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Honda Accord VCM



  • rcummelinrcummelin Posts: 184
    I never noticed any oil consumption with our 2010 Accord V6. It used less than 1 qt. between changes @ 5000 mile intervals, which seemed OK.

    I think Honda would "lose face" if they pulled back from VCM. OTOH, they may get even more embarassed as owners pull back from Honda because of VCM. Only time will tell.

    Rumors abound that if Honda builds any more Ridgelines beyond 2012, that VCM will likely be added. Even though I'm looking forward to a "new" Ridge, VCM will be a deal-breaker for me. No thanks!
  • dieselonedieselone Posts: 5,729
    I didn't realize there is a reliability issue with VCM. My dad has an 09 Accord EX-L v6 with 85k miles on it. Well he called me yesterday and come to find out a week ago the engine pretty much self destructed. My dad's not mechanically inclined, but he told me something about it burning quite a bit of oil and his engine being completely torn apart and a cylinder kit installed, due to one cylinder not working (loss of compression is my guess).

    Regardless, Honda completely stepped up to the plate. He didn't have an extended warranty and Honda gave him a new car to drive while they fixed his and only charged him $100.
  • indydriverindydriver Posts: 620
    Good for Honda and your dad. This is the first report I've heard of Honda going above and beyond. Maybe they are starting to get the message. They will never know their 'lost opportunity'. I needed a new minivan this spring and didn't even look at Hondas because of VCM and we haven't had any trouble (yet) with ours.
  • lneil06lneil06 Posts: 4
    edited September 2012
    We have a 2010 Honda Accord Crosstour - 6 Cylinder - AWD - with severe engine shake at 22mph. My wife says it happens at highway speeds - but I can't rule out road conditions at those speeds. The gas pedal, brakes, front floorboards shake real hard with going up any incline, stop and go traffic, and gets worse as the car warms up. The power drops off as well. The shake gets so bad my 10 year old in the back seat will say - I felt that back here !!

    My neighbor and I opened the hood and drove the car down the street - you can see the engine shaking extremely hard at 22mph.. I would expect a little shake - but this reminded me of a gallon paint can shaker.

    The dealer has replaced the front axles/CV joints, swapped out the rims and tires, swapped out the computer, and even tried shutting down the VCM - with No change. The dealer said they checked the engine mounts and said they were OK..

    I have test drove 8 other crosstours - one had a little gas pedal shake at 22mph -but the others didn't show any signs of it.

    The engine doesn't shake if you step on the gas pedal hard. The engine will shake in 1st,2nd, 3rd, or in regular D - so to me it doesn't look to be a transmission problem.

    I'm worried about my family's safety - that something may come loose that normally wouldn't because this engine is shaking so hard all the time - putting my family in danger or someone else in danger if my wife or any driving this car looses control because of a failure.

    We have been getting lousy gas mileage as well.

    NOT proud of my Honda and actually worried about my family - Honda is still trying to figure it out and we don't want this car anymore - since it has been shaking since day one - and worried about a failure putting everyone in danger.

    Honda needs to do something about it fast -- I would prefer to have the Honda Ridgeline motor in the crosstour without VCM and I'll bet that the gas mileage will be the same as with the VCM - if not better with less moving parts and less things to fail.
  • Sorry to read about your difficulties. It sure sounds like the dealer and Honda have given a yeoman's effort to get to the bottom of your problem and that they haven't yet given up so, I'd keep working with them until they solve it or give up. Their intensive efforts and many repairs (I assume under warranty) means that they agree you've got an abnormal problem. It doesn't sound like a VCM issue, but who knows?
  • lneil06lneil06 Posts: 4
    edited September 2012
    I drove our crosstour tonight and man it not only shakes at 22mph but at 72-74mph - just as bad if not worse than 22mph, you can feel in through the seats, gas pedal, steering wheel, and floorboards. The dealer has roadforced balanced these tires several times now with no improvement - even moved rims around ! .. My wife was definately right..

    Thanks IndyDriver - I'm meeting with Honda once again on Monday - hopefully will get to the bottom of it - or time to pursue lemon law. .. It's terrible to have a new vehicle and not be able to trust it.

