How Do You Change the Transmission Fluid in a 2003 Accord?

Unlike most automatic transmissions, the transmission in the 2003 Honda Accord does not have a replaceable transmission filter. So the approved transmission service procedure is a simple drain and fill similar to an oil change. Transmission fluid specifically for Honda cars is required. Designated as ATF-Z1, this fluid is available at your local auto parts store. This maintenance service will take the home mechanic with an average skill level about an hour to complete.

Step 1 - Park the Honda on flat level ground. Place wheel chocks behind the rear wheels. Lift the front of the Accord until the front wheels are off the ground, and position the jack stands under the front subframe. Lower the car onto the jack stands. Position a drain pan under the transmission drain plug located on the outside end of the transmission.

Step 2 - Remove the drain plug using the 3/8-inch-drive socket wrench from the socket set. The square end of the wrench fits into the square hole of the drain plug. Remove the drain plug and allow the transmission fluid to drain into the pan. When the transmission fluid is completely drained, replace the drain plug and dispose of the fluid properly in the same manner as you would used motor oil.

Step 3 - Remove the orange dipstick located on the top of the transmission in the left side of the engine compartment. Insert the narrow funnel and add 2 1/2 quarts of the transmission fluid to the transmission. Reinstall the dipstick. Raise the vehicle off the jack stands using the floor jack. Remove the stands, and slowly lower the vehicle to the ground. Remove the wheel chocks.

Start the engine and check the fluid level. Test drive until the engine reaches normal operating temperature on the temperature gauge. Park the car on level ground and recheck the fluid level. Add small amounts of fluid to the transmission, using the funnel, until the fluid level is at the top of the crosshatch area on the dipstick.

THINGS YOU'LL NEED: Floor jack, Jack stands, Wheel chocks, 3/8-inch-drive socket wrench, Drain pan, Narrow funnel, 3 quarts ATF-Z1 Honda transmission fluid

WARNINGS: Wear safety glasses and work gloves to prevent serious injuries.

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