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Acura MDX Maintenance and Repair



  • The Acura guy should be able to get your steering wheel back to center. Wothin specs, he says? Maybe, but the job is a basic one, unless something greater is wrong that he doesn't want to have to deal with. My '09 MDX Sport/Ent had the same problem - fixed in a jiffy, no charge. It is nothing for any decent mechanic (Acura or even a Midas shop) to straighten out. Go back and talk to the service manager. No luck with him? Get the customer relations manager involved. Keep moving up the chain.
    Good luck.
  • cding5cding5 Posts: 3
    I have a 2003 MDX midnight blue and I am the original owner. The passenger side door panel has original paint. However, since 2 years ago, I began to notice it has a noticeable haze on it on the entire panel. None of the other body parts have the same problem. Anyone has similar problem? I guess whatever happened to it happened to the entire panel and that is too much coincidence and I cannot help thinking it is the manufacturing process that mess it up. Could they have forgot to put a clear coat on the door panel?
  • Getting rid of my '05 touring MDX. 49,000 miles, garage kept & per the dealer needs a new tranny because the torque converter is slipping. WTF????!!! A four year old vehicle under 50k miles needs a new tranny???!!! Just out of warrenty by 3 months, dealer won't help, ACS won't help. I am DONE with Acura. Will never buy one again! They should own up to the fact they have tranny problems and RECALL the vehicles. :mad:
  • Reminds me of my days with Volvos so I bought an Acura. But...
    I have an 09 MDX with a rear suspension problem that is driving me nuts. Four times in the shop in six months and still the racket from the rear is ever-present. Acura knows it's a problem but does not know the cause. They say it is "commercially acceptable" and they won't try to repair the problem. Another Acura in my future? Fat chance!
  • kdiaskdias Posts: 8
    Call Honda customer support. Generally if the vehicle has l;ess than 100K miles, they will work with you to cover some if not most of the costs of replacing the tranny.
  • gregmdxgregmdx Posts: 17
    I just bought an 09 MDX and have the same rear suspension thud issue. It seems to come from the right rear only. It's not a clank of a bang. It a hollow, boomy thump/thud. Almost like a muffled bass drum. It's not loud. Just loud enough to be annoying. It hear it a lot of city streets where I'm going 20mph over lots of crappy pavement. I took it in along with a service bulletin to my dealer. The service bulletin described the exact issue we are talking about, but only covered VIN numbers prior to mine. The bulletin called for the rear dampers and bushings to be replaced. Since my VIN didn't fall under the bulletin, the dealer didn't do this. They did try applying some extra lube to some of the components, but it doesn't seem to make a difference.

    Has anybody actually had their rear dampers and bushings replaced per the bulletin? Curious to know if it actually helped.
  • smilsomsmilsom Posts: 11
    I had the the dampers and bushings replaced per the bulletin and it made no difference with the respect to the noise you are describing which is the same issue I had. I then test drove another 09 MDX and it had the same exact noise issue. When I drive the car on the highway or out of the city this problem is basically non-existent, it only occurs at lower speeds over sharp bumps. I believe at this point that this is just an unfortunately and annoying characterisitc of this vehicle. Its my biggest issue with the car.
  • This has been an issue since day one and i don't think any of the "fixes" have worked. It's a (annoying) characteristic of the vehicle. I notice it more when our '07 is in sport mode. Do you guys have the sport or base?
  • kdiaskdias Posts: 8
    I have an '08 with Tech Package. I had a tapping sound (I would not charatcterize it as thump) at slow speeds. It seemed to occur when the SHAWD was engaging and disengaging. I could be wrong about that, but annyway..... The first time the bushings were changed, the problem returned. They were changed a second time and this time the problem seems to have been resolved. The difference is that I believe in the case of my car, the noise was coming from the front. Now that that has been resolved, I get a buzz that goes through the car when I get above 65 mph. Anybody encountered this??
  • gregmdxgregmdx Posts: 17
    I have a Tech. It does not have the comfort/sport active damper system. I only notice it on certain types of bumps at low speeds. If the bump too small, no noise. If the bumps are too big, then the car makes normal tire/suspension noise, which drowns out the thump. It's only when the bump is small enough that the front goes over it silently and then I hear a thud/thump from the back.

