ROC Rank: Senior
Join Date: Apr 2010
Model: *Former Ridgeline Owner
Model Year: 2006
Color: Steel Blue Metallic
Valve Adjustment at 156,000
I decided to share my observations (before/after) the valve adjustment has been done on my RL at 156k. I've noticed it's something that hasn't been discussed a whole lot on this forum, so I hope this helps those who may be thinking about doing this soon.
Ultimately, a rough idle is what led me to getting my valves adjusted. This rough idle could come and go, and be more pronounced during a cold start. It was more of a shudder than a vibration, and it was more noticeable in park/neutral than it was in gear. The truck seemed to run just fine otherwise. No CEL, fuel economy was acceptable at ~17.5MPG mostly city.
I recently had a remote start installed (Code Alarm CA5551 for those who are interested...!). So I'd start up my truck in the morning (getting down to 25-30 degrees at night here now). When walking out to my truck, I noticed a "tick tick tick" sound that would usually disappear by the time I would get to where I'm going.
Those are really the only two things that would have told me a valve adjustment was required, but after having them done, I'm glad I did.
It's too early to report on any changes in fuel economy, but I'll update this as soon as I notice anything. The rough idle is completely gone, and I can't even feel it idling anymore. The ticking noise is gone. Here's where it gets interesting: it seems as though the shift points have changed a bit. What I mean by this is that the transmission seems more "alive" like it wants to upshift as soon as it can. Usually I'd be going 35-40mph and it would be hanging out at around 2000RPM, but now it goes down to 1400-1500RPM (4th gear?). I suspect this will have a positive impact on fuel economy.
Overall, the engine feels less strained. It seems to coast further without having to step on the gas again. Shifting is a little smoother as well.
Now, I only paid ~$280 for this whole service. Another reputable mechanic quoted me $510 before tax on this. So if you really want to not be ripped off, take a look around before you schedule with your dealer. This mechanic used to work for a Honda dealer before opening his own shop, so I know that he knew what he's doing. At 156k on my RL, he said I took it in for this service at just the right time, and all of my valves were tight (interesting). I even got to look at the engine with the valve covers off before he started, and it was completely free of any oil sludge.
I'm not the most knowledgable about engines and their mechanics, but I have been closely observant of my truck before and after this service. I hope this is useful to someone
2006 Steel Blue Ridgeline RTS