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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Recently purchased a 2010 Honda pilot EX with a heating issue. Wife loved the pilot when we bought it now that the temperatures dropped she's not so happy about it. So this pilot is bare bones it doesn't have heated seats or dual temp zones up front. I'm trying to find out why we have no heat in the front but have heat in the rear area. I have removed the glovebox and top of the dash. when i move the control from cold to hot I don't hear or see anything moving. When I push the buttons to move from front vents to feet or defrost it works i can see the motor moving as normal. Is there another actuator I'm not seeing? any help would be greatly appreciated Thanks. Searched all over the site and all i see are older pilots and the heater valve issue but from my understanding it doesn't have one correct?
 

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Have you tried checking for HVAC error codes? See information below.

If this doesn’t show any troubleshooting codes it’s possible that there is an air bubble or clog in the heater core. There are separate front and rear heater cores so front can be clogged and you’d still have heat in the rear.

Do you have any service records? Any history of coolant changes? Is the coolant overflow tank above min?

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It’s also common for the heater core to get clogged up. I want to say flushing them with clr is the fix. This of course assuming the actuators and vAl es are working well.

 

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At 12 years old and used, it is possible that you have a clogged heater core, especially if the coolant wasn't replaced as necessary.
 

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It’s also common for the heater core to get clogged up. I want to say flushing them with clr is the fix. This of course assuming the actuators and vAl es are working well.

From the CLR Website:

CAN I USE CLR CALCIUM, LIME AND RUST REMOVER TO CLEAN OUT MY RADIATOR?

CLR Calcium, Lime and Rust Remover should not be used in or on a car radiator. CLR Calcium, Lime and Rust Remover may not be compatible with the materials associated with a radiator and it could have adverse effects if the CLR Calcium, Lime and Rust Remover is not rinsed out completely.

 

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From the CLR Website:

CAN I USE CLR CALCIUM, LIME AND RUST REMOVER TO CLEAN OUT MY RADIATOR?

CLR Calcium, Lime and Rust Remover should not be used in or on a car radiator. CLR Calcium, Lime and Rust Remover may not be compatible with the materials associated with a radiator and it could have adverse effects if the CLR Calcium, Lime and Rust Remover is not rinsed out completely.

It does say if not rinsed out entirely. Additionally if you‘re looking at pulling the core anyway I’m not sure you got a ton to lose.. but you’re right - best to be careful.
 

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It does say if not rinsed out entirely. Additionally if you‘re looking at pulling the core anyway I’m not sure you got a ton to lose.. but you’re right - best to be careful.
How long, with what and how much water or other solution is needed to rinse the system out entirely? That is the question I have. Usually in manufacturing the removal of acids from a substance is a double dip, cleaning process. With the amount of aluminum in the system these days I think I would be concerned.

The cooling system is a complex system which could easily leave behind the various acid solutions used in CLR. Think about the normal applications for CLR such as cleaning sinks, tubs, toilets. All locations where aluminum parts, the substance radiators are made of these days, are not generally used.

Clogged heater cores are generally caused by corrosion, eat away the corrosion and you may end up with a flowing heater core, or you may end up with a heater core with flowing coolant coming from the seams. I guess it all depends on how you want to tackle the problem.

I ended up with a clogged heater core many, many years ago when my now wife, the was before we were married, didn't take care of her vehicle as she should have. For the youngsters out their coolant used to be green and clear, then came blue and clear and other clear colors. Murky brown however has never been a coolant color however, something lost on my future wife. When I say murky brown, think of orange juice with pulp.

Drained the system, pulled the heater core and tried to back flush to clean it out. A load of gunk, garbage an crap came out of the heater core. After it was drained I corked off the tubes and pressure tested it Thing leaked like a sieve. I think I flushed not only the corrosion out, but also about half of the braising that had been used to put the core together.

It was an interesting waste of a few hours time and then I went and bought a new heater core and installed it.
 

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How long, with what and how much water or other solution is needed to rinse the system out entirely? That is the question I have. Usually in manufacturing the removal of acids from a substance is a double dip, cleaning process. With the amount of aluminum in the system these days I think I would be concerned.

