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Honda Odyssey Engine Ping, Detonation, Preingition issues

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  • We are in the same boat as everyone else. We leased a 2007 EX starting last summer and heard the ping within a month of owning it. We have brought in back to our dealer a number of times and have had the same response. They are telling us it's a software issue and the car thinks it is running a higher octane gas so it over sparks to compensate. Honda America has told us it has no effect on the engine. ARE THEY FOR REAL. How can this not have any effect on the engine. We are so frustrated and want to be done with this van. My wife has wanted this vans for a long time and is so dissapointed with it. What ever happened to Honda making quality cars. I am thinking we need to follow the lemon law route with some of the other owners. We just want out of the lease so we can move on to a van that doesn't sound like it's 10 years old and never maintained. For what it's worth we live in PA. :mad:
  • I had a 2002 Odyssey which had the big transmission problem which was listed in the recall but because certain gears were not dark enough, the failed transmission was not under the recall extended warranty (honda canada said it was a different issue.).

    so i trade it in for a brand new 2008 Odyssey.
    I too have the ping problem in the way it was described above. acc up a hill causes ping, less ping with ultra 92 octane but the car is rated for the cheap gas (well relatively cheap at todays gas prices).

    I also noticed some pretty crappy gear changes. there is always a sudden drop in power while gears are changing and decisions to change gears are bad ones.

    My best guess is that compromises were made in the re-engineered transmission to lower the failure rate found in 1999 - 2004 models. lower the stress on the tranny by widening the shift time and dropping power on shifts - making it gentler on the clutch(es)? This is just a guess ofcourse but would help explain the crappy shifting but not the ping problem.

    Getting bad fuel economy as well. I did a same trip comparison with a route i took with my 2002 odyssey and found it to be 10 - 15% worse fuel economy on mostly highway. Shooting from the hip it seems that city driving is an even greater discrepancy. EPA ratings are waaaaaaay off.

    I owned a 1984 chrysler voyager (the first minivan) and as underpowered as it was (74hp and pulling a trailer) the thing ran and shifted a lot smoother at 10 years old than this brand new Honda does new. (although not nearly as pretty)

    I bought a 2008 Accord at the same time (yes i got sick of old cars breaking down and bit the bullet) and the thing is absolutely perfect. So this is definitely not a "Honda is Crap" session but more of a "Honda is having some trouble with their Odysseys - lets see if we can get them to fix it"
  • pingypingy Posts: 12
    Hi, I am in the same boat. Pinging, dealer cant hear it. I am in PA as well,
    you are not in West Chester are you? :confuse: :confuse:
  • lavrishevolavrishevo Posts: 312
    "Pinging, knocking and detonation are all terms for a condition known as "pre-ignition". That means some of the gas and air mixture is igniting in the cylinder before it's supposed to. And when that extra flame front crashes into the normal flame front (created by the spark plug), you hear a noise, and that noise is pinging.

    There are four major causes of pinging. The first three are related to excessive heat.

    The first is severe engine overheating. If the engine is running too hot for any reason, the temperature in the cylinders can simply be too high. In that case, some of the mixture can ignite before the spark plug fires just from the intense heat.

    The second major cause of pinging is carbon buildup inside the cylinders and on the pistons. When too much carbon collects, it can reduce the size of the cylinders (increasing the compression and temperature of the cylinder contents) and retain excessive heat itself.

    The third cause of pinging is a malfunctioning exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) system. The EGR is supposed to send non-combustible exhaust gas into the cylinders to lower the temperature of the mixture.

    How does 800-degree exhaust gas LOWER the temperature in the cylinders? Because it doesn't burn, and it crowds out some of the oxygen that would have burned and made an even hotter flame. And if that EGR is not working properly, the cylinder temperature can be too hot and the engine can ping.

    And finally, incorrect ignition timing can cause pinging. The ignition timing determines when the spark plugs fire. And if they're set to fire too early, the stuff will begin to burn too early.

    The use of higher-octane gas often makes the pinging stop because it has a higher ignition point. By requiring a higher temperature to make the gasoline burn, you reduce the likelihood of it "pre-igniting" somewhere else in the cylinder.

