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Honda-Man, Honda/Acura Mechanic
Category: Acura
Satisfied Customers: 3083
Experience:  I have worked on Acura and Honda vehicles for over 30 years. I have an associates degree in automotive and factory training.
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In my 2002 Acura, MDX the fifth gear seems to be sputtering, is it safe to drive in 4th on

Customer Question

In my 2002 Acura, MDX the fifth gear seems to be sputtering, is it safe to drive in 4th on the freeway? I have had the filter changed and it work fine for a few days but it has started the problem again. I need to drive from WA to AZ, can I do that in 4th gear?
The engine runs great.
Since it is an older model will it be worth it to fix the transmission?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Acura
Expert:  Honda-Man replied 2 years ago.
Welcome to JustAnswer. It won't hurt to drive in 4th gear down the highway. You will just not get the same fuel mileage as if you were in 5th. Most likely your torque converter lock-up clutch is failing causing the sputtering(shudder) while in high gear or overdrive. This is a very common problem for Acura and Honda vehicles. The repair requires replacing the torque converter and transmission. Due to the age and mileage just replacing the torque converter(links engine to transmission) is not a good idea. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to assist you. Your satisfaction and accepting my service is what I work for! If you can't rate in a positive way please let me know so I can continue to help. A positive rating is the only way the site will compensate me for helping you. You can still ask follow-up questions after the rating.Thanks again! ~Honda-Man