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2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

Old 06-18-2012, 09:37 AM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

ok so 5th and reverse are slipping in my 03 tls, code 0730 i think.... says incorect gear ratio.... have also read alot about people taking solenoids off and cleaning and fixing this "particular" set of issues..... But, which solenoids and how to clean? There's shift, shift lock, and linear solenoids all on the trans.....
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Old 06-18-2012, 10:35 AM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

looks like i'm doin them all haha
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Old 12-11-2012, 04:09 PM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

Originally Posted by Gearspeed-Performance View Post
Do you know what the fluid condition was before it was changed?
Typical failure on these transmissions is 3rd gear clutch assembly. What you will get usually is a 2-3 slip condition initially with codes PO730 indicating incorrect gear ratio due to trans slippage. In more severe cases a code PO780 will come up indicating internal trans failure and you will usually lose Reverse gear. Losing Reverse gear is from the filter being plugged with clutch material. Hope that helps! We sell these transmissions daily so they do fail often! Good luck!
Problem with Acura is its transmission. The company needs to re-design the transmission rather than replacing parts within the same. One of the weird designs is putting fliter inside transmission which is not user friendly servicable as one needs to take apart the transmission to replace the filter.

I guess we need to address the famous Acura tranny problem to President Obama as this could be a safty concern for people which includes loosing gears on the road as it is like stopping the car with no break lights on.
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Old 02-03-2013, 08:33 PM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

I have a 2003 Acura TL. I just had the tranny rebuilt due to a shot 2nd gear about 2 months ago. Now having intermittent slippage in 3rd. Mechanic says its due to the command module for the transmission and that's why the tranny went out the first time. I don't really trust the guy, so my question is: Is that possible? I feel like the guy is trying to wiggle out of the 1 year warranty he put on the work by blaming it on something else. Going to get a second opinion...
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Old 02-05-2013, 09:31 AM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

Originally Posted by Tipperzee83 View Post
I have a 2003 Acura TL. I just had the tranny rebuilt due to a shot 2nd gear about 2 months ago. Now having intermittent slippage in 3rd. Mechanic says its due to the command module for the transmission and that's why the tranny went out the first time. I don't really trust the guy, so my question is: Is that possible? I feel like the guy is trying to wiggle out of the 1 year warranty he put on the work by blaming it on something else. Going to get a second opinion...
Hey buddy. Was the mechanic specific on what he rebuilt exactly? If he directly replaced the 3rd gear clutch pack, which is notorious for failing and then causing flow issues to the rest of the transmission, he should be honoring that warranty.

Are there any codes when you scan it? There is a probability that the ECM is having an issue but if there's no codes it's usually a straight mechanical issue.

A part of the Acura bulletin states that some models require a new pcm with the new trans, but i've seen this step skipped and the vehicles were fine with just the new transmission.
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Old 02-08-2013, 03:56 PM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

I ended up buying a new car, Honda accord. Turns out the guy was a crook. I found out he bought used parts from the junkyard, so instead of rebuilding anything, he just put a junk tranny in my car(my guess anyway) and charged me for a FULL transmission rebuild. AAMCO techs advised me not to drive the car at all with the condition tran was in. Several other things he was paid to do that either didn't get done at all or got half-done. Example: he was supposed to replace a motor mount but upon inspection, no wrench marks were found and paint marks from factory still intact.
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Old 02-18-2013, 02:11 PM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

If i remember right the problem with the trans is 3rd gear is mounted to high and overheats. The cooler is supposed to fix that. Id probably mount that onto the remanufactured transmission you had installed. Did you get it replaced at a dealership?
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Old 03-06-2013, 02:41 PM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

take this as u want

bought a 99 tl with supposedly bad trans , 125k good conditions in and out other than the trans ,
$700 for a junkyard trans delivered to my shop ,
trans installed sold the car for $3700
today i got bored and started to disassemble the old trans and what i found got me thinking here is the pic of what i found in the top solenoid
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Old 03-06-2013, 02:48 PM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

and this is trans
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Old 03-08-2013, 08:36 AM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

Did you take the 3rd gear clutchpack apart yet?
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Old 03-09-2013, 08:30 PM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

Originally Posted by 94EG8 View Post
Did you take the 3rd gear clutchpack apart yet?
YES I DID and found that the plates have heat marks and also 3rd clutch packs have different color then the rest
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Old 03-10-2013, 05:11 AM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

Was the spring all flared out at the top? I'm not sure if I took pics of the one I did but that 3rd gear clutch pack was absolutely destroyed. Everything else looked perfect though.
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Old 07-12-2013, 06:03 PM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

I have a new to me '01 CL 3.2 with 5sp auto. It is having an interesting trans issue:

At a standstill in D5, it will sometimes just rev when you try to pull out - if you move the shifter down to D2 it goes fine then continues to drive fine if you move shifter to D5. Sometimes it will pull out fine from a standstill in D5. And, sometimes shortly after you come to a stop it will clunk very hard and then it is 'in gear'.

