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Hi Everyone,
I am a newbie in this forum, I just acquired a 2012 Honda Pilot with 80k miles, I am very happy with it except when "ECO" light comes on, the vehicles feels heavy and lack of power. I admit I did not do my homework before buying it, saw it at the dealer, liked it, and just jumped on the boat, Now I am finding out about this VCM and the problems that can cause. Truthfully I am disappointed.
Now I see several systems out on the market that would stop this VCM system from coming on. Has any of them resolve the temp gauge reading? Which one would you recommend?

Happy Driving:)
 

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Bertto,
Welcome. It seems that you do not know what the VCM is, so if you do know, I apologize. VCM stands for Variable Cylinder Management. When the computer sense you are cruising, it shuts off up to two cylinders to save gas and the ECO light comes on. So in essence the Pilot becomes a 4 cylinder. When it sense the need for more power, it re-engages the two cylinders making it a V6 again. For sensitive drivers like me, it feels like there are transmission issues as the process is not smooth. On the other end, the engine is also equipped with V-TEC to provide more power over 6,000 rpm.

I have a 2015 and I am about to hit 100,000 miles and haven't had any issues and do not have a VCM muzzler.
 

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S-VCM or VCM Tuner 2 will both solve the issue, get rid of the eco light, make the car drive like it should, and not let the engine overheat without any dash indication. I have the S-VCM and it’s been perfect. 5 minute install and forget about it. The VCM Tuner 2 I think may even have a few more features. You’ll be happy with either.
 

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Hi Everyone,
I am a newbie in this forum, I just acquired a 2012 Honda Pilot with 80k miles, I am very happy with it except when "ECO" light comes on, the vehicles feels heavy and lack of power. I admit I did not do my homework before buying it, saw it at the dealer, liked it, and just jumped on the boat, Now I am finding out about this VCM and the problems that can cause. Truthfully I am disappointed.
Now I see several systems out on the market that would stop this VCM system from coming on. Has any of them resolve the temp gauge reading? Which one would you recommend?

Happy Driving:)
While some claim they have no issues, everyone who has an active VCM eventually have issues. Sight unseen until the engine codes come. I'd get a VCM disabling device asap. Just regularly inspect the cooling system and make sure both cooling fans are both working properly. Enjoy running on 6 cylinders all of the time.
The Honda V6 engine is a great engine. Keep a clean Air Filter, MAF, and an air tight crack free intake hose, with the VCM deactivated, it will have many trouble free miles without emission codes.
You may want to check your transmission fluid to see if it's bright red and clean.
Has the timing belt, water pump been replaced? Honda recommends replacing the TB every 105k miles or 7 years, which ever comes first. Hopefully they didn't sell this vehicle to you needing this maintenance performed, since the vehicle is 8 years old.
 

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Bertto,
Welcome. It seems that you do not know what the VCM is, so if you do know, I apologize. VCM stands for Variable Cylinder Management. When the computer sense you are cruising, it shuts off up to two cylinders to save gas and the ECO light comes on. So in essence the Pilot becomes a 4 cylinder. When it sense the need for more power, it re-engages the two cylinders making it a V6 again. For sensitive drivers like me, it feels like there are transmission issues as the process is not smooth. On the other end, the engine is also equipped with V-TEC to provide more power over 6,000 rpm.

I have a 2015 and I am about to hit 100,000 miles and haven't had any issues and do not have a VCM muzzler.
Actually, we just recently discovered that the VTEC on the second gen Pilot is a blank lobe for VCM activation, there is no high lift cam like you'd normally see... so it has VTEC but not for performance, it's to shut of cylinders. Check out the J37 swap thread, I believe @volvofan posted some pics of the camshaft profile that is clearly lacking the traditional high lift lobe.

So you'll say, "but at 4000 RPM I feel VTEC engage! You're an idiot and you're wrong!". Apparently that is solely due to the intake manifold flap opening and allowing greater volume and longer flowpaths. So for thinking I was wrong you need to send me your RU parts...
 

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Actually, we just recently discovered that the VTEC on the second gen Pilot is a blank lobe for VCM activation, there is no high lift cam like you'd normally see... so it has VTEC but not for performance, it's to shut of cylinders.
5 months ago, I got chastised for calling a Vtec solenoid a VVT solenoid. On RockAuto, there called VVT solenoid. What's your assessment of this convo.
 

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5 months ago, I got chastised for calling a Vtec solenoid a VVT solenoid. On RockAuto, there called VVT solenoid. What's your assessment of this convo.
What is the Honda part called?

My thoughts are VVT is valve timing and VTEC is valve lift, so I would say calling it VVT is inaccurate in the purest form. Now my Traverse has variable camshaft timing since it's DOHC but that would be really challenging to implement on a SOHC motor since intake and exhaust valves are controlled from the same camshaft.
 

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What is the Honda part called?

