Foam on transmission dipstick - Drive Accord Honda Forums | radio-pro.ru
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post #1 of 45 Old 12-17-2017, 11:21 AM Thread Starter
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Foam on transmission dipstick

I drove my car around the block (not even 1/10 mile) after a pad and rotor change, and noticed the car had a real hard time getting out of first gear so I decided to check the transmission fluid level (I had just done a drain/fill three weeks ago). When I took it out, it was pretty much all pink foam.

I haven't seen any leaks from underneath the car, but I have no clue what could be causing it. The engine was warm, so I don't know if that's normal or not. I guess the main reason I'm concerned is because of the rough gear shift.


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post #2 of 45 Old 12-17-2017, 11:26 AM
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Can you describe, in detail, your ATF change procedure?

Can you describe, in detail, your method of checking ATF level?

Can you describe, in detail, the car you have? (engine, mileage, etc)

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post #3 of 45 Old 12-17-2017, 11:33 AM Thread Starter
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Can you describe, in detail, your ATF change procedure?

Can you describe, in detail, your method of checking ATF level?

Can you describe, in detail, the car you have? (engine, mileage, etc)
Drain the transmission pan, replace the drain plug and crush washer, fill with Honda ATF (3x3). I then drive around the block a few times going through all of the gears starting at D1 then check the level again.

I will check the dipstick when the engine is cold (pull out, wipe dipstick, stick in, wait a few seconds, then check again), also the same procedure after driving around the block.

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post #4 of 45 Old 12-17-2017, 11:50 AM
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Foaming ATF usually indicates an overfilled level.

The difficulty in shifting also indicates an overfilled level of ATF. Aerated fluid will cause slipping, noisy shifting since foam doesn't lubricate.

Also look at the vent on the top of the transmission housing to make sure it isn't plugged in some way. A plugged vent will also cause the foam to appear. No place for the air, causing the foam, to escape.
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post #5 of 45 Old 12-17-2017, 12:06 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Miker View Post
Foaming ATF usually indicates an overfilled level.

The difficulty in shifting also indicates an overfilled level of ATF. Aerated fluid will cause slipping, noisy shifting since foam doesn't lubricate.

Also look at the vent on the top of the transmission housing to make sure it isn't plugged in some way. A plugged vent will also cause the foam to appear. No place for the air, causing the foam, to escape.
Thanks! Pardon my stupidity, but what would the vent look like? Is there a certain part number?

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post #6 of 45 Old 12-17-2017, 01:17 PM
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Thanks! Pardon my..........., but what would the vent look like? Is there a certain part number?
Fixed your statement there.

I really don't know for the 4cyl transmission what it looks like and I'll be stumped that I can't find it on the webs.

I can say that normally there is a copper tube sticking out the top of the transmission housing that looks like it should be covered. It will bend in a hook form with the open end of the tube pointing down (so junk doesn't fall in). Upside down "J".

Look around the fill port on the top of the trans case and you should find some sort of vent. It very well may be ON the fill port. It may also look like a plug with a "loose" cap.

Someone here may have a better idea of exactly where it is or even a picture.

EDIT: Majestic Honda to the rescue.
Item 4 breather cap.

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post #7 of 45 Old 12-17-2017, 05:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skyfire322 View Post
Drain the transmission pan, replace the drain plug and crush washer, fill with Honda ATF (3x3). I then drive around the block a few times going through all of the gears starting at D1 then check the level again.
Can you describe, in detail, what "fill" means in your definition as you understand it?
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post #8 of 45 Old 12-17-2017, 06:29 PM
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Sounds like coolant is mixing with the ATF in the radiator. Called a strawberry milkshake. Bad news if so.
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post #9 of 45 Old 12-17-2017, 07:28 PM
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when he pulls his oil cap, what happens if he doesn't see a milkshake?

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post #10 of 45 Old 12-17-2017, 10:16 PM
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when he pulls his oil cap, what happens if he doesn't see a milkshake?
maybe his engine is still ok? I would have the car towed to a repair shop and get it checked out.

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post #11 of 45 Old 12-18-2017, 04:23 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
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Can you describe, in detail, what "fill" means in your definition as you understand it?
When the fluid is at or just below the top dot on the dipstick.

Quote:
Originally Posted by spiritof76 View Post
Sounds like coolant is mixing with the ATF in the radiator. Called a strawberry milkshake. Bad news if so.
I did have to replace the breather hose the other week as coolant was leaking from there.

I need to take it to the shop anyway for an alignment, so I will have them take a look and see what they say. I'll keep you updated, and thanks for the replies everyone

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post #12 of 45 Old 12-18-2017, 05:03 AM
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12 posts in and we still don't know if the tranny is overfilled?
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post #13 of 45 Old 12-18-2017, 05:17 AM
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12 posts in and we still don't know if the tranny is overfilled?
If coolant is mixing with the ATF, it very likely will appear overfilled at this point.

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post #14 of 45 Old 12-18-2017, 05:26 AM
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If coolant is mixing with the ATF, it very likely will appear overfilled at this point.
Don't know why we are on the coolant tip. The guy changed his ATF three weeks ago and now he sees FOAM. Foam is not strawberry milk. Foam is coolant being whipped up.

OP,

Did you check the fluid when cold yet?
How many quarts of ATF did you add after draining?
Did you measure it prior to draining to make sure it was at proper level?
Did you measure what came out and add that amount back in?
Did you add more than 3 quarts?
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post #15 of 45 Old 12-18-2017, 12:44 PM
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Don't know why we are on the coolant tip. The guy changed his ATF three weeks ago and now he sees FOAM. Foam is not strawberry milk.
It is when it's pink. Actually had this happen on an old Volvo. Cracked transmission cooler tank in the radiator. The rubber coolant overflow hose disintegrated due to oil and split spilling strawberry milk shake all over the ground. Coolant and ATF looked exactly like a McDonalds strawberry milkshake.

OP, check your coolant too and see if it has the same look.


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