Is a Honda Pilot Expensive To Maintain?

Honda is a popular car brand that has many loyal customers and it is easy to see why. Honda was created by Soichiro Honda in 1946 and since then has become loved by many people all over the world. One of their most popular SUVs is their acclaimed Honda Pilot; however, despite being a popular model do you ever wonder if a Honda Pilot is expensive to maintain?

Honda vehicles are known across the field as being reliable and similar to Toyota, they have an amazing resale value. If you are looking for a used vehicle then you cannot go wrong with a Honda. Yet just because they are reliable and well priced does not mean that they are inexpensive to maintain. If you own a Honda Pilot or if you are thinking about buying one, whether new or used this is good information to know. Just how much would you be forking out for your Honda Pilot?

Let’s find out.

Are Honda Pilots Expensive to Maintain?

So, are Honda Pilots expensive to maintain? When it comes to family sized SUVs the Honda Pilot is not considered and expensive SUV to maintain. The average Honda Pilot owner should expect to spend $542 per year according to RepairPal’s website.

That’s not the whole store, so let’s dig into the details.

All About Honda Pilots: What Makes Honda Pilots Such Great Cars?

In a sea of SUVs and family vans, it is difficult for any SUV to stand out but the Honda Pilot still gets the job done. It is spacious, more on the affordable end, reliable and is fuel-efficient.

The Honda Pilot is so impressive in fact, that for their 2020 model, Honda decided not to make any big changes to their newest Honda Pilot.  Why fix something that is not broken right?

The only notable change for 2020, is the new Black Edition trim level which is both aesthetically pleasing as well as exciting. The last time Honda made any serious changes to their beloved Pilot was back in 2016, for their third-generation launch. After that, however, not a lot of changes were made or as some customers might argue, needed.

Honda Pilots are not only reliable on the road but they are reliable overall as they prove year after year that they have a formula that works and they are sticking with it.

So what makes Honda Pilots such great cars?

Excellent Fuel Economy

When you think about a Honda Pilot one of the first aspects that might pop into your mind is fuel efficiency and that actually goes for Honda vehicles across the board.

The 2020 Honda Pilot beats out its competitors in terms of gas efficiency and drivers love it for that.

Honda Pilots with their all-wheel drive and 9-speed transmission will give you 19 miles per gallon city and 26 miles per gallon highway.

If you prefer a four-wheel-drive however, you can get about 24 miles per gallon combined.

That is more than impressive for an SUV that is large enough to fit in an extra third-row.

Powerful Engine

Hondas, on the other hand, are not known for their powerful engines. It does not mean that they do not have great engines, just that it is not their forte.

However, the 2020 Honda Pilot does come with a standard V6 engine which is not the most powerful engine out there but it is still pretty good for an SUV.

The 3.5-liter V6 engine yields 280 HP as well as 262 lb-ft of torque.

The six-speed automatic transmission is standard on most trim levels as well.

However, if you are looking for something with a bit more power, then you should look into the 9-speed automatic. It is only available on the Touring trim and higher.

Great Interior Design

Hondas are all about efficiency and that does not only apply to the exterior.

Inside the 2020 Honda Pilot, there are 16 cubic feet of cargo space-this is when you have all your seats in the upright position as well. When all the seats are folded down, however,  you will get 84 cubic feet of cargo space.

You might be thinking “that does not seem like much” and you are right. Compared to other SUVs out there, that cargo space is merely okay.

However, Honda makes up for this by the way they designed the load floor-you are able to hold items underneath which will give you even more storage space.

There are also many great storage units scattered throughout your Honda Pilot. This makes it great to keep items organized.

Comfortable Ride Quality

At the end of the day, there is nothing quite like a comfortable car ride home.

This is especially nice if you live in an area where the terrain is quite bumpy or if the road you take to work is filled with small bumps or dips. This can drive anyone crazy but luckily for you, these annoyance are made manageable by the Honda Pilot

When you are driving a Honda Pilot, very little outside noise will get in. The cabin quality is quite nice. You will not be hearing the loud traffic noises, the whistling of the wind, or the music blasting from the car next to you.

However, sometimes the noise could be coming from you. Most SUVs have loud engines but that is not the case with the Honda Pilot.

Comfort does not just mean quiet with the Honda Pilot. Whether you are taking it on a long road trip or whether you just drive it day-to-day, you can rest assured that you will feel comfortable in your seat. The design of the seats will make you want to drive your Honda Pilot because they are not stiff or uncomfortable. That goes for your passengers as well.

All About Maintaining A Honda Pilot

How much does it cost to maintain a Honda Pilot?

According to Repair Pal’s website, the annual maintenance cost of a Honda Pilot is roughly around $542.00 a year.

