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Towing Honda With Automatic Transmission


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34 replies to this topic

#1 ronbrs

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Posted 19 June 2011 - 10:44 PM

I used to tow a Acura Integra and had no trouble. Now Honda has changed their direction with no obvious change in design. What gives?
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#2 desmo

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Posted 20 June 2011 - 08:55 AM

I can't speak for all Hondas but I have been towing a 2006 Honda Odyssey for 2 years over 10000 miles and have no problems. All you need to do is start the engine and shift from low to drive then to neutral and leave the key in the ignition also I have a disconnect switch on the negative post of the battery that I engage. Every 200 to 300 miles start the Odyssey and let idle for 5 minutes.

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#3 ClayL

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Posted 25 June 2011 - 11:17 AM

As you probably know there was a procedure that had to be followed to tow Honda's 4 down.
If it wasn't followed part of the transmission could be left in reverse and that could cause damage.
In 2006 as I recall Honda no longer allowed 4 down towing of most of their models.

The speculation is that enough people did not follow the procedure and there were so many resultant warranty claims that Honda decided to no longer allow it. I haven't seen that confirmed however and they still allow some models to be towed - CR-V,CR-V 4WD, and the Fit.
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Clay (WA5NMR), Lee (Wife), katie & Kelli (cats)
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#4 ronbrs

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Posted 01 August 2011 - 12:45 AM

I hooked up my 2008 Honda Element SC (5speed Auto Trans) with a towing system, I have towed it 400 miles so far and no troubles.

Honda said don't tow but its working good for now.

I plan to keep an eye on my transmission fluid color and continue to follow the towing procedures Honda recommended from years ago.
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#5 lebjdixon

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Posted 01 August 2011 - 09:39 AM

We recently purchased a 2006 Honda CRV, and the book says to run motor about 5 minutes in Drive then shift to neutral then turn key to accessory position, never start from reverse to neutral. No problems so far by going this procedure.

Thanks

B. Dixon
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#6 langglemd

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Posted 01 August 2011 - 11:28 AM

I have been towing a 2007 Honda Pilot, 2wheel drive, for over 2000 miles. I follow the system that Honda recommended for towing prior to 2006. So far so good.
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#7 ronmonson

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Posted 01 August 2011 - 03:33 PM

I have been towing a 2007 Honda Pilot, 2wheel drive, for over 2000 miles. I follow the system that Honda recommended for towing prior to 2006. So far so good.


Ditto on my 2008 CRV
Mine has the Nav system, so I cobbled up a switch with a 7.5amp fuse and 'plugged it into the fuse block #38 (I think that's the number) ck the Honda manual.
Ron
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#8 bizsmith@yahoo.com

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Posted 12 September 2011 - 12:37 PM

I see at least one reply that one poster is towing an Element. Are there others with experience towing an Element? I suspect that the manual says you can't because as another poster said people did not follow the procedure. I have towed a CRV for many years and I am thoroughly familiar with the set up procedure. I am considering a new Element and would like feedback from others with experience.
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#9 bizsmith@yahoo.com

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Posted 13 September 2011 - 07:54 AM

I am firmly convinced that any model of Honda can be safely towed using the procedure prescribed by Honda to tow the CRV or Fit. Otherwise, why would tow bar manufacturers such as Roadmaster make base plates for the other models? Camping World, who is one installer says they can be towed. However, Honda will not "bless" the towing of models except the CRV and Fit. I was interested in purchasing an Element and while Honda would not flat out say it could not be towed, the power train warranty would be void if it was towed.
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#10 coldmaker@earthlink.net

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Posted 06 October 2011 - 08:03 PM

We tow a 2004 Honda Odyssey EX-L behind a Discovery MH. We have towed over 35000 miles in the last four years and have no problems. Just follow the procedure of running the toad in drive for three minutes, then shift to neutral and turn the key to acc.
Do this when you stop or at least every 300 miles. I always start out the morning with the run - shift procedure.