    I'm wondering if it has to do with the back being lighter than the front. Or there could be less sound deadening back there. Or it also might be the acoustics of having all that open space back there.
  • jtlajtla Posts: 373
    I lost my owner's manual. Does anyone know what type of battery the 2001 MDX uses in the keyless entry remote control? Thanks in advance.
  • jtlajtla Posts: 373
    I've found out. It takes one CR2025 battery.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    Here's a source for owner's manuals btw:

    How To Find Your Car Owner's Manual Online
  • I have the 09 sport suspension package, about one year old. The deal is this on the bonking rear suspension at slow speeds:
    Acura knows it is a problem but they don't know how to fix it. The are not sure what it is, though it sure sounds like bushing problems.
    My dealer, McGrath Acura in Illinois, has tried very hard to fix it.
    Finally, as of today, they are going to take a new suspension from a more recently built MDX and place that in my car - no charge. They believe that Acura has made some modifications to the new suspension and that might solve the problem. Or maybe they are tired of my whining and just "throwing parts" at it to get me out of their hair. Either way, the customer and service managers have been good to work with. My suggestion: get those two involved at your dealer. I hope you are still under warranty. Good luck.
  • Don't get your hopes up. I have a BRAND NEW 09 and it has the issue. I actually ordered the last silver 09 my dealership could get. It arrived brand new off the truck just two weeks ago. So I would guess it has the latest suspension. In fact I have a service bulletin covering 09's with our thumping issue. Mine is so new that the VIN is not yet listed in the bulletin.

    Sure, all of the tires/shocks make thumping noises when going over bumps - this is normal. But there is no doubt that the right rear is twice as loud as the rest and has an odd, boomy quality to the sound. It's annoying, but I'm not sure there is much we can do. If a brand new car with the latest suspension has the problem, there is an obvious design defect at fault. I wonder if the 2010's will have the issue?
  • In there a solution to the door locking issue? :confuse:
  • Well, the repairs have been made and the car is noticeably improved. Much quieter, though there are hints of thumping. I do not remain hopeful, however, based on my past experience. I fear the problem will return. We shall see...
    I wish you well with your MDX. Other than the thumping it has been a great car.
  • I have an 08 MDX Tech package. The car has 20,000 miles on's been a good car so far. However, I recently received multiple warning messages on the console. There are three yellow warnings lights that come on while the car is in motion. The check VSA light is on, check ABS system warning is on, and check SH-AWD system warning are on. This is the first i've seen of these warnings. Also, it's was kinda hard to shift it from park to drive. Does anyone have any similar problems to this?

    Update: Wife took the car to dealer today and had them look at plugged in and did diagnostic check of it. He said it was something related to the multiple key memory system. Where if i used my key to unlock the would set to my seat and radio station settings. However, i noticed that we lost both of our settings a while back...but did not pay too much attention to it. This seems kinda bogus because it doesn't have anything to do with the previous warnings of ABS, VSA and SH-AWD. I want to resolve this before my warranty expires next year.

    Any opinion about this would be helpful.

  • Hi everyone. This is driving me nuts (literally) and i need some input.

    My vehicle has 7500 kms on it, just got it in July. OVer the course of the 7500, when i go over speed bumps, not all but some, i hear this horrendous screech scraping noise from under the front of my car. Everytime, i stopped the car and got out thinking something was dragging. The last time this happened, 3 weeks ago, when i was going over the bump and heard this, my car felt like it was going to seize, but then kept going.

    The first service i took it into was two days after that. He said it was my ABS kicking in?!?! Is he kidding? He wouldn't even take my car in - he said i'd be wasting my time, they won't find anything. I've been driving for over 25 years and i've NEVER heard any of my abs systems making that noise. Besides, of the five times i heard it, it only tried to seize once.

    I took it in to another Acura dealership and the service dept drove it, and hoisted it up. They couldnt' find anything. They kept me on record and said if Acura notifies them of anything, they'll call.

    Has anyone heard of or experienced this? Does anyone know what this is?

    Please help me.