    Added features - if your accellerating on a ramp getting on the highway you can feel it in the engine shake in the steering as well while turning on the ramp.

    Honda was supposed to be one of the highest rated vehicles - this design has some not so nice features.

    Just recently my co-worker is complaining about her crosstour shaking real hard at 72 - 74mph. She just had new tires put on - then had the new tires replaced - still shaking between 72 and 74 MPH.. I'm definately not alone with this problem.
  • I know you said they were checked but I would take a closer look at the engine mounts. It wouldn't be the first car to leave the factory with poorly designed or installed mounts. I replaced one of the mounts on my Mazdaspeed3 as a performance upgrade. The OE was a pretty flimsy piece. The aftermarket part was carved from aluminum billet.
  • Have a 2010 v6 accord, with 75000 mi on it. ~3 months ago started to intermittently have flashing engine light along with rough running engine, brought to dealer and nothing found as it wasn't actually doing it at time of service. 3-4 weeks ago ame problem which persisted and codes indicated the problem from the tsb of 8/2010, that i had fouling of spark plug #3 . Dealer replaced that and updated software. ran fine till yesterday when exact same problems returned with rough engine and the flashing engine sign lit. I am concerned as supposedly the dealer had already updated software to prevent recurrence yet i have it again.
  • Please keep us updated as to your progress with your dealer and with Honda.
  • Dealership waiting for response from honda motor usa re: solution and cost. Dealership thinks there may be internal damage which might require replacement of "small engine block" ? I am told Honda would cover fully if car less than 5 years old or if milage less than 60,000. Mine has 75, 000. Unclear thus far if will be prorated or fully covered.
    They also mentioned that this problem more common in drivers who have car in ECO mode for greater % of time, ie driving at same speed for extended time on highway. I drive 50 miles/ day @ same speed on highway.
  • Yes, highway miles seem to be a bigger problem for VCM. This was noted in the service bulletin. If you want some more ammo on this topic, try googling "Odyssey oil consumption". All of these vehicles have VCM V6s which is why I bought a Toyota minivan this year.
  • Dealership got response from technical advisor @ Honda, they agree that lower engine block needs replacement, also need to fix rings ( which are in upper block?). (I am not technically savvy re: engines.)They think lower block problem allowing oil to leak and foul plugs. Estimated cost of repair =$6,000. Honda will cover all but $200-300, which i am reasonably happy with given car has 75,000 mi on it. Worry though that this may happen again. I kept my prior 2003 v-6 accord till 200,000mi, not sure if i will get that from this car with VCM.
    I have heard honda hopes software updates will solve this problem but i am not sure if this is proven over time.
  • indydriverindydriver Posts: 620
    edited October 2012
    Obviously, any Honda owner would be disappointed with an engine that only lasted 75,000 miles. Can you imagine the new car showroom with a big promotion: "Step right up and get your 75,000 mile Hondas!".

    It is good to see Honda stepping up on a car that is well beyond the warranty period. I think you should be happy with this action. I'd be thinking about trading it though soon after it is repaired.

    'Rings' refers to piston rings that seal the cylinder walls during piston movement keeping combustion elements out of the crankcase and crankcase oil out of the combustion chamber. Note that piston rings were "upgraded" for MY 2011.

    All said, I still believe that these "fixes" are merely bandaids on a bad technology. GM learned it's lesson the hard way but Honda seems intent on betting the ranch on cylinder deactivation. It's a cheap route to gain a little CAFE fleet average bump but the problems created by temperature and pressure differentials and who knows what else empirically reduce life expectancy of this engine. Honda began by stonewalling all their loyal customers and have lost many for good. It appears now they are quietly fixing these engines as they fail. They will never know how many people like me never even considered their product when shopping for minivans earlier this year.
  • The engine mounts were OK - A National Rep came in and found cylinder 5 valves tight - causing misfires.. He also replaced the Torque Converter and Front Drive shafts. This is the Thirds set of drive shafts on this car.

