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Hi everyone! Not sure where this question belongs (my first post) so this seems to be a reasonable guess.

I just purchased a used 2008 RL RTX model yesterday, with 112k miles. The mechanic who checked it out for me had nothing but good things to say about its condition. But he could not confirm that the timing belt has been replaced as expected by this time. So I have a decision to make....

But here's my question. Can I reasonably assume that, if the MM does not give me any codes, then the timing belt must have been replaced in the past and is not currently due?

Actually I have a more basic question. When I turn on the ignition, I see the odometer and trip mileage. Pressing the Select button a couple of times brings up the oil status (50%). Am I understanding correctly, that this is where I would see MM codes if something is due for maintenance?

I am happy to find this forum, and looking forward to participating in the community of RL owners!

Thanks for any input.
Alan
 

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Hi Alan. I'm assuming your truck did not come with an owner's manual. You might try to find one, it covers all this Maintenance Minder stuff.

Yes the place where you are seeing 50% is where the maintenance codes will appear, however, the codes will not say "timing belt", they will be numbers and or letters which you look up in your manual...one of those is for timing belt. Most of us use the number 105000 miles as the time to change the TB. But we recently had someone post they went well past 200K miles prior to changing it. So it is not an emergency right now if it was not done by the prior owner. If other things on the truck looked poorly maintained, I would be a little more worried

A Honda dealer can look up your VIN to see if any other dealer logged the TB service for your truck. Otherwise you have a guessing game. On a truck of this age and miles, I might be tempted to stay with "if aint broke don't fix it". Your other option is to pay somebody to inspect the TB. There is also a water pump and a tensioner that most people change when the front of the motor is open. If it has the old parts, it probably has the old TB.

Otherwise the MM tells you when to do oil changes, change spark plugs, and rotate tires, that kind of stuff, if you have the codes available. We can help you interpret the codes when they appear, but it would be better to have your own manual.
 

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Hi cccbock,

Thanks for your response. I do have the manual and have read what it says about the MM. From the description just wasn't clear to me where the codes would appear. I was expecting a SERVICE screen to come up with codes showing what is due, but no SERVICE screen comes up as I press Select repeatedly. So I wasn't sure if I was looking in the right place.

So if I understand you right... If the timing belt was due for replacement, there would be a SERVICE screen in the sequence showing code 4. Correct?

The manual explains how to reset the oil change alert, but I don't see anything about resetting the other codes. So I am guessing that only the dealer can reset those. That leads me to believe that the timing belt has indeed been replaced at some point in the past, as well as the other items implicated by a code 4. Am I understanding that right?

I have a carfax report that lists the dealer maintenance done regularly since this vehicle was new. None of the entries mentions the timing belt. I'm thinking about calling those dealers to see if they have any record of replacing the timing belt on this vehicle.
 

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Even with the Maintenance Minder all anyone has to do reset it without doing that maintenance. Example I had service last week at Honda Dealer Service.
The service manager called me on the phone and asked did I want to have the Transmission Fluid Replaced. The Maintenance Minder system was showing the code for it. But we many times go over by as much as 2K before getting service so it's saying past due. The tire shop rotates the tires so dealer never does it. Service manager pulled up service history on computer and said I had Trans Service done at some mileage interval was not time to get done again.
But unless you can find a service history from a dealer or records from some other source it's a guessing game.
 

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Hi cccbock,

Thanks for your response. I do have the manual and have read what it says about the MM. From the description just wasn't clear to me where the codes would appear. I was expecting a SERVICE screen to come up with codes showing what is due, but no SERVICE screen comes up as I press Select repeatedly. So I wasn't sure if I was looking in the right place.

So if I understand you right... If the timing belt was due for replacement, there would be a SERVICE screen in the sequence showing code 4. Correct?

The manual explains how to reset the oil change alert, but I don't see anything about resetting the other codes. So I am guessing that only the dealer can reset those. That leads me to believe that the timing belt has indeed been replaced at some point in the past, as well as the other items implicated by a code 4. Am I understanding that right?

I have a carfax report that lists the dealer maintenance done regularly since this vehicle was new. None of the entries mentions the timing belt. I'm thinking about calling those dealers to see if they have any record of replacing the timing belt on this vehicle.
Unless the system is not functioning, you will only get service notifications when the MM thinks it is time for a particular service interval which are mileage based. Otherwise your screen will only show your total mileage, trip miles, outdoor temp, etc. It is likely the TB code (if it is 4, I dont know without looking at my manual) did in fact fire back around 105k miles, and the owner or dealer reset it. We don't know if the service was actually done, the MM relies on the human input to reset it.
 

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Unless the system is not functioning, you will only get service notifications when the MM thinks it is time for a particular service interval which are mileage based. Otherwise your screen will only show your total mileage, trip miles, outdoor temp, etc. It is likely the TB code (if it is 4, I dont know without looking at my manual) did in fact fire back around 105k miles, and the owner or dealer reset it. We don't know if the service was actually done, the MM relies on the human input to reset it.
#4 is replace spark plugs & check adjust valves also. Don't forget water pump should be replaced if Timing Belt was done.
 

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If you don't have a receipt or dealer record showing that the timing belt work has been done, do not assume it has.

A mechanic can look at the crankshaft bolt and other fasteners to see if it has tool marks on it, but that won't tell you if the belt was replaced (as opposed to something like the water pump).

If you can't confirm it was done, I would go back to the seller and see if you can get them to pay for half the cost.

Chip H.
 

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The MM is a calculation.
When I change my oil, the MM doesn't "know" I've put in fresh oil.
Same for other stuff.
 

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And the codes often come up in combos like A136, which would be Engine Oil, Transmission, VTM-4(rear diff) & Transfer Case. If you only changed the Engine oil & hit the reset, which is a sequence(I can't remember, but can be found on the forum). The MM would think you did all of them.
 

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Alan, many owners trade their vehicle in specifically to avoid this expense. Just last week we traded in our Pilot rather than do this service a second time. We let the salesman know it would soon be due, but you can bet he won't willingly pass that info along to the next owner.


"Oil changes every 3,000 with full synthetic for my Ridgeline."
OCD, will you be doing this timing belt/water pump service every 40-50,000 miles?
<Grin>
 

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The MM codes only show up when the oil life indicator hits 15%. It will say "Maint Due Soon" and will give you the "A12", "B136", etc. codes on that screen. At 50% oil life remaining, you still have at least 2500-3000 miles (depending on your driving style) before you reach 15%. Is there any other indication of any of the other fluids ever being changed? Tranny, rear diff (VTM-4), transfer case gear lube and brake fluid changes are pretty important on these trucks. They're extremely simple to do with just hand tools and a few hours of your time.
 

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"Oil changes every 3,000 with full synthetic for my Ridgeline."
OCD, will you be doing this timing belt/water pump service every 40-50,000 miles?
<Grin>
Nope; that will be at the recommended ~105,000 miles.
Routine maintenance is going to be performed on mileage based intervals; I recently did the oil, VTM4 and transmission at 15,000 miles.
I've used mileage based intervals for maintenance for 30 years and my Ridgeline will not be an exception; the MM is a minor nuisance at best.
 

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Nope; that will be at the recommended ~105,000 miles.
Routine maintenance is going to be performed on mileage based intervals; I recently did the oil, VTM4 and transmission at 15,000 miles.
I've used mileage based intervals for maintenance for 30 years and my Ridgeline will not be an exception; the MM is a minor nuisance at best.
It certainly won't hurt anything (3K oil changes). You'll be sure to have the cleanest block on the block! :act024:
 
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