Also, it is not slipping when driving, but I will say that I have not run the car hard or really tried to get it to slip.

Thanks for any help - I will be pulling codes with HIM tomorrow.
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Old 08-01-2013, 10:31 AM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

Originally Posted by neauva View Post
I have a 2003 TL-S myself, with about 99K miles on it now. About 3 months ago it started 'slipping'. I checked the ATF. It was chocolate colored and smelled a little 'burnt'. So, I had it changed (which, much to my surprise meant a partial drain of about 3.5 qts and a re-fill) for $100. Once I learned how easy that was I did it myself two more times (after about a week in between each). It started acting better but now (2 months later) it starting to slip again. And, it's reluctant about shifting into Reverse now. The slipping seems to happen mostly at the 2-3 and 3-4. I'm not sure what to expect by taking it to the dealer. I had the oil injector recall work done several years ago and I'm sure the tranny is beyond even the extended warranty (if mine was even covered). Any further suggestions on diagnosing it? Thanks!
I have the exact same car and problems.... EXACTLY the same just a little more miles... Did you fix this already??? any advice... Thanks!
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Old 05-28-2014, 06:13 AM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

I have an 03 TL that would slip in 2nd and 3rd gear only after the engine warms up and I would hear a loud tick noise when putting it in reverse. When I drained the atf, the drain plug looked like gray peanut butter on the inside of it. Change the atf and again after a few days but I changed the tranny filter also. After adding fluid I heard about Lucas tranny oil so I added a qrt. Drain atf at least 2 times, replace filter, and add some Lucas and I've been driving my TL for the past few months with no slippage. Shift like a brand new car and no tick when putting it in reverse. Try that before dropping a few grand
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Old 01-03-2017, 02:44 PM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

Originally Posted by technic05 View Post
Hi,

Yes the 03 3.2TL base and Type S models have a transmission issue. I've worked on several 03 Models that have been on their 2nd or 3rd transmission.

I would take your transmission to the dealership and have them scan for any codes, there's a set of codes that have bulletins pertaining to transmission replacement. If you want to check yourself just pull the dipstick and smell the transmission fluid. If it looks dark/oil like that's usually a sign your transmission has been overheating due to a mechanical failure inside the motor itself. If you have the Flow Jet Recall installed, take out the 2nd gear speed sensor and look at 2nd Gear. If it looks bluish in color that's due to that gear overheating due to improper fluid flow.

If you have any more questions i'll be happy to email you some material regarding the matter.
Hi, I am experiencing this same malfunction. Could you please send me all the info you have on cause and repair. Is I called Acura and they said that my tl has already been serviced. I changed the atf and filter. Car worked for a little while, then got warmed up and malfunctioned again. I am hoping to either flush and clean oil chiller or figure something new out. TY for an help.
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Old 03-10-2017, 09:27 AM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

Originally Posted by Jaymesrice14 View Post
Hi, I am experiencing this same malfunction. Could you please send me all the info you have on cause and repair. Is I called Acura and they said that my tl has already been serviced. I changed the atf and filter. Car worked for a little while, then got warmed up and malfunctioned again. I am hoping to either flush and clean oil chiller or figure something new out. TY for an help.
Just change your transmission with a 06-07 accord v6 trans. fits right in and runs a 100times better then the original. i have done this trans swap my self. its a perfect fit.
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Old 08-14-2017, 05:48 PM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

My 2003 Acura 3.2 TL type S transmission completely failed. Others have advised me to find an Accord V6 transmission from 2006-2007 as a replacement - in order to avoid the repetition of the next Acura transmission also failing. What say you all to that advice?
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Old 02-15-2018, 03:08 PM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