    But premium gas doesn't address the underlying problem. So start by checking the EGR system, the cooling system and the ignition timing. And if none of those things fix it, then you can consider using a higher-octane fuel. " - Jims Performance Automotive.
  • I am near West Chester. We purchased Odyssey from Scott. How about you?
  • pingypingy Posts: 12
    Yup, scott too.
    I actually called our service guy 3 times and left messages 3 different times, and... he never called me back. I then left an email with the service mgr. and he ignored me too.
    I finally gor the mgr on the phone, and I am waiting to find a time to get it back in.
    What ever happened with you? Have they recognized your problem? Did they offer any solution?
    We are so dissappointed!! we were sure the honda was the way to go. We really looked around too.......
  • I have not posted in a while as fighting with Honda through a lemon law attorney is draining. American Honda finally would like to inspect our 2007 Honda odyssey. The Ping is still pinging and I am still feeling cheated by Honda. If they do not rectify this problem I will never own another Honda again. This is outrageous. For Honda to feed my wife and I excuse after excuse. Telling us it was normal. Then admitting the engine is pinging. They used those exact words on paper. Come on Honda. Admit that our vans are faulty and buy them back. My van will be inspected by American Honda @ Honda World in Downey, Ca on the 16th of July. They should have a determination, hopefully, soon after that. I own a 2003 Honda Odyssey that runs better than my faulty 2007. That is one of the reasons we knew for a certainty our van was a lemon. When your brand new van's engine sounds worse than one you have 80,000 miles on, that is just BAD! Never again. As promised, I will continue the fight and post the disposition of my case.
  • We are in the same boat. Here is what they are telling us. (this is from Honda Corp) The engine is over sparking because the computer thinks it is running a higher octane gas then what is in it. We only run regular unleaded as specified by Honda and I refuse to put in a higher octane gas. They told us it was a programming issue and that Honda Corp was working on a solution. This has been going on for about 10 months now. We purchased the van last August and in September we heard the ping. Scott Honda has no interest in resolving the issue, we asked to drive another EX Odyssey to see if it made the same noise for but they wouldn't do it.
    I can tell you we have opened a Lemon Law case against this van. We just took it to Roberts Honda in Downingtown just for another pair of eyes on the problem. I am so jaded by this experience with Honda. We owned a Windstar before this van that had the transmission go with 65k miles on it. We new we didn't want to purchase an American Minivan because of quality issues. My wife has always liked the Odessey and it had a good reputation. I think we will try Toyota after this......
    One more thougth. We live in a neighborhood that a lot of people have Odessey's and we are now listening to them ping as they come around the corner. I am interested in hearing if they have had the same run around from Honda. Good Luck and I will keep you posted as to how we make out with the Lemon Law.
  • pooh875pooh875 Posts: 9
    I'M HAVING THE SAME PROBLEM MY LAWYER SENT AMERICAN HONDA A LETTER ASKING THEM TO BUY THE CAR BACK THEY REFUSE TO BUY THE CAR BACK SO MY LAWYER IS FILLING A LAW SUIT AGAINST AMERICAN HONDA.HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN GOING THROUGH YOUR CASE I WANT TO TRADE THE VAN IN BUT MY FRIEND SAY THAT IM LETTING HONDA WIN DO U THINK I SHOULD TRADE THE VAN IN. :lemon:
  • lavrishevolavrishevo Posts: 312
    If you have the money to fight it out and realistically think you will win the case then go for it. The less people that don't do anything about it the less likely Honda will make any effort to fix the problem. But, if it means mucho stress and agony just get rid of the van for what fits your needs. Yes by not doing anything about it Honda in a sense wins but it is pointless to make it too personal. You just one among hundreds of thousands and the reality of the situation is Honda cares most about their bottom line then their customers. A trend more and more companies are taking these days.
  • My case was accepted by a lemon law attorney, so I will not have to pay for the service as long as I do not sell the vehicle before the case is settled or refuse a fair settlement. If you are having to pay to fight the case, it will only benefit you if you win. My case has been active for about 2-3 months so far. I have been dealing with the issue since October of 2007. I just refuse to be stuck with this piece of junk. I would just return it, but I would be responsible for the attorney's fees. My van is due for inspection (by American Honda) on the 16th of July. I will never buy another Honda if they attempt to stick me with this one.
  • pooh875pooh875 Posts: 9
    All i paid was a $350 court filling fee thats it. I put down $17.000 on this van plus my one year seven months of payments totaling out at $26.405 i drove a total of 35000 miles in a year and seven months the lawyer told me that they will deduct $6000 from my settlement because all the miles i put on the van in a year and they will deduct for the extended warranty and the alarm they put on the van for me thats another $5000, lawyer told me i could cancel my extended warranty and get 1500 bucks back i dont want to do that because if i loose my case i will be with out a warranty i'll keep you updated on my case and good luck on your case. :lemon: :lemon: :lemon:
  • I took in my 2008 Odyssey the other day to have them look at the pre-ignition problem. Like many of you out there I was experiencing engine knock on hard acc. going up hills - mostly at lower RPM. Problem existed since new and I had it for 3000KM.

