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I'm in a bit of a quandary with the timing belt on our 2014 EXL 4WD pilot with only 32,000 miles. My wife uses it locally as a sub teacher and we tow our 17' aluminum boat perhaps 5 times a year which accounts for the low miles. The vehicle is approaching 7 years old and based on time recommendations the timing belt should be replaced. Frankly I find the thought of doing the timing belt service (which I will perform myself) at 32K miles kind of ridiculous. Any thoughts or suggestions on the topic?
 

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There have been many examples of ones who have gone longer on the time interval. Even one who claimed the belt has never been changed with 300k miles and 17 years. (I still dont believe that one.) Could you put it off without a problem? I think you could go another year or two, but I'm not recommending doing so. It's a costly mistake if it breaks. Honda's 7 year recommendation would likely be for a worst case scenario, for a vehicle being used in extreme conditions. It all comes down to if your willing to roll the dice. You could make a more educated decision by removing the top cover and inspect for problems. Is there oil or coolant on the belt, is it cracking, dry/brown, or stretched/loose.
 

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I'm in a bit of a quandary with the timing belt on our 2014 EXL 4WD pilot with only 32,000 miles. My wife uses it locally as a sub teacher and we tow our 17' aluminum boat perhaps 5 times a year which accounts for the low miles. The vehicle is approaching 7 years old and based on time recommendations the timing belt should be replaced. Frankly I find the thought of doing the timing belt service (which I will perform myself) at 32K miles kind of ridiculous. Any thoughts or suggestions on the topic?
Assuming the vehicle was manufactured in 2013 as a 2014 model, you are already a year past the recommended interval.

The Honda guidance is clear, miles or years, whichever comes first. However ridiculous you may find that to be, the rubber doesn't car what you think and ages all the same.

My '15 is 7 years old this year and only has 65k miles but the timing belt will be done this year. There is no reason for me to risk taking it further and I knew about the timing belt requirement going into the purchase. I'm seeing if any good deals present themselves this summer at local dealers, if not I will do it myself.
 

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I'm in a bit of a quandary with the timing belt on our 2014 EXL 4WD pilot with only 32,000 miles. My wife uses it locally as a sub teacher and we tow our 17' aluminum boat perhaps 5 times a year which accounts for the low miles. The vehicle is approaching 7 years old and based on time recommendations the timing belt should be replaced. Frankly I find the thought of doing the timing belt service (which I will perform myself) at 32K miles kind of ridiculous. Any thoughts or suggestions on the topic?
Don’t forget the belt is made of a rubber like material. It will dry rot from age just like tires. I’m sure if you have 7 year old tires, they would be cracking.
 

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The tensioner is the real problem. Mine was leaking at 7.5 years and 65k miles.
At least with the tensioner, you should get a little warning if it goes weak. It will start to rattle.
 
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Here is my observation on timing belts. They will work perfectly fine, right up to the point that they break. Then all bets are off. You have to weigh you chances.

147926


Would you buy tires that sat in a hot warehouse for 7-8 years?

Would you put 7-8 year old gasoline in the tank?

The choice is yours, but like the 1971 Fram oil filter commercials said: "You can pay me now, or you can pay me later."
 

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Honda's 7 year recommendation would likely be for a worst case scenario, for a vehicle being used in extreme conditions.
Agree. I'm the forum non hand-wringer....for timing belts OEM's, including Honda, tend to be VERY conservative on mileage and years. 7 years is certainly worst case and then some; maybe half the belt manufacture aging data, just because Honda doesn't want the reputation of imploding engines due to timing belt failure. Obviously the 7 yr recommendation has kept them out of trouble. I'd bet a 10 yr/110k mi recommendation would yield nearly the same data. My memory is that (nearly) all the TB failures posted have been from 2nd TB, and often the Gates or other non-Honda sourced belt, or a failed tensioner, installation error, etc.

Would I replace a 7 yr old 35k mi, or 65k mi belt in an otherwise well-running Pilot, well past the infant failure mileage? Nope. $1000 or a weekend of my life given to that Honda CYA recommendation would be a waste for me.

That belt operates in an essentially sealed environment, and not seen the heat, operating stresses, engine vapor or fluid exposure a higher mileage belt would have experienced in quadruple or double the number of operating hours (assuming a 110k TB service), and nowhere near its dry-rot failure point for a modern belt. Easy enough to pop the TB cover inspection plugs, ogle and poke--I'd venture without exception--still crack-free, craze-free, the rubber like-new pliable, teeth still well formed and free of fraying, etc. Check belt tension as well, if you;re paranoid of the tensioner.

Similar rule for "old" tires, power steering, trans and brake hoses, coolant hoses, serpentine belt. If they "appear" dry rotted or compromised, then they ARE. Act accordingly. If they appear/feel supple and crack free, then they are NOT dry rotted--they don't rot from the inside out. Act accordingly.

Your Constitution May Vary. Stumbled whilst dismounting the soap box.....
 

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Here is my observation on timing belts. They will work perfectly fine, right up to the point that they break. Then all bets are off. You have to weigh you chances.

View attachment 147926

Would you buy tires that sat in a hot warehouse for 7-8 years?

Would you put 7-8 year old gasoline in the tank?

