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Discussion Starter #1
Hi. I bought my 2011 Pilot last year. It now has 125k miles. I had the timing belt done when I bought it. I am the fourth owner but it has always been serviced at the local Honda dealer (something I usually avoid but our local dealer is good and very competitive price wise). Other than routine items (rear shocks, brakes, calipers etc. which all have now been recently done) it runs fine. Air mix motor made noise at start up for a while but but both ACs are still running so I just ignored it and it stopped maybe six months ago. My question is - should I plan to keep this car? I really don’t like the new Pilots but I want to know if I am headed for any likely major issues. I can’t really afford a new car but regular repairs aren’t any cheaper. Thoughts? Thanks.
 

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I'd keep it until it starts to nickel and dime you... even "major repairs" are often spaced out enough that a car payment is more expensive.
 
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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks. I should have added I do have a small payment. $200/mo. Still cheaper than new for sure. My main concern is that I’m not facing a likely transmission failure or similar in the near mileage future.
 

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I understand the transmissions on the 2nd gens is a pretty stout unit... The biggest concern with the 2nd gen (becomes less common throughout the years it seems) is the VCM system causing ring failure and oil burning issues resulting in a top end rebuild... I thought there were extended warranties and TSBs on that.

Have you been burning any oil between oil changes? Do some digging on the site to learn about it, just remember for the very vocal and scary looking cases there are a thousand that don't have any issues.
 
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Thanks for all this great info. I don’t think I am burning oil. Sounds like I may have dodged that bullet? I hope so...
 

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It sounds like you have a well maintained Pilot. Unless something catastrophic goes wrong I would be inclined to keep it. If you look at a $1k repair bill as two months of car payments it doesn’t seem so bad. Just put a bit of money aside each month for repair work so you’re prepared when something goes wrong.
 
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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks. I’m inclined to agree. I am hoping most of the major stuff is in the past. Or distant future....
 

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My '09 has 131,000. I drove it alot when I first got it, two years ago and 93,000 miles. I drive a lot less now.

I am in the same spot tho, even same payment amount, lol of 200/month. I changed timing belt/water pump. all new fluids. It needs struts/shocks or something in the front for a rattling. I imagine it'll need brakes soon, need to check.

But like you... man I'll keep this thing until it really isn't running. So I'm looking to see if I can make it last several more years and another hundred thousand miles. To when my kids are mostly grown up and I don't need 8 seats all the time like I do now. Hopefully well past owning it and having no car payment.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Agree... can’t beat the size and ride at that payment. There is an extended warranty for front compliance bushings I think. It was 100,000 miles but some dealers may push it further. Worth checking if that may be your issue. Good luck with yours!!
 

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A Pilot, in general, is one of the best cars to invest money in repairs and drive indefinitely. There are no big gotchas that are likely to bite. But you should have reasonable expectations - any car, even a Pilot, past 100K or so will likely require periodic infusions into the maintenance budget for somewhat expensive failure items - radiators, alternators, suspension, CV joints, motor mounts, exhaust/cats, sensors, you name it. So it really boils down to whether you're the sort who has a good dealer/mechanic and are willing to roll with the punch of the occasional small hit and the small chance of a really big one. To be honest, most aren't, as it is difficult to invest $3K in a given year to a car that is worth $8K. But the data says that this is the cheapest way to own a car up to point where the car has terminal rust issues or requires a new engine and/or transmission.

- Mark
 

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bzwyatt: my 2009 had clanging/rattling in front last year. Installing new sway bar end links made it quiet again. About $100-150 installed. (Front).
 
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