    They replaced the knock-sensor with an updated version. Said by the service rep to be a known problem with some but not all the newer minivans. Also said that many people may not notice the knock sound because they may not be as "technical". Said it was a good idea to bring it in because the probem may eventually lead to other damage/failure down the road.

    I am right now running on 87 octane (a fresh full tank from what was almost empty) and have noticed zero ping. I gave it hell last night by gassing hard - immediately taking off the gas and then gassing hard again. It also appears that acceration is more smooth/constant going up in the rpms. As far as fuel economy is concerned I do not have an answer for you yet but I am optomistic that it will imporve.

    The dealership I went to is Roadsport Honda in Scarborough Ontario. I was preparing for a battle and was greeted with a good service rep who was considerably more informed and open than what most would expect.

    here is a summary of the service report (in my invoice)

    a cust reports pre-ignition noticed. Happens @ lowe rpm's on acceleration. noticed even when brand new. tried higher octane gas - improved slightly but still notices pre-ignition on hard accel from idle.
    Cause: Knock sensor internal fault
    121188 knock sensor (KS)- replace
    part#: 30530-P8F-A01

    also
    3870 knock sensor internal fault perform hds scan test = no codes.
    perform bulletin II-4-08. Replace Knock sensr.

    the dealership/honda covered the rental and charged nothing for the service. (warranty) good guys - must have helped that the dealership owner was walikng the floor that morning :shades:
  • pooh875pooh875 Posts: 9
    I'VE BEEN HAVING THIS PROBLEM SINCE LAST YEAR MY TRANSMISSION WENT OUT AT 10 MONTHS THEY HAD TO REPLACE THE VALVES THAT STOP THE PINGING FOR A MONTH OR SO I TOOK THE VAN BACK IN THEY TOLD ME MAYBE IT WAS THE TYPE OF FUEL I WAS PUTTING IN THE VAN THEY TOLD ME TO RUN THE TANK TO EMPTY AND TRY A HIGHER GRADE OF FUEL I DID IT AND IT STILL PINGS THEY TOLD ME THAT I NEED TO GET MY FUEL SYSTEM FLUSH OUT AND THAT WILL COST ME ABOUT NINE HUNDRED BUCKS AND IT'S NOT COVERED BY THE WARRANTY SO I READ MY INVOICE AND IT SAID "WE RAN TEST ON FUEL AND FOUND NO CONTAMINATION " I WAS IN THE DEALER EVERY OTHER WEEKEND THEY RAN ALL KINDS OF TESTS AND NOTHING FOUND SO I SAID FOR GET IT UNTILL IT GOT REAL BAD THE PINGS WERE SO LOUD I TOOK IT BACK IN THEY KEPT THE VAN FOR SEVEN DAYS THEY CHANGED 16 DIFFERENT THINGS ON MY ENGINE INCLUDING THE HEAT SHIELD THE KNOCK SENSOR AND A LOT OF OTHER THINGS SO I WENT ON A TEST DRIVE WITH THE SHOP FOREMAN AND HE COULDN'T HEAR THE PINGS WHEN ME AND MY FRIEND COULD HEAR IT REAL GOOD SO WE WENT BACK TO THE DEALER AND COT ANOTHER SHOP GUY HE TOOK ME TO A PARKING LOT WICH HAD TWO WALLS CLOSE TOGETHER I DROVE THE CAR BETWEEN THE TWO WALL AND THE SHOP GUY HEARD IT REAL GOOD SO THEY TOLD ME THAT THERE'S NOTHING THEY CAN DO ABOUT IT THAT I HAD TO WAIT FOR HONDA TO UPDATE THE SENSOR THE SERVICE REPS ARE NICE AT THE DEALER I HAVE NO PROBLEM WITH THEM OR NORM REEVES HONDA IN CERRITOS CA . :lemon: :lemon: :lemon: :lemon: :lemon:
  • Sorry to hear that. :( Seems that there had been several mis-diagnosis - each of which caused you hardship. I am sure your service reps would like for this to end as well.

    I bet you that if they put the van on a dyno the techs would be better able to hear and troubleshoot the pre-ignition while the engine is under load.

    It would be great if a technician would use a probe to see what signal the knock sensor is generating (if any) when a pre-ignition event occurs.

