2004 air mix motor - cleaning - Honda Pilot - Honda Pilot Forums

Register Home Forums Active Topics Insurance Photo Gallery Garage Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read Auto Escrow
Piloteers.org is the premier Honda Pilot Forum on the internet. Registered Users do not see the above ads.
LinkBack (1) Thread Tools Rate Thread
Old 05-16-2012, 02:18 PM   1 links from elsewhere to this Post. Click to view. #1 (permalink)
Registered User
Willard's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Charlotte
Posts: 67
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Default 2004 air mix motor - cleaning

After reading this thread I decided to take my motor apart and clean it as a first try to fix my strange hvac noise.
Gurgling / Grinding from under dash near HVAC...RESOLVED!!

The list price for a new mix motor is $274 so, if I could put that purchase off for a few more years that would help.

(I set the hvac to full cold (low) before removal of the motor)
The motor is located under the dash on the passenger side:

There are 3 screws holding the motor in place. The metal arm (with a plastic lock on the end) as well as a white plastic stud are the business end of the 'mixer' that do the actual "dual adjustments".

Here is the motor opened up:

There are 5 plastic tabs that hold the motor together as shown above (along with the 3 screws). Those plastic tabs are fragile and will most likely break as you take the motor apart (use caution).

Flip the motor over and remove the plastic adjuster arm (push the lock tab over and slide the arm straight up):

Mark the position of the gear (I am not 100% sure if this is "needed"(*)) before removal and this is what you see once it is pulled out:

I assume that the 'issue' originates from the spots where there is contact between the copper tabs and the circular contact pattern on the large wheel. I just wiped all of the tabs off and smeared the grease (dielectric?) all around on the wheel. (There was some dark stuff on the rag that came off of the tabs.)

(*) I did not mark the position before pulling the gear off/out.
Before I put the motor back in the car (I guessed at the correct gear position), I plugged the motor back in and turned the key on. The motor turned the gear a little bit and the arm moved. I assume the mix motor was indexing itself to the correct location for a "low" hvac setting. I played with the temperature knob a little bit to see what happens (and at which temperature) when you make adjustments. After playing a little bit I set the knob back to full low and bolted things back up.

So far so good as the noise has not reappeared. :fingers crossed:
1984 Volvo 242Ti (repairs are underway...)
2004 Pilot EX
2008 Fit Sport
Willard is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Sponsored Links
Old 05-16-2012, 09:22 PM   #2 (permalink)
Registered User
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: OH
Posts: 384
Feedback Score: 0 reviews

I did the cleaning on job on mine and it only helped for a couple months before the chattering was back. On close inspection of the large gear with the resistive rings on it, one of the rings was worn pretty thin. I suspect it's because I leave the temp at 70-71 most of the time and the gear hovers around that same position nearly all the time which eventually wears through the layer of material on the gear. I eventually changed out the motor and things have been OK for about 7 months now.

I can't believe what Honda charges for the air mix motor. It basically looks like a plastic gearbox from a toy car.
2004 EXL 4WD, 2012 EXL+NAV 4WD
mudbog is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 05-16-2012, 10:59 PM   #3 (permalink)
Registered User
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 490
Feedback Score: 0 reviews

You can also try slightly squeezing the forks of individual fingers together, which forces them to follow a different (and unworn) path on the rotor carbon track. Occasionally, the carbon tracks on the rotor get burnished or contaminated and make poor contact, where a light rubbing with an eraser and alcohol wipe helps. The dialectic grease probably does no harm.

'03 Pilot EX
'02 Highlander
'01 Civic EX
belundy is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-04-2012, 09:14 PM   #4 (permalink)
Registered User
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: USA
Posts: 38
Feedback Score: 0 reviews

After hearing the gurgling noise for several years, my wife's 2004 finally lost heat last week. Yesterday I removed the air mix control motor, cleaned, lubed with dielectric grease, & reinstalled. At $200+ for the part I figured it was worth trying.

After I finished cleaning it I reinstalled, but it didn't work. Hmm. Maybe the part's bad after all? With nothing to lose and following the troubleshooting instructions in the shop manual I took the motor out & applied 12V to terminals 1 & 2. The motor worked! Put it back in & it's been OK since. Maybe there was a capacitor or something in the step motor that needed a "bump" of some sort.

Anyway, the heat's back...and thanks to the OP for saving me some $$.
2004 SS EX-L. Side steps, full towing package, cargo tray, cargo cover, auto mirror, roof crossbars, full-size spare, Husky floor liners, wheel locks.
Jonathan is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-23-2013, 08:42 AM   #5 (permalink)
Registered User
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Florida
Posts: 14
Feedback Score: 0 reviews

Just wanted to post that this fix worked for me as well. Took out the old part, cleaned it and added some dielectric grease and put it all back together. Has been working fine for a week now with no annoying gurgling noise. Sure beats spending $200 on a new dealer part. Thank you for the valuable info and super easy fix.
Bevman is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-23-2014, 05:08 PM   #6 (permalink)
Registered User
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: NJ, 07087
Posts: 2
Feedback Score: 0 reviews

Hello. Trying to do same thing myself.
Unscrewed 3 screws but motor is hanging now. I cant figure out how to disconnect metal rod without breaking something.
Any advice, instruction or successful technique how to disconnect it?

* Googled solution to my gurgling noise HVAC problem and found this amazing forum. Thanks everyone for sharing your experience with pics and step by step instructions !
bojan.p is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-30-2014, 07:53 PM   #7 (permalink)
Registered User
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Dallas
Posts: 2
Feedback Score: 0 reviews

Thanks to all! I took out the air mix motor today, cleaned it up, re-lubed sparingly, and tried shifting the collar on the motor axle to keep the worm gear from slipping .... just installed and first test everything seems to work fine! Hopefully, this fix will last awhile.

Appreciate all the good pics, comments, advice, etc.

Rattling Center Dash (Heater A/C AirMixMotor) - Acura MDX Forum : Acura MDX SUV Forums

Gurgling / Grinding from under dash near HVAC...RESOLVED!!
rgcarroll is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-23-2015, 04:42 PM   #8 (permalink)
Registered User
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Virginia
Posts: 77
Feedback Score: 0 reviews

I had tried to clean mine. There were grooves worn in to the contact surface on the gear. It worked better, but was still causing issues. I found a replacement part on eBay for $70. Works great now.
2004 Honda Pilot EX-L Sandstone
Running Boards | Trailer Hitch | Rear Splash Guards | Cargo Tray | Full Size Spare | Thule 996 Expressway 4-Bike Rack | Covercraft UVS100 Sun Shade | All Season Mats |
Other Hondas / 2011 Honda CR-V | 2003 Honda Civic
Previous Hondas / 1997 Honda Odyssey | 1990 Honda Accord | 1984 Honda Accord
Chess Pilot is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Sponsored Links

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Honda Pilot - Honda Pilot Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

LinkBacks (?)
LinkBack to this Thread: http://www.piloteers.org/forums/14-problems/30949-2004-air-mix-motor-cleaning.html
Posted By For Type Date
Bubbling sound from the steering column? - Page 2 - Honda Accord Forum - Honda Accord Enthusiast Forums This thread Refback 09-12-2013 08:31 AM

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 11:29 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.3.2
Garage Plus vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.
Copyright 2000 piloteers.org. All Rights Reserved.