Forget About the Pilot Brake Upgrade, Do this Instead.
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Thread: Forget About the Pilot Brake Upgrade, Do this Instead.

  1. #1
    Registered User MrRangerZr1's Avatar
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    Forget About the Pilot Brake Upgrade, Do this Instead.

    FINALLY, I found a solution to get a better brake pedal feel and stopping power from the wimpy stock 3rd gen odyssey brakes; stainless steel braided brake lines.

    Some people here have installed the pilot brakes on their odyssey. I tried it after these people made claims that their heads are hitting the windshield after installing pilot brakes lol not literally, but you get my point. (also placebo effect)

    Guess what...

    BIGGEST WASTE of time and money. The brake felt WORST with the pilot brake upgrade. Why? Now you have bigger calipers, brake fluid needs more time to get to the pistons. This results in more pedal travel than stock and no braking performance increased whatsoever. Going back to stock was better after the pilot brake upgrade.

    I thought stainless steel lines weren't going to do anything, especially with just the front stainless steel braided lines installed. I went ahead and installed just the FRONT lines with Dot 4 brake fluid. Now, I finally have better brake pedal feel and also better braking power. This is because the stainless steel braided lines do not flex/expand when you brake, fluid travels faster to the brake pistons and gives you better braking performance. I plan on installing the rear lines as well.

    No need to upgrade to bigger wheel setup with these lines. With the pilot brakes, you need to upgrade your stock wheels too.

    I recommend getting the clear stainless steel lines so you can easily inspect them.

    Here are videos on replacing the brake hoses and bleeding brakes. Stainless steel lines and Dot 4 brake fluid are linked in the videos. They are available for all of the odyssey generations.
    Brake hose replacement video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o7j8UPF-rmM
    Brake bleeding video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N70h87PMPrA
    Last edited by MrRangerZr1; 03-21-2019 at 12:01 AM.

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  3. #2
    Registered User Odyssey.owner's Avatar
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    Will try that. My stock break lines are due to replacement anyways.
    2010 Odyssey EX RES Canadian
    Bought @130K with preexisting trans problems
    DIYs:
    1.Timing belt with all related parts ( Continental kit ) + drive belt tensioner
    2. B&A Passenger side engine mount.
    3. Complete ATF change, DW1
    4. ATF changed to Valvoline MaxLife - slippage gone!
    5. Low beam bulbs replaced with 9012 HIR2. Twice more light!
    6. B&A control arms
    7. CENTRIC 12040064/12040065 Rotors, Akebono ProACT pads
    8. Magnefine ATF filter
    9. Lubegard Shudder Fix - better shifting

  4. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrRangerZr1 View Post
    FINALLY, I found a solution to get a better brake pedal feel and stopping power from the wimpy stock 3rd gen odyssey brakes; stainless steel braided brake lines.

    Some people here have installed the pilot brakes on their odyssey. I tried it after these people made claims that their heads are hitting the windshield after installing pilot brakes lol not literally, but you get my point. (also placebo effect)

    Guess what...

    BIGGEST WASTE of time and money. The brake felt WORST with the pilot brake upgrade. Why? Now you have bigger calipers, brake fluid needs more time to get to the pistons. This results in more pedal travel than stock and no braking performance increased whatsoever. Going back to stock was better after the pilot brake upgrade.

    I thought stainless steel lines weren't going to do anything, especially with just the front stainless steel braided lines installed. I went ahead and installed just the FRONT lines with Dot 4 brake fluid. Now, I finally have better brake pedal feel and also better braking power. This is because the stainless steel braided lines do not flex/expand when you brake, fluid travels faster to the brake pistons and gives you better braking performance. I plan on installing the rear lines as well.

    No need to upgrade to bigger wheel setup with these lines. With the pilot brakes, you need to upgrade your stock wheels too.

    I recommend getting the clear stainless steel lines so you can easily inspect them.

    Here are videos on replacing the brake hoses and bleeding brakes. Stainless steel lines and Dot 4 brake fluid are linked in the videos. They are available for all of the odyssey generations.
    Brake hose replacement video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o7j8UPF-rmM
    Brake bleeding video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N70h87PMPrA
    That's great. Can you recommend some good brands? Rockauto doesn't seen to carry any for the 2010 Odyssey.
    Last edited by whoa; 03-21-2019 at 06:58 AM.

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  6. #4
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    A general question regarding brakes, are Ody brakes like a 'Jekyll and Hdye' situation, where some people have good brakes and others have bad brakes?

