Recommendations on what to do on maintenance list first?

maintenance
honda
filters
accord
transmissions

#1

Hello everyone, I’m on a fixed budget right now. car has another 1000 miles before 105,000 maintenance schedule. (honda accord 2002 ex 4 cyc 2.3L engine automatic) When i took it in for airbag recall they gave me a list of recommended services. Can anyone please rank the priority of what I should take care of first or what is not necessary. Won’t be able to do all at once. thank you!!! (of course I wont have these services done at dealership although when looking for good mechanic on cartalk my dealership came up???)



BTW the dealer said car is running fine.



(1) brake fluid exchange…I’m thinking just drain and fill

(2) replace transmission fluid exchange… I read on this site that transmission fluid total exhange (which I’m assuming is a flush) are bad and to request pan, drain, and filter change. I called honda and asked if they change filter and they said that the car is made that you do not have to change the filter. Is this true? I’m I ok with just going with A/T drain and fill?

(3) power steering exchange

(4) 4 cyc tune-up (spark plugs)…is this something my friend and I can change along with the wires and cap…he did his own in his car but then he did install turn signal bulb incorrectly???)

(5) heater hoses and lower core hoses

(6) thermostat (the temperature gauge in car is fine…its in the middle and car hasn’t overheated at all

(7) upper and lower radiator hoses ( I touched them and they are not cracking, breaking and feel fine)

(8) valve adjustment and cover gasket (I do see a bit of grease on the contraption that houses the spark plugs)

(9) 2 front struts and bump stops (they want $596…pricey no?)





P.S. At 91,000 miles, I had the timing belt, water pump and whatever seals that are associated with that changed.



Also, in the last 2 months, I have had front and back brake pads changed, battery changed, light bulbs changed, engine air filter, and cabin air filter changed. Am I missing anything? thank you for replying…I dont have the service records for this car so I am not sure what has been done in past other than maintained oil changes


#2

Sorry for long tread but was informed to keep to one tread and tell everything…I had the car aligned feb this year and tires rotated and balanced in april. I do plan to purchase new tires since i feel the steering vibrate ever so slighty, when i start the car, idle or not but nothing major and brakes are fine. any recommendations for affordable tires?


#3
  1. a good idea. It’s more, however, than just a drain and fill. New fluis is used to push (flush) the old fluid out the drains, but it needs to be pushed in. With an assistant you could do this yourself, but I’d recommend having it done.

  2. I’ll let the Honda guys answer this one.

  3. IMHO this is a waste of time. You can, if you’d like, drain the reservoire with a turkey baster and refill it with fresh fluid. The pump will circulate the fluid when you restart the car.

  4. an easy DIY. I’d recommend invetsing $25 in a beam-type torque wrench, but others here don’t believe they’re as important as I do. And, of course, you’ll need the proper size spark plug wrench. You’ll find that the plugs are recessed into tubes. I use a socket extension taped to the spark plug socket.

  5. I never have changed hoses unless they fail.

  6. skip it.T-stats usually last the life of the car.

  7. Leave then.

  8. pick up a Haynes repair manual at the parts store and see if this looks like something you’d be willing to tackle.

  9. if you’re experiencing a floating feeling on the highway or have abnormal tire wear, have this done. This is a bit more advanced work, and it’ll require an alignment after anyway.


#4

If this was my car, and I was on budget, I would only drain the trnasmission fluid and refill. Struts and shocks last a very long time, and unless the car handles poorly, leave it alone.

I would wait till the next brake job to flush out the brake fluid.

Hoses are replaced when they feel squishy, in Seattle that could take a very long time, in the desert it might happen at 80,000 miles or so.

You have already replaced the timing belt, etc. I hope at that time they also replaced the engine coolant (antifreeze).

As others say, you don’t really need very much, unless you were planning a coast to coast round trip. In that case I would replace the hoses, and maybe replace the serpentine belt proactively, if that was not done already.

In short, if this was my wife’s car, I would budget $100 or so to drain and refill the transmission. I don’t recommend a “flush”.


#5

First thing I’d do is change the transmission fluid. Honda’s are not known for strong transmissions and it needs to be changed every 30,000. You use only Honda trans fluid but there is no filter so its opening the plug to drain and adding the 4 qts or whatever. They want you to replace the washers too on it.

Second, I’d do the plugs and last maybe your friend can help with the all of the hoses and thermostat at one time. I like to change hoses as a preventative measure and if you do everything at one time, its not so bad. Struts depends on how bad it feels but nothing immediate. The rest is nice but most people never do it.


