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Automatic Transmission Fluid question

Hi all

I have a 2011 Honda Accord v6. I need to top up the transmission fluid. The manual says to only use Honda ATF DW-1, which I’ve done before to top up the fluid.

However, now at Canadian Tire, they don’t sell the genuine Honda fluid anymore, and the guy there sold me this OEM fluid. Should this work just as well, and mix OK with the Honda DW-1 fluid that’s already in there?



Only use Honda ATF DW-1

ATF DW-1 is Honda’s OEM fluid

So, I don’t know what they sold you.


You don’t have a Honda dealer near you ?

Yes we do, it’s very close by. Just that I got the DW-1 before at Cdn Tire. Would a dealer sell me just the fluid without the service?

Read the notice you, yourself posted. “Use only Honda ATF DW-1…” That is the answer. Stop by your Honda dealer and buy a quart.

Of course they would. That is why they have a “Parts Department”

OK thanks! Just wanted to make sure, as of course Honda is going to say only use their fluid…

Based on everything I’ve read, NOT using Honda transmission fluid or power steering fluid is courting real disaster, not an imagined one.


Use the Honda fluid unless you can verify the universal fluid has the same properties as the Honda fluid. Honda lubes and brake fluid are not easily substituted. When I bought my first Honda in 2005 I checked all over the interwebs and the universal recommendation was not to substitute for Honda fluids. I haven’t and won’t.

Absolutely. Don’t use that one sized fits all stuff. The dealership parts department will be happy to sell you a quart or two of the right stuff.

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… and Canadian Tire should willingly accept the return of that sketchy fluid… as long as the OP retained his receipt, and as long as the bottle wasn’t opened.

First, if you need to top off the transmission fluid I suggest you find and repair the leak that is causing your car to leak transmission fluid. The trans does not “use” fluid like an engine uses motor oil. If it’s low there should be a reason.

Second, that brand “OEM” is sold by Recochem and I have used and trusted their products for 10 years or more, and there’s nothing sketchy about it. They make a complete line of coolants as well.

However, as you can see on the back of the bottle, that fluid does not meet the DW-1 spec you need, only the older Z-1 spec, so I wouldn’t use that fluid in your car.


I have found the fluids at the Acura dealer is really not that much more than at auto stores and you get the correct stuff.

Update: I went to the Honda dealership, got the DW-1 fluid. Returned the other stuff to Cdn Tire. They are both the same price.

Curious, I remember reading somewhere that trans fluid does decrease over time between flushes, and you should check it regularly. If it’s not designed to ever lose any fluid, why provide a dipstick to measure the level?

Dip sticks for engine oil/transmissions fluid are for monitoring consumption.


You should regularly check the fluid level

But it doesn’t get “consumed” like engine oil . . . because an automatic transmission works differently than an internal combustion engine

If the automatic transmission fluid level is dropping, it’s leaking out somewhere

So that you can put the proper amount of fluid in after draining the old fluid during a trans service . . . as well as keeping an eye on the level in between services. Otherwise, it would be much harder to determine if you in fact have the proper fluid level

My cars have to be up on a lift to check the fluid so really never happens but I change every 30K.

Whoever wrote that bit you read about an auto transmission normally using a bit between changes is dead wrong. Ignore them forever. Unless there’s a leak (external or internal trans fluid cooler) the transmission should use none at all. The dipstick is the insurance policy for checking fluid level is all.