Honda Pilot - Honda Pilot Forums banner
1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
82 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've heard so many fans rave about the VCM Muzzler on this site, but I've held steady wondering whether it really is worth modifying a Honda system, which is usually pretty good.

Some months ago my vehicle went into limp mode throwing code P2652, by the time I towed it to the shop, it went away. I came back on a couple more times, transiently again. A few days ago it came back on and it stayed. The dealership diagnosed it and they are telling me I have to replace part 37250-5A2-A01, which -- surprise, surprise -- is not covered by the powertrain warranty (it is classified as an emissions piece, which has a shorter warranty period). My Pilot is about 1,400 miles short of 60k...

I'll be out about $600 in diagnostics fees and parts/service cost, and now I am wondering if this is something that is used/overused due to the VCM system. Can any of you VCM Muzzler fans advise whether investing in it would help prevent such issues in the future?

Thanks in advance,
Gabor
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,139 Posts
I've heard so many fans rave about the VCM Muzzler on this site, but I've held steady wondering whether it really is worth modifying a Honda system, which is usually pretty good.

Some months ago my vehicle went into limp mode throwing code P2652, by the time I towed it to the shop, it went away. I came back on a couple more times, transiently again. A few days ago it came back on and it stayed. The dealership diagnosed it and they are telling me I have to replace part 37250-5A2-A01, which -- surprise, surprise -- is not covered by the powertrain warranty (it is classified as an emissions piece, which has a shorter warranty period). My Pilot is about 1,400 miles short of 60k...

I'll be out about $600 in diagnostics fees and parts/service cost, and now I am wondering if this is something that is used/overused due to the VCM system. Can any of you VCM Muzzler fans advise whether investing in it would help prevent such issues in the future?

Thanks in advance,
Gabor
If that's the correct part number, it's just an oil pressure switch, about $62 on Amazon that takes a $20 OBD reader to check and 5 mins to replace. The diagnostic flat rate is one hour at $100/hour. It just tells the ECU if there is good enough oil pressure to drive the rocker arm pins into position to enable VCM. VCM itself doesn't put any stress on the oil switch. VCMuzzler may not make the oil switch last longer, but it will make your engine and transmission last longer. Did they at least change or even check the oil?
 

·
Registered
2008 Honda Pilot EX-L 2013 Honda Pilot EX-L
Joined
·
1,569 Posts
Just a datapoint, a 2016 Pilot has 300k miles with VCM. The motor is fine. I don't think VCM is the engine killer everyone makes it out to be.

Does it cause some issues? Yes
Is it somewhat poorly implemented? Probably
Will it kill every engine that has it? No

I do not know what the magic formula is when it comes to preventing engine damage from VCM (other than muzzling it), but it confuses me that its horrible for some people and not for others.
 

·
Registered
2020 Honda Pilot EX-L AWD, 2017 Honda CR-V EX-L AWD
Joined
·
50 Posts
Just a datapoint, a 2016 Pilot has 300k miles with VCM. The motor is fine. I don't think VCM is the engine killer everyone makes it out to be.

Does it cause some issues? Yes
Is it somewhat poorly implemented? Probably
Will it kill every engine that has it? No

I do not know what the magic formula is when it comes to preventing engine damage from VCM (other than muzzling it), but it confuses me that its horrible for some people and not for others.
Maybe it’s driving style. What is your average mpg?

I am the type of driver who prefers to let inertia slow down the car rather than stabbing the brakes so I look far ahead of me when I drive. My wife is the opposite. She accelerates hard towards red lights and then stamps on the brakes. Until I get my SVCM module (ordered last night) I’m going to keep encouraging her driving style and have adopted it myself


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,139 Posts
Just a datapoint, a 2016 Pilot has 300k miles with VCM. The motor is fine. I don't think VCM is the engine killer everyone makes it out to be.

Does it cause some issues? Yes
Is it somewhat poorly implemented? Probably
Will it kill every engine that has it? No

I do not know what the magic formula is when it comes to preventing engine damage from VCM (other than muzzling it), but it confuses me that its horrible for some people and not for others.
It is possible VCM never, or rarely, engages on your engine based on the way you drive ... or due to a malfunctioning sensor, solenoid, valve, etc. At 300k miles I imagine you've adjusted the valves and changed the plugs. How did the back bank look compared to the driver's end of the font bank and #1 through #4 plugs look compared to #5 & #6?
 

