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Q: Transmision drain and replacement. Drain or suction? on 1997 Honda Accord

Your estimates of transmision fluid change do not specify if the service is draining or suctioning the fluid. The suctioning is much better and costs more! Don
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I'm glad that you are aware of the difference between a drain and fill Transmission service and a complete Transmission flush.
The drain and fill requires about 5 quarts, costing less due to less fluid. (Approx. $79.95)
The complete flushing of the Transmission requires approx. 16 quarts of fluid which is run through a machine and takes about 1 hour. (approx. $179.95)
The benifits are greater with a complete flush.
From my research, to include consultation with American Honda Motor Company and Cottman Transmission, South Cobb Drive, Marietta, Georgia, a complete "flush" is NOT recommended for several reasons. The Honda Accord automatic transmission does not allow access to the internal metal screen transmission filter w/o rebuilding the transmission. As the vehicle accumulates more miles, more gunk and metal savings are caught by the internal transmission filter. Eventually, this internal automatic transmission becomes so clogged, it starves the rest of the transmission of transmission fluid, causing over heating, and further breakdown of internal transmission parts. Eventually leading to complete premature tansmission failure.
The disadvantage of a complete "flush" involves most service technicians adding a detergent type additive during the flush which actually can cause more damage than benefit. This additive which cleans the internal transmissions also removes any friction additives needed for the clutch plates. The complete flush can also dislodge gunk and metal shavings, and lodging these particles in passage ways which end up blocking transmission fluid paths.
Research indicates that a certified transmission dealer, who specialize in transmissions, should always perform any required maintenance as the transmission technicians are most familiar with premature Honda Accord automatic transmission failures, and can determine the best method, to include mileage on vehicle, what is the best method to remove old transmission fluid and add new. This can include a pressure flush w/o the harmful detergent being added, or a simple drain and fill.
Let the experts, a certified transmission business who specializes in transmissions, do any servicing on the Honda Accord automatic transmission.
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