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Discussion Starter #1
Hi, I've got a 2006 EX AWD with 125K miles that is starting to show signs of needing suspension work - it's getting a little floaty over bumps and lately I've noticed an odd "hobby-horsing" when cornering hard on entrance/exit cloverleaf ramps. I assume the former is worn out shock/struts and the later is probably stabilizer/sway-bar links.

I getting a little long in the tooth to do this sort of work myself and I have a good local independent shop I like so I'm going to farm the labor out, but I prefer to order parts ahead of time so I can make the best selections and get the best prices. I've read a few suspension threads on this forum, but I thought I'd see if anyone here has any comments on my plan.... which is:

1. Replace front struts/springs with preassembled complete units, probably KYB Struts-Plus units which are about $130 a side right now with a rebate to sweeten the deal a bit from RockAuto.
2. Replace rear shocks with KYB Excel-G units at about $30 per side.
3. Replace stabilizer/sway-bar links with Honda OEM at about $20/corner.
3. Replace sway bar bushings with Honda OEM at about $3-$5/corner.
4. Replace tie rod ends with Honda OEM at about $40/side.

So total cost would be about $550 + install labor + alignment. I'm only interested in returning the car to original handling and ride, not making any improvements or firming things up.

I'll have the mechanic inspect the ball joints and control arm bushings, but I'm assuming with 125K, these are probably Okay. They're also quite a bit pricier than the above parts.

Any suggestions on my plan? Anything further I should do while I'm in there? Thanks,

- Mark
 

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I used KYB, note they provide a stiffer ride than OEM. I have heard Monroe are closer to original ride. The lower control arm includes the ball joint to the hub. I used Moog on my retrofit.
 

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Sounds like a good plan. It's exactly what I would do, for what it's worth. I would go (and have gone) with KYB over Monroe. 125k miles could also include LCAs, like me, perhaps depending on road conditions you usually drive on.
 

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My wife’s 2005 Pilot will likely need a similar suspension refresh in the near future. Thanks for listing the necessary parts. :)

We replaced the rear shocks, due to leakage, with KYB. The ride quality didn’t feel like it changed compared to OEM.

A friend who works on cars recommended Moog for the lower control arms when I told him the compliance bushings were starting to crack/tear. As mentioned above that comes with the ball joint. Since replacing the LCA also requires an alignment it might make financial sense to take care of this at the same time as the other work. If memory serves me correctly, these run about $150 a set.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Thank for comments. I notice that Moog sells a "Front End Kit" ($236 on RA) that includes the tie rod ends and both control arms (with bushings and ball joints). So, as you say, I could get the control arms thrown in for another $150 over the tie rod ends by themselves from Honda. (Honda OEM for the control arms is nearly $300 each! I could just replace the bushings if the ball joints are okay.)

I haven't driven the car hard and it lives in a garage in a moderate climate, so I suspect the control arm bushings and ball joints would be fine for another 100K or so; we'll see.

- Mark
 

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My 2006 is upward of 192,000 and still going strong. While I do have some looseness in the front end, I believe it to all be stock. Appreciate the part numbers and estimates. I would encourage you to look at changing the rear differential fluid if that has not been done. I have had a rear hop in tight corner with old fluid. Fresh Honda fluid change was just what the doctor ordered.
 

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2004 Pilot EX-L
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I'm also in the process of doing a front suspension refresh on my 04 Pilot. Here's what I've ordered so far, all from RockAuto. Am I forgetting anything that I should replace at the same time as the following parts:

1. KYB Strut-Plus assemblies (strut/spring/support)
2. MOOG lower control arms
3. MOOG outer tie rods and inner tie rods
4, MOOG stabilizer bar bushings
5. Proforged stabilizer bar link

Am I forgetting anything?
 

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I'm also in the process of doing a front suspension refresh on my 04 Pilot. Here's what I've ordered so far, all from RockAuto. Am I forgetting anything that I should replace at the same time as the following parts:

1. KYB Strut-Plus assemblies (strut/spring/support)
2. MOOG lower control arms
3. MOOG outer tie rods and inner tie rods
4, MOOG stabilizer bar bushings
5. Proforged stabilizer bar link

Am I forgetting anything?
Personally, I would go with Proforged's LCA's over MOOG as they're known for producing excellent aftermarket ball joints among other things...but that's me. I've had great results with their ball joints and outer tie rod ends on my '98 CRV. All of their products are Made in Taiwan which is a good thing nowadays. Not to mention the prices on their LCA's for our Pilots have come down markedly since I decided to stick with the factory original LCA's on my '05 three years ago since the lower ball joints were still amazingly tight at the 180K mile mark....the compliance bushings were another matter as they were really starting to show their age. What I did was I purchased Honda OEM compliance bushings from Amazon for a really good price, bought a dedicated installation tool on ebay(made by KTC Tools) for $40 and installed the bushings myself. The tool did it effortlessly.

I've found that Honda's OEM ball joints last a crazy long time and that's why I opted to stick with the factory original LCAs. The lower BJ's on my CRV were replaced at the 285K mile mark but to be honest there really wasn't any play in either one of them. I even saved them in case the Proforged don't last me the remaining life of the vehicle.
 

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2004 Pilot EX-L
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I thought about going all Proforged, but that'll cost another $75 over using the parts listed above, and I'm already blowing so much money on all these parts that it's hard to justify another 10% increase.
 

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I thought about going all Proforged, but that'll cost another $75 over using the parts listed above, and I'm already blowing so much money on all these parts that it's hard to justify another 10% increase.
I thought about going all Proforged, but that'll cost another $75 over using the parts listed above, and I'm already blowing so much money on all these parts that it's hard to justify another 10% increase.
Oh, I fully understand as I just replaced quite a few suspension and drivetrain parts on my '98 CRV over the last two weeks. In several instances I went with Proforged but I had already spent enough money so when it came to the upper arm/balljoint assemblies I thought long and hard about it and spent half as much as Proforged was asking...went with AC Delco Professional instead. Overall, they got very favorable reviews on Amazon although one guy said his went bad after 56K miles. At this point in my CRV's life I only put around 8K miles per year on it so that's really not a deal breaker for me...that's seven years down the line...no biggie.
 

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I would replace the inner tie rod end boots too. With age they start to get hard and prone to crack and tear. You will have them off anyway when you change the in tie rod end.
 

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I would replace the inner tie rod end boots too. With age they start to get hard and prone to crack and tear. You will have them off anyway when you change the in tie rod end.
Are you talking about the big plastic bellows? As shown in this figure part #8?
135946
 

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Yes. That’s them. You could check the condition of yours but you will already have them off. You can usually get the boots from rockauto too.
 
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