Honda Ridgeline Owners Club Forums banner
1 - 4 of 4 Posts

·
Registered
2014 Sport
Joined
·
4,056 Posts
Good grief. Yeah I never came across that 40 page thread on my recent radiator search, or the SMOD. Thanks for all the feedback! And thanks for the pics. I just checked mine and it is one bolt, of course. ? Mine actually looks pretty good considering some of the pics I’ve seen.

I went to the Honda dealer to yesterday to get trans, VTM, and transfer case fluids to do a change this week. I guess I need to look into a radiator now before changing the tranny fluid.
Are you the original owner? Why would you expect the transmission fluid fittings on your radiator to be two bolts? Aftermarket radiators use a compression type fitting which is two pieces. OEM radiators use a one piece design; if you have the original Honda radiator then it will be a one piece fitting.

You should probably be thankful that you have an original radiator on your Ridge. If you own a used Ridgeline with a radiator that has been replaced by the previous owner then there is a likelihood for a previous overheating or SMOD event.
 

·
Registered
2014 Sport
Joined
·
4,056 Posts
Did the Denso come with the double nut or did you put it on.
I just bought a 2013 with 105K and mine are starting to rust.
I've heard Koyo, Denso, OSC etc. Still need to know which is the best way to go.
thanks
Pretty much all aftermarket are made in China or other low cost labor location. Product quality will be hit or miss and shipping damage is a VERY common problem particularly with Amazon supplied radiators. Rather than getting hung up on which brand, you might just want to go to a local auto parts supplier like NAPA and purchase a replacement radiator. Open the box and inspect it very carefully before leaving the store. If you can have a local radiator shop you could purchase from them and have them pressure test it prior to installation. A SMOD event sucks but a single overheating episode caused by a faulty replacement radiator can easily ruin your engine. OEM radiators are made in Japan and other than the SMOD prone fittings are high quality units. . . .
BTW, we have yet to see a SMOD event on a 2009 and later Ridgeline. Age may be a factor but Honda did make some changes to the Radiator in 09 and it is a different part number. The fittings appear to be the same as on the earlier radiators.
I have yet to replace the radiator on my 14 (with 60k miles) I will do so around the 10 year mark. I haven't decided what I am going to replace it with but I may well just buy a new Japanese made OEM unit.
 

·
Registered
2014 Sport
Joined
·
4,056 Posts
I heard that the 09 and up rads are still the same trying to find out where you guys and gals are finding these radiators with 2 nuts like the picture shown above.
Can anyone tell me a direct source, I have a 2013 mine look liks so:
Just about all the aftermarket radiators will have the "two nut" design. You can for instance go to Rock Auto and you will find 5 or 6 aftermarket options. You could also go to local NAPA, Autozone or whatever you have in your neck of the woods and get one.
 

·
Registered
2014 Sport
Joined
·
4,056 Posts
I think the issue is that the single nut design has one nut that holds the trans-cooler tight inside the plastic radiator with the same threads that also hold the trans fluid line to the radiator. So when the nut fails, the trans cooler comes loose, from the radiator allowing coolant to mix with trans fluid. This is particularly bad on the suction side where the trans pump is pulling trans fluid back to the transmission. Coolant in transmission is bad. I was lucky having my failure on the side that pumped trans fluid to the radiator, and fortunately no coolant got inside my trans cooler. I just lost all of both fluids in about a minute.

With the two nut design, the nut closest to the plastic radiator holds the trans cooler in the radiator. The front nut closest to the metal line holds the trans cooler line to the trans cooler.

So I believe you CAN determine if you have a bad design just by looking at your trans cooler connections.
All OEM radiators have the "one nut" design. If the viewable outside of the nut looks extremely corroded then that would indicate that the fittings have been weakened and the radiator should be replaced. However if the fittings look relatively corrosion free, that does not necessarily indicate that the fitting hasn't been compromised by corrosion that you can't see. The metals used for the fittings and the washer are different and galvanic corrosion seems to be playing a role potentially corroding the fitting from the inside out. I believe that this is point the speedlever is making.
If you have a preowned Ridgeline and don't know whether the radiator has been replaced then YES all it takes is a quick look at the fittings to determine if it is OEM style or the two nut compression fitting style that apparently all the aftermarket radiators use.
I would venture to say that finding an aftermarket radiator in a used Ridgeline isn't really a good thing. I would be a red flag in my mind that a SMOD event has occurred in the past. Unless of course the previous owner was a well informed forum member who preemptively replaced the radiator . . .
 
1 - 4 of 4 Posts
Top