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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 2014 MDX with the Technology Package (navigation screen on top and touch-sensitive control screen underneath). I was curious if anybody has experienced the following issue(s).

Recently, the navigation screen has started to intermittently flicker. This flickering progresses to jumbled/non-intuitive data being presented on the screen until finally the screen turns white. It seems to start after 4-5 minutes of the car being powered on and within another 5 minutes the navigation screen is basically unusable.

The issue has also crept into the control screen as well. The same symptoms appear here as well. Interestingly, the 'buttons' are still able to be controlled/activated even if the display isn't showing them properly.

I took the car to the local Acura dealership and (surprise) they were unable to reproduce the problem. I took it back a few minutes after I left when the issue was happening again and was told that "it's a known issue and Acura will eventually issue a recall for it."

Was the technician pulling my chain? Is this really a known problem? If anybody has experienced this and has any work-arounds, please post them here.

Thank you!
 

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Was the technician pulling my chain?
Probably. I absolutely wouldn't trust what one of the random techs or worse, service advisors, which is likely who really talked to you, says when they conclude either 'normal', 'can't reproduce', 'known issue - maybe someday Acura will fix it'. Keep in mind that service advisors often know very little technically about the vehicle.

I have an early 2014 tech shawd that's over 2 years old now and have never experienced what you state and I haven't seen that same symptom posted here in these 2 years either and I expect it would have been posted here multiple times by now if it was 'a known problem'.

You should pursue getting this fixed - likely by replacing the Nav head unit. By 'pursue' I mean 'insist'. Go up the chain at that dealership if you get the shrug-off from your first contact, likely a service advisor. Don't take 'no' for an answer. Be ready to contact Acura customer relations yourself if need be as well as taking it to a different dealership if yours turns out to be useless.
 

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It is a known issue. They're not lying about that.

American Honda has been bombarded with contacts from dealers over the infotainment system.

Here's the thing. The system and more importantly, it's software, was made by an outside supplier. Honda collects all the contacts of reported problems and eventually passes them on to the supplier. Then the supplier tries to fix it if they can and then they'd give Honda an update to issue to the dealers. But since this isn't an "in house" job, the pressure to make things happen in short order just isn't there.

I would imagine they they aren't done with updating the system. Depending on the VIN, 2014 has one firmware update available. 2015 has a firmware and nav database update as well. And the system is still far from perfect. So all I can do is hope another system update is in the works. But nobody in the dealers really knows for sure.
 

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The system and more importantly, it's software, was made by an outside supplier.
The same is true with most of the components in the vehicle yet Acura's still responsible for the selection of the component and the 'fix' albeit via a vendor.

There's only been a single firmware update to the 2014 infotainment system to my knowledge and that one was quite some time ago (about a year I think) to fix the voice seat heater command issue plus a few other things. The updates they applied to an almost identical system in the 2015 Acura/(vendor) has refused to apply to the 2014. It seems as if they're doing 'nothing' to address any of the issues on the 2014.

Regardless, from the OP's description of the symptoms this issue on his unit is pretty severe, something that presumably only just started happening recently on this roughly 2 y/o vehicle as opposed to something that's always been there (and software doesn't suddenly start to go bad), and certainly not something I'm seeing on my 2014 so it seems that perhaps a unit swap might actually fix the issue for him.

Supertech - have you seen a vehicle with the same symptoms the OP describes? On the face of it, it sure doesn't sound like the known occasional hangs/loss of brains that the unit experiences. The problem is that it's all too easy for a tech (not talking about you) to call 'any' weird symptom as the 'known hang/brain loss' issue when in fact, the symptoms could be completely different.

If I was the OP I'd still pursue that avenue unless a dealer can readily replicate this on another 2014 of the same firmware version on the lot to prove to me it was 'normal' in the sense that it's a known issue. If they can't then I'd campaign to have the unit replaced.

I'm stating all of the above on the face of the OP's post, obviously.

