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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi, need your advice. I just got this 2014 RL and after reading about radiator problems I decided to have a look at the lines to make sure I dont run into this problem. I took a few picture best I could. I notice there is a lot of residue (likely oil?) on the left line (from driver view point). The right line look clean. This RL came from cold climate for 6 years.

Also note that I have not seen any fluid on the ground, had this RL for about 2 weeks.
Leak in line?

Do you recommend just fixing the line and prevent further leaks?
Do you recommend changing the whole radiator for this year model? it is usually the earlier year that has problem?


 

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2009 Ridgeline RTL (with nav) in Bali Blue Pearl
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All Gen1 Ridgelines (2006-2014) have the SMOD problem. Most will not give you an exterior indication before they fale for it is an inner-rust problem where the dissimilar metals have contact. Although imperfect due to varying rates of decline, I say you need to replace the radiator at the 10 year mark. So if you can figure out when your Denzo radiator was assembled, then you will know when you should worry about replacing it.
 

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I do think that all the years have a risk of SMOD given that the fundamental connection design hasn't changed. That said, the radiator on the 2009+ Ridglines are a different part number and I have yet to see a report on this forum of a SMOD failure on 2009+ Ridgeline.
I agree with McChizzle that the outer appearance is not the only indicator of fitting condition.
I also own a 2014 and will likely wait a few more years before swapping out the radiator. For now, I personally would just replace the section of hose and use either a new OEM spring clamp or an aftermarket fuel injection type hose clamp. Avoid the common worm drive type hose clamps.
Good luck.!
 

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Recently did my '09's radiator. After 11 years and 120,000 miles in NE PA weather the fittings showed minimal corrosion. I would suggest repairing the source of the oil seen on the fitting - clean the area well and monitor. As far as your radiator goes I would wait at least till the 10 year mark.
 

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2009 Ridgeline RTL (with nav) in Bali Blue Pearl
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I do think that all the years have a risk of SMOD given that the fundamental connection design hasn't changed. That said, the radiator on the 2009+ Ridglines are a different part number and I have yet to see a report on this forum of a SMOD failure on 2009+ Ridgeline.
I agree with McChizzle that the outer appearance is not the only indicator of fitting condition.
I also own a 2014 and will likely wait a few more years before swapping out the radiator. For now, I personally would just replace the section of hose and use either a new OEM spring clamp or an aftermarket fuel injection type hose clamp. Avoid the common worm drive type hose clamps.
Good luck.!
I have a 2009 and mine had a pinhole leak on the top-left of the radiator that made me replace it in 2019. My mechanic inspected the lower fitting at my request and he said they were quite corroded around the threads and could have failed at any time. I wish he or I took pictures but... hindsight is 20/20.
 

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2008 Ridgeline RTS in Billet Silver Metallic
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I don't know if there's any magic about 10 years. But as a general ROT, I suggest replacing the radiator and coolant when you do the TB/WP/spark plugs/valve adjustment major service. I did mine at 120k miles and while it had some corrosion, the connections were still tight and would have lasted for a good while without issue. But I prefer to be proactive rather than reactive when it comes to maintenance issues, and I found that service interval to be a convenient point to replace the radiator with the new, preferred style.

404241
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you all. I opened up the bottom this morning to inspect the source of the leak. Seems like it came from the upper rubber hose leading into that line. I cleaned it and refitted to be snugged against the stopper hump (it was about 2cm out). Will continue to inspect it monthly. I also cleaned the area around the radiator hose and re took some picture, it does seem pretty clean but the radiator problem seem to be an internal degradation. I will probably look to replace the radiator in the next year or so.

 

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All Gen1 Ridgelines (2006-2014) have the SMOD problem. Most will not give you an exterior indication before they fale for it is an inner-rust problem where the dissimilar metals have contact. Although imperfect due to varying rates of decline, I say you need to replace the radiator at the 10 year mark. So if you can figure out when your Denzo radiator was assembled, then you will know when you should worry about replacing it.
You should be worried.... raduator replacements are simple. Pop in, pop out. While you're changing it , change the fan motors as well....easy as pie. You won't regret it. Remember, tge fresher the coolant, the longer your A/C& engine runs without expensive repair
New OEM radiator for my 2006 was $86.00. Add new coolant $ 60.00, add fans$130.00. And your vehicle will run like new, cheaper gas mileage and a/c will freeze you out
 

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2009 Ridgeline RTL (with nav) in Bali Blue Pearl
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OEM radiator for $86? Aftermarket sure but OEM????
Honda does not make their own radiators, they used Denzos, so maybe that is why the price is not supper jacked up, maybe...
 

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No, you can't buy an OEM radiator for $86 from a typical online part's supplier. It's about $315 not including shipping from Bernardi.
OEM Denso and aftermarket Denso are not the same. OEM is made in Japan. Aftermarket is made wherever labor is cheap.
Here's the OEM part from Bernadi: RADIATOR
 

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Aftermarket Denso #2213254 from Rock Auto cost me $121 earlier this year. Exact fit with no problems so far.
 

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Obviously the OEM radiators are different than aftermarket, even from the same manufacturer. Isn't this the reason many are opting for aftermarket to hopefully avoid future SMOD issues by having a different design??

Spend more than twice the $$$ for an OEM replacement and (in the OP's case) get another 6 or more years out of it and then worry again about possible failure. I had zero issues after 11 years and 123,000 miles with my cooling system and it was a tough decision to change the rad. out but the thought of impending failure made me give in.

As with all aftermarket parts I realize I run the risk of the part not performing/lasting like the original. So far I notice no difference but the time since the install is only measured in months.

I normally believe in using OEM parts, however in this case I didn't want to replace a potentially poorly designed part with the same. I do plan on keeping the truck for a long time. It's now a contest to see what will last longer - me or the truck!
 

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OEM vs aftermarket radiator.......do they have the same space between the vertical tubes/rows, same number of vertical tubes/rows, same number of fins per inch???? In other words, are the cores the same.
 

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OEM vs aftermarket radiator.......do they have the same space between the vertical tubes/rows, same number of vertical tubes/rows, same number of fins per inch???? In other words, are the cores the same.
There have been comparisons between OEM and other designs here on this forum
 

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Plenty of good posts on this subject.
 

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OEM vs aftermarket radiator.......do they have the same space between the vertical tubes/rows, same number of vertical tubes/rows, same number of fins per inch???? In other words, are the cores the same.
Nope, they're not the same. Not really all that close, in my view. The internal OTW heat exchangers for the ATF are quite different, too. The aftermarkets that have been compared here (that I've seen) indicate less heat rejection capacity in the aftermarket units for both the internal OTW exchangers and the main coolant cores.
 
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