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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi,

I've been a member of this forum for a while and gathered a lot of great information before I bought my Ridgeline, 06 RTS with 75k, but this is my first post.

The fitting on my radiator is pretty corroded and I'm concerned with it failing and causing the strawberry milkshake. I don't want to put the money out for a new radiator right now. Since the truck already has an external trans cooler I was thinking of bypassing the internal cooler that runs through the radiator and just capping it off. Has anyone done this? If so, do you have a diagram and/or video?

Thanks

Duffg
 

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I know this isn't the help you're looking for, but that sounds like a really bad idea to me. I don't want to shovel out $300 this spring to change my radiator either, but I'm going to. Just in case.

Do you tow with it? If you do, I'd say it's definitely a bad idea. If not...maybe? I'm not a mechanic but as finicky as the RL is with everything else, I'd be very leery about bypassing the transmission cooler.
 

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Duff, there has been some discussion about this option, but there have been mixed opinions expressed about the mod. I'm not sure if anyone has actually bypassed the radiator or not. The good news is that a new 3rd party radiator is relatively inexpensive and not very expensive to install or even DIY... and is much cheaper than a new transmission! ;)
 

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Hi,

I've been a member of this forum for a while and gathered a lot of great information before I bought my Ridgeline, 06 RTS with 75k, but this is my first post.

The fitting on my radiator is pretty corroded and I'm concerned with it failing and causing the strawberry milkshake. I don't want to put the money out for a new radiator right now. Since the truck already has an external trans cooler I was thinking of bypassing the internal cooler that runs through the radiator and just capping it off. Has anyone done this? If so, do you have a diagram and/or video?

Thanks

Duffg
I'd do it in a heartbeat, if I had reason (such as trying to 'get by' with a radiator whose fittings are visibly corroded, or towing a lot, or living in a very hot climate). In fact, I did bypass it on my Subaru Baja turbo.

The purpose of the in-radiator heat exchanger (radiator by another name...) is to help warm the fluid up to operating temp more quickly, and help keep it there since in most driving the ATF temp will be on the low side of 'optimum.' Doing this improves fuel economy measurably, and _may_ slightly improve durability if one's climate and usage patterns are such the one's ATF is normally well below 'ideal.' For someone like me, who has a 40 mile one-way commute on the highway and freeway, and whose climate is extremely hot, eliminating the in-radiator heat exchanger would be a complete non-issue. For most of you, it'll have an impact, but I still wouldn't get too worried about it.
 

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bulwnkl beat me to it . . .

Just to clarify, the primary benefit of the transmission fluid HEAT EXCHANGER in the radiator is to get the transmission fluid up to temp quickly. The transmission will perform optimally sooner (particularly in cold weather) and probably last longer as a result. Yes, there is also probably a secondary cooling effect when the transmission fluid is up to temps (like during towing) higher than that of the coolant.

Personally I wouldn't second guess Honda engineers on this (even though they messed up the tranny radiator fittings). The low cost of a aftermarket radiator and the relative ease of doing the job makes radiator replacement the way to go IMHO.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Duff, there has been some discussion about this option, but there have been mixed opinions expressed about the mod. I'm not sure if anyone has actually bypassed the radiator or not. The good news is that a new 3rd party radiator is relatively inexpensive and not very expensive to install or even DIY... and is much cheaper than a new transmission! ;)
I'm still trying to figure out how to reply to specific posts. I was hoping someone has done this mod and had some insight. If I don't get a definitive answer, I'm not going to be the guinea pig.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I'd do it in a heartbeat, if I had reason (such as trying to 'get by' with a radiator whose fittings are visibly corroded, or towing a lot, or living in a very hot climate). In fact, I did bypass it on my Subaru Baja turbo.

The purpose of the in-radiator heat exchanger (radiator by another name...) is to help warm the fluid up to operating temp more quickly, and help keep it there since in most driving the ATF temp will be on the low side of 'optimum.' Doing this improves fuel economy measurably, and _may_ slightly improve durability if one's climate and usage patterns are such the one's ATF is normally well below 'ideal.' For someone like me, who has a 40 mile one-way commute on the highway and freeway, and whose climate is extremely hot, eliminating the in-radiator heat exchanger would be a complete non-issue. For most of you, it'll have an impact, but I still wouldn't get too worried about it.
Thanks. My brother is a mechanic and he says it's not a big deal (but he won't be covering and damage that might occur as a result of the mod either). I'm just nervous about taking the cheap way around getting a new radiator.
 

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Well, I think you'll need a new radiator anyway, if everyone's suspicions on ROC are correct. If they are, then your fittings will eventually corrode away enough that the coolant will leak out of the radiator and you'll face an over-heat situation. It won't wreck the tranny in the process, but you'll have to replace the rad. That's why I was phrasing things in the context of 'getting by' until you have the money saved for the radiator replacement.
 

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I paid $132 for my radiator and put it in myself. Where is this huge expense you're trying to avoid?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Well, I think you'll need a new radiator anyway, if everyone's suspicions on ROC are correct. If they are, then your fittings will eventually corrode away enough that the coolant will leak out of the radiator and you'll face an over-heat situation. It won't wreck the tranny in the process, but you'll have to replace the rad. That's why I was phrasing things in the context of 'getting by' until you have the money saved for the radiator replacement.
Thanks. I just added pics to my original post. Yeah, I might just do it as a very temporary fix. I certainly can't afford a trans.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I paid $132 for my radiator and put it in myself. Where is this huge expense you're trying to avoid?
I just bought the truck about a month ago and it had a flowmaster exhaust on it. Drove me nuts so I replaced it about a week ago and it cost me $425.00. I know the radiator isn't that expensive but I was just trying to avoid putting anymore money out right now.
 

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Sorry I didn't mean it that way and know everyone has their thing. I just figured with time, fittings and hoses I imagine one would need to bypass it there wouldn't be much of a difference. I could be wrong about that though. Good luck whichever way you go.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Sorry I didn't mean it that way and know everyone has their thing. I just figured with time, fittings and hoses I imagine one would need to bypass it there wouldn't be much of a difference. I could be wrong about that though. Good luck whichever way you go.
No worries. You didn't offend me. I was just trying to avoid putting out the cash. I was really hoping someone with a Ridgeline had done this mod and had some insight. I appreciate everyone's feedback. Thanks
 
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