    Thank you :cry::cry:
  • I've noticed that also on my '08 MDX. It happens to me also when i go over speed bumps and I hear the screeching rotating noise. I just assumed that it was the engine or wheel moving while the car is sorta airborne. I don't think the noise happens if you let off the gas and just let it coast over the speed bump. If you are driving fast over the speed bump while accelerating...then I think the noise kicks in. I never thought to check it out...please let me know if you find anything out about that noise from your dealer.
  • My son put some coins in the DVD player. Any tips on how to remove? If not would you expect this to be a major repair bill?
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    Foreign objects stuck in the player usually require pulling the player to remove them.

    A car stereo shop is probably cheaper than the dealer, but call around.

    Or you may want to remove the bezel yourself and see if you can pull the player out. There's some links in the How to Remove a Stuck CD guide for d-i-y access to radios and players that may help.

    Or maybe an owner here has done it?
  • Any ideas - it is intermittent sounds like a grind / humming- can't pinpoint it to any speed or situation. It sounds like it is trying to go into neutral but no loss of power or speed. Have extended warranty so any suggestions on helping them diagnose it? Much appreciated.
  • I am betting Torque converter. Honda/Acura has history of bad torque converters.
    Try first doing proper transmission fluid change. This means use honda only fluid and they have to change it 3 times in a row. Cant drain 100% out on a single change so you need multi changes.

  • I have a 2009 MDX as well with the same start off noise of 4 or 5 knocks. Did you ever get yours fixed and if so what was the solution.
  • kdiaskdias Posts: 8
    If the noise is more like a tapping and coming from the front of the car when you first start, it may be as a result of some defective bushings. There is a service/repair bulletin out about this and your Acura dealership should know all about it. They are referred to as "compliance bushings" and when they were changed on my car, the tapping went away. The first time they changed the bushings the problem returned after a few months. now it seems to be fixed permanently. Good luck.
  • topofftopoff Posts: 19
    I've had two MDX loaners - both under 5k miles. Same 4-5 clunks on start-up - usually just the initiall after sitting for sometime.
  • Yes they all do that. I was told its the ABS system kicking in. At around 20 MPH the system does a check and activate. I hear it every morning when the vehicle is first driven to work.
  • Hello, I have a 2003 MDX with 140,000 + miles, and had the same exact problem you are indicating above. Did you ever get a resolution to it? I see you had the problem in 2006, so I am really hoping you can help me out. For the last 6,000 miles the check engine light has been randomly coming on and sometimes the VRM-4 light as well. The dealer said my valves were too tight and need a valve adjustment as well as replacing the valve cover. So, I had the valve job done as well as replaced the transmission fluid and rear diff fluid as well since it was time for it to be done. This was about 500 miles ago and now I have the issue that you described above. Please help - I don't really trust the dealer or car shops around me as none have been able to help identify the problem. Thank you so much for your time!!
  • Did you get yours fixed? My dealer has been very accomodating as well. They just did the TSB08-038 on my MDX. Basically replace the whole rear suspension. The thumpy boom is still there.

    I had a brand new MDX loaner while they were working on it. Same exact issue. I'm guessing only people who drive on bad roads notice and/or complain about this issue.

