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Honda Pilot Noises and Sounds



  • pagtarappagtarap Posts: 10
    hi guys came back from honda, I asked for an oil change and tire rotation, informed them about the humming sound and vibration thing, their diagnosis was "they found leaves" in the AC blower motor, was charged 50 bucks for the cleaning. when the job was done I took the car and ALAS (i know most of us have the same experience) the sound was still there...................spoke with manager and I let him hear the sound, he called the "chief mechanic" and guess what happened I wasn't able to reproduce that humming thing (sigh). And like most of us will expect I was told to observe and just bring back the car when the sound is frequent enough to reproduce...........

    Hope one of you guys will find the "cure" to this problem, and please do let us know.
    Thanks again, will be updating you.
  • pablo9pablo9 Posts: 29
    Oh so frustrating...I guess it's good you got the leaves out but geez.

    If I can get mine in before a trip next weekend, I'll let you know. I think I won't use the word hum but more of an ultra-low bass note...maybe that will get them on the same page faster.
  • pagtarappagtarap Posts: 10
    I think the "ultra low bass note" description is the more appropriate term to our mystery sound. I backread this thread and your "theories" regarding the ANC diverting the sound to the "bass" could be it also. Will be waiting for further updates. Have a safe trip and thanks again.
  • leroygleroyg Posts: 1
    My low mileage 2008 Pilot has recently started doing a similar thing...a very low pitch, bass "drone" when idling that I discovered stops if any door is opened, but not from opening a window. I also sense it at about 35-40 mph, but not nearly as loud (and of course haven't opened a door then to see what would happen) .Not affected by AC being on/off. I saw a posting that someone thought a body seam in the b-pillar bewtween the front and rear doors may not be completed welded to cause a similar noise in a 2007 Pilot. I'm planning on taking it to a dealer this week. Did you find an answer yet?

  • pagtarappagtarap Posts: 10
    Leroyg, good day thanks for the post. No answer/s for our problem yet. I still hear that low pitch bass tone even after my oil change and "aircondition cleaning" . Kindly update us regarding the "b-pillar" thing, thanks. Your description ("a very low pitch, bass "drone" when idling that I discovered stops if any door is opened, but not from opening a window" ) is very similar to my symptom although the tone coincides with on/off mechanism of the airconditionning.
    Thanks for posting
  • pablo9pablo9 Posts: 29
    No answer from any of us yet but here are another couple of observations:
    - On our extended weekend trip a day ago, zero problems including this droning noise for the 1100 mile adventure.
    - The first return of the noise was in my driveway as I headed out for an errand. So there is reproduceability(sp?) since this is one of the settings in which I had the noise before.

    I have heard about complaints of the other year models with a droning noise at different speeds on the road. But so far, the noise described has only occurred as described at idle. I remain suspicious of the ANC system and the motor mounts. Hopefully, we will have time to visit the dealer in about two weeks.

    Good luck one to the back!
  • pablo9pablo9 Posts: 29
    I just found this TSB referenced in the forums (excellent forum if you haven't already found it.). The bulletin predates the 08 model.

