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Greetings, I'm a new forum member, who is very naive with car/van matters. I did do a search on my problem and found interesting info, but not any answers to my questions.

I was told today by Honda, after a valve adjustment that they said was needed because of clicking/knock sound, that it's actually deeper, and is probably a piston problem which would require a new engine.

2000 Odyssey with 85,000 miles. Had timing belt done last year at 80,000m because of age (this is when they initially found the valve problem).

Question: is this safe to drive? Honda said it was safe, but there was no telling when the piston will give out, or if it will give out at all.

Question: Would the engine give out without any warning? Is there something to look for or listen for? We are planning on driving this on a 1000 mile round trip in a couple weeks. Is this advisable?

Thanks for any help you can provide.
 

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This sounds like piston slap. It's acceptable in a cold engine but usually goes away when the engine heats up and the piston expands in the cylinder.

Honda's assessment seems objective enough. There's no way to say for sure what will happen, or if anything will happen.

If the noise is soft enough to be mistaken for a loose valve, I wouldn't worry about it. Take your trip as planned. Don't baby the engine, but don't do any full-throttle accelerations either.

What you can do is to monitor the sound for getting louder. If its volume increases, then engine failure may be closer. These engines rarely fail in this way, so I don't expect the noise to get any worse.
 

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It's safe. It may be a good idea to switch to a 0W-40 oil to protect the cylinder a little more on start up and at temperature.
 
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