·
Registered
2008 Honda Pilot EX-L 2013 Honda Pilot EX-L
Joined
·
1,569 Posts
It is possible VCM never, or rarely, engages on your engine based on the way you drive ... or due to a malfunctioning sensor, solenoid, valve, etc. At 300k miles I imagine you've adjusted the valves and changed the plugs. How did the back bank look compared to the driver's end of the font bank and #1 through #4 plugs look compared to #5 & #6?
No I'm referring to a post made a few days ago by a dealer mechanic who was doing the 3rd 100k service.

I disabled VCM on both of my Pilots. One car I can't really tell the difference and one of them I can.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
269 Posts
The dealership diagnosed it and they are telling me I have to replace part 37250-5A2-A01, which -- surprise, surprise -- is not covered by the powertrain warranty (it is classified as an emissions piece, which has a shorter warranty period).
You are correct in that the federal emission warranty only covers that part for 3/36 or in certain states, 3/50. Either way, you are outside of that with your mileage.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,139 Posts
No I'm referring to a post made a few days ago by a dealer mechanic who was doing the 3rd 100k service.

I disabled VCM on both of my Pilots. One car I can't really tell the difference and one of them I can.
You'll have to forgive me ... sometimes my scroll wheel works faster than my eyes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
82 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
If that's the correct part number, it's just an oil pressure switch, about $62 on Amazon that takes a $20 OBD reader to check and 5 mins to replace. The diagnostic flat rate is one hour at $100/hour. It just tells the ECU if there is good enough oil pressure to drive the rocker arm pins into position to enable VCM. VCM itself doesn't put any stress on the oil switch. VCMuzzler may not make the oil switch last longer, but it will make your engine and transmission last longer. Did they at least change or even check the oil?
Yes, that's the first thing they had checked and they even performed an oil change as part of the troubleshooting sequence, the issue persisted. There was a downstream effect from this, it went from the car first warning about the rocker arm, then about the transmission, then the blind spot informations system (wtf?). I don't take my Pilot to the dealership for service as of about a year, and they were unable to diagnose this, because at the time was intermittent. The Honda dealership charges $160 for diagnostics, I think in this case they might have actually earned their keep on it. I decided to eat the dealerhsip cost this time, even for the fix, because we're going out of town this weekend, plus I'd have to have it towed again (and I'm out of free tows). My initial "plan" was to have the dealership fix this under powertrain warranty, but it's under emissions for some reason, and I verified this with Honda of America. Best laid plans and all...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
82 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Maybe it’s driving style. What is your average mpg?

I am the type of driver who prefers to let inertia slow down the car rather than stabbing the brakes so I look far ahead of me when I drive. My wife is the opposite. She accelerates hard towards red lights and then stamps on the brakes. Until I get my SVCM module (ordered last night) I’m going to keep encouraging her driving style and have adopted it myself


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
It's about 21 mpg combined (AWD), with mostly Covid city driving lately. I like to drive in a spirited fashion around the hills and stuff, and I do ~80 on the freeway, but I don't accelerate from one stop sign just so I can slam the brake 10s later.

I would think that hard driving would actually result in reduced usage of VCM, you're not giving the computer patterns which fit the 3 cylinder mode.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
82 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
You are correct in that the federal emission warranty only covers that part for 3/36 or in certain states, 3/50. Either way, you are outside of that with your mileage.
Yes, that's fine, but why is an oil pressure switch which disables the car when on the fritz not part of powertrain? I wouldn't be wondering if it was the CAT or the exhaust pipe. I still don't have good understanding what these switches do? Enable VTEC? Is VTEC considered an emissions system (you could call a the electric motor in a hybrid an emissions system by that token)?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,325 Posts
I only know of a former Piloteer who had just over 200k with an active VCM. It took 2 transmissions to get there before the original engine poofed.
My advice is to deactivate the VCM.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,139 Posts
Yes, that's the first thing they had checked and they even performed an oil change as part of the troubleshooting sequence, the issue persisted. There was a downstream effect from this, it went from the car first warning about the rocker arm, then about the transmission, then the blind spot informations system (wtf?). I don't take my Pilot to the dealership for service as of about a year, and they were unable to diagnose this, because at the time was intermittent. The Honda dealership charges $160 for diagnostics, I think in this case they might have actually earned their keep on it. I decided to eat the dealerhsip cost this time, even for the fix, because we're going out of town this weekend, plus I'd have to have it towed again (and I'm out of free tows). My initial "plan" was to have the dealership fix this under powertrain warranty, but it's under emissions for some reason, and I verified this with Honda of America. Best laid plans and all...
I think it's a stretch to call the oil sensor switch an emissions component. Oh well, at least you got it done for your trip. Hope your trip is fun and uneventful car-wise.
 

