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I know the water directly on the warm engine will make steam come out the grille......but when I'm done washing it, and I pull out of the local car wash here, there is a steep downhill slope. Once I hit this slope, steam continually comes out the grille, as if it is overheating. But once I'm level again, it stops.

Does your PILOT do this? It can be rather embarrassing if you're around a crowd of people.:rolleyes:

I guess there's a big enough opening in the grille or something that water gets "stuck" in the cooling system and does not drain until I hit that hill.

I've never had a car that will do this to the magnitude described above......I think I'll do some investigating next time I wash it to see where that water might be coming from.
 

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You're not alone... the other day, I was going through a touchless car wash to get all the salt and sand off the Pilot (from the snow plows) and when I pulled out of the dryer, sure enough, there was smoke/steam coming out of the front grill area!! It did resemble an overheated vehicle, yet the temperature gauge was defintely within the "normal" range. I just assumed the power wash really did a number on the radiator and the H2O was still evaporating...
 

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Yep, it happens me too. It scared the heck out of me the first time it happened. But, when I opened up the hood, my worries were put to rest. Still unsettling to see all that smoke/steam coming out of the front of the hood though.
 

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Same here. There was enough steam coming out of the grille that it really got my attention. I've noticed that it only happens at car washes that have spray jets under the car.
 

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ChuckW said:
Same here. There was enough steam coming out of the grille that it really got my attention. I've noticed that it only happens at car washes that have spray jets under the car.
Ahhhh.....right, right, that would explain it. One of the reasons I always go to the brushless carwash I go to is because they have the underside spray. I don't know if it helps, but I feel better that all that much/salt/sand is at being washed even if a little bit during the winter.
 

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I've noticed the big burst of steam from the front as well - and it is heaviest when you go down an incline vs. staying level. It goes away quickly.

I've also noted three other "Car Wash" issues:

1. If I get the "works" wash with under-body wash, wheel brite, clear coat protection, etc. (pink & blue foam), I notice a chemical odor in the car for the next few miles. It's as if the car wash chemicals are burning off the exhaust system or sucked into the vents. It goes away within 15 minutes or so.

2. No matter how many times I dry off the rear hatch window, when I start driving, water always streams down the window. It leaves water marks as it dries. I've looked up on the roof and the blowers seem to leave it dry. The trapped water seems to be inside the rear spoiler. When I get home, I have to clean the rear window.

3. The car wash dryers often blow the rear wiper blade outward. I have to get out of the car as soon as I exit to fold the rear wiper back against the glass. Not a big deal, but my other vehicles with rear wipers never did this. The Pilot must have less tension on the wiper spring.

These are all miner issues. Well worth it to get the salt and sand off. Overall, this is a great vehicle!:2:
 

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Everytime I got out of washer

The last 3 times I used the touchless wash,every time I got out of it,smoke came out like a train,I was so worried and embarrased in front of people,(the first time it happened) when they all looked at me and the smoking Pilot.The last 2 times,I just drove off.
 

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The grill of the Pilot also allows alot more water to get through to the front of the engine. I have never before had a vehicle that allowed such easy airflow directly through to the engine. I guess it's great from a cooling point of view but it also means the engine bay gets alot dirtier faster. In your case I suspect that water is also getting through the grill to the top and sides of the engine.
 

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Yup, the front is very much open and that was my reason for previously posting on the need to have some additional road debris protection for the radiator. I have already had to clean the engine compartment because of the rapid accumulation of salt/road grim. Regarding the post about the rear deflector holding water; the Pilot holds water in numerous other areas too. When I last hand-washed it, I got so disgusted trying keep up with the seemingly continuous trickling water with a chamois that I fired up my high velocity hand held leaf blower and took it to her. I was amazed at how much water was retained under her skin.
 

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foxhallow said:


3. The car wash dryers often blow the rear wiper blade outward. I have to get out of the car as soon as I exit to fold the rear wiper back against the glass. Not a big deal, but my other vehicles with rear wipers never did this. The Pilot must have less tension on the wiper spring.

Concur! I have the same problem with my rear wiper flipping out, too!
 

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foxhallow said:
I've noticed the big burst of steam from the front as well - and it is heaviest when you go down an incline vs. staying level. It goes away quickly.

I've also noted three other "Car Wash" issues:

1. If I get the "works" wash with under-body wash, wheel brite, clear coat protection, etc. (pink & blue foam), I notice a chemical odor in the car for the next few miles. It's as if the car wash chemicals are burning off the exhaust system or sucked into the vents. It goes away within 15 minutes or so.
This hasn't happened for me at all. Do you have the heater/ac running at all? I usually have the heater/ac completely off when I go into a carwash.
2. No matter how many times I dry off the rear hatch window, when I start driving, water always streams down the window. It leaves water marks as it dries. I've looked up on the roof and the blowers seem to leave it dry. The trapped water seems to be inside the rear spoiler. When I get home, I have to clean the rear window.
Now, this sounds familiar. No matter how well I wipe and dry off that area, once I drive off, I get streaks of water running down the back window.
3. The car wash dryers often blow the rear wiper blade outward. I have to get out of the car as soon as I exit to fold the rear wiper back against the glass. Not a big deal, but my other vehicles with rear wipers never did this. The Pilot must have less tension on the wiper spring.
This hasn't happened for me, but the dryer at your carwash might be different from mine though.
These are all miner issues. Well worth it to get the salt and sand off. Overall, this is a great vehicle!:2:
Amen to that! :D
 

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Whew!

I have had the steam coming out of the front grille for some time after going thru the carwash, and I have to say, the first time I saw it I FREAKED OUT!!!!.

But, like someone else said, after checking the "temp" guage and popping the hood to look for any kind of hose problems or anything like that, nothing was wrong.

So, I just figured it's something I'm gonna have to deal with on my PILOT!!!! No biggie!


PILOTinginCO
Sagebrush Pearl-EX
Parker, CO
 

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I read this thread yesterday and just rolled my eyes.:rolleyes:

On my way home last night I stopped for gas. While I was there, I also ran my Pilot through the touchless wash. (Eventhough it was only 18 degrees F!)

I laughed out loud a few minutes later at the first red light. Sitting there watching clouds of steam rise from my grill!!!:D
 

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The cooling system for the towing package is in the front of the car. They would both be pretty hot and would create alot of steam.

This happens to me as well.
 
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