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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello. I am new here. I am looking some advice on maintenance. I have 2013 MDX. I had it serviced just over one year ago. Since service I have driven only about 9,000KM. I have called Acura for oil change few times. They ask what is the oil life? I would tell them whatever it was at that time. 60%, 50% and now it is at 30%. I am going to get the oil changed anyways.

Now Acura also recommending drive belt change, coolant flush. I have 110,000 KM (68K miles). Are these items necessary? They also actually say to change timing belt as doing timing belt and drive belt would save little money compared to if done separately. (Maintenance up sell!).

Any comments on this would be appreciated. Thanks in advance.
 

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The recommended oil change intervals are to follow the M.I.D. schedule or one year max. You can probably go over the +12 months limit a month or two since the Honda/Acura oil is a synthetic blend ( I use 100% synthetic Mobil 1 oil). I would check the oil level and probably wait until the 15% mark to see if any other codes pop up for the next oil change service.

The timing belt is a 7 years or 105,000 miles; whichever, comes first. Many folks go longer if they have low mileage and I haven't heard of an issue for those that have gone 7-10 years and +130,000 miles with the original timing belt. Just know it will cause serious damage to the engine if the timing belt breaks with our type of engine (pistons will hit the intake/exhaust valves with broken a timing belt). Checking out the water pump, changing out coolant, new serpentine belt kit would save on a labor cost being done at the same time. I would plan on doing the timing belt in the next 2-3 years max. I wouldn't worry about the timing belt if you are planning to sell soon.
 

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Using Mobil 1 Synthetic since the warranty expired. Using Synthetic I just follow the reminder & shoot for 15% but have hit 5% a couple times. With full synthetic it shouldn’t matter since those oils are really designed for >10K intervals. Almost all of the vehicles I care for are low annual mileage & I essentially ignore the time interval & use Synthetic Oil. I shoot for around 6,000mi but it ranges 5-10,000 depending on my laziness & the weather.

As a comforting example, new cars are now often scheduled for their 1st oil change by the manufacturer at 10,000mi - even our new Toyota 4Runner. Also, my 2002 offroad truck that only ran Mobil 1 was opened up at 102,000 mi & 15 years - the cylinders still had their crosshatching & the interior pristine without any sludge.

My info on a 2009 Acura MDX Tech
8/29/[email protected],392mi Total $1,150
Timing Belt $450 ($810-$360), WaterPump $440, Tensioner $70, Serpentine Drive Belt & labor $190
Included Engine Oil & Filter & Coolant Drain & Replace
+Passenger Side Axle Seal
Acura of Lynnwood, WA
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Thank you so much for the helpful information. Much appreciated. I am planning on keeping my MDX for some time. It has been a trouble free vehicle so far (touch wood!). Mileage is pretty low and I don't see mileage going up much due to working from home and my annual trip to US can't happen until border opens up! I have 2018 RAV4 also. So it probably will take few years before I got to 105,000 miles.

But I am coming up to about 7 years though and know that i will be a big cost is timing belt breaks. But I think I will take chances and wait couple of years as suggested for timing belt. Now could I wait couple of years to change the drive belt also? That would be ideal so I can get both done at same time to save on labour. And have water pump checked. Also, I hear there are no signs of issues with timing belt. Are there any signs of drive belt problems before it breaks?

Thanks.
 

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It is just the labor savings to change out the water pump at the 105,000 miles timing belt service. You could skip the water pump if there are no signs of a coolant leak. It is unlikely the water pump will last until the next timing belt service at 210,000 miles is the reason for getting it done with the labor savings during the 105,000 miles service.

The serpentine has a tension roller that adjusts as the belt wears and stretches. I would replace if you see a lot of cracks on the belt.

Another service item that isn't on the M.I.D. service schedule is replacing the power steering fluid. It can get very dark and absorb contaminates and water. It can get very thin and start to leak out of seals on the pump and steering rack. Fresh power steering fluid will improve steering feel and help against pump/rack leaks down the road.

