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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Honestly, I know every car out there has its quirks, but I wonder how these cars ever got their reputations for being "reliable." Everything I've read on Honda 5-speed automatics makes me wonder why I didn't just dump it instead of doing what I'm doing now -- rebuilding the transmission myself. It has to be one of the most flawed transmissions of the last 20 years. It may as well have been designed by Jatco...or even worse...Ford/Getrag. That being said...my reading has led me to believe that the fatal flaws in this transmission are multi-fold but that the two most significant have to do with inadequate TC charge and leaky valves due to being undersized or the bores being oversized, etc. Those problems combined with the non-existent cooling with the "ATF warmer" basically turns these transmissions in ATF boiling pots. Cool. So...I have the Superior kit and it seems to handle a lot of what needs to be addressed...aside from all the leaky lock-up valves. Sonnax sells their oversized valves for the TC/lock-up...but really don't address any of the other issues. A rule I'm familiar with is to not mix kits with differing methods to fix similar problems...however; it would seem to me that both kits fix one problem and not the other (i.e. STL doesn't address the excess clearances in the valve bores for lockup)....

What are people's experience with the Superior kit vs. Sonnax...and has anyone use some combination of them both?

I just don't want to do all this work...put the transmission back in and add an actual cooler + thermal bypass + whatever else I need to make this thing not be a ticking time bomb only to find out that the cooler ends up making things worse (the Sonnax write-up here is interesting: Beyond the Pressure Regulator: Keeping Cool While Investigating Mystery Honda Overheat ) and the transmission is doomed to fail in another 40-60,000 miles because I went with one kit over the other and let another problem go unresolved.

Side comment...
Funny thing is...I'm suspecting the real problem with my transmission was a clogged filter. Thanks Honda for the asinine internal filter design that can't be replaced without pulling the whole transmission out. Like really...what the hell were they thinking? Why when I look through this forum do people say 06-07 models weren't impacted? The dealer tried telling me "Ah yeah, them 03-05 models are rough but these here 06-07s are bullet-proof." More than one dealership told me that...almost like Honda, trying to fend off future class-actions, warned their employees to never admit problems with later models ever again. MAYA/BAYA from all years all share the same jacked up design. So much of the early failure could have been prevented with a serviceable transmission filter (not the tiny element next to the "warmer"). Before I tore this thing apart, I probably had close to zero fluid charge. End rant.
 

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Seriously, if you have certain agendas against this car's transmission then you can just dump it and get a different car. No one is telling you to keep it and it's a free country. With just over 20 posts and a short amount of time on this forum, you've posted complaints and arguments against someone like me who's been here for almost 15 years and has done a V6 trans rebuilt. I am no longer recommending anything to you because you come back with an argument to shoot it down every time a recommendation is given.

No car has ZERO issue, but this car has very little problems compared to many others. Hop over to the 8th gen Accord forum and find VCM toasting piston rings and 9th gen Accord forum to find toasted starters. Perhaps find yourself a 06 6-speed sedan so you don't need to deal with the auto trans.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Seriously, if you have certain agendas against this car's transmission then you can just dump it and get a different car. No one is telling you to keep it and it's a free country. With just over 20 posts and a short amount of time on this forum, you've posted complaints and arguments against someone like me who's been here for almost 15 years and has done a V6 trans rebuilt. I am no longer recommending anything to you because you come back with an argument to shoot it down every time a recommendation is given.

No car has ZERO issue, but this car has very little problems compared to many others. Hop over to the 8th gen Accord forum and find VCM toasting piston rings and 9th gen Accord forum to find toasted starters. Perhaps find yourself a 06 6-speed sedan so you don't need to deal with the auto trans.
This thread was meant to get feedback on the Sonnax and Superior kits...not to address issues that you personally have with me.

That being said, I apologize if I offended you by asking for clarification on the thread you sent me that said something very different than what you were saying it said. I think for the most part, I've been receptive to your input and I appreciate it. Yet, just because you say it's so doesn't mean that I need to accept that it's correct if it isn't. I'm an engineer...I analyze and question everything, don't take it personally.

As for the rest, I don't think it's up for debate that the Honda/Acura 5AT is a poor design.
 

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Pretty much all the Honda ATs from the early to mid 2000s were problematic. But they've definitely taken a major step forward since then.
 
