Should Transmission Cooler for 2013 Honda Pilot Bypass Radiator Cooler

Question:

I’ve got an 2013 Honda Pilot that I am wanting to pull a small 3000 lbs Trailer with. Upon reading the owners manual it says that it is cavalry of pulling 3500lbs if I add a transmission cooler. I’ve found your site very helpful and informative and have been checking to see which cooler I should purchase, however upon talking to a friend who owns a Transmission Shop out of state was given some advice that I’m not sure of. He told me when I install the Trans cooler that I should by pass the stock radiator cooler as he said it will run cooler and will also eliminate any potential issues that may arise if the stock radiator cooler ever fails. I live in SC so I don’t think I will need the benefits of the radiator cooler to warm up the fluid. What is your stance on this? Thanks

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Expert Reply:

That's a smart question and when it comes to transmission coolers it is supplemental cooling and because fluid cannot be over-cooled it is recommended to use the cooler in series with your radiator cooler to get optimum cooling. Not doing so to avoid an issue if your radiator happens to fail is not really something I would consider as a pertinent reason (with all due respect to your buddy) only because this is playing to a worst-case scenario which may or may not occur.

With that said you are going to want the largest transmission cooler that will fit your 2013 Honda Pilot and I highly recommend the Derale Series 8000 Transmission Cooler # D13503 because of how efficient the cooler is.

This is a plate-and-fin cooler, which means it uses smaller plates that cover more area than other coolers in order to agitate transmission fluid. What this means is the large 11" wide x 8-3/4" tall x 7/8" deep Series 8000 is going to give you great cooling efficiency.

I have added a link to a video of this cooler being installed on a Honda Pilot for you to check out as well as a link to the installation instructions for you to take a look at.

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Kyle S

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