It?s time for my 2001 Honda Accord 105K scheduled maintenance. I find it will be quiet expensive to do the entire list all at once. I would like to break it up and do the maintenance in two visits.
My question is what you would recommend doing first and foremost?
Please, any money stretching advice would be useful.
Is this the work list given to you by the dealer, or did you read it in the owner’s manual?
I would take the list in the manual, go to a good independent garage, and do the ESSENTIAL things as quickly as possible. Those might be the timing belt/water pump and tensioner. Doing this as well as oil chnages, ensures that your engine will last its normal design life with is 3 times your current mileage.
You can do the others, such as draining the transmission fluid, brake fluid and such things a little later, again by the same mechanic.
Since your car is now out of warranty, and Hondas have conservative design factors, you are not living on borrowed time if you don’t do these things immediately.
Many unscrupulous Honda owners do almost no maintenance, and sell their cars after 4 years to an unsuspecting buyer.
It would be helpful if you gave us the list from your owner’s manual. Otherwise only people with Honda Accords can help you here.
Regardless, I assume you’re due (or even overdue) for a timing belt. Get that done right away, unless you have a few thousand dollars sitting around ready to use on an engine repair or replacement.
The list is attached.
The big ticket item, AND the most important item on the list is the replacement of the timing belt.
Even though the car has apparently just reached 105k miles, the timing belt needed to be replaced at ~8 years of elapsed time, even if the car has not yet reached 105k miles. Thus, your car is grossly overdue for this procedure unless you had it done already.
When the belt snaps without warning (not IF it snaps), the damage to valves and pistons will cost ~$2k to repair, over and above the cost of the timing belt replacement. If you don’t replace the timing belt a.s.a.p, you don’t need to worry about any of the other 105k maintenance because the engine will be a wreck anyway when the belt snaps.
What the maintenance list does not mention is that the water pump, the serpentine belt, and all belt tensioners should be replaced at the same time as the timing belt. Depending upon where you live in the US, assume that the timing belt, water pump, serpentine belt and belt tensioner replacments will run ~$500–or more.
After you have replaced the timing belt, then you can spend the money needed on the other 105k maintenance procedures.
In actuality, at 105k miles this car should be approaching its 4th valve lash inspection.
While it’s not recommended (the factory recommendations are not always the correct ones as to what is best for your car), from a purely mechanical longevity standpoint it’s a process that should be performed.
Most people will luck out by not having this done. For the smaller percentage that gamble and lose it can be an expensive proposition so you have to decide if you want to be part of a larger lucky percentage or a smaller unlucky percentage.
The one critical item is the timing belt being changed. A failure of this item will cause damage likely 2-3 times the price of full 105k service.
The other item I would definitely have performed soon thereafter is change transmission fluid if automatic. They are prone to failure.
The rest can wait and be done slowly when funds come along.