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2017 Honda Accord, Coupe, Touring (V6, 6AT), 2017 Honda Accord Sedan, EXL V6 w/ Navi, Sensing
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I’ve always heard the problems with the Honda 5AT for the V6 were mostly resolved with the mid model refresh in 2006. I’m curious which 5AT you’re rebuilding, I4 or V6? I haven’t opened up either one of them, but an internal filter that can’t be changed without removing the tranny is a poor design. Critical thinking is a good thing.

Hopefully someone will be able help you with the specific rebuild questions. My guess is you’re deeper in the machine than most of us get. It is neat that your keeping an older model alive.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I’ve always heard the problems with the Honda 5AT for the V6 were mostly resolved with the mid model refresh in 2006. I’m curious which 5AT you’re rebuilding, I4 or V6? I haven’t opened up either one of them, but an internal filter that can’t be changed without removing the tranny is a poor design. Critical thinking is a good thing.

Hopefully someone will be able help you with the specific rebuild questions. My guess is you’re deeper in the machine than most of us get. It is neat that your keeping an older model alive.
Yeah, I've heard that too...and honestly is one of the reasons I was okay with buying the 2006. I have 2006 V6 w/ BAYA. There were changes made between years, but the major flaws still remain...mainly the transmissions valve body, fluid flow restrictions, and the subsequent overheating and destruction of the clutches and TC. My transmission suffers from many of the same defects found in other Honda 5AT's found in other Hondas and Acuras. They generally share the same fate. While those defects would ultimately lead to a failed transmission down the road, yes, the inability to change the filter exacerbates the fluid flow --> heat generation --> clutch destruction problems.

Thank you for responding! I hope others will chime in as well. I know I might have come off as hating this vehicle, hence T-RD's response, but I actually like it enough that I'm putting more work into this car than my other oldie (my college car that I just can't let go of...has close to 400,000 miles and is 15 years old but is completely rusted). It's a very nice car and drives handles better than most new sedans. I'm hoping the work pays off and I can use it for several more years. Right now, it's in the garage on a table with the cover off and the 3rd clutch guide pulled off...haven't taken the lock ring off yet. I certainly hope to fully teardown this weekend so I can order any hard parts, bearings that will be required. I'm hoping by then I'll also have some input on whether or not anyone has mixed Sonnax and STL.
 

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What's his name: OP fella, I have a 2009 V6 with that same transmission that is turning you into a frog. It has 155k miles NO ISSUES, zilch, nada. Do you ever quit being grouchy and service it? Change the fluid? How oft,,,,, oh forget it.
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
What's his name: OP fella, I have a 2009 V6 with that same transmission that is turning you into a frog. It has 155k miles NO ISSUES, zilch, nada. Do you ever quit being grouchy and service it? Change the fluid? How oft,,,,, oh forget it.

I've changed my fluid, 3x3 twice and a drain and fill by the dealership in the 70-80,000 miles since I've owned it. That's more than enough maintenance...for a vehicle that never tows, isn't driven hard and is only driven on the highway.

The B97A is not the same as a BAYA. A 5-speed yes, an updated design of the BAYA maybe, but a BAYA it is not. Do you change the fluid every 15000 miles? Drive it in 3rd under 36 MPH? Have a transmission cooler? Either way...glad you haven't had problems. Still, do you ever wonder why you've become a fanboi for a family sedan? Chill bud. It's a car, it has flaws, don't get your undies in a bundle because someone comes in and states what most of us already know...the transmissions in 03-07 Accords are flawed. It's weird how offended and defensive people get about their cars.

After reading through a list of discussions created by you, it seems you have plenty of complaints of your own about your car. Still have that 2nd gear shudder after changing your fluid every 20,000 miles? Hope not! Who's the "frog" lol....
 

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Honestly, I know every car out there has its quirks, but I wonder how these cars ever got their reputations for being "reliable." Everything I've read on Honda 5-speed automatics makes me wonder why I didn't just dump it instead of doing what I'm doing now -- rebuilding the transmission myself. It has to be one of the most flawed transmissions of the last 20 years. It may as well have been designed by Jatco...or even worse...Ford/Getrag. That being said...my reading has led me to believe that the fatal flaws in this transmission are multi-fold but that the two most significant have to do with inadequate TC charge and leaky valves due to being undersized or the bores being oversized, etc. Those problems combined with the non-existent cooling with the "ATF warmer" basically turns these transmissions in ATF boiling pots. Cool. So...I have the Superior kit and it seems to handle a lot of what needs to be addressed...aside from all the leaky lock-up valves. Sonnax sells their oversized valves for the TC/lock-up...but really don't address any of the other issues. A rule I'm familiar with is to not mix kits with differing methods to fix similar problems...however; it would seem to me that both kits fix one problem and not the other (i.e. STL doesn't address the excess clearances in the valve bores for lockup)....