The cooling system is a complex system which could easily leave behind the various acid solutions used in CLR. Think about the normal applications for CLR such as cleaning sinks, tubs, toilets. All locations where aluminum parts, the substance radiators are made of these days, are not generally used.

Clogged heater cores are generally caused by corrosion, eat away the corrosion and you may end up with a flowing heater core, or you may end up with a heater core with flowing coolant coming from the seams. I guess it all depends on how you want to tackle the problem.

I ended up with a clogged heater core many, many years ago when my now wife, the was before we were married, didn't take care of her vehicle as she should have. For the youngsters out their coolant used to be green and clear, then came blue and clear and other clear colors. Murky brown however has never been a coolant color however, something lost on my future wife. When I say murky brown, think of orange juice with pulp.

Drained the system, pulled the heater core and tried to back flush to clean it out. A load of gunk, garbage an crap came out of the heater core. After it was drained I corked off the tubes and pressure tested it Thing leaked like a sieve. I think I flushed not only the corrosion out, but also about half of the braising that had been used to put the core together.

It was an interesting waste of a few hours time and then I went and bought a new heater core and installed it.
Yep, I agree. With that said apparently our years of Honda do tend to plug up pretty easil and I’d read about this fix a few times before plus with Eric O using it… well seems like maybe worth a shot. Obviously try flushing with freshwater first. I hadn’t heard of any needing replacement despite the clogging. I do remember green coolant and how if you didn’t flush every 2 years you could expect “mud”. It’s amazing how much better the modern stuff is at resisting turning to gunk.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Hey PilotGeorge I went ahead and ran the diagnostic test on the system and it blinks twice which is an issue with the air mix control motor. Where is this motor located?

Have you tried checking for HVAC error codes? See information below.

If this doesn’t show any troubleshooting codes it’s possible that there is an air bubble or clog in the heater core. There are separate front and rear heater cores so front can be clogged and you’d still have heat in the rear.

Do you have any service records? Any history of coolant changes? Is the coolant overflow tank above min?

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
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Looking at the drivers side footwell it seems like my motor is missing?? Looks like I’m gonna have to order it. Can someone take a picture of theirs so I can see exactly where it goes and leave a part number so I order the right one. My guess is someone had a problem and just left it out waiting for some guy to buy it during the summertime. Thanks for your help!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
On top of the motor missing I am missing this arm as well! What a headache it has been searching for that arm. Anyone have a part number for it? Or am I gonna have to go to a junk yard and find one? Any help is appreciated thanks. Automotive tire Font Art Wood Space
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I can rotate it by hand.I grabbed a socket and attached it to an extension and turned it sure enough I have heat now. That part I turned is pretty chewed up so if I am able to find that arm I’m gonna have to gorilla glue it on there. I clicked on the link and it does look like the arm but I don’t see how it attaches to the piece that’s chewed up. I was hoping a junkyard around here would have a 2nd gen pilot but most of them have 1st gens only.

Interesting, maybe you can rotate the part that remains to at least get the heat flowing?

It’s raining by me at the moment but once it lets up I’ll take a look at my car for the part #s.
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Glad to hear you have heat, at least that solves the immediate comfort issue! I usually use car-part .com or eBay and have things shipped as needed when I need junkyard parts.

Now that you have heat can you pull that mangled piece out? If so, does it have a metal tip like the complete motor at the Honda dealer website?


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Never mind, there is certainly a missing linkage piece in your situation. I can't figure how you'll get it without going to a "u-pull-it" style junk yard since it's not even on Honda parts list and all the Honda repair manual says is to repair the linkage as needed if sticking...maybe the dealer can help source the linkage?

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I wonder if the linkage is part of the heater core itself...
I tried to pull the piece off with some vice grips and it’s on there pretty good. It doesn’t look like it’s broken at the tip of it. It’s a pretty tight squeeze to get to so I can put my eyes closer to it. All the junkyards around me only have the 1st generation pilots and plenty of them. I’d have to travel at least 80 miles to San Antonio to see if the bigger junkyards have any.
 
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