    Just a thought - good luck.
  • xinstxinst Posts: 9
    Hi Markhamguy,

    I'm very glad that there is another person out there in GTA that experienced this problem. I bought my 08 Odyssey from Centre Honda here in Toronto in mid May. My pinging problem is exactly as you have described for yours. I've only started to notice mine at about 1000 km. Right now, it's at 4900 km, and it still pings. I've taken my Ody to the dealership three weeks ago and they admitted the problem, hooked my car to a dyno but could not get any error readings from the computer. They say are still waiting for instructions from Honda Techline as to how deal with it.
    May I ask you if you're sure that the replacement of the Knock Sensor on your Ody has really solved the problem?

    Thanks so very much.

    Xinst
  • It may be too early to tell but before I took it to the dealership it (knock) was there and after it is not there. It may be possible that the knock will come back some day but that day did not come yet. (and hopefully will not ever come).

    The computer not logging any errors appears to be a symptom similar to mine. (i would assume that repeated pre-ignition events should be picked-up by the ecu and logged if all was working properly)

    The tech should trust his senses more than the computer and enquire why the computer does not hear what he hears on the dyno. (if it quacks like a duck, walks like a duck and looks like a duck....)

    I am sorry to say that I did not attain a copy of the " Bulletin II-4-08 " to see exactly what the bulletin pertains to. Maybe someone with connections will be able to post the content of that up here.

    I will let you and everyone else know if there is any recurrence as well as my fuel milage - before the fix I had a hard time making 500KM on a tank with almost all highway.
  • xinstxinst Posts: 9
    Hi Markhamguy,

    Thanks for your prompt response. I eagerly look forward to your reading updates and extend my wishes to your having gotten rid of the ping problem once and for all.

    Many thanks.
  • pcullenpcullen Posts: 11
    Update: the pinging was reduced by the repair of the heat shield, but not elminated. The ping is only heard with the front windows rolled down, especially out of the right side, while accelerating at 15 - 30 mph especially while going up a hill. And it helps to have a reflective object like a wall alongside to amplify the noise. Using regular unleaded. Back to the dealer.
  • xinstxinst Posts: 9
    Yeah, that's precisely the way how I'm able to hear the ping, though I can hear it with the windows closed at times when it pings badly enough. For example, then I turn on the air conditioner and/or when the temperature outside is above 25 degrees.

    Sorry to here that your car's pinging did not disappear. I was very much hoping to hear a success story.
  • xinstxinst Posts: 9
    Hi Markhamguy,

    Pardon me for being hasty, but I'm very eager to hear updates from you about your Odyssey. Has the pinging returned on your car?

    Thanks very much. Crossing my fingers for you (and me).
  • xinstxinst Posts: 9
    Hi Markhamguy,

    How's it going with your Odyssey? Could you update on whether the engine ping has come back since you took it in to change the knock sensor?

    Thanks very much.
  • Good news so far - ping is still gone.
    Since taking it to the dealership for service (as noted in an earlier post) I still have zero ping. I am now at my second complete tank of gas an no ping.

    I have tried all the things that would normally make the van ping like nuts such as gas it hard, ease off quickly and then gas it hard again. also acc. with sound reflection off a wall and zero. I can safely say that the ping is gone.

    RE: Fuel economy - my fuel economy difference is not enough to really judge - I got 450KM on 60L of mostly city (but not all). That is not good but not pathetic either. if there is an improvement, it is likley no more than 10%.

    best of luck to the lot of ya. :shades:
  • xinstxinst Posts: 9
    Hi Markhamguy,

    Thanks very much for the eagerly awaited update. Congradulations on your successful resolution!
    If you don't mind, I have another question: Prior to changing the knock sensor, did you try using in 91 octane (or even 94 octane at Sunoco) gasoline? If so, did you notice a significant reduction -- but not necessarily a complete absence -- in the occurance and/or severity of the pinging noise?
    Right now, I can eliminate almost all the pinging in my car by using 91 octane gasoline -- save when I accelerate up the steep on-ramp at the Spadina junction of the Gardiner and upon heavy acceleration after coming out of a traffic jam.
    The thing is, based on my understanding, if my odyssey's pinging is due to a faulty knock sensor, then the octane rating of the gasoline I put in should not make a difference on the amount of pinging experienced, since a poorly timed ignition is going to pre-maturly ignite a fuel-air mixture regardless of the octane rating of the fuel. On the other hand, if a good knock sensor moves the ignition timing back far after top-dead-centre, the fuel is still going to have the same probability of detonating prior to spark ignition; whatever that caused detonation prior to ignition timing adjustment -- be it an over-heated cylinder wall, too lean of a fuel-air mixture, or excess carbon deposites (shouldn't be the case in new cars) -- would still be there after timing adjustment.

