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My rear shocks have been leaking for quite some time, but just recently I noticed that my Pilot wasn't handling well. Whenever I would go over railroad tracks or other odd dips or bumps, the car would have a strange floating feeling with a squishy/loose feeling in the rear so I figured it was time to replace them.

I was considering the KYB shocks for around $50 each, however I noticed that Bilstein made a B6 shock for the Pilot for around $80 but they were backordered at the time. So a few months ago I placed the order, and once they were in stock they shipped. I just finished installing them about two weeks ago and so far I'm very impressed. The ride and handling is almost back to what it was like when new, however I'm certainly feeling the weakness of the front struts now (100K miles on them) so they're getting replaced next. The B6 are a monotube design, allegedly better than the twin tube design of the B4 or the KYB Excel-G. Time will tell how these hold up, but so far I'm very happy with the improvement.

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I did read a few horror stories regarding the lower bolt seizing up when trying to remove the original shocks. I started on the passenger side and it came off without issue. Despite my Pilot never seeing snow/salt and very rarely even being driven in the rain, the lower bolt on the drivers side was a bit difficult to remove. It wasn't seized to the point where I had to cut the welded nut to remove it, but it required more effort than the passenger side. It looked like some galvanic corrosion with a white crust on the bolt and threads. I zipped it on a wire wheel to clean it up and added some anti-sieze before reinstalling it.
 

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I am considering installing the B6 Bilsteins on my 2011 Pilot. Thanks for the initial report. Keep us posted as you put more miles on them.
 

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I am excited too to hear how they hold up after 10-15k. I put the KYBs on mine at ~98k and I feel they are already sloppy (at 140k).
 

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Just put on the Bilstein B6 struts and rear shocks after waiting for about several years for Bilstein to finally produce ones for the 2011 Pilot. Most of my vehicles have been refitted with Bilstein s or Konis. The Japanese aftermarket shocks are not available not heavier duty ones are available for the Pilot.
I've tried the KYB and the other readily available brand, which claims to be the OEM maker and model for the Pilot. They seem to last about 10-15,000 miles before starting to fail by losing the "jounce" control on long trips in warm weather.
My Pilot, a 2011 Touring AWD, has over 125,000 miles on it. Was worried the the B6's were going to be too stiff for the ride. Since I could not find aftermarket progressive springs, I decided to retain the original ones along with the B6's.
The results were a smooth and firm extremely controllable ride, especially at high speeds on the highway and the twisties! In town the ride is smooth and level, especially going over the potholes and the deteriorating roads in California.
Finally got the right combination for my Pilot! Amazing ride and control at all speeds and road conditions! ETM
 

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How is the ride on these from a "comfort" perspective? harsh at all? I'm deciding between b4's and b6's right now.
 

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The ride is more stuff and, at the same time, more comfortable and controlled than the stock ride. Just came back from a 800-mile trip on the freeway and was totally satisfied.
The AWD handles more "square" now and Isa pleasure going threw the twisties. Other drivers who know how it was handling, are awestruck by the difference in the improvement. ETM
 

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Today I replaced the original rear shocks on my 2009 EX-L with 146,000 miles, took me about two hours in my driveway. The only tough part was removing the lower bolts. I was able to break both free but getting them to pull through and out was tricky. Had to use a combination of vice grips, open ended sockets to apply pressure while turning the bolt. Had it not been for this slow down, this would have been an under one hour job easy.

I replaced them with original equipment Honda parts, didn't want to change the ride quality from OEM which I found very nice.

Both of the old shocks looked to be in good shape, no leaks, but when I compressed them the didn't return to the extended position. Initial test ride definitely showed some improvement in ride quality, slight bouncing and loose feeling in turns is now gone.
 

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Today I replaced the original rear shocks on my 2009 EX-L with 146,000 miles, took me about two hours in my driveway. The only tough part was removing the lower bolts. I was able to break both free but getting them to pull through and out was tricky. Had to use a combination of vice grips, open ended sockets to apply pressure while turning the bolt. Had it not been for this slow down, this would have been an under one hour job easy.

I replaced them with original equipment Honda parts, didn't want to change the ride quality from OEM which I found very nice.

Both of the old shocks looked to be in good shape, no leaks, but when I compressed them the didn't return to the extended position. Initial test ride definitely showed some improvement in ride quality, slight bouncing and loose feeling in turns is now gone.
Did you put your Pilot up on jack stands and remove the tires to change out the rear shocks?
 

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I also needed to do the rear shocks at 145k mi as my 09 Pilot was bouncing all over in the rear. On highway dips, it started to feel dangerous. I went with Monroe since they have a lifetime replacement warranty and were only $90 for the pair at Advance auto (w/ 25% off online coupon). After 20k miles, performance has been great...they make the Pilot handle and ride like new, and that's all I can ask for at that price. Link below. The struts on my Pilot seem OK still. I did have to do the front sway bar links at round 145k as well, they were rattling over bumps.

BTW - I did mine on a jack with stands. I used a 1/2" ratchet set and a breaker bar, makes things much easier. I think I had to tap the lower bolt out with hammer. Be sure to soak the upper and lower bolts with penetrating oil after removing wheel.

 

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I also needed to do the rear shocks at 145k mi as my 09 Pilot was bouncing all over in the rear. On highway dips, it started to feel dangerous. I went with Monroe since they have a lifetime replacement warranty and were only $90 for the pair at Advance auto (w/ 25% off online coupon). After 20k miles, performance has been great...they make the Pilot handle and ride like new, and that's all I can ask for at that price. Link below. The struts on my Pilot seem OK still. I did have to do the front sway bar links at round 145k as well, they were rattling over bumps.

BTW - I did mine on a jack with stands. I used a 1/2" ratchet set and a breaker bar, makes things much easier. I think I had to tap the lower bolt out with hammer. Be sure to soak the upper and lower bolts with penetrating oil after removing wheel.

I installed the KYB 349151 Excel-G Gas Shock rear shocks today and it was easier than changing brake pads. Purchased both for $126 shipped from Amazon. My local Autozone wanted $95 per shock!
 

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I've got 100K Miles (160K KM) on mine now and I can sense the front struts are getting weak and rear shocks as well. These Bilstein B6 look like a nice replacement/Upgrade and Rockauto has them at a really good price. I have spring compressor and all to swap the springs, it would be about the 10th set I've done. My underside looks nothing like yours though. I'll be cutting bolts and cursing a lot to do them when the time comes. Salt brine they use here makes everything rust even if you undercoat annually. Did you do your front struts? if so what Strut mount bearing did you use? I know my OEM are starting to go as I can feel them poping when you do a tight turn, I'm wondering if the KYB are ok or if I should bite the bullet for OEM on those?

Cheers

Maritime.
 
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