    Reference Bulletin 06-092, 12/22/06

    Service Bulletin
    © 2006 American Honda Motor Co., Inc. – All Rights Reserved ATB 34078 (0612) 1 of 1
    CUSTOMER INFORMATION: The information in this bulletin is intended for use only by skilled technicians who have the proper tools, equipment,
    and training to correctly and safely maintain your vehicle. These procedures should not be attempted by “do-it-yourselfers,” and you should not assume
    this bulletin applies to your vehicle, or that your vehicle has the condition described. To determine whether this information applies, contact an
    authorized Honda automobile dealer.
    December 22, 2006
    Applies To: 2006 Pilot – All LX 2WD models
    2007 Pilot – LX 2WD models from VIN 5FNYF2...7B000001 thru 5FNYF2...7B006392
    Booming or Humming Noise From Speakers While Driving
    A booming or humming noise is heard from the
    speakers while driving with the radio on or off.
    A faulty ANC (active noise control) unit.
    Replace the ANC control unit.
    ANC Control Unit: P/N 39200-STW-A02
    H/C 8563413
    In warranty: The normal warranty applies.
    Operation Number: 0101C9
    Flat Rate Time: 0.6 hour
    Failed Part: P/N 39200-STW-A01
    H/C 8159055
    Defect Code: 03217
    Symptom Code: 04201
    Template ID: 06-092A
    Skill Level: Repair Technician
    Out of warranty: Any repair performed after warranty
    expiration may be eligible for goodwill consideration by
    the District Parts and Service Manager or your Zone
    Office. You must request consideration, and get a
    decision, before starting work.
    1. Start the vehicle.
    2. Turn the radio on, and make sure it operates
    3. Turn the radio off.
    4. Press and hold the preset buttons number 1 and
    number 6, then press the VOL push PWR button.
    The audio system enters its diagnostic mode and
    Diagnosis (or Diag) appears on the display.
    Release the preset buttons.
    5. Press the number 1 preset button. ANC ON
    appears on the display.
    6. Press the number 1 preset button again to turn the
    ANC OFF. You should hear a humming noise
    coming from the speakers for about 60 seconds.
    • To turn the humming off, press the number 1
    preset button to turn the ANC ON, and wait for
    the hum to stop. Press the number 1 preset
    button again to turn the ANC OFF.
    • Repeatedly pressing the number 1 preset button
    cycles the audio unit ANC ON and ANC OFF, but
    the ANC control unit won’t hum until the ignition
    switch is turned on and off, and you put the audio
    system back into Diagnosis mode.
    • When the ignition switch is turned on and off
    again, the audio system defaults to its ANC ON
    7. With the ANC OFF (audio unit on), test-drive the
    vehicle as described by the customer. If you can’t
    reproduce the booming or humming noise, go to
    8. If you can still hear the booming or humming noise,
    disregard this bulletin and do the ANC
    troubleshooting in the service manual.
    1. Replace the ANC control unit.
    • Refer to page 22-345 of the 2006–07 Pilot
    Service Manual, or
    • Online, enter keyword ACTIVE and select Active
    Noise Control Removal/Installation (2WD)
    from the list.
    2. Test-drive the vehicle to confirm the repair.
  • phx1138phx1138 Posts: 2
    Hi, I have a 2008 pilot SE with about 3,000 miles with the same problem. I have the AC running constantly this time of year, and the noise happens 90% of the time that I stop at a light. If the AC is turned off or if a window is opened the noise stops. I took it in to the dealer and they said they thought it was the noise cancellation system. They did something to the stereo while we were in the car (like what is described above) and were able to make the noise much louder by turning the volume up (note that normally turning the volume up doesn't make the noise louder, but it did while they had accessed the ANC system). The noise they made louder was definitely the same "bass noise" I had been hearing. They wanted to order a new ANC unit to install. In the meantime they turned off my ANC unit, which should have stopped the noise. However, while I was driving the car with the ANC off for the next few days I still heard the noise. I let them replace the unit, but the noise is still there. I am going to take it back in and will post an update.
  • pablo9pablo9 Posts: 29
    At least in our case, the ANC seems to tbe the problem as well. I did the diagnostic and sure enough, killing the ANC will do away with the noise. Will try to get it into the dealer this week so we can get them to acknowldge the same and order the part.

    PHX1138: The ANC will re-activate itself when you turn the ignition back on. So, we just quickly press the 1, 6, and power buttons on the radio (when off), hit #1 for the noise to first amplify, then hit #1 twice more to activate then fully de-activate the ANC. (more complicated to write than to do)

    I'm happy to have found the apparent culprit! That droning noise will make you jump off a cliff after a while.
  • phx1138phx1138 Posts: 2
    I went back to the dealler, and got some bad news. I let them keep the car overnight so the head mechanic could drive it at night, since the sounds seems worse at night. They heard the noise, and still say it is definitely the ANC. Having the ANC replaced did not fix the problem. They contacted Honda. Honda is apparently aware of the problem and working on a fix - for now, there is nothing they can do. According to the dealer this is a common problem.
  • pablo9pablo9 Posts: 29
    Wow...that's not good to hear at all. Thanks for posting though! Did they provide any kind of timeline? I'm curious as to what kind of recourse this leaves us with the problem. I'm not real keen on making payments for something that annoying.
  • My wife drives our '08 Pilot and she recently began complaining about a random beep/ creeking noises when the AC is on. She thought it might be a vent or something, but couldn't get it nailed down.