    I'm now convinced that there was nothing "wrong" with my MDX, which is why replacing parts didn't fix it and why the loaner has the same issue. Unfortunately, it seems to be an inherent flaw in the design. Unless Acura engineers re-work the suspension, our dealers can replace parts until the cows come home with little or no effect on the hollow boom sound.
  • Hi gregmdx:
    My dealer did replace my rear suspension with a brand new 09 suspension. The first 72 hours was like butter! Then the problem reappeared, but not as bad as it used to be. I am sure that as the miles increase on it, the problem will return in full throat! For now I have forgotten that the problem is present as it is so minimal.
    My service guy admitted that it seems to be a design flaw. All the models he has driven also have this issue. Bummer. Not much else to be done - unless I want to call a lawyer. Nah, I don't want that hassle. It is disappointing, as I bought this car over Lexus and Mercedes and Buick because of the quality and reliability of the MDX. Not sure if I will be a repeat customer. Best of luck to you. Happy New Year.
  • There was no improvement in mine after the TSB was done. Not even temporary like you experienced. It's obviously a defect. Although annoying, it's just not serious enough to be worth the time to pursue any type of legal action. It's a shame, because the rest of the car is sooo good. I don't mind hearing thumps over bumps. But the type of noise the rear suspension makes is very annoying. The vast area in the rear causes the thump to take on a boomy echo quality. My solution? Turn up the stereo and do my best to forget about it. This model has been out for going on 4 years now, so I highly doubt a fix is on the way...
  • Anxious to see if they've fixed this on the 2010's. If not, I'll be looking elsewhere.
  • I doubt it. Just make sure to take the time to test drive thoroughly over bumpy city streets. Often, when I test drive cars the drive is so short that I tend to miss nagging subtle noises. It wasn't until I had the car for a few days that I started to notice it. And once you're keyed into it, it's hard to ignore.
  • Just had another thought... The MDX is rated at a pretty high tow capacity. It's also meant to be able to have 5 people in the back without sagging much. So the rear suspension must be pretty firm. I'm wondering if you were to load it up, the thump/boom might go away. I had my buddies in the car once and I didn't hear the boom. Then again, I was on better roads at the time.
  • I hear that there is a redesign for the 2010 model. We shall see.
    I have had the car with a heavy load and the problem stays the same.
    I should be clear that I have the sport model suspension. The standard suspension models had a recall on their suspensions for thumping. The sport model does not have this recall.
    As far as the type of streets that cause the noise, it is not necessary hard core potholed types. It can be a manhole cover or even pavement changes that make the thumps. Even backing out of my driveway from the apron to the street caused it. Focus on very moderate bumps at moderate speeds (under 40 mph) to hear the thump. For now, my new suspension is staying quite quiet. Good luck to all.
  • I have a 2009, non-sport. I didn't hear of a recall. But I did have the thumping/drumming TSB service done, which basically replaces the rear suspension components. If anything, it's worse then ever.

    My experience has been the same as yours in that it seems to handle big bumps, dips and large potholes just fine. Rather it's the small stuff (cracks, manhole covers, etc) that make the noise anywhere from 10-40mph. I was in the city today and it was driving me nuts!! And for some reason, I hear the noise from the rear-right, even when the bump hits the left side of the car.

    There is a small mahole cover on my street, covered with some rippled pavement. I hit it every day, going about 20 mph. The front passes over silently, then BOOM!

    I don't expect a silent ride. I expect bumps to make noise. But this particular noise has a certain boomy quality to it that is very irritating. I really hope I can find a fix to this someday soon because it's ruining an otherwise GREAT car.
  • twotwotwotwo Posts: 11
    I noticed that my 2009 MDX door lock locking on several occasions when start to drive after doing a complete stop like in a traffic light. I did not shift to neutral or park when I stop. It did this four or five times throughout the day, but more of a sporadic frequency and not on every stop and go.

    Did anybody experience this? Could this be in the setting of the automatic door lock? I bought the vehicle new about a month ago. Wanting to get some opinions before taking it to the dealer.

    Also the driver side window was making a screeching noise when rolling up. It did not make any noise rolling down. I didn't see a mark on the glass. Any guess on what could've caused this?
  • Yep, right rear side is my exact problem area as well! Moderate speeds and moderate pavement changes such as a manhole cover cause the thump. You are telling my story. Front end goes over nice and smooth and then the right rear side: THUMP! Sounds like tennis balls in a cardboard box.
    Mine is still better after the rear suspension replacement.
    The "recall" I mentioned applies to the service that you had done on the rear suspension. Perhaps I used recall incorrectly. Rather, it was a service bulletin of sorts.
    Sorry that you are not getting any satisfaction. Indeed, it does ruin an otherwise GREAT car. Best of luck.
  • gregmdxgregmdx Posts: 17
    I've resorted to cranking the music to drown it out. I haven't had to resort to that tactic since driving my clunker way back in high school. haha
  • plowplow Posts: 1
    The turn signals for my 2003 MDX recently quit working so I thought I would check the fuse. The fuse for the turn signals is located on the interior driver side fuse box. The problem is I can't seem to get the fuse cover off to get to the fuse. Can someone please help? There are two small openings on the cover which makes me think there may be a special tool to get it off.
  • x5killerx5killer Posts: 368
    would it be possible to get the usb connection for ipods/iphones and usb flash/hard drives added to an 09 tech with ent.?