What are people's experience with the Superior kit vs. Sonnax...and has anyone use some combination of them both?

I just don't want to do all this work...put the transmission back in and add an actual cooler + thermal bypass + whatever else I need to make this thing not be a ticking time bomb only to find out that the cooler ends up making things worse (the Sonnax write-up here is interesting: Beyond the Pressure Regulator: Keeping Cool While Investigating Mystery Honda Overheat ) and the transmission is doomed to fail in another 40-60,000 miles because I went with one kit over the other and let another problem go unresolved.
I would call your local transmission shop. Some are secretive on how and what they use to rebuild their transmissions, some aren't.
FWIW both my G35's Jatcos RE5R05A never gave me an issue, one with over 170k the other 250k miles. Jatco CVT's are absolute garbage on the other hand. Much like 4cyl Honda automatics seem to be more resilient vs the V6 ones.
Side comment...
Funny thing is...I'm suspecting the real problem with my transmission was a clogged filter. Thanks Honda for the asinine internal filter design that can't be replaced without pulling the whole transmission out. Like really...what the hell were they thinking? Why when I look through this forum do people say 06-07 models weren't impacted? The dealer tried telling me "Ah yeah, them 03-05 models are rough but these here 06-07s are bullet-proof." More than one dealership told me that...almost like Honda, trying to fend off future class-actions, warned their employees to never admit problems with later models ever again. MAYA/BAYA from all years all share the same jacked up design. So much of the early failure could have been prevented with a serviceable transmission filter (not the tiny element next to the "warmer"). Before I tore this thing apart, I probably had close to zero fluid charge. End rant.
This is why on my old '99 Accord I added a Derale spin-on oil filter and plumbed the transmission lines into it + a cooler. Clean and stable temp fluid is what keeps a transmission healthy.
Tempted to try to purchase a CVT cooler adapter for my '14 Accord to run to a larger spin on filter, as the little filter behind the oil 'warmer' is anemic in my opinion.
 
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I've changed my fluid, 3x3 twice and a drain and fill by the dealership in the 70-80,000 miles since I've owned it. That's more than enough maintenance...for a vehicle that never tows, isn't driven hard and is only driven on the highway.

The B97A is not the same as a BAYA. A 5-speed yes, an updated design of the BAYA maybe, but a BAYA it is not. Do you change the fluid every 15000 miles? Drive it in 3rd under 36 MPH? Have a transmission cooler? Either way...glad you haven't had problems. Still, do you ever wonder why you've become a fanboi for a family sedan? Chill bud. It's a car, it has flaws, don't get your undies in a bundle because someone comes in and states what most of us already know...the transmissions in 03-07 Accords are flawed. It's weird how offended and defensive people get about their cars.

After reading through a list of discussions created by you, it seems you have plenty of complaints of your own about your car. Still have that 2nd gear shudder after changing your fluid every 20,000 miles? Hope not! Who's the "frog" lol....
That's because you started offending people right off the bat with just 28 posts so far.

And you "had the dealer" do a 3x3? If you aren't even draining and filling trans fluid with your own hands, you shouldn't come to conclusions so fast by simply reading technical docs on paper. I have written many things about the BAYA trans here over the years plus a DIY on the trans cooler install if you haven't found out already.

You haven't gotten into the torque converter clutch yet, which you cannot rebuilt yourself, it needs to be done by a shop because you can't just bond a new clutch to your existing torque converter at home.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I would call your local transmission shop. Some are secretive on how and what they use to rebuild their transmissions, some aren't.
FWIW both my G35's Jatcos RE5R05A never gave me an issue, one with over 170k the other 250k miles. Jatco CVT's are absolute garbage on the other hand. Much like 4cyl Honda automatics seem to be more resilient vs the V6 ones.

This is why on my old '99 Accord I added a Derale spin-on oil filter and plumbed the transmission lines into it + a cooler. Clean and stable temp fluid is what keeps a transmission healthy.
Tempted to try to purchase a CVT cooler adapter for my '14 Accord to run to a larger spin on filter, as the little filter behind the oil 'warmer' is anemic in my opinion.
Exactly! I asked a local shop and they had no problem telling me the problems but wanted $4000 for the answer. I talked to a remanufacturing company and they made sure to use the word "proprietary" many times when describing how the deal with the valve body. That's fine. I mean, truth be told, even if I go with one kit over the other, my thought is that the transmission will be better off than it started. There's a guy out in CA though that basically said they prefer the STL kit...which is what led me to where I am now. I just don't want leaky valves...and the Sonnax kit tends to do a better jjob at resolving that.