    While driving it this weekend together I heard what she was talking about. It almost sounds like a vent creeking open or something. It is very quick and could almost be a loud beep for a second. Has anyone heard something like this? I see there have been reports of a humming noise. Very confusing.
  • So I've documented all too well on here about my ANC problem. I have been able to confirm with several better Honda shops and Honda techs they are seeing the issue and are changing a part of the ANC behind the radio when diagnosed. Now, mine rarely does it so I have to wait and catch it in the act for diagnosis. Nice not to have it but would like to make sure it stays that way if I can. I'd just love to assume it's past it's problem so the radio doesn't have to come out and get the trim scratched up.

    New rattle developed with the panel covering the subwoofer on the passenger side of the cargo area. I kind fo half expected it. I'm very nervous of the techs tearing it up for investigation and fix but the rattle is not something to live with...even does it without the radio on now. Just one of those things...I'll take it if it's the worst thing that can happen! Rest of vehicle continues its sterling performance.
  • caugncaugn Posts: 30
    I have an '03 pilot with 108,000 miles. In the past year I've been experiencing a whine coming from it seems the subwoofer. This noise is most obvious when the radio volume is low. Also, it over rides all sound from either the wireless headphones or headphones plugged directly into the jacks. I thought to disconnect the subwoofer but getting the panel off is more of a chore than it seems it should be. Any thoughts before I spend an entire day taking the interior appart would be appreciated.
  • caugncaugn Posts: 30
    My 03 pilot with 108,000 miles has recently started making a rubbing or vibrating noise while driving. It sounds like it's coming from the rear end and maybe from the rear right wheel. It happens when I'm driving anywhere between 30-60 mph and comes and goes. Also, when I accelorate or decelorate while the sound is present it goes away but if I maintain speed it lasts for quite a while. I've seen other posts mentioning a sound that is related to the drive shaft bearing. Would this be consistent with that or might this be something different? I'm just not sure.
  • My 05 Pilot (53K miles) has an abnormally lound air conditioning fan. Once I get past the 3rd power setting on the air conditioning it sounds like a prop plane engine. Anyone know what this might be and the approx. cost to fix it? Thank you.
  • That is probably the "Leaf in the Blower" problem.

    Costs about $50 to get the leaf removed.
  • odie6lodie6l Hershey, PaPosts: 1,172
    That rattle could be a loose Sub or even a blown one. Check, because it should be covered under warrenty.

    Odie's Carspace
  • we just purchased an 05 pilot. we get the same booming sound when the kids have the 2nd row windows down. almost sounds like air flow around the vehicle gets trapped and cant get in or out causing a resonating in the cab. very annoying, almost makes your ears pop. any solution to the problem would be great.
  • my 2005 only 'booms' when the second row windows are down at speeds over 40mph. haven 't seen any threads with the same complaint, but i'm going to check the anc unit anyways.
  • pablo9pablo9 Posts: 29

    The booming you describe with windows down doesn't have anything to do with the ANC and isn't an electronically manufactured sound. It's the aerodynamics playing with the air pressure of the cabin. I have been in numerous vehicles that do this with different combinations of windows down...especially the rear windows only scenario. In fact, I once used a 4 door Ford Pickup that made people almost pass out from the pressure "booms" with the same scenario...weird stuff.

    The ANC problem described in the bulletin and by several in the posts is an improperly working ANC system. It is fixed by replacing the portion of the unit located behind the radio head unit. It was confirmed by a couple of Honda techs I have spoken with and indeed, I can control it by disabling the system as described in the bulletin.

    So...don't roll down just the rear windows!
  • Stavro - I have the same thing happen when my dog wants to hang his head out the window. Its a function of the internal volume of the car, the size of the opening, and the speed. Just crack your front window a couple inches and it goes away.

