don't take it to Meinke or those other generic transmission shops

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Old October 20th, 2014, 07:27 PM   #6
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We found a shop that is familiar with Honda transmissions (honesty, they all probably are) who is going to do the job. Full rebuild, plus clean and bench test all the solenoids. Said it should be done by Wednesday, which would give us a couple days driving to be sure there isn't anything really screwed up in it. $1575 plus ATF. If any solenoids are bad, they'd be extra.

After a road test, they said it was going into 4th gear but slowly. Didn't throw a code though. Fluid was pretty burnt up. He said what probably happened is the internal screens (thanks for no external filter, Honda) clogged up and that's what ate up 4th gear. He'll know more once its apart.

My son really isn't in a position right now to dump the car and get another one. He's moving to go to school and starting a new job so it really isn't a good time for him to try to sell a dead car here and try to buy another one. Best option now is to fix it, drive it a year and save his money. Other than the transmission, the car has been pretty reliable.
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Old October 21st, 2014, 11:25 PM   #7
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My son's car was done today! Full rebuild, new torque converter, new solenoids and we had them replace the rear main since the transmission was out anyway. So far, so good, got a few days to drive it around and make sure there aren't any issues.

And my car, filled it up in Tucson, drove 90 miles to Queen Creek (near Phoenix), the another 260 miles in mixed driving here in the Phoenix area, 28.4 mpg both on my trip computer and doing the math too. Not bad for a V6.
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Old October 25th, 2014, 01:58 PM   #8
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I'm surprised your 7th gen v6 5AT trans held up so great. Over on DA, there's nothing but horror stories.
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Old October 27th, 2014, 07:50 AM   #9
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I'm surprised your 7th gen v6 5AT trans held up so great. Over on DA, there's nothing but horror stories.
I actually had to have it rebuilt at 157,200 or so miles. Sprag clutch failed. Rebuilt with a full master kit, shop did a few valve body modifications to improve shift feel and added an external cooler.

BTW, my son's car made it to Seattle, he got 28 mpg on the trip. Not bad for a car rated at 21/25 mpg!
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Old October 29th, 2014, 10:50 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigballer8526 View Post
I had one of those autotragic preludes (98)

Used to be on preludepower, those trannys were no good. Guess those H22's were pushing out too much torque for autotragic....

As soon as mine started slipping, sold it ASAP.
Where have we seen this...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scottwax View Post
I actually had to have it rebuilt at 157,200 or so miles. Sprag clutch failed. Rebuilt with a full master kit, shop did a few valve body modifications to improve shift feel and added an external cooler.

BTW, my son's car made it to Seattle, he got 28 mpg on the trip. Not bad for a car rated at 21/25 mpg!
PM with details? or post?
Very interest in keeping my tragic at its best. Also wondering what you mean by shift feel precisely.

Also if you make a run back to Arizona again, PM.
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Old October 31st, 2014, 06:20 PM   #11
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The shop here in the Dallas area (Plano to be exact) said they do 190-220 Honda automatics a year. Not sure exactly what was done but shift quality (firmer, faster) is better than stock, very consistent too. Full throttle they are very quick. They did ask me about what I was looking for because they noticed my intake and J-pipe. I said I wanted a faster shift, but not necessarily a GM automatic with a shift kit slam-bang shift. They did say if it was too soft I could bring it back and they could tweak it.

Hope to be back in Phoenix in the spring, basically its a working vacation. Detail cars during the day, hang out with friends (grew up in Scottsdale) at night. Also bring my road bike because both the Phoenix and Tucson areas have bike lanes...and elevation. So freakin' flat here. When I was in Marana, I climbed for 5 miles straight.
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