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Discussion Starter #1
Warning…..this is long…..

I read through several threads.....but did not find one direction to go in…..

So…..I want to tell you what is happening with my 2004 Honda Pilot…..(Mileage 229,000)…..

Just so that you know the condition of the vehicle…..these are the current maintenance issues:….

First…..the transmission needs to be replaced…..but I have been nursing it along until I can get the money to replace it…..

Second…..the exhaust needs to be repaired…..(bad after-market muffler)…..

Third…..brake rotors are due to be changed…..

This is the intermittent no start issue:….

About 10 days ago…..after sitting all day…..I drove it to a meeting…..(about 2 miles)…..which lasted about two hours…..

After the meeting…..I got in and tried to start it in my normal way…..turned over…..but did not start…..I tried a second time…..still no start…..(I did hear the fuel pump running the first time I tried to start it)…..

I waited a minute…..cycled the key a couple of times…..tried to start it…..and still no start…..(B-T-W…..it had about a ½ tank of gas)…..(No fuel pump sound heard)…..

I decided to wait a few minutes…..in case I was flooding it…..after about 15 minutes…..I cycled the key 2 times and tried to start it again….started right up…..(No fuel pump sound heard)…..

Drove it home…..(about 2 miles)…..it ran and drove normal…..I parked and turned it off…..I tried to start it again…..and it started right up…..(No fuel pump sound heard)…..

I drove it the rest of the week without any starting or running problems…..(in total…..about 100 miles)…..

7 days later…..I drive it about 20 miles running some errands…..and no issues…..when I get to the next stop…..I go in the store for about 20 minutes…..come out…..turn the key…..and no start…..I tried a second time…..and no start…..(No fuel pump sound heard)…..

So…..I waited about 15 minutes…..cycled the key a few times…..tried to start it…..and no start…..(No fuel pump sound heard)…..

After about a half an hour…..still no start…..So…..I call to get a ride home…..

Seven hours later…..I return with a tow truck to take my Pilot home…..put the key in and it starts right up…..I still tow it home…..(I did not listen for the fuel pump sound)…..

When I get home…..I try to start it…..and it starts right up several times…..(this was Tuesday before Thanksgiving)….. (No fuel pump sound heard)…..

I did not drive it on Wednesday…..on Thursday evening…..I decided to take it on a short run to the neighborhood store…..(about ¼ mile)…..going to the store…..it started up and ran fine…..(I did hear the fuel pump running when I tried to start it)…..

After being in the store for about 10 minutes…..I came out…..and again…..no start…..I cycled the key a couple of times again…..and still no start…..(No fuel pump sound heard)…..

I wait about 15 minutes…..cycle the key 5 or 6 times…..and it starts…..I drove it home and parked it…..(No fuel pump sound heard)…..

The next day…..(Friday)…..I go out and it starts right up.....I run some errands…..(about 15 miles)…..and it starts normal every time…..(I heard the fuel pump before I started it the first time)…..

Saturday morning…..I want to take it to my friend’s shop to test the fuel system…..I go out and…..it won’t start…..(I did not listen for the fuel pump)…..

I read on the internet…..that sometimes the connections inside the PCM-FI relay become loose and tapping on the relay while turning the key will sometimes allow the vehicle to start…..So…..I try it…..but no success…..no start…..

I tapped on it a second time…..still no start…..I was about to just drive something else…..but decided to try to start the Pilot one more time…..and it started…..(No fuel pump sound heard)…..

I drove it to his shop…..and the tech with the testing equipment that I need is out with the flu…..and the equipment is locked in his toolbox…..So…..no testing yet…..

I made two stops on the way home…..(about 3 miles)…..no problems…..

So…..what I am looking for…..is any information that you can give me…..so…..that when I am at the shop on Monday…..I can isolate the issue and repair my Pilot…..

Thanks in advance…..
 

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Check the fuel pressure regulator. Diaphragm can rupture and allow raw gas to pool in the intake manifold, causing hard starting with black smoke. Another possibility is leaking fuel injectors after shutdown. This also can flood the engine and cause a difficult hot start. And of course, old fuel pumps can become intermittent and unreliable
 

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You are on potentially the right path with the fuel pump relay testing. Is the green immobilizer key going out every time you try to start it?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Check the fuel pressure regulator. Diaphragm can rupture and allow raw gas to pool in the intake manifold, causing hard starting with black smoke. Another possibility is leaking fuel injectors after shutdown. This also can flood the engine and cause a difficult hot start. And of course, old fuel pumps can become intermittent and unreliable
Thanks.....

I don't smell a strong gas smell when I start it up.....and I will look for the black smoke in the morning.....

If it is the fuel pressure regulator.....will there be visible signs of fuel leakage on the outside?....Or how can I test the fuel pressure regulator?....

You are on potentially the right path with the fuel pump relay testing. Is the green immobilizer key going out every time you try to start it?
I did not notice if the imobilizer icon is going out.....I will check it in the morning.....

Should it go out before I actually start the engine.....when the key is all the way forward?....

Or only after the engine starts?....

Thanks.....
 

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Regarding the fuel pressure regulator, a leak will not be obvious from the outside. However, I think that you can remove the regulator and visually inspect it. I haven't done this on a Pilot, you will have to do some reading to figure this detail out.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The green key should disappear quickly after you turn the key.
Okay.....so today.....tech still sick.....so.....no testing.....

I did watch for the green key icon to disappear.....and it did.....both times that I tried to start it.....

".....causing hard starting with black smoke."
Also.....from the driver's seat.....I could not see any smoke coming from the tailpipe.....

I will update everyone tomorrow.....
 

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Discussion Starter #8
So sorry to leave this hanging out there.....The Tech is still out with the flu.....So I will have to wait a little longer.....

So far.....it has not failed to start since I posted about 10 days ago.....

What I did notice.....is one time last Saturday night.....the green key icon did blink one time while I was driving.....But the vehicle did not stall or act in any unsusal manner.....Also.....when I arrived at my destination.....I cut the vehicle off and then tried to re-start it.....It started with no problems.....

It has started everyday so far.....

I will post when the Tech returns and we can test the fuel system.....
 

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Are you still using the original factory keys, or are you using an aftermarket key, by any chance?

 
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