    Pablo - I have the low frequency resonance also. Thanks for the post and tracking down the TSB, I'll print that out when I bring it to the dealer.
  • It sounds like I am having an issue similar to the "Buzzing Sound" described elsewhere in this forum with my 03 Pilot EX. At about 110K miles I began to hear a transient buzzing noise similar to a 'snorting' (or semi-truck compression breaking) that lasted just a second or two, occurring between 25 and 45 mph. Not sure if it is the same noise, and it sounds funny but the best way I can describe it is as a snort.

    I am a pilot so I am particularly aware of new and different noises in the vehicles I operate. After a few months of trying different things to make it occur, I can induce it by accelerating slowly to 40mph and adjusting RPM to get it to shift at the earliest opportunity. It seems to occur when the transmission shifts into 4th gear and RPM drops to approx 1200. When the engine struggles at the lower RPM for that gear the sound occurs, and I can actually watch the RPM needle rise when the sound goes away.

    It I am going to check the underside of the vehicle for a loose heat shield around the exhaust system and also for loose fuel lines that may just happen to vibrate at that frequency. The Pilot engine is so quiet that it is really hard to isolate if it is an exhause manifold or transmission related issue, so I will continue to troubleshoot. I may have to take a technician for a ride to make it happen for them. Anyway, any :confuse: ideas would be great.
  • pablo9pablo9 Posts: 29

    Did you get the ANC worked out per the TSB? I was planning on doing such last week...had the Pilot all week with the wife out of town...but dang if the thing didn't do it once so no chance to replicate for a tech to diagnose.

    Hope repairs have gone well.
  • I now have the same problem as you 03pilotguy mine cuts in at around 45 to 50 mph and some times lasts for as long as 2 or 3 minutes and sometimes it goes away in 10 secs. or so. I have an 03 LX with 56,250 miles on it!! Let me know if you have any success after crawling around under the BEAST!!
  • Try opening the front windows a smidgeon. That should take care of it.
  • wow4helpwow4help Posts: 3
    I recently read up on the Honda Pilot recalls as well as technical service bulletin. Should I have a mechanic @Honda look at this car prior to purchase? What scares me is the reliability of a Honda but then to read ATF leaks, ect. in recall and tech.;also electrical problems? Anyone care to steer me in the right direction before this purchase @10K? (after 1500 trade-in, 1k cash coupon, 1k cash down).

    Letting go of unreliable LR98 for a reliable Honda-hopefully! :confuse:
  • infonurseinfonurse Posts: 2
    I have owned Hondas for the past 21 yrs and have owned both Accords and Civics. I sold my 1997 Civic and purchased my 2003 Pilot EX in May 2003 and have not experienced any problems with it, short of replacing the security key fobs. All I have had to do with it was the general maintenance. However, last month, at about 90k miles, I started noticing oil drops on the driveway. I took the vehicle in to a mechanic who thought that the leak was the main seal. After changing out the seal, the leak was still present. The mechanic researched and found Service Bulletin 01-009 which addresses V6 Engine Oil Leaks on all 1998-03 Accord V6, 1999-03 Odyssey, and 2003 Pilot. Apparently the probable cause is "the cast aluminum engine block may be porous in spots." Since my mechanic does not work in a Honda repair shop, he doesn't have the VTEC System Test Tool needed to perform a pressure-check test on the engine block for oil leaks. I have since been hunting all over the internet to find out more information related to this. This bulletin was printed 5/09/08 and, it appears that only the first year Pilot is affected.

    Personally, I love my Pilot and, if they wouldn't have recently changed the body style, I would get a new one. But, if I was looking for a used Pilot and since I can't find any more information on this and it appears that it may be limited to the 2003 Pilot, I'd probably look for a second year or newer model. Also, price it out on Kelly Blue Book website, as I checked on mine today and trade in value for it (good condition) is $7500.

    If anyone is out there who has come across the oil leak issue due to porous spots in the engine block with their Pilot (or even the 98-03 Accord V6 and 99-03 Odyssey), I'd like to hear from you. Did the repair shop just repair the leak per the bulletin, with JB Weld and/or coated bolts, or did the engine need to be replaced?

  • wow4helpwow4help Posts: 3
    Thank you for the info. We bought a Toyota Sienna instead of the Pilot:)
  • I have an 03 making the same noise you describe. Did you have any luck finding a cause or solution?
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