Short cut repair method: EGR Valve Port (Carbon Problem) Repair Code P0401
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Thread: Short cut repair method: EGR Valve Port (Carbon Problem) Repair Code P0401

  1. #1
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    Short cut repair method: EGR Valve Port (Carbon Problem) Repair Code P0401

    Thought I would share this info...

    My 2000 model had the maint. light come on. My garage pulled the code from the computer...it was "P0401". This translates to "insufficient erg flow". After researching this on this forum and Google, it appears that this is a very common problem with Hondas and its basically only a carbon build up.

    HERE IS WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW...
    1. You don NOT have to install the repair kit as described in Hondas Service bulletin # 00-009. A simple cleaning will suffice...probably for another 95k miles (at least that's how long it took mine to clog and trigger the maint. light)
    2. The attached youtube video is great to show you how to make the repair...but I found that you can skip a few steps and will take half the time. Watch the video and read the service bulletin first...then my short cut info will make more sense.

    Short cut method:
    1. There is no need to remove the "rear ignition coil cover". (step 1 in service bulletin)
    2. There is no need to disconnect the throttle body from the intake manifold! (A huge time saver and won't need the new gasket) Step 3 in service bulletin.
    3. No need to remove the front "intake manifilold end plate"...only the rear one. Step 5 in service bulletin.
    4. Perform all other disconnects.
    5. Prop up the left side of intake manifold with a small piece of wood. Lay a lint free rag or towel over cylinder openings.
    6. Clean erg port out on intake manifold & on the corresponding manifold port that seats up to it. Basically, 2 ports that are connected when intake manifold is bolted down. Use carb cleaner, drill bit (by hand only), shop vac, etc. Just clean "tar" like carbon deposits out.
    7. Reassemble.
    8. Disconnect power to battery. Will reset maint light. Reattach.

    Should be good to Go!

    P,S. This took me only about 40 minutes. Probably could do it in 30 now that I have done it once. Probably saved $400 from a dealer repair charge!

    Good luck!

    Youtube tutorial link:

    [ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zC6FkziI1ds]‪1999 Honda Odyssey Van EGR Valve Port Carbon Problem Repair Fix Code P0401‬‏ - YouTube[/ame]

    pdf file link:
    http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sourc...PhL8IKHG5btp9w

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  3. #2
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    Our van just started throwing this code. It is a 2000 with approximatley 155,000 miles. However, we bought it used a little over two years ago with around 130,000 on the clock so I am not quite sure what was done to it before then. I live in KY which does not require us to pass a sniff/smog test to get our tags each year. If I am not noticing any driveability problems and do not have to pass the test each year do I need to even worry about wasting my time trying to clean out the EGR passages?

  4. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by mustangcobra93 View Post
    Our van just started throwing this code. It is a 2000 with approximatley 155,000 miles. However, we bought it used a little over two years ago with around 130,000 on the clock so I am not quite sure what was done to it before then. I live in KY which does not require us to pass a sniff/smog test to get our tags each year. If I am not noticing any driveability problems and do not have to pass the test each year do I need to even worry about wasting my time trying to clean out the EGR passages?
    Not exactly sure, but my mechanic said it wasn't hurting anything by leaving it alone. For me it was about staring at the dang light for over a year. My local garage didn't really want to do the job and I knew I would have to go to a dealer to get it done. As a long time customer, they passed my inspection anyway knowing it wasn't a serious thing. Not sure if they would do the same to others though.

    Trust me, if your somewhat mechanically inclined, it really is easy to do. Especially my short cut method where instead of removing the intake manifold, it is just propped up on left side. Plenty of room to clean out the ports.

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  6. #4
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    Good video, here are a couple of points, the openings in the head to the intake valve should have been covered. Comment to thank Al Gore is not exactly correct. EGR system is part of the emissions system but its purpose is to help prevent preignition.

  7. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by ohboyhonda View Post
    EGR system is part of the emissions system but its purpose is to help prevent preignition.
    Nope.
    The purpose of the EGR system is to recirculate exhaust gases back into the intake to dilute the mixture and decrease the temperature of combustion so the formation of NOx is reduced.

  8. #6
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    I once had to take off the EGR itself and clean the passage from that port on the inlet runners all the way to the EGR. There is a TSB that reroutes the EGR ports but perhaps that's for another thread....

  9. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by davek22 View Post
    Thought I would share this info...

    My 2000 model had the maint. light come on. My garage pulled the code from the computer...it was "P0401". This translates to "insufficient erg flow". After researching this on this forum and Google, it appears that this is a very common problem with Hondas and its basically only a carbon build up.

    HERE IS WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW...
    1. You don NOT have to install the repair kit as described in Hondas Service bulletin # 00-009. A simple cleaning will suffice...probably for another 95k miles (at least that's how long it took mine to clog and trigger the maint. light)
    2. The attached youtube video is great to show you how to make the repair...but I found that you can skip a few steps and will take half the time. Watch the video and read the service bulletin first...then my short cut info will make more sense.