Coldmaker@earthlink.net
Mansfield, OH
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#11 Curtislaporte

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Posted 06 October 2011 - 09:57 PM

I to tow a 2000 Honda Odyssey and had no problems with thw car battery going dead. I bought a 2007 Odyssey, go through the same procedure as I did with the old but the battery runs down and pretty quickly too. What's the problem. Parked it in the garage yesterday, put it in neutral, turned everything off, went out two hours later and everything is dead. Also it's a new battery.
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#12 mygusto

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Posted 07 October 2011 - 07:26 AM

I have towed my Fit for approx 6000 miles with no problem. Go thru all the gears, idle in Neutral for 3 minutes and shut it down in Neutral, leave Key in so as not to lock the steering wheel. Stop at rest stops every few hundred miles and run engine for approx 5 minutes to keep battery charged. Dont forget to release the emergency brake if applied.
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#13 CWSpiess

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Posted 31 October 2011 - 05:43 PM

After much research and discussion with Roadmaster, I decided to tow my 2005 Honda Civic Hybrid 4 down. Roadmaster makes the brackets, I follow the "emergency" 4 down towing procedures in the manual, and so far, all is fine.

CW Spiess
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#14 hanko

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Posted 01 November 2011 - 05:31 PM

Wouldn't it be simpler to get a manual transmission instead of going through all that hassle?
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#15 davenbelle

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Posted 04 November 2011 - 01:03 PM

I have just put 2000 miles on an new 2011 CRV with auto transmission no problems, I followed the procedures faithfully, would recommend this model to anyone.
I traded in my 1996 Accord with auto transmission, that had been towed approx 120k, with no problems.
Just follow the towing recommendations.

davenbelle
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#16 tlight

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Posted 04 November 2011 - 01:16 PM

I have towed my 2009 Honda Fit over 17,000 miles with absolutely no problem. As long as the proper Honda procedure is followed, as has been explained in other replies, there should be no difficuties in towing.
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#17 jimkate

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Posted 04 November 2011 - 08:53 PM

In today's world, not all standard transmission vehicles can be towed.

My owner's manual for our 1995 Honda Pilot has very detailed, specific instructions for preparing the transmission for towing. It does not say to run the vehicle with the transmission in Drive for 3 minutes. What it does say is to start the vehicle in Park, shift to neutral, then shift through all forward gears, then shift back to neutral, then let the vehicle idle with transmission in neutral for 3 minutes before shutting off the engine.
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#18 titanbus

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Posted 05 November 2011 - 04:45 PM

The Element is an excellent TOAD. It is a great roomy little SUV. Easy to get in and out of for me at 6-4, and the dogs as well.

We pulled our 2 wheel drive 2006 model over 8500 miles this summer, no problems whatsoever. We follow the recommended predeparture procedure by checklist, and we will do the same at every rest stop, or Labrador break. Change trans fluid (easy to do or $60 at dealer) per schedule and do the above and you should have no problems.

Element and CRV have notorious OEM undersized battery, so a battery cutoff switch is recommended, on the POS post if you are going to install a breakaway system.

We tow behind a Tiffin 42 tag axle and she doesn't even know the little Honda (3400 lbs.) is there.

James Mago
Clear Lake Shores, TX
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#19 bizsmith@yahoo.com

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Posted 06 November 2011 - 06:28 AM

I wanted to purchase an Element and I know it has a drive train almost identical to the CRV. Based on the input from titanbus, it works fine for a toad. But the problem was the instruction manual says not to tow except in emergency and Honda will not honor the drive train warranty if a problem occurs so I stuck with my 2003 CRV. I almost wish I had taken the gamble and gone with the Element because I loved the inside configuration. Now the Element is no more as they discontinued it this year. Oh well!
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#20 ronbrs

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Posted 07 November 2011 - 02:21 AM

I started towing my 2008 Element (auto, 2wd) 5 months ago I only have 1,000 miles towing I have followed the standard procedure and kept an eye on the color of the transmission fluid all seems fine. I plan to put a lot more miles on my Element. Others at the Honda dealership unofficially said I shouldn't have any trouble. The Element makes a great toy box I can fit 4 bikes in side I just need to take the front wheel off the bikes and fold up the back seats.
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