97 Honda crv transmission will not shift into into D4 when cold

My 1997 Honda CRV will not shift into D4 when it is cold outside (less than 40 degrees). It shifts fine when it warms up. No problems found in electrical diagnostics.

Honda dealer says I need a new tranny. Other mechanics say not to worry.

Do not know about hondas but toyotas do this also. The older they get the longer it needs to warm up before the od will work.

It’s normal. When it’s cold, the engine management system prevents the transmission from shifting into D4. This is done so engine comes up to operating temperature quicker thereby reducing emissions.


Thanks for the response. I’m glad I won’t have to come up with the $4K for a new transmission.

You might need a new transmission anyway if it is not serviced as it should be.

You need to have the trans fluid (and filter, if so equipped) changed every 3 yrs/36k miles, whichever comes first, if you want to keep it functioning properly.
Be sure to use only genuine Honda fluid.

Your car might not be heating up as it should, like it needs a new thermostat.

So is there a fix to get it back to normal?

I will sure give this a try.

If it isn’t heating up properly. of course there is a fix for it. Isn’t that what a thermostat does??

I can’t understand why the Honda dealer and 2 auto shops never mentioned replacing the thermostat.