Just a example of a worn drive belt:

116549
 

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Thank you so much for the helpful information. Much appreciated. I am planning on keeping my MDX for some time. It has been a trouble free vehicle so far (touch wood!). Mileage is pretty low and I don't see mileage going up much due to working from home and my annual trip to US can't happen until border opens up! I have 2018 RAV4 also. So it probably will take few years before I got to 105,000 miles.

But I am coming up to about 7 years though and know that i will be a big cost is timing belt breaks. But I think I will take chances and wait couple of years as suggested for timing belt. Now could I wait couple of years to change the drive belt also? That would be ideal so I can get both done at same time to save on labour. And have water pump checked. Also, I hear there are no signs of issues with timing belt. Are there any signs of drive belt problems before it breaks?

Thanks.
IMO, given your mild climate, going several more years is not a significant risk for the timing belt, and quite frankly it's not usually the belt that fails. It is one of the other components, and one of the most common ones is the hydraulic tensioner. The most common sign is a rattling noise that occurs at start up and goes away within a minute or two. I have heard of those failing as early as 40K miles, so it is something that should always be in the back of your mind simply because any noise that is out of the ordinary should always be evaluated for the seriousness of it and not ignored.
 
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Thank you so much for the helpful information. Much appreciated. I am planning on keeping my MDX for some time. It has been a trouble free vehicle so far (touch wood!). Mileage is pretty low and I don't see mileage going up much due to working from home and my annual trip to US can't happen until border opens up! I have 2018 RAV4 also. So it probably will take few years before I got to 105,000 miles.

But I am coming up to about 7 years though and know that i will be a big cost is timing belt breaks. But I think I will take chances and wait couple of years as suggested for timing belt. Now could I wait couple of years to change the drive belt also? That would be ideal so I can get both done at same time to save on labour. And have water pump checked. Also, I hear there are no signs of issues with timing belt. Are there any signs of drive belt problems before it breaks?

Thanks.
Hi There,

My wife and I have a 2012 MDX Advance Package and a 2011 MDX Tech Package. Both have been trouble free driving except the excessive oil consumption which were part of a recall 2-yrs ago. The issue was the piston rings and had to be replaced for free by American Honda. You may want to call American Honda and see if your vehicle is part of the recall.

Since both of our cars were part of the recall (replaced piston rings), we ended up doing the major service/tune up at that time that included all the items below from my dealership...Costs came out to around $1,200.00+/-...

DCH Tustin Acura
Date
09/11/2020
Odometer
94,095mi
Services Performed
  • Drive belt(s) replaced
  • Oil and filter changed
  • Piston rings replaced
  • Spark plug(s) replaced
  • Timing belt replaced
  • Timing belt tensioner/idler replaced
  • Water pump replaced
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hi There,

My wife and I have a 2012 MDX Advance Package and a 2011 MDX Tech Package. Both have been trouble free driving except the excessive oil consumption which were part of a recall 2-yrs ago. The issue was the piston rings and had to be replaced for free by American Honda. You may want to call American Honda and see if your vehicle is part of the recall.

Since both of our cars were part of the recall (replaced piston rings), we ended up doing the major service/tune up at that time that included all the items below from my dealership...Costs came out to around $1,200.00+/-...

DCH Tustin Acura
Date
09/11/2020
Odometer
94,095mi
Services Performed
  • Drive belt(s) replaced
  • Oil and filter changed
  • Piston rings replaced
  • Spark plug(s) replaced
  • Timing belt replaced
  • Timing belt tensioner/idler replaced
  • Water pump replaced
Thanks. I will check. But I have not had any problem with excessive oil use. I purchased 7 year warranty! Place I take for servicing are going to do some things like water pump under warranty. So I decided to schedule to get water pump, drive belt, timing belt, tensioner, spark plugs, and couple of other things done for $1000. I think that is pretty good. I am planning on keeping my MDX.
 
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