    My other vehicle is a '98 BMW M3, with good brakes. My 2010 Ody also has good brakes and good pedal feel. What could be the difference or problem with the Ody vans and braking?

  7. #5
    Registered User Odyssey.owner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marvinstockman View Post

    What could be the difference or problem with the Ody vans and braking?
    I am guessing, high quality parts making big difference.

    I went from no-name crappy pads to Akebono pads, and new rotors, all 4. Difference - day and night.
    2010 Odyssey EX RES Canadian
    Bought @130K with preexisting trans problems
    DIYs:
    1.Timing belt with all related parts ( Continental kit ) + drive belt tensioner
    2. B&A Passenger side engine mount.
    3. Complete ATF change, DW1
    4. ATF changed to Valvoline MaxLife - slippage gone!
    5. Low beam bulbs replaced with 9012 HIR2. Twice more light!
    6. B&A control arms
    7. CENTRIC 12040064/12040065 Rotors, Akebono ProACT pads
    8. Magnefine ATF filter
    9. Lubegard Shudder Fix - better shifting

  8. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by marvinstockman View Post
    A general question regarding brakes, are Ody brakes like a 'Jekyll and Hdye' situation, where some people have good brakes and others have bad brakes?

    My other vehicle is a '98 BMW M3, with good brakes. My 2010 Ody also has good brakes and good pedal feel. What could be the difference or problem with the Ody vans and braking?
    Wish I knew...My 05 Touring has always had a great feel, even when replacing front rotors/pads with middle-of-the-road Advance rotors, my 10, with Centrics, not so much.
    '10 Touring Ody
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  9. #7
    Registered User John Clark's Avatar
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    If you're going to do the Pilot brake upgrade you really need the master cylinder to go along with it. The master cylinder is matched to the caliper piston size. It's just basic hydraulics.

    That said, brake hose flex is often the cause of soft pedal. It's just hard to find. My only problem with "upgrades" like this is what happened when I "upgraded" to the adjustable rear control arms. The ball joints on them wore out in around 50K miles. How long would these new brake lines last would be my biggest question. Replacing with four new OEM lines might be another option. If I was guaranteed 200K out of a set of stainless brake lines I'd probably be fine purchasing them.
    2008 Odyssey Touring-Silver
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  10. #8
    Registered User MrRangerZr1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by whoa View Post
    That's great. Can you recommend some good brands? Rockauto doesn't seen to carry any for the 2010 Odyssey.
    The stainless steel lines are linked in the videos I posted.

  11. #9
    Registered User MrRangerZr1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Clark View Post
    If you're going to do the Pilot brake upgrade you really need the master cylinder to go along with it. The master cylinder is matched to the caliper piston size. It's just basic hydraulics.

    That said, brake hose flex is often the cause of soft pedal. It's just hard to find. My only problem with "upgrades" like this is what happened when I "upgraded" to the adjustable rear control arms. The ball joints on them wore out in around 50K miles. How long would these new brake lines last would be my biggest question. Replacing with four new OEM lines might be another option. If I was guaranteed 200K out of a set of stainless brake lines I'd probably be fine purchasing them.
    YES good point, I was going to add that to my original post but it didn't let me. With any big brake kit, you have to upgrade the master cylinder too.

    You're right on longevity on aftermarket parts. Hopefully the lines last a long time and do not fail on me unexpectedly.

  12. #10
    Registered User Maxtierney's Avatar
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    Even though I've upgraded the brakes on just about every car I've owned, from Civics to Odysseys. I agree that braided brake lines make a great improvement in terms of brake performance and pedal feel. Something that is often overlooked is your brake fluid. Fluids have to deal with a lot of heat (especially on our 4,500lb Odysseys) and are hygroscopic by nature. It absorbs water over time, which is a major contributor to spongy pedal feel. OEM Honda DOT3 brake fluid, with its relatively low wet and dry boiling points, don't help. Upgrading to a quality DOT4 fluid like Motul or ATe is well worth the investment. ATe Type 200, in my opinion, is the best fluid for the money. It's 536 degrees Fahrenheit dry and 374 degrees Fahrenheit wet boiling points are unbeatable, at $15 a quart. It's wet boiling point outperforms most, if not all, DOT3 fluid dry boiling points. Meaning, 5 year old, water saturated ATe fluid will outperform and feel better than fresh Honda DOT3, out of the bottle.

