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Valvoline dex/merc in a Honda trans #4609808
12/21/17 12:05 AM
12/21/17 12:05 AM
Joined: Oct 2013
Posts: 69
oklahoma
91camarosRS Offline OP
91camarosRS  Offline OP
Joined: Oct 2013
Posts: 69
oklahoma
So Iím borrowing my girlfriends 05 Saturn VUE as my subaru is being worked on (bodywork). Well, Iím tryin got get a good tuneup while Iím borrowing. So as Iím checking stuff, thereís a large 1 gallon jug of valvoline dex/merc blue bottle in the rear. Itís half full. So apparently, someone put it in the car a while back. What harm is this? Auto trans are kinda a mystery to me.

The car does some weird things. When the car is on a negative load. Like between shifts or if i leave it in low, it will make a ďgrindingĒ ish noise. But only when cold. Shortly after driving, itís much quieter. The car shifts ok, maybe a little sluggish.

The car is the Honda equipped 3.5 and Auto. The fluid is dark red. Iím not sure it smells burned, but doesnít smell right, but Iím also not an expert on Auto.

What should i do? Should i flush it via, cooler, qt at a time? Drain and fill can get very very expensive. Iíve already put a reasonable amount of money into this.

Thank you.


2000 subaru 2.5rs Auto. 240k and climbing.
Other stuff
Re: Valvoline dex/merc in a Honda trans [Re: 91camarosRS] #4609812
12/21/17 12:10 AM
12/21/17 12:10 AM
Joined: Oct 2013
Posts: 69
oklahoma
91camarosRS Offline OP
91camarosRS  Offline OP
Joined: Oct 2013
Posts: 69
oklahoma
Also, i do plan to go to a maxlife atf if i flush or whatever. One that is rated ZF-1


2000 subaru 2.5rs Auto. 240k and climbing.
Other stuff
Re: Valvoline dex/merc in a Honda trans [Re: 91camarosRS] #4609816
12/21/17 12:53 AM
12/21/17 12:53 AM
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 14,564
Silicon Valley
PandaBear Offline
PandaBear  Offline
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 14,564
Silicon Valley
From what I have heard, many Honda transmission using just dex merc will shift very hard (but it is not damaging to the transmission), actually earlier honda spec Dex Merc IIe from factory.

Z1 and DW1 soften it and MaxLife or other brands' import multi-vehicle ATF are designed to work with Honda transmission, so it should be ok as long as the bottle said so on the label.


"You keep asking questions PandaBear and you'll end up a vegetarian like my wife" - Camu Mahubah
Re: Valvoline dex/merc in a Honda trans [Re: 91camarosRS] #4609818
12/21/17 01:03 AM
12/21/17 01:03 AM
Joined: Oct 2013
Posts: 69
oklahoma
91camarosRS Offline OP
91camarosRS  Offline OP
Joined: Oct 2013
Posts: 69
oklahoma
The website and the bottle say nothing about z1.

Maybe they say Honda?


2000 subaru 2.5rs Auto. 240k and climbing.
Other stuff
Re: Valvoline dex/merc in a Honda trans [Re: 91camarosRS] #4609821
12/21/17 01:37 AM
12/21/17 01:37 AM
Joined: Nov 2017
Posts: 382
North of you Idaho
KneeGrinder Offline
KneeGrinder  Offline
Joined: Nov 2017
Posts: 382
North of you Idaho
I'm using Valvoline maxlife full synthetic, its dexron. I know it say's approved for Honda's. I have a high mileage 2003 Acura TL type -S, 234K miles. Been rev'ed hardcore in 3rd a lot! does 100-110mph in 3rd easy. When I bought it, it shifted harsh from 1st to 2nd when cold especially. I did a 3 time fill and drain over a few days and it has been shifting smooth cold, hot, luke warm....ever since. I drive this car more than any of my others, almost daily. Use with confidence. This is coming from someone that normally says to use factory trans fluild! Unless you have low miles, and or a warranty use it, cause the Honda trans fluid is $$$


08 Tribeca 86k PUP 5w30 wix
06 Accord Hybrid 134k PPHM 0w20 wix
02 Chevy k3500 99k Delvac 1 esp 5w40 wix
00 F350 136k Delvac 1300 15w40 wix
Re: Valvoline dex/merc in a Honda trans [Re: 91camarosRS] #4609853
12/21/17 05:12 AM
12/21/17 05:12 AM
Joined: Apr 2015
Posts: 289
Georgia
Charlie2015 Offline
Charlie2015  Offline
Joined: Apr 2015
Posts: 289
Georgia
I would recommend the red bottle Valvoline Maxlife Multi-Vehicle ATF for your application.