#6

(1) brake fluid exchange…I’m thinking just drain and fill

Have you done a fluid exchange before?  Normally you don't "drain" it.  You use a one way valve at each wheel and push the fresh fluid to each wheel.  Draining it would, I suspect, would likely result in air in the lines, which is not good.  

(2) replace transmission fluid exchange?

Best bet is to drain oil, clean filter and refill.  Most of those who are pushing the flush do it to make more money and less work or their part. 

(3) power steering exchange

I’ll let others comment on this one, but I generally pass on that one on my own car (note it is not listed on the recommended maintenance list for my car)

( (4) 4 cyc tune-up (spark plugs)…is this something my friend and I can change along with the wires and cap…he did his own in his car but then he did install turn signal bulb incorrectly???)

Yea, you should be able to DIY on this one. Just don’t over torque the plugs and use OEM quality parts.

(5) heater hoses and lower core hoses

I would and do skip this one until there is some indication of need or I am messing with them for some other reason. 

(6) thermostat (the temperature gauge in car is fine…its in the middle and car hasn’t overheated at all

Same as above. Do as needed.

7) upper and lower radiator hoses ( I touched them and they are not cracking, breaking and feel fine)

Same as above. Do as needed.

[i] (8) valve adjustment and cover gasket (I do see a bit of grease on the contraption that houses the spark plugs) [/i]

Unless there is some reason to do so (like being on the list of items listed in the owner's manual for service at this time)  again say   [i] (1) brake fluid exchange...I'm thinking just drain and fill[/i] 

Have you done a fluid exchange before?  Normally you don't "drain" it.  You use a one way valve at each wheel and push the fresh fluid to each wheel.  Draining it would, I suspect, would likely result in air in the lines, which is not good.  

(2) replace transmission fluid exchange?

Best bet is to drain oil, clean filter and refill.  Most of those who are pushing the flush do it to make more money and less work or their part. 

(3) power steering exchange

I’ll let others comment on this one, but I generally pass on that one on my own car (note it is not listed on the recommended maintenance list for my car)

( (4) 4 cyc tune-up (spark plugs)…is this something my friend and I can change along with the wires and cap…he did his own in his car but then he did install turn signal bulb incorrectly???)

Yea, you should be able to DIY on this one. Just don’t over torque the plugs and use OEM quality parts.

(5) heater hoses and lower core hoses

I would and do skip this one until there is some indication of need or I am messing with them for some other reason. 

(6) thermostat (the temperature gauge in car is fine…its in the middle and car hasn’t overheated at all

Same as above. Do as needed.

7) upper and lower radiator hoses ( I touched them and they are not cracking, breaking and feel fine)

Same as above. Do as needed.

(9) 2 front struts and bump stops (they want $596…pricey no?)

If those are original struts, they may well be due for replacement. You can get a second opinion if you like. I would certainly look for a second price.


#7

The only critical one is the transmission fluid change. The brake fluid is always a good thing if not done in the 3 years.

Don’t bother with Power Steering fluid that is lifetime fluid. Why do the heater hoses, thermostat, and radiator hoses? Leave them be. The valve adjustment should have been done during the timing belt change as the cover came off to perform it and valve cover gasket should have been changed. Check into it.

The struts may be required if you notice an issue. Shop around for that.


#8

thanks for all your replies! much appreciated!!!

I have an appointment to change my transmission fluid. Since I am not sure of all the service records and because my car has 104,000 miles on it, should I replace all the fluid or just drain and fill once? If i should have it done 3 times, should I do it in intervals or all at once?


#9

I realize Honda has different transmission issues than my 2002 Toyota Sienna. But, I like to drop the three quarts and add three quarts, when I think of it. Not sure how much your car drops each time. Not 30,000 miles, but much more often.like every 15,000 miles. It doesn’t cost that much if you do it yourself. if the fluid looks very clean, that is adequate. DO NOT CUT CORNERS ON FLUID FOR PRICE! Use the best fluid recommended by Honda you can get.

I am odd man out on thermostat. I was also told on Toyota that the thermostats do not fail. But, I knew a car builder, and he said he appreciates that sort of help, because he sometimes gets Toyota engines around 140,000 miles with ruined heads from bad thermostats. So, I replace the thermostat every 100,000 miles or so.

It is not urgent right now, but should be a future change. When the thermostat goes, your very expensive heads are toast, and a new thermostat every 100,000 miles is cheap insurance. Or, in my case, I guess I can do it when I replace the plugs at 120,000. A thermostat is one of those critical items that you do not wait to replace until it fails. Anyone who tells you that is just flat wrong.


#10

No, I think just do it once. On Honda, you just drain it and add the required amount of fluid (3.3 to 4 qts.) with new drain and fill washers. Then do it again in 30K.