My thoughts are VVT is valve timing and VTEC is valve lift, so I would say calling it VVT is inaccurate in the purest form. Now my Traverse has variable camshaft timing since it's DOHC but that would be really challenging to implement on a SOHC motor since intake and exhaust valves are controlled from the same camshaft.
Not to intended to confuse the conversation. For the 2008 Honda in my link, Honda sells
1. Switch, Oil Pressure (tec)
2. Solinoid Assembly, Honda

(Which is just the solinoid with its wire connector)
3. Valve Assembly, Spool
So we have 3 terms I'm trying to get straight here. VCM, Vtec, VVT. What applies and doesn't.
 

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Not to intended to confuse the conversation. For the 2008 Honda in my link, Honda sells
1. Switch, Oil Pressure (tec)
2. Solinoid Assembly, Honda

(Which is just the solinoid with its wire connector)
3. Valve Assembly, Spool
So we have 3 terms I'm trying to get straight here. VCM, Vtec, VVT. What applies and doesn't.
VVT: Variable valve timing... usually a hydraulic or electronic adjuster located inside of the timing gear for the camshafts. Can advance or retard the camshafts.

VTEC: Variable valve lift... again usually hydraulic or electronic but this time it engages a higher lift profile that is on the camshaft and is not engaged at lower RPMs.

VCM: Variable Cylinder Management... bastardization and ruination of VTEC. Replace the high lift cam lobe with "blank" lobes so the intake valves don't lift when VTEC/VCM is engaged.
 

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Here is a picture of the OEM camshaft for the front of the engine... notice how 1 of the cylinders has VTEC cam lobes but they are "blank" instead of higher lift?

139666



The below camshaft is for a K series I4, but you can see the high lift VTEC lobes.

139667
 

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Here is a picture of the OEM camshaft for the front of the engine... notice how 1 of the cylinders has VTEC cam lobes but they are "blank" instead of higher lift?

View attachment 139666


The below camshaft is for a K series I4, but you can see the high lift VTEC lobes.

View attachment 139667
I get that Honda changed what Vtec does. Are the parts I mentioned above named properly for their function. Again, I learned the terms I use from RockAuto. Obviously Honda's part names are vague and not exactly correct either, since There is no working parts using the term "VCM."
 

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I get that Honda changed what Vtec does. Are the parts I mentioned above named properly for their function. Again, I learned the terms I use from RockAuto. Obviously Honda's part names are vague and not exactly correct either, since There is no parts using the term "VCM."
I don't see how the name is correct... as far as I know nobody has a VVT application on a SOHC engine since you need to be able to control intake and exhaust independently.

My opinion, wrong name.
 

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I don't see how the name is correct... as far as I know nobody has a VVL application on a SOHC engine since you need to be able to control intake and exhaust independently.

My opinion, wrong name.
That's very very strange because not only does RockAuto uses the term VVT but also many auto parts stores.
Ty
 

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Its quite strange that Honda took VTEC, an acronym that has been synonymous with more horse power since its debut in the original NSX and stamped it on the engine cover and used it to reduce horse power. What's even more perplexing is the first gen Ridgeline 2005-2014 had a 3.5 V6 with VTEC (NO VCM) and is rated for 250 hp and 247 lb feet of torque. The Pilot has a 3.5 V6 with VTEC used for VCM and is rated for 250 hp and 253 lb feet of torque and the Pilot weighs 53 lbs more. How can they both be correct? Or are there other differences that I am not aware of?

I agree VVT is not the same thing. I believe VVTLi is however the same thing as VTEC but Cintocrunch would need to confirm.

If I remember correctly, Honda 4 cylinders that had VTEC on them were DOHC's and not SOHC's.

It makes me wonder if you could swap out the cam shafts from the Ridgeline and Im assuming you would have to swap out the computer and probably need different heads too. Might not have to get the turbo's after all....lol

 

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Its quite strange that Honda took VTEC, an acronym that has been synonymous with more horse power since its debut in the original NSX and stamped it on the engine cover and used it to reduce horse power. What's even more perplexing is the first gen Ridgeline 2005-2014 had a 3.5 V6 with VTEC (NO VCM) and is rated for 250 hp and 247 lb feet of torque. The Pilot has a 3.5 V6 with VTEC used for VCM and is rated for 250 hp and 253 lb feet of torque and the Pilot weighs 53 lbs more. How can they both be correct? Or are there other differences that I am not aware of?

I agree VVT is not the same thing. I believe VVTLi is however the same thing as VTEC but Cintocrunch would need to confirm.

If I remember correctly, Honda 4 cylinders that had VTEC on them were DOHC's and not SOHC's.

It makes me wonder if you could swap out the cam shafts from the Ridgeline and Im assuming you would have to swap out the computer and probably need different heads too. Might not have to get the turbo's after all....lol

I am still recovering from learning I do not have VTEC, and it is quite interesting the Ridgeline makes such similar horsepower but it is technically a different engine designation than the Pilot by engine code.

Many manufacturers call it different things, but most of them have either variable timing, variable lift and now variable duration (the Hyundai Smartstream engines, check out the Engineering Explained video on that). I don't recall seeing "VVTLi", but it very well could be how one manufacturer calls their technology.