    i always thought the ppl with tech and ent. got jipped because you lose the aux audio connection in center console that the tech has just because you added ent. package and got the outlet in the console.

    you shouldn't lose anything from the tech package just cus you added the ent. package.

    that was terrible of them.

    i hate having to plug in a separate charger for the iphone and fumble with it to change song plus have to connect it with a y cable (red and white audio to headphone jack in the iphone) from the rear inputs behind center console.

    i hope there is a way to add the usb connection of the 2010 into the console of the 09 to make up for the fact that adding the ent package took away the aux audio input of the tech package.
  • ashd1ashd1 Posts: 14
    I have a 2005 MDX Touring with NAV + Entertainment with 30K miles on it.
    A couple of days ago the radio stopped working for FM and AM channels, however XM, the CD player and the DVD work fine.

    Any ideas on what may be the issue here ? Has anybody else here faced this issue and got it resolved ? I took it to the dealer and the service rep said they'll charge $125 to diagnose the issue and if its a dead radio it'll cost 600-700 to get it fixed. My car is out of warranty and I'm not in a position to fork out that much now :( I'm wondering if there is something simple that I can try - I'm quite hands on and am willing to try out any suggestions.
    Could it be a problem with the antenna - and how is the antenna connected ?

  • gsdgsd Posts: 4
    Did replacing the ABS Modulator fix the issue, I know you said they replaced it but you didn't say if it actually fixed the issue. I am having the exact issue with my 2005 mdx and they want to replace the brake switch which after reading this post looks like it will just cost me $ and not fix the issue.
  • Hi,
    I bought a new 2009 MDX recently and I am also experiencing the same high pitched whistling noise coming from the dash board. I drove only 1500 miles so far. I took the car to the dealer immediately and they inspected (took 6 hrs) and said that it is due to passenger window that was rolled down slightly, which I don't believe it. Has this problem been fixed for your MDX? If so, can you please let me know what the root-cause of the problem was and how it has been taken care of? I appreciate it.
    Thank you!
  • qaliqali Toronto CanadaPosts: 60

    I'll let others respond who also have the 09MDX. However, I have a 05MDX Touring and the symptoms were that this noise appeared to be coming from the engine/transmission. See my post 1767.

    A quick symptom check would be to see the speed at which this happens (in my case it was around 40mph and above). When you notice the noise, take your foot off the accelerator and see if the noise goes away. In my case, the tech immediately diagnosed this to be a faulty transmission and replaced it. Since that time, I have not had that noise.
  • topofftopoff Posts: 19
    Very similiar - the 'lift off the gas' is the same, but the speed range is different. At first they said it was the transmission cable acting as a sound tube. Not giving up until this is resolved.
  • Hi tweeter,

    I found out that I have the same issue on my new 09 MDX. The whistling noise only happened after start the car and at the speed 20 mile point. I took the car to the dealer and they said this is a normal. They also asked Acura Tech Center and said every 09 MDX has the same noise. Does anyone has same problem on 09 MDX and got it fixed?
  • Hi,

    I have an 09 MDX [tech+ent] and noticed the same thing. On one certain road [speed limit 35, I'm going 40], my wife and I would always notice it. At first I thought it was some 'interference' from some cell towers, etc. But, the more I read, the more I think I've got the same issue as others. Normal? It shouldn't be but it seems a good way for the dealers/Acura to avoid the issue.

    No - I haven't done anything about it for now except turn the music up.
  • The Acura service consultant said that the whistling noise was due to the right front window cracked open. First I couldn’t believe it and have asked him to look into the problem from the transmission standpoint as well, based on what I have read on the forum. He checked with Acura and found that this whistling noise can be caused by two reasons 1) The transmission pipe OR 2) When the re-circulate air button was turned on and he also confirmed that both of these problems have been fixed in 2007 models and onwards and are NOT applicable to 2009.

    I was able to reproduce the problem by rolling the right front window slightly down and it stopped when I closed it completely, which is very strange - High pitched whistling noise as apposed to wind noise. I believe it as I see it. I had to keep my MDX for two days at the dealer for thorough investigation though.
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