And...I certainly wouldn't hold my breath waiting for Acura to provide a firmware update to address the issues with the 2014 - that certainly doesn't appear to be happening given that it's been a year or so since the last update - an eternity in the software world.
 

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I don't see how you equate "normal" to known issue. They could be worlds apart. You certainly paint techs and advisors with a broad brush. The OP said the issue was known. Not normal.
At the same time. They should be swapping out the unit. Not waiting until or if there is a fix.
 

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I don't see how you equate "normal" to known issue.
A 'known issue' does tend to be equated to 'normal' in the sense that it typically would be something that would hit many of the vehicles hence why it's 'known'.

You certainly paint techs and advisors with a broad brush.
I don't paint them with a broad brush but I certainly don't have implicit faith in what they say when what they say isn't logical. There are many examples that have been posted here by others where the service department says 'normal' and 'not a problem' when clearly that's wrong. There also seem to be some instances where the service department just wants the customer to 'go away' if they can't immediately identify the problem.

It's all too easy for a tech to simply assume any weird problem with the infotainment 'must be' due to some known weird issues that hit all of them and then not bother to investigate it further but that's a basic troubleshooting mistake.

When it comes to 'service advisors' I don't have much implicit faith in what they say but this is warranted in my experience since they generally aren't techs and often don't know much about the mechanics of the vehicle yet will sometimes try to come across as if they do. You've probably run across this before unless you know little about mechanics yourself and perhaps don't realize it when what they're saying makes little sense or is flat wrong. It's actually quite helpful to have a reasonable knowledge of the basic mechanics of a vehicle and nowadays a basic understanding of how electronic hardware and software work.

If it's true that the OP's 1.5-2 y/o vehicle just recently started this behavior in the system then I think the OP should pursue a swap-out (or other ready fix) since it's likely something that recently went wrong with the system rather than something that's been there all along as is implied in the 'known problem' diagnosis. If in fact the issue's always been there and this is the 'known' type of hangs with this system, then a swap-out may not fix it but that's not what I gleaned from the OP's post.
 

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I haven't seen this problem in 2 years and 30,000 miles. I think the rear camera stayed on once. I say swap it out.
 

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I feel that dealers have been told by Acura to get guidance from them before swapping out units and doing a bunch of major warranty work before the known solution is discovered.
 

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I feel that dealers have been told by Acura to get guidance from them before swapping out units and doing a bunch of major warranty work before the known solution is discovered.
Absolutely. An ODMD (screen) is like an $1100 part. The audio unit behind it costs much much more. Thy don't want dealers just doing a knee jerk reaction and ordering lots of expensive parts without a due process. One of them being checking to make sure software is up to date.
 

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Supertech - have you seen a vehicle with the same symptoms the OP describes? On the face of it, it sure doesn't sound like the known occasional hangs/loss of brains that the unit experiences. The problem is that it's all too easy for a tech (not talking about you) to call 'any' weird symptom as the 'known hang/brain loss' issue when in fact, the symptoms could be completely different.


And...I certainly wouldn't hold my breath waiting for Acura to provide a firmware update to address the issues with the 2014 - that certainly doesn't appear to be happening given that it's been a year or so since the last update - an eternity in the software world.
I've seen just about every problem that's been described on this forum. Plus a bunch that haven't been complained about here. Locking up, unresponsive buttons (hard and virtual), flickers, dimming, you name it. Plus a variety of stuff related to Bluetooth.

I'll freely admit that they have not been very swift with the updates. Maybe they're having an issue where the software provider is blaming the hardware and vice versa. Seen that finger pointing match among suppliers before. Meanwhile, everyone is stuck waiting for someone to jut do their job and fix it.

What are we...in the 4th model year of the current RDX now. And they are just finally coming up with a new brake pad to counteract noise issues we've been getting complaints for (and filing warranty claims for brake jobs) since it came out. Took forever to get a software update for transmissions on the last MDX. Meanwhile, it cost them hundreds of thousands in warrantied transmissions and/or torque converters. So hard parts or software....things don't move fast. Even in a flat out emergency situation when no dealer could sell a bunch of TLXs because of the 9AT not holding Park? They left us hanging for almost three full months before we could get those cars back in circulation. 3 months is a disaster for something that was selling so hot.
 

