Last post on Mar 07, 2013 at 5:52 AM
You are in the Honda Pilot
What is this discussion about?
Honda Pilot, Transmission, SUV
#152 of 392 03 Pilot Transmission problems
Jan 29, 2010 (11:45 am)
I own a 2003 Honda Pilot EX. Somewhere over 120K miles, the transmisson began slipping. As soon as I took off from a stop, the engine would start to rev and it would not shift into second gear. This only happened a few isolated times at first, and no lights came on, so I didn't think much of it. Over time, it happened more often, then finally my engine light came on. I took it to my certified Honda mechanic and was told they were getting transmission codes. I was told it was rare to be able to repair a transmission, they usually had to be replaced, to the tune of $4k!!!!! We've owned Honda's for over 20 years because they were supposed to be reliable cars. We've always maintained our Honda's meticulously, with certified Honda mechanics, so I was shocked to need a 4 thousand dollar repair at 125K miles.
We don't know yet if we are going to get any help from Honda, but I can say we as a family wil be extremely disappointed if the don't take care of the problelm, and they will lose us as loyal customers. Obviously from what I've read there have been other consistent Honda Pilot transmission problems. They also have a track record with Honda Odyssey transmissions failing from 1999 - 2001 years, and Honda ended up extending the warranty's to cover their transmissions. We'll see what happens.
#153 of 392 Re: 03 Pilot Transmission problems [kcos]
Feb 06, 2010 (9:05 am)
I wouldn't spend $4k to fix a car with 120k miles -- just trade it in for a new / certified used vehicle. I just traded my 2002 Audi A6 with 120k miles for a new '10 Pilot 4WD Navi -- the dealer gave me a very good price ($5k), considering the car needed about $4,800 of repairs for emissions / torque converter issues.
#154 of 392 03 pilot tranny
Feb 15, 2010 (3:26 pm)
Just got back from my dealer. P0730 Incorrect Gear Ratio. $4500 to replace. Called American Honda, was told that because my car was nearly 100,000 miles over the 3yr/36,000 mile warranty that there wasn't anything they could do for me. Car has 126,600 miles on it and other than the transmission the thing is good to go. Dealer offered me $2500 trade-in for it. I'm gonna take it to AAMCO and see what they say. I'd like to get it under 2k, doesn't seem unreasonable to me, but we'll see.
Private -party sale with disclosures may be the way out for me.
#155 of 392 Re: 03 pilot tranny [damon8]
Feb 15, 2010 (11:17 pm)
Be careful with AAMCO. I would have been better off having the dealer replace my tranny when it went up at 138 k miles. It ended up costing me closer to 5 thousand, and within a short time I had to repace the torque converter TWICE. Ended up having to fork over another 1200.00 for that. If you do choose AAMCO, I recommende checking with the BBB about the particular one you select. They're not all the same in quality, which I found out the hard way.
#156 of 392 Pilot Tranny Warning Signs
Feb 16, 2010 (12:49 pm)
My quest for a car continues. Looking at the Car Fax reports on some of the used Pilots at Honda dealers, some seem to have had their differential fluid changed at 10k or 20k. I have not read the owners manual (not sure it would even be listed in there) but it seems that differential fluid should have a life similar to tranny fluid and not need to be replaced at such a low mileage.
When I see the differential fluid changed at these intervals, it gives me pause for concern. Am wondering if this is a tell tale sign of future problems and even more concerned that the differential fluid changes may not be showing up in the car fax reports of all the vehicles.
Still thinking of biting the bullet and getting a new '10 Pilot but the leases stink right now. One dealer said they will get better when the new programs come out March 3 but who knows.
If anyone can comment on my concerns regarding differential fluid I would appreciate it.
#157 of 392 Re: Pilot Tranny Warning Signs [albert72]
Feb 16, 2010 (7:25 pm)
You actually SHOULD be looking for a Pilot with a differential (VTM-4) change within 15,000 miles. That's what the recommendation is for severe service, in my case, ours is operated under Normal conditions but I have always changed it within 15,000...it's cheap insurance...too bad there wasn't a way to have prevented the transmissions from going bad though.
#158 of 392 Re: Pilot Tranny Warning Signs [12bdriving]
Feb 18, 2010 (5:49 am)
Did not realize that it needed to be changed that frequently so now I look for that info on the CarFax report.
Any guess as to how much a Honda dealer would charge to change the diff fluid?
Is it every 15k? One posting said first change should be at 7500 because of the new differential, metal shavings etc and then every 30k thereafter.
Do you know if the maintenance minder system would tell me when the change is needed?
Appreciate your comments & knowledge sharing.
#159 of 392 Re: 03 pilot tranny [damon8]
Feb 18, 2010 (9:00 am)
So in addition to my incorrect gear ration I had a P0505 error. So I cleaned the rotary control valve. Before I dismantled the RCV I unplugged the battery. Once I got everything cleaned and back together, all my codes cleared. Even went to the smog station in CA and had the smog test done for registration. No codes, no errors, passed with flying colors. Didn't end up taking it to AAMCO, cause now there is no code and if there is no code, how do they know that there is a problem in the first place? Unless I drive it and try to force the tranny to slip, which is not something I am willing to do. Private party sale is looking like the best option now.
200 miles + and still no codes or lights indicating failure.
#160 of 392 Re: Pilot Tranny Warning Signs [albert72]
Feb 19, 2010 (3:39 pm)
On the normal schedule, the first change is at 15k, the second at 30k and then each subsequent is 30k apart.
On the severe schedule, the first change is at 7500k, the next is at 15k, and then it is at every 15k after that. If you live in a snowy/icy climate where the VTM-4 is going to engage, it is probably advisable to lean towards the severe schedule. I have changed mine about every 20k.
Here is a link to a 2004 Pilot Owners Manual, that may help as you look at the vehicle. http://www.autoownermanuals.com/manuals.item.1675/PI0404O00160B.pdf
Honda Dealers charge about $60 to $80 to perform it in Minneapolis. If you have someone else change it STRESS and get in writing that they will only use VTM-4 fluid from Honda and not ATF fluid in it. Bad news otherwise.
I understand it is actually very easy to do yourself, but I have no desire, it's my wife's car and I'd rather spend the time with our kid. It comes in 1 gallon containers and the capacity is about 3 quarts.
Good luck with your search. Other than the transmission, it is a fine automobile. We just put 97000 on ours and really the only other stuff I had done was shocks, struts, tie rod ends and a few other suspension parts at 90k and then of course tires at about 60k.
#161 of 392 Re: 03 Pilot Transmission problems [kcos]
Feb 24, 2010 (8:58 am)
kcos, your story is a duplicate of mine, only my mileage is 107K. Did you receive any help from Honda? Obviously, the transmission is a dud with these vehicles. I was a big Honda fan until now. If Honda doesn't fess up, I'll never buy another one!