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I bought a nice 2008 rtx about a month ago (112k miles). I immediately took it to the honda dealer for the timing belt, tensioner, serpentine belt, and water pump replacement. Now a month later they tell me I need to have the valves inspected / adjusted at a price around $800. Is that really necessary? I have not heard anything that sounded like noisy valves...

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I bought a nice 2008 rtx about a month ago (112k miles). I immediately took it to the honda dealer for the timing belt, tensioner, serpentine belt, and water pump replacement. Now a month later they tell me I need to have the valves inspected / adjusted at a price around $800. Is that really necessary? I have not heard anything that sounded like noisy valves...

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Smart move on the timing belt and related service.

Last month I had the same service and concern. At that time, the trusted 25 year Honda certified mechanic at my independent shop of choice informed me "only if the valve train makes noise" do they *need* adjustment, so he advised against the expenditure.

Having said that, there's a ton of experience to the contrary. The 3.5 motor is similar to the 350 GM in a few regards. It's been in service for quite a while, it's reliable and trusty with plentiful parts and support almost everywhere you go. From what I understand, checking valve clearance finds zero gap as one of the more common issues - and when caught can prevent upper cylinder burn damage - making regular checks a good preventative measure.

Not to take anything away from the ROC, here's a one mans commentary on the topic:

http://honda-tech.com/odyssey-|-ridgeline-|-mdx-|-pilot-|-rdx-|-hr-v-80/check-your-valve-clearances-50k-miles-less-not-105k-honda-recommends-2726472/
 

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$800 valve check every 30,000 miles. Just in case ti is needed? Ouch!

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The point of the reply was this:

An experienced mechanic advises against the expense, even though I was a paying customer in his shop following scheduled preventative maintenance. I'm following his advise.

I'm also looking around at the experience of others.

Being informed and making choices is part of vehicle ownership. Based on the available information, the sand under my feet feels about right.

Having said that, I do make a point of listening to the mechanical music the RL produces each day. She seems to be right on key so, no worries. So far.
 

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> have not heard anything that sounded like noisy valves...

the exhaust valves will not make more noise as the gap gets smaller

And in my opinion, tight valves are more of a threat than noisy loose valves. Problem is, you won't get a warning when valves are getting tight, so a "periodic" check is the only insurance, even though it's likely you don't have a problem.
In my world of wildly unsubstantiated estimation, I'd say checking them at 150K miles & every 50K after that should be more than sufficient.

It would be interesting to know what the cost of a valve job would be if a person decided to go "all in" with the risk of not worrying about it until there was a problem. At $800 a pop, you'd probably pay for that valve job eventually!
If you DIY, I would certainly do the 100k or 150K periodic check.... it costs virtually nothing but time & effort (maybe a few incidentals), and the potential trouble avoidance is a comforting payoff.
 

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I had mine done while they were in doing the timing belt job along with plugs water pump other things I wanted done while they were in there and it cost me about an extra honey if that. Motor all good to go another 100,000 :act064:radiator. still waiting for that new RL before I go there but keep takin pics and it don't look bad. Will replace in time if I keep it.
I wouldnt know if it would need an adjustment or not its just one of those things that come up and you do it or you don't. If one does it its best to do it when all those other big maint. things come up cause its cheaper and the motor is already opened up. $800 bucks for the valves alone wow glad I threw it all together. With all I had done it was $1058.00 at a s Honda stealer, and I picked it up the same night. Biggest $s I spent since I got it over ten years ago.
 

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I had mine done while they were in doing the timing belt job along with plugs water pump other things I wanted done while they were in there and it cost me about an extra honey if that. Motor all good to go another 100,000 :act064:radiator. still waiting for that new RL before I go there but keep takin pics and it don't look bad. Will replace in time if I keep it.
I wouldnt know if it would need an adjustment or not its just one of those things that come up and you do it or you don't. If one does it its best to do it when all those other big maint. things come up cause its cheaper and the motor is already opened up. $800 bucks for the valves alone wow glad I threw it all together. With all I had done it was $1058.00 at a s Honda stealer, and I picked it up the same night. Biggest $s I spent since I got it over ten years ago.
Now THAT's the way to do it. Makes it much more worth the money spent.
 

