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We have an 05 Element 4WD with a 5 speed manual transmission. We are the original owners. It has 80,000 miles, 75% Freeway 25% City. In March it started popping out of gear after it had been driven for about 10 to 15 minutes. At first it was just 3rd gear. Now it is 1st, 3rd and 5th. We changed the transmission fluid with "Orignal Honda Manual transmission fluid" we brought from the dealer. It fixed the problem for about one month. It started popping out of gear again so we took it to the dealer. They said the transmission fluid did not look right, I agreed to have it flushed and replaced again for a cost of $178. On the way home from the dealer it started to pop out of 3rd gear again. My husband drove me back to the dealer to pick up my Accord that I left there, during the 15 minute drive it popped out of 1st, 3rd and 5th repeatedly. We just left it at the dealer. The dealer called me back and told me they were guessing that it needed a new transmission, but they were not sure. They can only get a new one and the cost will be about $4,000 unless they decide we need the clutch replaced also. Has anyone had a simular problem? I will pay for a new transmission if I really need one, but the dealer does not seem to really know. My past experiance with Honda Manual Tranmissions has been very good, I am suprised to have to replace one at 80,000 miles.
 

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I would run, not walk, to look at cable binding, cable looseness or other problem relating to the gear selector, something which is preventing the shift from reaching the detents fully. Nearly everything I would immediately check for a 1-3-5 problem like this does NOT involve removing the transmission from the vehicle.

That said, there is the (unlikely!) possibility of the countershaft being worn out of spec, allowing the countershaft to move laterally enough to pop out of engagement in your 1-3-5 combination. If a thorough elimination of selector mechanism issues yields no relief, then, yes, a teardown is in your future.
 

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I would run, not walk, to look at cable binding, cable looseness or other problem relating to the gear selector, something which is preventing the shift from reaching the detents fully. Nearly everything I would immediately check for a 1-3-5 problem like this does NOT involve removing the transmission from the vehicle.

That said, there is the (unlikely!) possibility of the countershaft being worn out of spec, allowing the countershaft to move laterally enough to pop out of engagement in your 1-3-5 combination. If a thorough elimination of selector mechanism issues yields no relief, then, yes, a teardown is in your future.
and the good news is that it would be the ideal time to add a 6th gear.
 
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