You are incorrect! I know, because I had a 1996 Accord as my first car. All trims that used the 4 cylinder used the F22 engine. The LX and below got the non-VTEC engine (and a single exhaust tip) and the EX got the VTEC engine that made 10 more horsepower, dual tip exhaust (on one side), ABS among other goodies.

You'd have to do some serious studying of the engines side by side to see if hardware is even compatible. Then you get into electronics, that's a whole different ball of wax. I suggest you check out the J37 swap thread @volvofan is building, it's a really interesting read and is very thorough. If I were to go through that effort, I'd do the same and go for the J37 which has real VTEC on the intake AND exhaust lobes, full Honda performance experience!
 

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I am still recovering from learning I do not have VTEC, and it is quite interesting the Ridgeline makes such similar horsepower but it is technically a different engine designation than the Pilot by engine code.

Many manufacturers call it different things, but most of them have either variable timing, variable lift and now variable duration (the Hyundai Smartstream engines, check out the Engineering Explained video on that). I don't recall seeing "VVTLi", but it very well could be how one manufacturer calls their technology.

You are incorrect! I know, because I had a 1996 Accord as my first car. All trims that used the 4 cylinder used the F22 engine. The LX and below got the non-VTEC engine (and a single exhaust tip) and the EX got the VTEC engine that made 10 more horsepower, dual tip exhaust (on one side), ABS among other goodies.

You'd have to do some serious studying of the engines side by side to see if hardware is even compatible. Then you get into electronics, that's a whole different ball of wax. I suggest you check out the J37 swap thread @volvofan is building, it's a really interesting read and is very thorough. If I were to go through that effort, I'd do the same and go for the J37 which has real VTEC on the intake AND exhaust lobes, full Honda performance experience!
Your other post that brought to light that we do not have VTEC for horsepower may require me to get counseling...lol.. I am so disappointed in Honda for doing this.

VVTLi is Toyota's version of VTEC. Toyota back in the late 90's, early 2000's had VVT (Variable Value Timing), VVTi (Variable Valve Timing with Intelligence) and VVTLi (Variable Valve Timing with Lift Intelligence). I only know this because I had a 2001 Celica GTS which had VVTLi and the GT models only had VVTi.

If I were to do an engine swap, the MDX has always been focused on performance and not economy and has always had more horsepower than the Pilot. Especially the 3.7 liter with 300ph. But there 3.5 versions didn't get enough of an HP bump to warrant an engine swap.
 

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Your other post that brought to light that we do not have VTEC for horsepower may require me to get counseling...lol.. I am so disappointed in Honda for doing this.

VVTLi is Toyota's version of VTEC. Toyota back in the late 90's, early 2000's had VVT (Variable Value Timing), VVTi (Variable Valve Timing with Intelligence) and VVTLi (Variable Valve Timing with Lift Intelligence). I only know this because I had a 2001 Celica GTS which had VVTLi and the GT models only had VVTi.

If I were to do an engine swap, the MDX has always been focused on performance and not economy and has always had more horsepower than the Pilot. Especially the 3.7 liter with 300ph. But there 3.5 versions didn't get enough of an HP bump to warrant an engine swap.
Yea I'm still recovering from it too... may need some counseling.

The MDX 3.7, the ZDX 3.7 or the TL SH-AWD 3.7 are the engines I'd look for, with the TL being the highest on the list. I believe all three had "performance" VTEC on the intake AND the exhaust, which has typically been reserved only for the highest performance Hondas.

Now find me a way to swap a manual trans in too, I'd be in heaven!
 

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Yea I'm still recovering from it too... may need some counseling.

The MDX 3.7, the ZDX 3.7 or the TL SH-AWD 3.7 are the engines I'd look for, with the TL being the highest on the list. I believe all three had "performance" VTEC on the intake AND the exhaust, which has typically been reserved only for the highest performance Hondas.

Now find me a way to swap a manual trans in too, I'd be in heaven!
A Pilot with a manual......I'd be in heaven...
 

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A Pilot with a manual......I'd be in heaven...
Problem is it would be you, me and about a dozen other people for each model year... hence why models like the ACCORD, THE GOSHDARN HONDA ACCORD won't be available with a manual this year.

The dichotomy is real, it is the best time to be an enthusiast (best engines, suspension tuning, technology) and worst time to be an enthusiast (manuals are dying).
 
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VTEC (as we typically think of it) = a different cam PROFILE that engages at higher RPMs for performance gains. (Intake, exhaust, or both depends on the specific engine/year)

iVTEC = VTEC as described above PLUS the ability to continuously vary cam TIMING... again, for performance gains.

VCM = V6s shutting off two or three cylinders (depends on which engine, some shut off only three, some can do either). It uses a system that is mechanically similar to the one that implements VTEC as described above, but for fuel economy instead of performance. Just to confuse the shit out of everyone, Honda ALSO refers to this as iVTEC.
 
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