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Discussion Starter #1
Bought a 2008 Pilot from an Acura dealer with impeccable maintenance records--the former owner had the oil changed and services done religiously by a Honda dealer. Instead of replacing the original tires when they wore out, the owner traded it in on an Acura. It had 61,000 miles on it. I have put 10K miles on it since I bought it and just recently discovered that Honda recommends the timing belt be changed at either 105 K miles or 7 years. In that case, I'm 5 years out of replacement.
Has anyone ever heard of a timing belt/timing chain conversion? Does it exist for the Pilot?

I'm going to assume that the answer is "no" and ask if there is an excellent belt replacement kit that is recommended?

Thanks!
 

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Converting to a timing chain would result in all new sprockets and tensioners at a minimum. If it's wider the timing cover may need to be replaced. Which results in the accessories probably needing to be shimmed (some, not all). Also timing chains critically require lubrication or they will heat up an stretch and jump teeth. So you would have to design and implement lubrication for the chain and a return line to the oil sump.

I'm sure I'm missing some things, that's just what jumped quickly out of my brain.
 

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The Aisin kit with belt, water pump, new idlers, and tensioner is good. Rock Auto is a good source for purchase of the kit.
 

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No, there is no possible timing chain conversion.

My top choice would always be OEM parts installed by a Honda dealer.

My DIY choice is the Aisin kit, along with some new OEM bolts
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for all of you who took the time to comment. I suspected that a belt/chain conversion was wishful thinking--wouldn't it be nice..... If I am not mistaken, Honda has gone from using belts to chains in later models. Time to order a Continental kit, I suppose.
 

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I suspect Honda chose to go GDI on the Pilot as a holdover until they go all turbo 4 in their vehicles. My guess is Honda will not release a new V6, the J35 may soldier on in a couple applications with some more updates but will eventually die off.

They aren't unique in this regard, the 3.8 in the Palisade/Telluride is the Lambda V6 Hyundai has been using since '06 or so.
 

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You have no idea what you are asking for. Yes, there is a going marketing term which describes timing chains as "lasting for the life of the vehicle" but once you read the fineprint, you realize that it means "till the end of manufacturer's warranty".
I own a vehicle with the timing chain. Its tensioners, buried deep within the guts of the engine, had worn out after only 100k miles. Yes, the chains are still like new, but the engine still had to be dropped to replace the tensioners. And that is not even tensioners, since they were combo oil-powered and spring-loaded. It was just the chain guides on them which wore out. It costs several times more to do the chain tensioner job than to do the TB job, at the same intervals.
 

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You have no idea what you are asking for. Yes, there is a going marketing term which describes timing chains as "lasting for the life of the vehicle" but once you read the fineprint, you realize that it means "till the end of manufacturer's warranty".
I own a vehicle with the timing chain. Its tensioners, buried deep within the guts of the engine, had worn out after only 100k miles. Yes, the chains are still like new, but the engine still had to be dropped to replace the tensioners. And that is not even tensioners, since they were combo oil-powered and spring-loaded. It was just the chain guides on them which wore out. It costs several times more to do the chain tensioner job than to do the TB job, at the same intervals.
Hello there, fellow F150 5.4 owner......
 

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Hello there, fellow F150 5.4 owner......
Coulda been a Traverse owner... or maybe a Hyundai Lambda V6 owner... Both have had recalls and TSBs on the subject.

Why they cheaped out on the tensioners is beyond me but it seems like most timing chain engines have tensioners that cause all of the problems.
 

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Thanks for all of you who took the time to comment. I suspected that a belt/chain conversion was wishful thinking--wouldn't it be nice..... If I am not mistaken, Honda has gone from using belts to chains in later models. Time to order a Continental kit, I suppose.
On all six cylinder Honda and Acura vehicles, a timing belt is used.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I have one more question: In addition to the 2008 Pilot, we also have an '06 Pilot with 250K miles on it. The timing belt broke on it Saturday night when I was driving into town to pick up a pizza.
Where would I find instructions on how to sync the cams and crank? Although I have been told that a broken timing belt means the engine is toast, I have also been told that sometimes that is not the case. I figure that if I get a new kit for the '06 and the engine is DOA, I can use it on the '08. If not, then the '06 lives to die another day and I'll spring for an additional timing belt kit for the '08.
 

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I have one more question: In addition to the 2008 Pilot, we also have an '06 Pilot with 250K miles on it. The timing belt broke on it Saturday night when I was driving into town to pick up a pizza.
Where would I find instructions on how to sync the cams and crank? Although I have been told that a broken timing belt means the engine is toast, I have also been told that sometimes that is not the case. I figure that if I get a new kit for the '06 and the engine is DOA, I can use it on the '08. If not, then the '06 lives to die another day and I'll spring for an additional timing belt kit for the '08.
Firing sequence is 1-6-3-5-2-4. These events are timed to sync with the numbers cast into the face of the front cam. The cam has 6 spokes, and the numbered index line on spoke center must be vertical at TDC for that cylinder. The crankshaft should be indexed vertically, with the woodruff key at 12:00 at either cyl 1 or cyl 5 TDC. The rear cam has only one index mark. This should be at 12:00 when the front cam is at cyl 1, and the crank is also at 12:00.

Google George Melnik video on Honda timing, it's very clear.

You probably have bent valves, but best of luck to you!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks for taking the time to reply and for the info--just what I needed. I am assuming that I will end up encountering bent valves--expecting the worst, hoping for the best. There are YouTube broken timing belt videos--one on a Civic and another on an '04 Pilot that have happy endings.... More chance of drowning in a bucket in your own yard than winning the lottery, yet someone does indeed win.... I'll let you know how it turns out.
 
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