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My son's 1990 Integra GS with auto transmission has stopped shifting upward from 2nd gear. At times it will shift from 1st to 2nd, then disengage, then if you rev the engine it will re-engage in 2nd gear. At other times it will just go from 1st to 2nd and stick there.

The auto trans fluid is clean but shows over-full. Since we have not added any fluid since it was purchased, that is something that needs correcting (I'll drain and refill tomorrow) but should not explain the problem. (We've had the car for a few months.)

Any ideas on what this is and how to fix it?

Tks in advance.

Sandy Sanders
 

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Sandy,

Transmissions are gnarly beasts. If the drain and fill doesn't work, you might be up for a trip to a transmission shop for a replacement. There's not many user servicable parts in the transmission - even for an advanced mechanic.

How many miles are on the vehicle?

An over-fill might indicate that the previous owner did the very same thing you are doing now to try to fix a problem. Additionally, depending on the miles, if the fluid is quite clean, it may indicate the previous owner attempting to cover-up a transmission in need of repair.

When you drain the transmission, take close inspection of it and the magnetic bolt (if the integra has a magnet on the end of the drain bolt). You don't want to see any metal flakes, chunks, or dark discolorations in the fluid. I'm also not sure if the '90 integra has a transmission filter. If it has a transmission "pan" that can be removed, the filter may also need changing.

I heartily agree with mdaniel on the usage of Honda ATF. My CLS uses only Honda Z1 (I think that's what it's called) ATF - any other usage may void my warranty. Honda is famous for using non-metal parts in their transmission, and then formulating a specific ATF to protect those parts.

Good luck and let us know what you find!
 

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One other thing - when you drain the ATF, drain a bit of it through a paper towel. Look at the towel after it is drained and tell us the color and any if there are any chunks or other non-fluid pieces on the towel.
 
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