  13. #11
    Super Moderator dvpatel's Avatar
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    Well. That is an interesting turn of events. I was still contemplating the expense. I am with marvinman. How some people perceive their brakes are really bad and need an upgrade is a mystery. I am replying to his question in the other thread as he asked me there.
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  14. #12
    Registered User Maxtierney's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marvinstockman View Post
    A general question regarding brakes, are Ody brakes like a 'Jekyll and Hdye' situation, where some people have good brakes and others have bad brakes?

    My other vehicle is a '98 BMW M3, with good brakes. My 2010 Ody also has good brakes and good pedal feel. What could be the difference or problem with the Ody vans and braking?
    Aside from pedal feel (which has been addressed by pads, braided lines and fluids), braking performance is mainly determined by your tires. Tire age, wear and composition can affect braking distances dramatically. Low-rolling resistance, eco and long life, low tread wear tires typically perform worse than "performance" and three season tires. Most people don't pay much attention to the temperature and/or wet braking performance, but I try not to buy tires with less than an A/AA or A/A rating, even if that means sacrificing some longevity. This may be the reason, braking characteristic between Odysseys (or any car, for that matter) vary. Most owners have the same pads, rotors and fluid, but tire choices differ. People buy tires based on cost, climate, fuel efficiency, performance, safety, load rating, noise, comfort, etc. My $.02
    Last edited by Maxtierney; 03-21-2019 at 07:59 PM.

  15. #13
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    I have to disagree! The brakes on the 3rd gen fall short period. Yes upgraded lines will help but if your van is at capacity and your brakes get hot they will fade even with top of the line pads and dot 4 fluid. I have been there done that. There are plenty of complaints about the brakes on these vans' most people probably wont notice the shortfall just driving normally. When the factory garbage rotors get hot they warp leaving you with the uninspiring front end shake with fading and another repair. This upgrade was a must for me as we load the van up for routine river outings and i pull a trailer with 2 seadoos. These vans have a tow rating of 3500 pounds and would be downright scary if fast braking was needed or maintaining speed on a long downgrade. What i have noticed is a much improved resistance to fade in spirited driving and heavy braking situations. In my opinion if you want a more robust system this upgrade is worth it if you drive like grandma and do not max out the van then you may just benefit from better pads and lines however this upgrade WILL result in better stronger more fade resistant brakes. As far as pedal travel i only noticed a 3/16 difference in travel with much better feedback than the stock setup as under heavy braking you do not have to push as hard resulting in less pedal travel. On the rubber side of things i am running 235/55/18 Honda pilot wheels i also installed new bearings struts and shocks and control arms all the way around when doing this modification. I am just stating my experience with this upgrade i am also a mechanic with 30 years in the automotive and powersports racing industry. Attachment 147367Attachment 147365Attachment 147369

  16. #14
    Registered User John Clark's Avatar
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    As a 30 year mechanic you would know that modern vented brake rotors rarely warp. Pad material is embedded into the rotor unevenly, causing a "warped" feeling in the brake pedal and/or steering wheel. A hot rotor (coming down a mountain pass, towing, hard stop on the freeway, or going to the track, and then the vehicle stopped with pressure on the brake pedal,) will do this if pads are not properly bedded. If you're towing or going to the track then you may need different pads or even this Pilot brake upgrade but, for most people, standard pads are fine if they are properly bedded.
    2008 Odyssey Touring-Silver
    2011 VW Jetta SE-Black-Totaled
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    2002 GMC Sierra SLT LB Z71-Red
    1998 Nissan 200SX SE-Blue

  17. #15
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    Yes modern rotors are better than they were years ago. Our brake lathe sees rotors with runout all the time and its not pad material we are cutting off of them' rotors with excessive buildup of uneven material can usually be cured with several hard stops. Brake rotors develop runout for different reasons the primary one is heat. When a rotor is hot and the vehicle is brought to a stop the high heat density stored in the pad continues to heat the contact area of the rotor causing hard spots in the rotor' these areas are higher than the surrounding material and cause a shimmy or pulsing feeling in the steering and/or pedal. This is all pretty common knowledge to professional techs but most shops will still cut the rotor and the problem will return shortly as these hard spots form deep in the casting and can not be cut away. These conditions are mostly seen in high performance applications however a vehicle with a substandard braking system that is driven hard will exhibit the same symptoms. There are many complaints with the 3rd gen odyssey brakes with the customer paying over and over again to have the rotors (Resurfaced) when many times it is just as John Clark described as uneven buildup on the contact surface of the rotor however the factory honda rotor when pushed hard will not perform as well as the competition and for that reason i do not use them. Manufactures have to balance cost vs performance and sometimes brake systems are compromised in this process.

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