    Short cut method:
    1. There is no need to remove the "rear ignition coil cover". (step 1 in service bulletin)
    2. There is no need to disconnect the throttle body from the intake manifold! (A huge time saver and won't need the new gasket) Step 3 in service bulletin.
    3. No need to remove the front "intake manifilold end plate"...only the rear one. Step 5 in service bulletin.
    4. Perform all other disconnects.
    5. Prop up the left side of intake manifold with a small piece of wood. Lay a lint free rag or towel over cylinder openings.
    6. Clean erg port out on intake manifold & on the corresponding manifold port that seats up to it. Basically, 2 ports that are connected when intake manifold is bolted down. Use carb cleaner, drill bit (by hand only), shop vac, etc. Just clean "tar" like carbon deposits out.
    7. Reassemble.
    8. Disconnect power to battery. Will reset maint light. Reattach.

    Should be good to Go!

    P,S. This took me only about 40 minutes. Probably could do it in 30 now that I have done it once. Probably saved $400 from a dealer repair charge!

    Good luck!

    Youtube tutorial link:

    ‪1999 Honda Odyssey Van EGR Valve Port Carbon Problem Repair Fix Code P0401‬‏ - YouTube

    pdf file link:
    http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sourc...PhL8IKHG5btp9w
    I'm grateful you posted this info. I fixed my EGR problem this afternoon. It was really easy with your helpful hints. I had not been looking forward to tackling this project, but your insight made it a breeze. Thanks for taking the time to post your solution.

    Chuck

  10. #8
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    Hi
    Im also having this p0401 code on my 2000 ody lx. I have already cleaned the port in the intake manifold but the light went back up. Earlier i tried cleaning the egr valve itself but the light still went back on plus my car is now vibrating at low speed. Any thoughts on what should i do next and what have i done wrong that caused the vibration. Thanks

  11. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jop2x View Post
    Hi
    Im also having this p0401 code on my 2000 ody lx. I have already cleaned the port in the intake manifold but the light went back up. Earlier i tried cleaning the egr valve itself but the light still went back on plus my car is now vibrating at low speed. Any thoughts on what should i do next and what have i done wrong that caused the vibration. Thanks
    Try removing and cleaning the EGR valve again. It's likely that the valve is gummed up. Before re-installing the valve, spray some gumout down in the manifold passages, then start the engine with the valve still off. This should help blow out some more of the deposits remaining in the exhaust manifold. If the check engine light comes back on, remove and clean the EGR valve again. It may take several times before the EGR valve stops getting dirty. I ended up also getting a 3M kit to clean out the entire intake system 3M Do-It-Yourself Fuel System Tune-Up Kit 08963. I don't know for sure, but I suspect the rough engine is due to a dirty EGR valve or, perhaps, the EGR gasket isn't making a good-enough seal. If the seal is bad, the engine will indeed run rough.

  12. #10
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    Could be a bad coil- when my egr clogged up i got a misfire and one of my coils went bad.
    tdpark

  13. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by tdpark View Post
    Could be a bad coil- when my egr clogged up i got a misfire and one of my coils went bad.
    Agreed. Best (and easy) to eliminate ignition issues as a cause of the vibration...

    The way to check coil function is to disconnect power to each coil momentarily (by carefully pulling the electrical connector free) and listen for a slight drop in RPM of the idling engine. When you disconnect a working coil you will hear the slight drop in RPM. No RPM drop, coil is suspect. Then swap that coil to a working cylinder to make sure the problem moves with the coil. In my case the #2 coil was dead, the other 5 were fine. This is all after I changed EGR and plugs.

  14. #12
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    Just to clarify, it sounds like following this method I would not need to order any parts at all (gaskets), correct?

  15. #13
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    ETCG does a great vid on this:

    P0401, 1999 Acura TL Honda V6 - YouTube

  16. #14
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    Thanks davek22. Used the updated TSB from dvpatel and followed this short cut. I did unbolt the throttle body and took out the manifold. Did lots of cleaning. It was easier and I used the seafoam spray. I cleaned the inside of throttle body lightly too. I followed the advice in the ETCG video. Did not have to disconnect any hoses. I had lots of deposits in the manifold. So I lightly flushed it. Now I kind of get why both front and rear end plates are removed (I did not remove the front) ... for cleaning. I used a screwdriver and allen wrenches instead of a drill to clean out the crud. There was a lot.

    Mine looks like it does not have the EGR TSB done on it. Is there a way to tell if it was drilled and that pipe inserted? I noticed a no 6 size hole and slight indent/groove but I guess it should be a bigger hole?

    It runs much better now again. Even my slippage got less since it picks up better. I have to tackle another leak somewhere next.

    Thanks again.

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    pics during egr port cleaning
    Attached Images Attached Images
    |-2008 Ody T [email protected]/2016 VCMuzzler2; Goodyear Assurance 3Tread, (90040) TruCool LPD 4544 +Magnefine 3/8in filter; All Wheel bearings replaced; Centric rotors+Akebono pads; 4 ATF d/f; oem cargo tray; weathertech floor liners; New thermostat + ect1 sensor (89k); (93537) Airlift 1000 bags, Interior LEDs; 94600mi TB, SP, PS fluid;
    |-2001 Ody EX (sold 149k mi)
    |-2000 Accord EX V6 Coupe (232k, sold, downsizing)

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