However, repair and maintenance costs do vary from person to person and it depends on a variety of factors such as but not limited to:

  • How well the Honda Pilot was taken care of:
  • Did you forget to get an oil change even though the engine light turned on?
  • Did you bring it in for quarterly maintenance checks?
  • Where you live/where you drive it:
  • If you live in an area where the terrain is more rocky or uneven then it could do more damage to your Honda Pilot versus someone who lives in an area where the terrain is smooth and even.
  • The weather also plays a big factor in the maintenance of your Honda Pilot as well. Do you live in an area that is scorching hot for the majority of the year? If so, it can do damage to the exterior paint of your car as well as damage the dashboard of your vehicle as well. Do be sure to park your Honda Pilot in a shady spot or in the garage to avoid sun damage.
  • The opposite is also trying, snow and heavy rain could also be damaging to your Honda Pilot.
  • Was it new or used?
  • A brand new Honda Pilot will have less trouble than a used one but because Hondas are so reliable, that is not always the case. However if you had bought your Honda Pilot used and the previous owner or owners did not care for the Pilot well, then it could also affect how much money you will need to spend on maintenance.
  • How often do you drive it?
  • If you drive your Honda Pilot every day and your work commute is quite far, then you will need to get your Honda Pilot checked out more often than someone who uses their Honda Pilot a few times a week. A long commute is not bad especially seeing how fuel-efficient the Honda Pilot is but you will rack up your mileage quicker than someone who puts less than 5,000 miles on their Honda Pilot a year.

Do keep in mind that the $542.00 is just a rough estimate as prices and costs may vary depending on your local auto mechanic.

What are the most common Honda Pilot issues?

Here are 10 reported problems that seem to be the most common among Honda Pilot owners.

  • Warped front brake rotors cause a vibration when braking
  • The engine takes a while to warm up
  • Harsh or difficult shifting due to broken front engine mount
  • Check engine light problems
  • Chirping timing belt problems
  • Wire Harness overheats easily
  • Map light does not turn on when doors are open
  • Water leak issues
  • Brake pad issues
  • Carbon buildup on the throttle body

Frequently Asked Questions

Do Honda pilots last long?

  • Honda Pilots are on Cheat Sheet’s  25 Cars that Can You to 300,000 miles so that should tell you a thing or two about the lasting power of a Honda Pilot.
  • However as emphasized throughout this article, this heavily depends on how well you take care of the car and less on the Honda Pilot itself.
  • If you take care of your Honda Pilot and are able to keep up with its maintenance checkups then your Honda Pilot will be able to go the distance with you.

Do Honda pilots have transmission problems?

Yes. In fact, the most common and most recurring issues when it comes to Honda Pilot has to do with its transmission.

With older models, the problem seems to stem from slippage. Yet in others, it is due to the transmission fluid mixing with the radiator fluid.

In more severe issues, the transmission fails completely and that will require a replacement.

This is a valid concern when it comes to the Honda Pilot because repairing a transmission is not an easy job and it is very costly.

A used or usable transmission ranges from $800-$1,500.

However, a new transmission will cost you anywhere from $1,100 to $2,800.

If you are interested in a remanufactured transmission, however, then you are looking to pay anywhere from $1,300 to $3,400.

Oh and we cannot forget labor which can range from $500 to $1,200 for up to four through ten hours of billed time.

The bottom line: even if regular upkeep and maintenance for your Honda Pilot are fairly reasonable, you will have to bite the bullet if your Honda Pilot has any sort of transmission problem.


Is the Honda Pilot a reliable car?

Should I buy a Honda Pilot with 100,000 miles?

This question should be considered in two aspects.

One being the asking price: a Honda Pilot with 100,000 miles on it has definitely been through a lot. However, it does not mean that the Honda Pilot is not in good condition. If the Honda Pilot is in good condition, you have to decide based on the asking price. How much is the seller asking for?

Secondly, it is, as mentioned above, what condition is it in? Even though your Honda Pilot can take you to 300,000 miles, it does not mean that it will. This will highly depend on how well the previous owner took care of their Honda Pilot. A Honda Pilot with a damaged engine will get you nowhere, no matter how cheap the asking price is.

How many miles does a Honda Pilot usually last?

What is great about Honda Pilots or Honda as a company, in general, is that their vehicles are made to last for a long time.

If your Honda Pilot is maintained well (do not skip those maintenance routines) then it should last you around 150,000 on average or around 10 years.

However, it does have the potential to go up to 300,000 miles but only if it is taken care of well.

Do keep in mind that once your Honda Pilot reaches the 100,000 to 150,000 mark then you will start to see some problems occur especially with the engine. However, that is to be expected in older vehicles.

How well do Honda Pilots hold value?

To put it plain and simply, Honda Pilots hold their value extremely well.

This has a lot to do with Honda as a brand in general for making cars that last throughout the years and that is no exception when it comes to Honda Pilots.

According to Ryde Shopper, Honda Pilots rank as the top five best cars that hold their resale value. To read this article and to learn more about why the Honda Pilot made it on their list, please check out their article: “Top 9 Cars that Hold their Resale Value.”  

If resale value is a concern for you, then you can rest assured that this will not be a problem if you decide to sell your Honda Pilot. Honda Pilots are known to be reliable, practical, and able to withhold a strong resale value.


The Takeaway| Is a Honda Pilot Right For You?

Honda Pilots are great if you are looking for a fuel-efficient and reliable SUV. They are a great day-to-day vehicle and you will not have to worry about pumping at the gas station a few times a week even if you have a long commute to work. This is why customers love their Honda Pilots so much. They know what they are getting year after year and they know that their Honda Pilot will not only treat them well, but they will also treat the next person who drives it great as well.

However, if you are looking for a powerful V8 engine or an SUV that you can go off-roading with then you might want to stick with other SUVs.

Honda Pilots are also quite affordable to maintain as they do not require much maintenance aside from the usual oil change, tire changes, and engine check which is standard with any vehicle.

If you take care of your Honda Pilot, then maintenance will cost you very little.


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