    The vibration is better at 22mph - but worse at 71-72mph.

    Not good for a @$34,000 2010 Honda Crosstour..
  • Just dropped off my 2009 Honda Accord V6 with 70K miles at the dealer after it started running very rough with CEL flashing. I am guessing it's misfiring again. About this time last year, the same thing happened at 80+ mph on the highway but it was a lot worse. Whole car was bucking, CEL flashing, and caution light flashing. At that time, I got it to the dealer 3 miles away and they diagnosed misfire on all cylinders. The spark plugs were trashed! They upgraded the software like the service bulletin suggested and said it wasn't going to happen again. Well - I think it happened again tonight and not long after the CEL came on 2 weeks ago for low oil due to VCM as well. I am fed up with VCM and even more so with Honda not taking responsibility for the issue. When this happened last year, I opened a case with Honda and demanded them to pay for all repairs (~$600 worth). They were only willing to take partial responsibility at ~$200 which I refused to take. This time, I am not letting it go that easy. Any tips on taking this issue back to Honda? Especially now that it hit me twice in just one year.
  • Document everything and go through Honda's process. As we are seeing, they seem to be more willing to step up. Let us know how it turns out. Good luck.
  • Update. My local dealer who got the pleasure of dealing with me this time diagnosed a misfire on one cylinder and a fouled spark plug. They recommended I replace all spark plugs (as I did last year at roughly 50K). After all, the car has 70K miles on it. :) The PCM software, however, is up to date this time.

    After I kindly explained the history and similar diagnosis from the other dealer last year, I asked them to dig deeper and call me back with a root cause or they could keep my car. They called back many hours later and after spending some time on the Honda tech line. Apparently, they took some things apart and sent photos to Honda who in turn recommended a short block and rings free of charge. When asked why, they explained that there are issues with the VCM getting oil to specific cylinders which is causing misfires and fouled plugs. Who knows what else could be affected. Their fix seems a little more permanent than replacing plugs every few months but I am not keeping my hopes up. I am re-opening my original case with Honda from last year and going after a full reimbursement on the original PCM software upgrade and spark plug job.

    I am now worried of new issues down the road, which may not have manifest yet, due to the oil not getting everywhere it should for over 70K miles. Any ideas about what they could be? Part of me wants to keep the car in hopes that the next repair will be the last related to this. Another part of me wants to give this lemon back to Honda and get my money back to buy a more reliable car.

    Any ideas what else I could expect down the road related to this issue? I drive about 20-24K miles every year. I need reliability above all else. That's why I bought this car in the first place and so far, the plan has backfired.
  • I've been having multiple VCM-related issues (fouled plugs, low oil, etc). I drive almost entirely highway. My 2009 Accord currently has over 70K miles on it. Honda just recommended a short block and rings. I am worried there is more wrong with the engine and seriously considering a different car. Here are the details -
  • Unfortunately, there is really only one long term solution for you or anyone with recurring problems due to faulty technology: get rid of it. Move on.
  • I got my car back yesterday. i paid $250, Honda paid for rest. The dealership gave me loaner for free for 5 days. they replaced small or lower engine block, ring seals, 3 plugs, etc. I asked them if they think this will happen again, they seemed confident that with software update that it would not. I was wondering if any one after the software change, (2011 or newer) has had this problem.So far it seems to be only in cars prior to this update, such as mine and ioreper.
    Right now the car is smooth, i never noticed significant hesitation from VCM either now or previously.
  • The only hope I can give you is that our 2011 with 13,000 miles has been flawless. However, it is driven 95% city, so it is rarely exposed to the conditions that create problems (long stretches of 3 cylinder operation, i.e., highway cruising). The 2011's also have the piston ring mod and extra moly when delivered. Since the moly eventually washes away, I am going to a high moly oil.
  • robtroxelrobtroxel Posts: 103
    edited October 2012
    In essence, Honda created needless complexity by adapting VCM, when in fact a 6 or 7 speed transmission would have done the job! We left Honda Accords after our fantastic running 2007 V6 EXL was worn out. That combined with the sneaky de contenting on the bloated 2008+made it an easy decision to go elsewhere. I am not surprised about the reliability issues posted here. on the v6 VCM models.
  • I don't know about "needless". Blame your government for the pressure of CAFE. In the minivan world, Honda has a 15% fuel mileage advantage because of VCM and that is huge. It's also why I bought a Sienna. But how many of those buyers even know about VCM? They trust Honda to be reliable.
  • robtroxelrobtroxel Posts: 103
    CAFE was the motivation for VCM, but ...they needed the 6 or 7 speed auto first and I believe they would get the same results without VCM's..unneeded complexity. Understand my context with the 4 door sedans as the bench mark. Toyota did just that and have an engine that runs smoothly at all speeds. That minivan "advantage" shows on paper but I'll bet the real world mileage is closer on both and you won't be sucking oil @ 80,000 miles like many of the Honda's seem to be.
  • rodutrodut Posts: 343
    True. It's better to let all the cylinders work, on a higher gear. Low noise, low wear, no vibrations.
  • Guess what - Our 2013 EX-L V6 AWD now has the same problem - if not worse than our 2010 Honda Crosstour. Severe floorboard shake at 22mph - 28 - then again in the 40mph range then again around 72-78mph. It's not as bad in S mode - using the paddle shifters.