    Appreciate your input.

    Thanks and congradulations again.
  • hvacrmanhvacrman Posts: 11
    I have a 2007 odyssey touring that was purchased new 9/07. Pinging from the start. 4 visits logged to date with 2 knock sensors replaced, heat shields replaced and computer cleared with idle learning several times. Still pings. Techline states known problem with no known resolution at this time. Started a case with American Honda 2 months long and end result was sorry we can not do anything about it, I recommend filing a claim with the BBB auto buy back program. Anyone one else here have this same issue and history. Anyone want to try a class action or look into a class action? If so many people have this issue why cant they pinpoint it?
  • xinstxinst Posts: 9
    Perhaps the pinging that many (but not all) of us are experiencing with our Odyssey's are due to a cooling problems, rather than the knock sensor or spark timing. If the engine runs too hot, then the combustion chamber WILL be hot enough to cause pre-ignition. Have you tried to get the Honda guys to change the coolant pump?

    Let me know how things go.
  • Just dropped off our 2008 Ody for service, including the engine ping/knock issue as discussed on this thread. Our dealer is one of the larger ones located in the SF Bay Area. They knew all about the ping issue and said the problem is widespread with this V6 engine (also used on other Honda models). Initially the dealer was replacing the knock sensors, but soon realized that this was not helping.

    More importantly, Honda is also well aware of this problem, and apparently Honda Engineering is working on a new knock sensor replacement. The service manager said that the new knock sensor should eliminate the ping problem.

    His exact words were that we "would receive a letter in the mail" notifying us of the new knock sensor replacement. He did not know when, but it sounds like it may not be too far off. For the sake of our engine's valves, the sooner the better.
  • RE: octane - yes I tried the 94 and there was marginal improvement but the problem still existed.

    I don't know about how to answer the association between ping, poor timing and octane. to speak from personal experience, there is a direct relationship between ping, timing and octane as i had found in a carbourated 1984 chrys voyager minivan (the original) that I had. manual adjustment of the timing on that vehicle via the crude distributor adjustment resulted in the vehicle performing better at different octane fuels. ie. adjusted one way resulted in bad ping at acceleration if at low rpm but awesome fuel economy when cruising in 5th gear (yes it was a stick) high octane at this adjustment setting allowed me to have far less ping. note that i don't believe the 72hp 2.2 even had knock sensors in 1984 so that kind of messing around was possible.

    the odyssey we drive is a very self-aware machine. if there is a ping, the puter will sense it and adjust accordingly. If the pings are pluralized beyond a threshold the puter will log it and hopefully give out a cel to let you know that it had failed in reducing the ping. Given that you got ping and the puter has not immediately gotten rid of the ping (or given you a cel if it failed) it appears that the puter did not even notice the ping.

    If I were a real smart automotive technician (which i assure you i am not) i would clamp in a scope with logger directly to the line connecting the knock sensors and the engine and see if ther is a signal produced when knock occurs and if so, if the signal is sufficent to trip the computer.

    most of us here are not experts with this sort of thing nor do we have the vast resources that the manufacturers and dealerships have - we need our vehicles to do our work and haul kids. digging deep into analysis without any of the time tools or training is a stress best avoided. the best we can do is to be informed enought to keep those in the service department from providing the easy half-assed answers we all dread or even worse the denal of the existance of a problem. I was very lucky that I got strait talk right from the beginning with my dealership "roadsport honda" lets hope you and the rest get the same.

    :lemon: ---> :)
  • Thanks for the information. Maybe it is cooling however to have all these vans with a cooling problem would be odd but not impossible. Honda's latest response is nothing is wrong with the van. They are saying the pinging is normal. I filed a investigation with http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov

    All of you that are having this problem should do the same. This is total BS what Honda is doing. They should just make it correct even if it means buying this [non-permissible content removed] van back. Personally because of the entire experience with the way this was handled I will never purchase another HONDA product. They are worthless and do not stand behind the warranty when a problem exisits. Anyone look into a class action? How to start one, etc?
  • Good idea on filing a complaint with the NHTSA. I just did the same and I recommend everyone else with this issue also file a complaint. I am finding the pinging is subdued by running only premium unleaded, so hopefully no engine damage will occur while I'm waiting for the recall ;)
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