1998 Honda Accord EX 2.3L Auto (Sold) 214k mi
2009 Scion tC Manual (Daily Driver) 165k mi
Re: Valvoline dex/merc in a Honda trans [Re: 91camarosRS] #4609854
12/21/17 05:17 AM
12/21/17 05:17 AM
Joined: Oct 2012
Posts: 2,478
Staten Island, NY
michaelluscher Offline
michaelluscher  Offline
Joined: Oct 2012
Posts: 2,478
Staten Island, NY
It's a Honda automatic, treat it like one

Drain and fill with DW-1


'06 Toyota Camry SE V6 3MZ-FE 100k
'01 Mercury Villager Estate VG33E 52k
'06 Ford Taurus SE Vulcan 60k
'13 Chrysler 300 3.6 Pentastar 230k
Re: Valvoline dex/merc in a Honda trans [Re: 91camarosRS] #4609859
12/21/17 05:47 AM
12/21/17 05:47 AM
Joined: Oct 2013
Posts: 69
oklahoma
91camarosRS Offline OP
91camarosRS  Offline OP
Joined: Oct 2013
Posts: 69
oklahoma
I know that the maxlife is better and recommended.

Iím asking about what harm is happening with a couple quarts of dex/merc that someone put in it? Maybe next week, but this week itís gonna be hard to fit in a flush/drain and fill.


2000 subaru 2.5rs Auto. 240k and climbing.
Other stuff
Re: Valvoline dex/merc in a Honda trans [Re: 91camarosRS] #4609874
12/21/17 06:42 AM
12/21/17 06:42 AM
Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,585
wv
krismoriah72 Offline
krismoriah72  Offline
Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,585
wv
Originally Posted By: 91camarosRS
I know that the maxlife is better and recommended.

Iím asking about what harm is happening with a couple quarts of dex/merc that someone put in it? Maybe next week, but this week itís gonna be hard to fit in a flush/drain and fill.


the plain ol dex/merc will make it shift more harshly.

I would drain and fill with the Maxlife Dex/Merc..its whats in our two Hondas. Then do it again in 25K miles.

Its almost $10/cheaper per gallon at walmart.

https://www.walmart.com/ip/Valvoline-Max...Gallon/15125768


Last edited by krismoriah72; 12/21/17 06:44 AM.
Re: Valvoline dex/merc in a Honda trans [Re: krismoriah72] #4609878
12/21/17 06:46 AM
12/21/17 06:46 AM
Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,585
wv
krismoriah72 Offline
krismoriah72  Offline
Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,585
wv
Edit to my post- I remember seeing this so found it again..

Always use Honda Premium
Formula Automatic Transmission
Fluid (ATF). If it is not available,
you may use a DEXRONIII
automatic transmission fluid as a
temporary replacement. However,
continued use can affect shift
quality. Have the transmission
drained and refilled with Honda
ATF as soon as it is convenient.

From Honda North America-
https://techinfo.honda.com/rjanisis/pubs/om/CR0000/CR0000O00207A.pdf

Re: Valvoline dex/merc in a Honda trans [Re: 91camarosRS] #4609894
12/21/17 07:19 AM
12/21/17 07:19 AM
Joined: Oct 2008
Posts: 12,652
The Old North State
Sayjac Offline
Sayjac  Offline
Joined: Oct 2008
Posts: 12,652
The Old North State
Basically following up on previous two posts.

Valvoline Dex/Merc wouldn't be my first choice for aftermarket Z1 spec ATF. That said, I'd just start with a simple MaxLife d&f, and do it relatively soon. Run it awhile, put some miles on it, then do it again. d&fs are fairly easy to do. As noted ML is very reasonable in gallon size, <$18/gal ordered from WalMart .com.

There was nothing special about Z1, sheared quickly. Been using ML in two Hondas specing Z1 for years, lots of miles, original trans and working fine.

Re: Valvoline dex/merc in a Honda trans [Re: 91camarosRS] #4610162
12/21/17 12:18 PM
12/21/17 12:18 PM
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 2,330
in the shop
sw99 Offline
sw99  Offline
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 2,330
in the shop
+1 on starting with a ML D&F. Our Civic had its first D&F at 30k and is now at 148k. I have done three D&F's by this point and the fluid always comes out looking great. Like Sayjac mentioned, I get it at WM.com for around the $18 shipped to my house. I also like to add a few ounces of Lubegard red. The car still shifts like new.


2016 Nissan Versa S 1.6L
2018 Subaru Outback 2.5i
2019 Ford F250 6.7L CCSB


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