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Yep. Should have completed the thought about "tight" valve lash. Without inspection the only way one would find out is when blue smoke dead dinosaurs start belching out the tail pipe.

The advise given by the mechanic at my shop of choice ignores the tendency for the 3.5 to tighten over time but my question was specific; of the scheduled valve clearance checks on Honds intervals, what % are found out of spec? He "guessed" 20%, low enough for me to pass @ 105k miles.
 

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Ok, I skipped the valve adjustment and spoke with the mechanic afterward. He said my RL is running smoothly and doesn't need the adjustment. He said exhaust valve problems would result in symptoms like clicking noises, odor in the exhaust, consuming oil, and sluggishness starting from a red light. He said he has worked on innumerable RL's and that he's never seen one in better mechanical condition than mine :)

My bill for brake pads / fluid, rear differential service, tire rotation, oil & filter came to nearly $500. That's on top of the $1500 or so I spent getting the timing belt, tensioner, serpentine belt, water pump done a few weeks ago. And now my post-maintenance email now says I need a $677 hose kit replacement. Does it ever end?

Seems like that would have been a lot easier and cheaper to do during the timing belt job. I need to find a less expensive place to get these things done.
 

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Ok, I skipped the valve adjustment and spoke with the mechanic afterward. He said my RL is running smoothly and doesn't need the adjustment. He said exhaust valve problems would result in symptoms like clicking noises, odor in the exhaust, consuming oil, and sluggishness starting from a red light. He said he has worked on innumerable RL's and that he's never seen one in better mechanical condition than mine :)

My bill for brake pads / fluid, rear differential service, tire rotation, oil & filter came to nearly $500. That's on top of the $1500 or so I spent getting the timing belt, tensioner, serpentine belt, water pump done a few weeks ago. And now my post-maintenance email now says I need a $677 hose kit replacement. Does it ever end?

Seems like that would have been a lot easier and cheaper to do during the timing belt job. I need to find a less expensive place to get these things done.
You didn't say where you're at ALAN, but unless you're in Maui or Fairbanks or some such cash vacuum, I'd say you're getting hit pretty hard with those prices, even at a dealer. You could probably get those services for 40% less if you shopped around most locales...... but again not knowing where you are???
Hope you fare better in the future.

BTW.... "hose kit replacement"???? I considered updating the tubes/hoses on my '06 a good while back, but my general research told me that rubber is better than it was years ago and should last a good long time. I don't see any signs of degradation, so I'm good as is..... I would probably change them out if I was replacing the radiator, just for grins; but if they all look/feel solid, I'm in no hurry to throw away perfectly good parts.
Caveat: I'm in mild SoCal climate, if that makes any difference.
 

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Ok, I skipped the valve adjustment and spoke with the mechanic afterward. He said my RL is running smoothly and doesn't need the adjustment. He said exhaust valve problems would result in symptoms like clicking noises, odor in the exhaust, consuming oil, and sluggishness starting from a red light. He said he has worked on innumerable RL's and that he's never seen one in better mechanical condition than mine :)

My bill for brake pads / fluid, rear differential service, tire rotation, oil & filter came to nearly $500. That's on top of the $1500 or so I spent getting the timing belt, tensioner, serpentine belt, water pump done a few weeks ago. And now my post-maintenance email now says I need a $677 hose kit replacement. Does it ever end?

Seems like that would have been a lot easier and cheaper to do during the timing belt job. I need to find a less expensive place to get these things done.
Prices are very high. GOOD prices for timing belt service (complete including OEM waterpump, tensioners etc) range form $600ish (Anderson Honda in MD) to around $850.