·
Registered
2008 Piot SE FWD, 2015 Pilot LX 4WD. 2005 GSX-R1000
Joined
·
2,174 Posts
I only know of a former Piloteer who had just over 200k with an active VCM. It took 2 transmissions to get there before the original engine poofed.
My advice is to deactivate the VCM.
While you know I've now gone SVCM on our 08 SE, it went 187K miles WITH the VCM.
OEM tranny, TC, etc. OEM motor basically too. Based on reasons you know, still I'm glad it's disabled.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Nail Grease

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,325 Posts
While you know I've now gone SVCM on our 08 SE, it went 187K miles WITH the VCM.
OEM tranny, TC, etc. OEM motor basically too. Based on reasons you know, still I'm glad it's disabled.
Well yes, but these 3rd gens do not seem to be as forgiving running on Bank 1 at 75mph. Just the most ridiculous idea ever, having a V6 run on 3 cylinders. 😖
 
  • Like
Reactions: The Todd

·
Registered
2020 Honda Pilot EX-L AWD, 2017 Honda CR-V EX-L AWD
Joined
·
50 Posts
It's about 21 mpg combined (AWD), with mostly Covid city driving lately. I like to drive in a spirited fashion around the hills and stuff, and I do ~80 on the freeway, but I don't accelerate from one stop sign just so I can slam the brake 10s later.

I would think that hard driving would actually result in reduced usage of VCM, you're not giving the computer patterns which fit the 3 cylinder mode.
Ours (AWD) is 19.5 ish , but your figure does tally with my reason for asking. This does suggest you’re driving hard enough to prevent VCM from triggering too often.

I agree, hard driving should result in reduced usage of VCM, hence my copying my wife’s style until my SVCM unit arrives


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
269 Posts
Yes, that's fine, but why is an oil pressure switch which disables the car when on the fritz not part of powertrain?
Good question. I don't know the answer. In any event, it's always to your advantage to have a part classified as "emissions." In this case, it didn't help you. Even if this part was classified as a "powertrain" part, you'd still be in the same situation though - right?

I still don't have good understanding what these switches do? Enable VTEC? Is VTEC considered an emissions system (you could call a the electric motor in a hybrid an emissions system by that token)?
I can't directly answer what the purpose of the "Rocker Arm Control Oil Pressure Switch Sensor" does. But I can offer some official info about VVT, VCM, VTEC. The Honda 3.5L V6 is a VVT engine (variable valve timing). Which is important to the operation of VTEC, VCM, etc. Oil pressure is one of the factors in the equation. You can read more about it here in the "VCM Operation" section.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
82 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Good question. I don't know the answer. In any event, it's always to your advantage to have a part classified as "emissions." In this case, it didn't help you. Even if this part was classified as a "powertrain" part, you'd still be in the same situation though - right?



I can't directly answer what the purpose of the "Rocker Arm Control Oil Pressure Switch Sensor" does. But I can offer some official info about VVT, VCM, VTEC. The Honda 3.5L V6 is a VVT engine (variable valve timing). Which is important to the operation of VTEC, VCM, etc. Oil pressure is one of the factors in the equation. You can read more about it here in the "VCM Operation" section.

My Pilot has 58,700 miles. If the part was classified as a powertrain component, Honda would have covered the repairs.

Thanks for the info on VTEC, I do have a pretty good understanding of it, and love it for the performance it offers (love the sound too). I will learn to love it as an emissions part too!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top