My Honda Pilot - 195,000.00

I purchased my 2009 Honda Pilot used from a dealership about ten years ago, it now has 195,000 miles, and it’s beginning to cost money $$$$. What’s the average life of a Honda Pilot. I understand Honda’s run forever, it’s the only make I’ve ever purchased

Well , you understand wrong . Forever is a long time . Mechanical things do wear out. There is no such thing as average life for any vehicle. If the repair costs are a concern then it might be time to replace it . That is a decision only you and your bank account can make.


All vehicles need maintenance, so not sure what kind of money it’s costing you. Is this maintenance or repairs?..there’s a difference.

Honda and Toyota make quality vehicles, but the key is maintenance. Keep up on the Preventative maintenance and take care of little problems quickly before they become big problems.

If properly maintained and not abused they can last several hundred thousand miles.

Virtually any modern vehicle can run “forever”–or at least for a very long time–IF it is properly maintained, and as long as you are willing to keep repairing it.

At 195k miles, you are rapidly approaching the need to replace the timing belt for the second time. If you have never replaced the timing belt, then I suggest that you have this work done tomorrow, lest you destroy the engine.

The real weak spot on these vehicles is the transmission.
Have you changed the trans fluid every 3 yrs/30k miles?
If not, then you will be needing an expensive trans overhaul in the very near future.

What can you tell us about this vehicle’s maintenance over the past 10 years?

You bought into a myth, I’m afraid. I believe that myth started back a few decades (when there actually was a significant difference in car reliability), but lives on in people’s minds.

It’s like the old saying, “Two can live as cheaply as one.”
Many people are unaware of the rest of that saying, “But, only for half as long!”

Most modern cars are capable of delivering good service for well over 250,000 or 275,000 miles, with only basic maintenance. For example, I buy used GM cars (for a fraction of the price for a new one) that have over 100,000 miles on them and drive them, without costing $$$$ up to at least 250,000 miles and that was in salt country and then the rust is what kills cars. Now that I’m in Florida during salt season I might be driving my cars literally forever.

I will never buy a Honda, but I’m curious. What is it on this Honda that is beginning to cost $$$$ at only 195,000 miles?

I’m frugal, however, I’ve just replaced all four brakes, and two rotors, now I might have to replace the caliper.

Thanks for your reply, I got a chuckle from my expectation, Lol, I know better

Brake repair is something that has to be done periodically on any vehicle.
What can you tell us about your Pilot’s preventive maintenance over the past 10 years, especially the timing belt and trans fluid changes?

That is just normal wear that is necessary on any brand. You might find an independent shop and pay them about 100.00 to 125.00 to look at your vehicle for things that need to be taken care of .

Oh I wish that were true.

You are at 195000 miles and are complaining about a brake job? Brakes are a wear item so just maintenance. You do have very unrealistic expectations. Just curious, how did you buy a used 2009 car in 2009?

I’ve purchased used cars that were less than a year old in the year corresponding to their model-year.
2009 model-year cars were built as early as late summer/2008.
the car’s mfg. date tag has that information.

If you just had to replace the brakes, fluids, and filters, you are doing very well with your Pilot. After about 150,000 miles, things start to wear out on any vehicle. I had a 2005 Accord and replaced it in 2017 with 186,000 miles on it. The only repairs I did were replacing the rear brake calipers and the hood struts. Maintenance included brake pads, brake rotors, oil, filters, and tires. You can’t avoid maintenance if you want to avoid repairs.

As for the timing belt, that is due at 210,000 miles or 14 years, whichever comes first. Do this as required. If the belt breaks because you missed this maintenance item, it could destroy your engine. It cost me $700 in 2012 to change the timing belt, water pump, coolant, and serpentine belt. That is the minimum you should get. Make sure whoever does the work inspects the pulleys and oils seals, too. The Pilot is old enough that they might need replacement, too. I got the job done at the dealer because they were the cheapest. Get three estimates.

Honda makes excellent vehicles with excellent reliability. If well maintained and driven gently, should last 10 years /150K miles. At around that mark however problems will usually develop. Someone diy’er inclined can fix most of them in their driveway, and shop-out the other few, and still be better off $$$-wise than buying a new car. But if you have to shop-out all the repairs, this can get pretty expensive, and common sense says even w/a well-made car, it is good idea to start looking for a newer vehicle around the 10 year/150K mark imo.

My 2009 wasn’t so good. This engine has the cylinder deactivation system and my cam on one side was shot at 128k. I changed the oil every 5k. I had it since it was new. 2009 was the first year of the redesign. I have talked to other people who had the same problem. These do last long but they get expensive as the miles get higher.

They do last long …
… but they get expensive as the miles get higher.

Asian car longevity myth? A throw-back from yesteryear?

Like I said above…


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Stop behaving poorly, CSA. All cars become more expensive to maintain as they age. Traditional Asian cars, many of which are assembled in the USA these days, do tend to start having problems later than Detroit 3 or traditional European cars. I liked my 2005 Accord so much that I compared another Accord to an Impala and Avalon in 2017. The Accord won, although I really like the Impala a lot. When Mrs JT gets in the buying mood, I’ll look at Detroit 3 cars because we’ve had success with them. I’ll also look at traditional foreign brands, too. I’m a globalist (I’m sooooo bad).

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I have always bought used cars and this is the way I look at repairs.

The below theory does not include, oil changes, brakes, tires, or any other item that you would do as routine maintenance

If the car is paid off, you are not spending $300.00 a month on a used car payment. Saving $3600.00 per year.
If the maintenance on a used car is $1200 year you still are saving $2400.00 per year.

Granted, you don’t want to always be spending big bucks on repairs, and at some point it is time for something newer.
A new transmission one year and $1500 to rebuild the entire front suspension would be a bug cost, but the next few years you may not spend more than a few hundred on repairs.
It all has to be weighed carefully.

If you saved that $2400/ yr for four years, you would have enough to buy a pretty nice used car, or put that money down on a new car that will have a warranty on repairs.


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Mileage isn’t a perfect measure of a vehicle’s condition and at the age and mileage of yours its service and usage history are significant factors in judging the likely remaining life of major components like engine and transmission. (It’s kind of like evaluating a 70 yr old man.) After roughly 150,000 mi. or so the accessories and sensors and CV joints don’t owe you anything and the failure of a few now and then doesn’t mean the car is worn out - best to budget for the failure of some of them and this may be a lot cheaper than the expenses of a new car. You might even want to replace selected items proactively as insurance against being left on the road (my favorites are fuel pumps, thermostats, and any pressurized rubber and plastic in the cooling system including radiators with plastic end tanks.