The choice is yours, but like the 1971 Fram oil filter commercials said: "You can pay me now, or you can pay me later."
As if the Honda 7 year fear factor wasn't enough. Got me shaking in my boots.
Come on, I dare ya..., to go another year on your timing belt. 🤠
 

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I understand the skepticism over the 7 year rating, but to me the numbers just don't work out and justify extending the interval. If you plan on keeping the vehicle another 5 years, it's still 1 timing belt change but you took some additional risk waiting until 10 years. So at 7 years from now you are now at another timing belt service... can you really not plan ahead and it's a big deal again?

While I agree that the 7 year is a conservative number that works for Honda statistically I just don't see a reason why not to follow it... as @Daltongang pointed out, pay me now or pay me later. So if you keep the vehicle 21 years you are doing the timing belt service one additional time, is that a bad thing? IDK, I'm just having trouble justifying not following the service interval.
 
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I went 8+ years and 127kmi or so (that I recall) on this Pilot. If it were 10 or 12 yrs old, I'd still would have waited until the recommended mileage (plus, never minus) :)

The only original TB I've ever had break was a '72 Pinto with 120k mi on it. Neither my dad or I suspected it had a TB, so shocked when we discovered the reason it stopped running. I waited until 10 yrs and 110k miles on my '86 Accord. The TB was in shockingly good shape. Similar yrs and mileage for all my TB-equipped Toyotas and subsequent Hondas.

Yes, if the tires upon careful inspection did NOT have dry rot--i.e wrapped in plastic to stave ozone exposure-- I would absolutely buy them. For a first tier vendor to keep them in inventory is liability exposure, where upon there are certainly thousands of likely good tires (in this example) that end up in a land fill or gray market, because they were beyond the "sell by" date. And of course, manufacturers, being charitable organizations, will always make the sell by date the latest they confidently know the product is viable. And surely, as Honda never defers to the desire of their dealers to make profit on service, that 7 years is the latest confident date as well. :rolleyes:

So then, certainly consider OEM recommendations and then use your powers of observation, the conditions your vehcile operates, and your noggin, and discern well.
 

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That said, I do need a valve adjustment on the old girl, as my superior observation powers discern the tickety-tick is getting louder, and it has 145k or so on the clock. Thus my persistent post re: cost on another thread. Unlike DBob, I don't yet have the luxury of time at my disposal.
 

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The Accessory belt is probably the same age. So, how does that look? The TB is exposed to more heat, the AB to more dirt. My wife's Volvo had a 10 year TB change interval...she nailed that mileage/time interval.
This thread made me wonder about her current ride. Thankfully, all three cars we currently have are equipped with timing chains. Confess, I hate timing belts due to cost of replacement.
 

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I'm just having trouble justifying not following the service interval.
Seriously, 35k on the clock and you'd stoically follow the 7 yr thing? If it had 10K, 5K, or 7 miles on the clock, you'd still follow 7 yrs and ignore any observation/inspection to contradict that?
 

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The Accessory belt is probably the same age. So, how does that look? The TB is exposed to more heat, the AB to more dirt. My wife's Volvo had a 10 year TB change interval...she nailed that mileage/time interval.
This thread made me wonder about her current ride. Thankfully, all three cars we currently have are equipped with timing chains. Confess, I hate timing belts due to cost of replacement.
I replaced the serpentine when I changed the alternator (@ 140k mi?). Belt was visually fine, but I had to remove/install it anyway, and even I recognize when something has provided a reasonable service life. :cool:
 

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I wonder if all the people who say not to follow recommendations are willing to send you a check for a new motor if it breaks? I don't see a lot of broken belts, but enough to not push it to far past the recommended intervals. As I tell customers who want to push it, we sell motors too.
 

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I wonder if all the people who say not to follow recommendations are willing to send you a check for a new motor if it breaks? I don't see a lot of broken belts, but enough to not push it to far past the recommended intervals. As I tell customers who want to push it, we sell motors too.
I'm not encouraging going beyond 7 years, but I'm not going to belittle someone who rolls the dice and wins either.
Do you know of a 7 year old 35k belt that snapped?
 

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I have 2, less then 50k miles in the 7-8 year range. Both moved up here from the south, so I have no history of either veh. 1 was a Ridgeline other was a pilot. In total I had probably 30 in the last 10 yrs, which isn't a lot, unless it's yours that broke.
 

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I wonder if all the people who say not to follow recommendations are willing to send you a check for a new motor if it breaks? I don't see a lot of broken belts, but enough to not push it to far past the recommended intervals. As I tell customers who want to push it, we sell motors too.
Straw man argument. But for a service center ALWAYS the prudent recommendation. As we are DIY's here and have eyeballs, fingers and brains, and we just might be able to discern--and have a reasonable conversation-- whether these things are on their last legs, versus an implied "there is an exploding capsule that will kill your TB at 7 yrs or 110k miles, whichever comes first". Doesn't matter whether you've driven like you stole it, in Death Valley for 7 years, or it sat in a closed garage in San Francisco for 300 days a year for the 7. No chin rubbing amongst DIYers, no "lets take a good look at it and consider the options". just "yep, replace it regardless and hand over $1000 or a weekend". And regardless of who does the 2nd TB, there is ALWAYS a higher statistical chance of failure from mistakes, disturbing things, "new" parts soon to implode, etc.
 

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Where am I missing the "delete fumble fingered post" button?
 
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