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Clearly it's a balancing act. Remember the voice activated heated seats. Didn't they swap out a bunch of hardware before they had a software fix? That wasn't exactly an emergency.
 

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Clearly it's a balancing act. Remember the voice activated heated seats. Didn't they swap out a bunch of hardware before they had a software fix? That wasn't exactly an emergency.
That update fixed a lot more than the seat heater glitch. I'm sure it was in the works before the first 2014 even was delivered to a customer.
 

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YES, i am experiencing this flickering problem with my dual screens

i have a '14 MDX AWD BASE, purchased in July '13, one of the first off the trucks.

i have recorded video of the problem multiple times and showed it to the dealer service person, they simply said it cannot replicated and cleaned the "light sensor". The flickering happens randomly on both screens during all types of conditions: day, night, rain, shine, driving, stopped. It has been flickering for approx 1-1.5 yrs. It is extremely annoying and makes the screens un-usable. This is leading me to towards a '15 JX60 (only 2 things holding me back - #1 horrible CVT trans & #2 - butt ugly rear looks)
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks everybody for their insight.
It seems as though the consensus is that I should pursue getting some combination of the nav head unit, screen assembly, or audio assembly swapped out. Correct?

Now, how should I pursue this given that there is only one Acura dealer in my neck of the woods and they've already told me that there's nothing they could find. Should I take it back in and 'try again'? Should I ask to speak directly to the service manager? The general manager of the dealership? Higher up? What avenues do I have if nobody on site is willing to help out?

I've attached links to a couple of videos of the issues (apologies for the sideways video). This started today after about 2 minutes, and within 2 more minutes the top screen was white/fading into and out of white and the bottom screen was doing what you see. Given this information, do any of you feel as though there's any one particular part that I should have the dealership look at?

Link 1:
http://youtu.be/syAy_ldhtlg

Link 2:
http://youtu.be/01xo1Hnf3BM

Link 3:
http://youtu.be/6hArE6YtVb0

Thanks
 

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If the dealership doesn't fix it even after the videos showing the issue, then you go to acura client relations. If they do not address your situation, you should probably hire legal counsel.
 

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That does not seem to be a software issue. That is a hardware issue. In my opinion. Talk to the service manager.
 

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From the videos - it's almost definitely a hardware issue - not a software issue. I definitely haven't had anything close to that on my 2014 2 y/o system. The dealer needs to fix this - likely by swapping the unit out. I highly doubt a firmware update would fix it even if they were to come out with one (which seems increasingly unlikely for the 2014).

Don't take 'no' for an answer on this one and do up the chain if you need to. The concern I'd have is a dealer service guy categorizing 'all' Nav/Info issues as the same 'known issue' that can cause some hangs, etc. when in fact, they're not the same issue.

If you still get nowhere with the dealer then try Acura client relations, which may also get you nowhere, and be prepared to find another Acura dealer even if it's a ways away.

Read up on the lemon laws in your state. There's something clearly wrong with your system so if they refuse to even try to fix it, which seems to be their position at this time, keep taking it back to them for several times regardless. Make sure they write down your complaint when you bring it in and keep copies.

It's hard to imagine a reasonable tech would see these videos and be so dismissive of you without even attempting to fix it. It could be something as simple as a loose ground or signal wire or something. They'll never know if they have a closed mind and don't even attempt to troubleshoot it.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Update:
After taking the car back in to the dealership today and having the service manager and head technician see the problem first-hand, they agreed to have the factory send over a new "electronics unit." Hopefully that will clear up these problems. I think they were pushed along by the fact that the car lost audio from the sound system today while the issue was occurring.

Just out of curiosity, does anybody have a guess as to how much money I saved by having this covered under warranty?

Thanks to everybody for their advice on this matter.
 
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