    Honda - Please get a clue - I'm also seeing people complaining with the Acura RDX - which just received the new VCM. :sick:
  • Having owned Honda Accords since 1981, and most receently a 1997 Accord V6, a 2000 Accord V6, and a 2004 V6 Coupe, we bought a 2008 V6 with VCM with great confidence in December 2007. In early 2011, with only 28,000 miles on it, all hell broke loose on a trip from NYC to our son's house in NJ. first the check engine light came on - I stopped and checked to see that the gas cap was on correctly as we had gotten gas. Followed manual and restarted the car - everything seemed fine, then all of a sudden the check engine light came on , the VSA lights, and the transmission downshifted two gears by itself. I tried restarting the car again, but each time, after about 30 seconds of operation, the same thing happened. We limped back into NYC - took the car to Paragon Honda in Queens - the result after several days of examination with the Regional Manager involved - something about transmission input and output modules replaced and the car pronounced "fine". Yeah, drove it home and it was not downshifting slowing down going into corners - came out of a slow turn in 5th , the transmission/engine lugging. I wasted no time - sold it immediately to a dealer in Texas on ebay and bought a used 2008 Acura RL with 18K on it for LESS than the Accord cost new. My highway mileage IMPROVED on the same trips from about 27 to 29-30 with the RL, and NO MORE VCM!!! That thing drove me nuts - seamless changing from 6-4-3 and back??? No way - I felt every change of cylinder management. Now I see that the Accord V6 has lost its recommended status as a used car by Consumer Reports. It is no wonder. Honda has lost me as a customer since 1981 since the new RL has VCM also. I will not own a Honda product with VCM. IF I need another car - my RL has 34,000 miles on it now - I am looking very seriously at the 2015 Hyundai Genesis with 8 speed transmission.
  • indydriverindydriver Posts: 620
    edited December 2013
    See thread "class action" or go to

    Bottom line, you can submit related out of pocket expenses for reimbursement and everyone gets an 8 year warranty against this problem.
  • dinofldinofl Posts: 53
    I received the class action letter as well. I would love to shove it in the face of all the Honda reps that basically ignored all my claims of problems and kept giving me the run around with the high speed forced wheel balancing line of crap! I traded it in 2011 for a VW CC and the VW is such a superior car and drives like a dream in comparison. Never again a VCM engine for me. Also hate the BMW engine off when stopped. That's another pile of crap!!
  • indydriverindydriver Posts: 620
    edited December 2013
    Glad you're happy with your Vdub. You should write a letter to the court. I am sure there are many owners who traded their VCM in exasperation and lost money on the trade value. This type of financial loss is not addressed by the settlement. Obviously, if you had actual out of pocket expenses, you should submit them.

    Of course, Honda is hoping very few people bother so that their expense and damage to their reputation is minimized.
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