Rear Differential Fluid Change Question
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Thread: Rear Differential Fluid Change Question

  1. #1
    crv|oc Rank: Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
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    Rear Differential Fluid Change Question

    I have a 2008 CRV and would like to know how often should I change my rear differential fluid? I was told to change it as often as I change my engine oil. Seems excessive to me but I would like a second opinion.
    Last edited by FishOnFish; 11-27-2008 at 09:06 PM. Reason: forgot to mention year of car

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  3. #2
    crv|oc Rank: Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
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    Rear Differential

    Just did a search and it seems like Black Pearl has a good post on the subject. Below is what he posted.

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------

    #2 12-27-2007, 10:59 AM
    Black Pearl
    Senior Member Join Date: Jun 2007
    Location: Pittsburgh Pennsylvania
    Posts: 1,698

    Welcome To The Club

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The problems with the differentials seemed to be caused by the fluid, and it has been an on going problem although it seemed to get worse in 2007. First thing to realize that this problem is limited to 4WD models. If you are in the market for a 2WD, there is no concern.

    There was a specific problem with certain 2007 differentials that fell in a range of VIN numbers all from the Japanese assembly plant. This was under TSB 07-021. This TSB called for the replacement of the rear differential clutch assembly. It seems that this was a fluid related problem, (wrong fluid, contaminated??? I don't know), although the TSB states that it was clutch material. I would say that this problem has been corrected.

    There is another problem that is addressed by TSB 07-024 which applies to the 2002 to 2007 model years. It is contaminated fluid. Apparently the Dual Pump Fluid used in the differential is hydroscopic--that is it has an affinity for retaining water. It must be routinely changed or noise results when turning in a tight radius. If the fluid is not changed, failure of the rear differential may result.

    The source of the confusion seems to be when should the fluid be changed. The owner's manuals prior to 07 stated 90,000 miles normal, 60,000 severe service. This is widely regarded as being far too long. The minimum required interval regarded by most of the members of this forum is generally 30,000 miles, but some people are experiencing noise problems before that on the 05 and 06 models.

    The 07 and 08 models use the Maintenance Minder to determine the routine maintenance intervals. The Maintenance Minder is a display on the dashboard that uses codes to specify the required maintenance as decided by the onboard computer. There is no published maintenance schedule for the 07 or 08 models. So the rub is now, when do you change the fluid on the generation 3's (2007 & 2008)? You really don't know until the Maintenance Minder displays a subcode of 6. The best that we can figure right now from early reports from members is that the Maintenance Minder is calling for the rear differential fluid change at 15,000 to 20,000 miles, roughly on the second oil change.

    The long and short of the situation is that if you change the rear differential fluid at regular intervals, you won't have any rear differential problems. If you don't change it...good luck.

    So to try to answer your question, I believe you will not have problems on the 2008...if you change the rear differential fluid every 15,000 to 20,000 miles.

    Does that bother me? No, because I am going to change it myself and it won't cost me any more than the price of the fluid. If, however, I had to take the vehicle back to the dealer and pay some outlandish price for what amounts to 15 minutes of labor I would be livid.

    I have to be honest, I find this whole rear differential issue to be rather disconcerting. A lot of ink has been spilled on this forum ranting and raving about it. The best I can tell you is that Honda has a very good rear differential with a lousy fluid...and you have to use Honda's fluid.

    For me it doesn't matter, I am going to change the fluid myself. But for people who have their cars serviced by the dealers, it could get expensive depending on what the dealers are going to charge to change the fluid.

    Sorry to give such a long winded answer to a short question. I rather imagine that you will see further commentary. Welcome to the club and if you decide on a V, we hope to hear from you.

  4. #3
    crv|oc Rank: Silver
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    Jun 2007
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    Welcome To The Club!

    Thanks for the compliment. Every oil change is too frequent. Unfortunately, however, every other oil change seems to be the case. Most members have been reporting the 6 sub-code (change rear differential fluid) on the second oil change.

    Welcome to the club!
    The Black Pearl . . . 2007 EX, 4WD, 5AT, Nighthawk Black Pearl

    “Being Irish he had an abiding sense of tragedy which sustained him through temporary periods of joy.” W. B. Yeats

    "The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." Bertrand Russell

  5. #4
    crv|oc Rank: Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    2

    Fluid Level?

    I just changed the rear differntial fluid in my 2008 CRV and about 1.1 quarts came out. I put back in about 1.3 courts and it still did overflow back out of the fill hole. I did not continue to add more fluid until it ran out of the fill hole for fear of overfilling. What is the proper amount of fluid? Should you add until it begins to come back out of the fill hole?

  6. #5
    crv|oc Rank: Silver
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
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    Welcome To The Club!

    Welcome to the club. I don't think you can get a full 1.3 quarts in. As you observed it runs out the fill hole. You can't fill it up any more than that. The only thing I can think would be to fill it, put the plug in, take for a short spin up and down some steep hills and check it again.

    I have never tried that but will on the next fluid change.

    EDIT: It is obvious I didn't read your post very well. Sorry. When I changed mine, the fluid started to run out of the fill hole somewhere between 8 & 10 ounces after the first quart. 0.3 quarts = 9.6 ounces. Does your manual state 1.3 quarts? If so, I would put in the 1.3 quarts and see if you can feel the oil inside the fill hole. It should be very close to running out. My drive way has a slight grade to it, so that may be the reason I didn't get the full 1.3 in. I don't believe you can overfill the rear differential, using the fill hole.
    Last edited by Black Pearl; 03-21-2009 at 04:35 PM.
    The Black Pearl . . . 2007 EX, 4WD, 5AT, Nighthawk Black Pearl

    “Being Irish he had an abiding sense of tragedy which sustained him through temporary periods of joy.” W. B. Yeats

    "The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." Bertrand Russell

  7. #6
    crv|oc Rank: Junior
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    Warrenton, VA
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    703
    Just fill until it comes out of the top hole. There is no danger in overfilling the rear diff, it is impossible.
    Mitch

    2003 CR-V EX 4A Chianti Red - K&N Typhoon SRI - Alpine/Orion 10" Sub and Amp - Yokohama Geolandar A/T-S 215/70-15 - Garmin Nuvi Navigation - Osram SilverStar
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