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2003 Pilot EX-L 4wd
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
installed the readylift 2” kit on my pilot. Biggest PITA I’ve ever encountered. Took 6 hours and I didn’t even install the new rear springs or the adjustable control arms. Every time I went to lift the lower control arm on the rear to get everything lined up, the whole car would lift, not just the suspension. Jackstands under the frame tabs under the rear doors, sway bar links and shocks undone. It would lift the control arm an inch or 2 and then the car would lift. I also demolished my ball joint separator on the passenger side so I couldn’t remove either of them. So that’s cool. Anyway I finally got my old springs in because the brand new MOOG springs with the spacers were literally impossible to install despite being damn near identical in height. I wanted to quit several times but I kinda need my car everyday at 6:45am so...no choice. Any tips? I’ve lifted and lowered vehicles before. With zero issues. This one ate my lunch.
What did I do wrong?

Edit; all bolts broke free with ease- even the sway bar links. Zero rust- spent its whole life in North Texas. I’m gonna have another go at this Monday- hopefully I’ll be able to squat by then- I’m sore af today. I’ll spray some PB Blaster on the ball joint to help it. Or should I just swallow my pride and pay a shop the small fee and have someone else do it?? It’s not in my nature to let something whoop me like this (I was a professional bike mechanic for a dozen years up until 2019) but I honestly don’t see how this could possibly work with the new stiffer springs and spacers....

148950

148951

Before and after pics at least. Getting aligned on Monday probably. Tuesday at the latest.
 

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installed the readylift 2” kit on my pilot. Biggest PITA I’ve ever encountered. Took 6 hours and I didn’t even install the new rear springs or the adjustable control arms. Every time I went to lift the lower control arm on the rear to get everything lined up, the whole car would lift, not just the suspension. Jackstands under the frame tabs under the rear doors, sway bar links and shocks undone. It would lift the control arm an inch or 2 and then the car would lift. I also demolished my ball joint separator on the passenger side so I couldn’t remove either of them. So that’s cool. Anyway I finally got my old springs in because the brand new MOOG springs with the spacers were literally impossible to install despite being damn near identical in height. I wanted to quit several times but I kinda need my car everyday at 6:45am so...no choice. Any tips? I’ve lifted and lowered vehicles before. With zero issues. This one ate my lunch.
What did I do wrong?

Edit; all bolts broke free with ease- even the sway bar links. Zero rust- spent its whole life in North Texas. I’m gonna have another go at this Monday- hopefully I’ll be able to squat by then- I’m sore af today. I’ll spray some PB Blaster on the ball joint to help it. Or should I just swallow my pride and pay a shop the small fee and have someone else do it?? It’s not in my nature to let something whoop me like this (I was a professional bike mechanic for a dozen years up until 2019) but I honestly don’t see how this could possibly work with the new stiffer springs and spacers....

View attachment 148950
View attachment 148951
Before and after pics at least. Getting aligned on Monday probably. Tuesday at the latest.
Nice Job!
Looks Great!
 
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2003 Pilot EX-L 4wd
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139 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
@Nail Grease I was hoping of all people that you would chime in with some pointers or tips lol

thanks! It was a total hassle and I’m already getting the vibration around 5-10mph. Hope all that trouble was worth it....
 

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Nobili spiritus embiggens pequeño sparus tyre.
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Nice job. Happy trails. (y)
 

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@Nail Grease I was hoping of all people that you would chime in with some pointers or tips lol

thanks! It was a total hassle and I’m already getting the vibration around 5-10mph. Hope all that trouble was worth it....
Sorry, never was one to do modifications, I just admire them.
If some day if the need arises, I'll know where to get some ideas. 😁👍
 

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installed the readylift 2” kit on my pilot. Biggest PITA I’ve ever encountered. Took 6 hours and I didn’t even install the new rear springs or the adjustable control arms. Every time I went to lift the lower control arm on the rear to get everything lined up, the whole car would lift, not just the suspension. Jackstands under the frame tabs under the rear doors, sway bar links and shocks undone. It would lift the control arm an inch or 2 and then the car would lift. I also demolished my ball joint separator on the passenger side so I couldn’t remove either of them. So that’s cool. Anyway I finally got my old springs in because the brand new MOOG springs with the spacers were literally impossible to install despite being damn near identical in height.
Your Pilot looks great! I had no issues installing the MOOG springs and spacer alone although a helper to control the floor jack would have helped. I used a floor jack under the rear LCA with the shock, end link, abs lines, upper arm removed and only one LCA bolt removed closest to the hub.
Automotive fuel system Tire Automotive tire Motor vehicle Tread
Automotive tire Wood Road surface Beach Asphalt
 

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2003 Pilot EX-L 4wd
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
That’s insane you did it all by yourself!! I did it the same way, but the LCA was rubbing on the ground even on the tallest setting on the jack stand and I couldn’t get the floor jack underneath the end closest to the hub. I couldn’t lift the LCA by myself enough to wedge the floor jack underneath.
 

