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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi. I recently had some snow where I live and on a hill struggled to get rear wheel traction at all. The front wheels just spun out and my rear wheels didn't engage.

I also had a spinout when taking an exit ramp off the motorway in very wet weather. The car has never engaged the rear wheels as long as I have owned it, in my view.

I am taking the car to the mechanic for an unrelated issue and I was hoping one of you guys could tell me what to ask him to take a look at under the car? Fluid or rear diff? Is this a known issue?

Thanks
 

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Everything in Moderation
2006 CR-V EX, 5MT
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10,789 Posts
The 2003 has 'open' differentials, so yes the wheels will spin if one side or the other has traction. (As opposed to EITHER front or rear)

First, assure that the propshaft hasn't been removed by a previous owner. (Expensive to replace if the u-joints were causing vibrations)

If that is OK, have the shop replace the rear differential fluid with genuine Honda Dual Pump Fluid. You need the specific friction characteristics for the pumps in the rear to work as designed.

Post back with the outcome.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
The 2003 has 'open' differentials, so yes the wheels will spin if one side or the other has traction. (As opposed to EITHER front or rear)

First, assure that the propshaft hasn't been removed by a previous owner. (Expensive to replace if the u-joints were causing vibrations)

If that is OK, have the shop replace the rear differential fluid with genuine Honda Dual Pump Fluid. You need the specific friction characteristics for the pumps in the rear to work as designed.

Post back with the outcome.
the propshaft is all there, however now that I think of it, I used to have a grinding problem on acceleration on this car - I took it to get it fixed and I believe what he may have done was disable the rear diff or awd and make the car FWD only.

this might make sense since the grinding noise coming from the rear diff is no longer there

could you tell me how the mechanic may have disabled this and how I could get under there and check?
 

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Everything in Moderation
2006 CR-V EX, 5MT
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10,789 Posts
Aside from removing both rear driveshafts, I don't know how he could have 'mechanically' removed AWD.

If he changed the rear differential fluid to remove the 'moan' or 'grind' with a generic type that doesn't have the friction characteristics of the Honda Dual Pump II fluid, that might be the issue. If the wrong fluid was used, three drain & fills (with a few miles driving between each D&F) would be required to get it all out.
 

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Everything in Moderation
2006 CR-V EX, 5MT
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10,789 Posts
Use NEW Dual Pump II fluid each time. Requires ~1.2 quarts (1.1L) each drain on a 2003. (Plus, I usually spill a little bit)?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I believe I found the source of the problem. My AWD works just fine I tested it some mud this afternoon. The problem was the tyres, the front and rears were not the same brand and they wore at different rates, so the rears were not the same circumference as the fronts, and they didn't engage the AWD.

Now I have the same brand and same tread depth on all 4 tyres, the AWD is engaging ..
 
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