WOW, this website made it so difficult to just sign up. I have a 2003 Acura TL/S and use another blog site like this one called, www.acurazine.com. I am the original owner and my car was made in June 2002 and i took delivery in early July 2002. Very few changes were made to the 2003 Acuras because this was the last model year for this generation. In 2004, all models were significantly changed. Anyway, I was looking at this site for another issue and came across this tranny room. For what it's worth, which is probably not much given how old these cars are now, Acura had many issues with trannys in CLs and TLs going back to 1999. There was never a recall issued but Acura/Honda extended the warranties on the transmissions to 7 years / 100,000 miles. This was done according to a Service Bulletin dated August 18, 2003. I found this online after i had received a letter from Acura in early November 2004, even though the letter was dated Summer 2004. I am not sure why it took over 2 months for me to get this letter. The Service Bulletin (which superseded a prior Tranny Service Bulletin dated February 24, 2003) was very specific in terms of which CLs and TLs were affected, even differences with TL Type S and non Type S for the 2003 model year. For 1999 - 2002 TLs, ALL vehicles were ""affected", with no need to check VINs. For CLs, ALL were affected from 2001 - 2002, but for 2003 CLs, ,it went by VIN. What this mean I guess is that they eventually thought they fixed the problem --- which may or not be true ---- because many vehicles even had issues with replacements --- and more than one replacement. Now, i am not sure the issue was the same for all these units, but the issue was but i found evidence that the problem was inadequate lubrication to the 3rd gear clutch pack which caused premature wear. Also, this same information revealed that this clutch pack was actually not redesigned until March 2005, which would explain that many replacements of units manufactured before this redesign date also failed
In my case, after I received the letter from Acura dated Summer 2004 (but not received until early November 2004) i went to the dealer. The leter was actually titled ""Safety Recall Campaign: CL and TL automatic transmission SECOND GEAR INSPECTION"". So, i cannot tell if the 3rd gear clutch pack is another issue, or that info is possibly wrong. So, my invoice from the dealer indicated that they did the 2nd gear inspection and then installed what they called ""Kit ATF Lub Pipe"" --- which is basically known as an ""oil jet kit"". I believe this to be a pipe / kit installed into the fluid filler hole on top of the tranny in the back. This recirculates tranny fluid back into the tranny and the pipe is probably fitted into the filler hole such that it provides fluid to the affected areas (2nd gear or 3rd gear clutch pack -- whichever). So, instead of just a plug or bolt for the fill hole, I have this oil jet. Now I aleady had the car for almost 2.5 years and had 26,334 miles on it when this was done. I figured that my tranny was not going to last and was glad that they extended the warranty.
As it turns out, I now have the car almost 16 years, with 106,000 miles -------- and the OEM tranny is still there ------- So, go figure.
I do change the fluid often ----- 3 years and / or 20,000 miles or so ---- maybe this helped, or i just got lucky i guess as well. I used to get a complete flush done, but i will now just do a drain and refill as long as the fluid is relatively clean and not burnt (which is only 3 quarts vs. a 7 quart capacity). I may start a 2 year change cycle now in this case. It is well worth the expense i think, which is small.
I have had a very isolated problem where the tranny gets stuck between 2nd and 3rd BUT only when i am a very slow speed (maybe 5 - 10 mph only) but not stopped yet --- then accelerate. The thing clunks like it just fell out. This has been going on for more than 2 years and i get around it 90% of the time automatically by just using the gas pedal---- and the rest of the shifting is perfectly normal. I don't even notice it anymore and stop and go traffic is the biggest challenge sometimes. I had all the screens on the various external shift solenoids cleaned which actually made it shift better overall BUT did not fix the problem. The diagnosis is an internal pressure problem that cannot be repaired apparently ----- the entire unit has to be changed. There are no codes. But, until things get worse, this is a waste of money. I can do a full hard passing speed acceleration and it shifts out right at the redline.
Acura made these trannys themselves and it is a shame they had so many issues. But, at least they extended the warranties. I have read about cases where 2nd owners may not have had the benefit of this extended recall in cases where they they didn't know about the recall and a dealer may not have told them. Also, many cars probably went over the 100,000 miles as well and did not benefit by the design failure. Some dealers made good anyway I heard even out of warranty, sometimes after a customer became forceful. These are some of the stories i read about online and in the acurazine.com chat rooms. I am extremely lucky to still have my OEM unit, but anticipate changing it someday as long as the rest o the car stays as good as it is. My TL still seems like a new car to me. Motor is perfect, with so few repairs in total. I still have the OEM shocks. I can't get rid of a car without at least changing the damnnn shocks.....))
It is an amazing car overall. Of course i am a maintenance nut as well, but Acura really gets the credit here.
Anyway, i just post this for historical and information purposes in case 3rd and 4th owners experience these tranny issues. Any rebuilt tranny sold these days is probably fine, and in my opinion only trannys bought from Acura should be used anyway. It's all about the warranty when it comes to rebuilt units. It's worth the few hundred extra bucks. Labor alone can ill you if the replacements doesn't last.
Good luck Honda / Acura owners....................
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Old 02-15-2018, 03:18 PM
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Default Re: 2003 Acura 3.2TL Transmission Problem

............... just remembered to add that my car's VIN was outside the Service Bulletin listings for 2003 TL, Type S ""affected vehicles"" which I explained, however the dealer installed that oil-jet anyway. I personally doubt that they actually inspected the 2nd gear since they would have had to take off the housing. I think the invoice would also have shown the fluid which was added and N/C. These dealer invoices show everything, even when there is no charge. I am pretty sure they just checked my VIN against the Service Bulletin, which is what i did after i found the Bulletin online.....I am glad they installed the oil-jet though. It may have saved it since I now know these units were 'bad' until after the March 2005 redesign.....
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