There is no way to really know your exhaust valve clearances without checking. Reports in this forum of tight exhaust valves (making no noise) are common. Hose Kit????? What hoses need to be replaced?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
The mechanic said everything looked great. It's the sales rep and the automatic email that said I need the extra work. So I take it with a grain of salt. BTW I am in metro Atlanta.

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$800 for a valve adjustment is very high. The book rate for this job is 3.2 hours (1.9 if warranty). There are virtually zero parts needed for this job -- it's just labor. 3.2 hours x even $120 labor for an expensive dealer is $384. You should be well under $500 with shop fees, taxes, etc. I'd ask for an explanation of how they get the $800 estimate.
 

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$800 for a valve adjustment is very high. The book rate for this job is 3.2 hours (1.9 if warranty). There are virtually zero parts needed for this job -- it's just labor. 3.2 hours x even $120 labor for an expensive dealer is $384. You should be well under $500 with shop fees, taxes, etc. I'd ask for an explanation of how they get the $800 estimate.
Exactly what I was going to say. My RL has 170,000 miles on it and I plan to have the valves adjusted sometime in the next couple of months. I called around and my dealership said it would be right around $400. Another shop said it would be around $450 and that included new plugs. When I told them I just replaced the plugs, they said it would be more like $375 without the plugs.

So, yeah, call around and you should be able to find someplace that will do your valve adjustment for you for about 1/2 of what your dealership is quoting you.
 

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I currently have 117,000 on my '06 RL. I was thinking it was time to have the valves checked so I contacted the dealer first. The service department told me I had no reason to adjust them because "there is no noise". I told them that a lack of noise bothered me because I have had a wrench in my hand for longer than some of them had been alive. (I was short of time or I would do it myself). They advised me they would like to do a diagnostic on the engine before committing to a valve adjustment so I told them to forget it.

I then called a local garage with experienced, good mechanics. They quoted me an astounding $658.00!! Obviously, they had made it worth my time.

After reading (and re-reading) all the posts regarding engine valve adjustment I went the DIY route. It was easier than I expected and took about 3 1/2 hours because I wanted to be careful and get it right the first time. I found 8 "tight" exhaust valves and 6 "loose" intake valves. It now runs great and has that reassuring valve noise it was missing.

Long story short: If you have the tools and time don't discount the idea of doing it yourself. Good luck!
 

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I currently have 117,000 on my '06 RL. I was thinking it was time to have the valves checked so I contacted the dealer first. The service department told me I had no reason to adjust them because "there is no noise". I told them that a lack of noise bothered me because I have had a wrench in my hand for longer than some of them had been alive. (I was short of time or I would do it myself). They advised me they would like to do a diagnostic on the engine before committing to a valve adjustment so I told them to forget it.

I then called a local garage with experienced, good mechanics. They quoted me an astounding $658.00!! Obviously, they had made it worth my time.

After reading (and re-reading) all the posts regarding engine valve adjustment I went the DIY route. It was easier than I expected and took about 3 1/2 hours because I wanted to be careful and get it right the first time. I found 8 "tight" exhaust valves and 6 "loose" intake valves. It now runs great and has that reassuring valve noise it was missing.

Long story short: If you have the tools and time don't discount the idea of doing it yourself. Good luck!
Hey, ORC, I am only a few hours away from you...I could drive down and you could do the job on my RL...how much would you charge to do the job for me...? :act024:
 

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I would be more than happy to give you a hand. Unfortunately, we are leaving tomorrow for an extended summer vacation!!

Unless you just don't want to mess with it, this is not brain surgery. The most critical part is properly adjusting the valves themselves and the exhaust valves on cylinders 1,2, and 3 have very little room to work around.

I would be more than happy to walk you through this / help you with it when we get back in town (no charge). I can send you a private message when we're back and I will get your number so we can talk.
 

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I'm going to adjust my RL's valves this weekend. I recently had a zero mile, remanufactured long block installed from LKQ/ATK engines. The 600 mile break-in service includes a valve adjustment and oil change.

I ordered the intake manifold and valve cover gasket sets from Majestic Honda. THEY COST $160. ouch.
 
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