As for the Jatco comment, I should've been more specific...I'm sure they have transmissions that will endure...my specific comment was referencing their CVT and some of the transmissions used in Mazda's in the mid-2000's.

As for my transmission cooling post-rebuild, I'm doing something very similar. I haven't decided whether or which method I'll bypass the factory inline filter...but I want something that's more accessible and can tolerate more flow. I've been looking at the cooler adapter...with a Derale plate 20,000 BTU cooler and an inline filter/thermal bypass combo set at 145/165 with some -6AN fittings and braided line. My thought is that I'd just remove the built-in external filter at that point since it's poorly positioned and inadequate. Honestly, I've got a Subaru Outback 3.6R that I'm thinking about doing the same to. I've seen too many CVT failures on years that were supposed to have the problem "fixed." Hell...after this debacle, I may do it to all of my cars in the future.

That's because you started offending people right off the bat with just 28 posts so far.

And you "had the dealer" do a 3x3? If you aren't even draining and filling trans fluid with your own hands, you shouldn't come to conclusions so fast by simply reading technical docs on paper. I have written many things about the BAYA trans here over the years plus a DIY on the trans cooler install if you haven't found out already.

You haven't gotten into the torque converter clutch yet, which you cannot rebuilt yourself, it needs to be done by a shop because you can't just bond a new clutch to your existing torque converter at home.
Again, I'm not looking to offend you...literally nothing I've said should be offensive or groundbreaking. Like...at all. In some cases I'm repeating what shops that specialize in these transmissions have told me...they're poorly designed and can't keep cool. I'm not sure what there is to argue about...you, yourself, admit that. Which is why I'm confused why you keep getting so defensive. I think one of the issues is that you may be misreading what I'm writing. For example, I didn't have a dealer do a 3x3...I don't even think they would given the amount of time necessary to do it properly. I had them do a drain and fill between 3x3. I did the 3x3 myself with DW-1...new pressure switches and new inline filter. Perhaps, you shouldn't come to conclusions so fast without considering the context. Also, the TCC is being replaced with a brand new torque converter I've purchased. I don't think I ever said anywhere that I was planning on rebuilding the TC myself. Most shops don't even do that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Can anyone guess what clutch this is? Should be really easy...

Not quite welded together but pretty bad. The entire drum should probably be replaced...

For anyone who didn't know which clutch...read about it here.

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Ring ring.... its 3rd gear clutch calling....
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Anyone have any thoughts on this? This is the ATF pump gear and the bell housing where the TC connects up to the pump.....

:oops:

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
At this point, the parts I'll be buying aside from the shift kit and master kit are the following...

1. New sleeved bell case -- $$$
2. Main valve body -- ATF pump is trashed -- $$$
3. Low gear
4. Low sprag from Gearspeed
5. Third gear (completely black) - $$$
6. Clutch end plate for third
7. New solenoids - $$$
8. Needle and cage bearings -- a few are toast.

Turning out to be way more expensive than I had hoped. The sad part is...after seeing what happened to the ATF pump, all of this was caused by low flow and heat...and given the condition of my filter, I can see why. Note to anyone reading this with an Accord V6 5-speed automatic...find a way to get a good inline external filter and cooler put on your transmission the next time you do a 3x3 -- or it will end up like this one and so many others. I have no idea when all of this damage occurred but some of it is pretty severe. It didn't just happen overnight.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
For anyone that's interested...what I believe is the root cause of the failure of this transmission is a clogged transmission filter. After seeing the wear on the pump, the fact that the car would lose all forward and reverse motion...third gear was burnt up along with the clutch, I figured it was due to low fluid pressure or a failed pump since the fluid was up to the correct level. However, I decided to fill the filter with fluid to see if it would drain...it didn't. Completely clogged. I opened it up and full of metal and clutch material. Again...I'll reiterate...put an external filter on these transmissions as soon as possible. The internal filters will clog...and take your transmission with it. Looking at one of these to hopefully address the problem long-term:


Camera accessory Font Cameras & optics Gadget Auto part


Also comes with a bypass. I think it's well worth the money.

I'll upload pictures of everything once the job is complete. It's on hold right now while I wait for backordered hard parts. I've been cleaning stuff up...painted the cover and it looks really nice. Cleaned the gears that will be reused along with the valve body components that will be kept.
 
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