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That’s insane you did it all by yourself!! I did it the same way, but the LCA was rubbing on the ground even on the tallest setting on the jack stand and I couldn’t get the floor jack underneath the end closest to the hub. I couldn’t lift the LCA by myself enough to wedge the floor jack underneath.
I used the HF 6 ton jack stands but didn’t max out.
 

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installed the readylift 2” kit on my pilot. Biggest PITA I’ve ever encountered. Took 6 hours and I didn’t even install the new rear springs or the adjustable control arms. Every time I went to lift the lower control arm on the rear to get everything lined up, the whole car would lift, not just the suspension. Jackstands under the frame tabs under the rear doors, sway bar links and shocks undone. It would lift the control arm an inch or 2 and then the car would lift. I also demolished my ball joint separator on the passenger side so I couldn’t remove either of them. So that’s cool. Anyway I finally got my old springs in because the brand new MOOG springs with the spacers were literally impossible to install despite being damn near identical in height. I wanted to quit several times but I kinda need my car everyday at 6:45am so...no choice. Any tips? I’ve lifted and lowered vehicles before. With zero issues. This one ate my lunch.
What did I do wrong?

Edit; all bolts broke free with ease- even the sway bar links. Zero rust- spent its whole life in North Texas. I’m gonna have another go at this Monday- hopefully I’ll be able to squat by then- I’m sore af today. I’ll spray some PB Blaster on the ball joint to help it. Or should I just swallow my pride and pay a shop the small fee and have someone else do it?? It’s not in my nature to let something whoop me like this (I was a professional bike mechanic for a dozen years up until 2019) but I honestly don’t see how this could possibly work with the new stiffer springs and spacers....

View attachment 148950
View attachment 148951
Before and after pics at least. Getting aligned on Monday probably. Tuesday at the latest.
Beauty!
 

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2003 Pilot EX-L 4wd
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
If the vibrations continue after the alignment the issue may be the CV axle angles or worn axles or suspension issues. If you look closely at my pic I installed a subframe drop kit to make the CV angles closer to stock angles.
Yeah I did notice your subframe spacers. My CV axles are new so I’m sure it’s just the lift coupled with the 31” all terrains that are making the axles sit at an extreme angle. Getting an alignment today so I guess we’ll see.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
had to install camber bolts for the front to get it within alignment spec. The vibrations from ~15-22mph are concerning...it’s subtle when accelerating from a straight line and worse when accelerating coming out of a turn. I’m starting to regret installing the lift...I knew there would be issues but I’ve had it for 3 days and ready to give up. I guess I can call it a failed experiment.
 

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Don’t give up too quickly. There is a segment of tuners that luv to turn their Hondas into HEEPs and have done mods way beyond 2-3” lifts. When there is a vibration issue they start at worn suspension bits then CV axle condition or high mileage and get new ones. Subframe drops are another “cure” for excess vibrations. Check out HRG
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Don’t give up too quickly. There is a segment of tuners that luv to turn their Hondas into HEEPs and have done mods way beyond 2-3” lifts. When there is a vibration issue they start at worn suspension bits then CV axle condition or high mileage and get new ones. Subframe drops are another “cure” for excess vibrations. Check out HRG
Yeah I’ve seen the subframe drop kits...just don’t wanna keep throwing money at it. The driver side front cv joint is 2 months old- the best aftermarket one that my trusted shop recommended. The passenger is ??? old. With vibrations how much is too much? Is it (or they) gonna blow soon or do I have some time? I’d like to go visit my parents day after tomorrow but they’re a 300mi drive (each way) away....
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Well, the old girl left us stranded 150mi from home today. Vibration started to get worse on the highway after about 100 miles or so....at 72mph while next to an 18 wheeler something let loose in the front end. Knocking, grinding and loose steering. Pulled over without incident. Drove it at 30mph in as straight a line as I could to the closest shop. They thought wheel bearing at first but then heard it and said passenger inner CV axle. I drove it at 50mph back home to my trusted local guy and he’s looking now. He said the lift shouldn’t have caused this. My guess is the cv axle was on the way out and the lift exacerbated it and gave me another 300mi before going kaput today.
 

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2008 Piot SE FWD, 2015 Pilot LX 4WD. 2005 GSX-R1000
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I hope you and the Fam are all OK.
This will get fixed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Pulled the lift off today. Chewed through a brand new axle during a test drive. Pulled the lift, installed another new cv axle and just drove it 350 miles with absolutely zero issues. Guess my particular pilot just wasn’t meant to be lifted. I’m guessing a subframe drop is necessary but I don’t really wanna go through all that for a little extra clearance. I did however email HRG about their 1.5” kit....
 

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Stinks to hear about the lift... I've lifted multiple IFS vehicles and haven't had issues with the CV axles even though I knew the angles would be putting more strain on them. I'll consider myself lucky.

Hopefully the HRG lift works out for you, the Pilot really is a great soft roading and camping rig.
 
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