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My 2004 Odyssey will be due for a timing belt replacement soon. So I have been using the "search" function on this forum and the web to find as much info as possible before I decide if this is a DIY project.

Everything I have found on this site regarding the timing belt replacement makes it seem like a very do-able DIY project. But then I found this.

Timing belt on a 2004 Honda Odyssey? - Yahoo! Answers

Is this true? Why has it never been discussed in the many write-ups I have read?
 

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Done these belts for years but never had to do a relearn. The Crank position sensor just counts teeth and knows where the crank tdc is. The crank has a woodruff key and only goes on one way. Strange that this guy reports that the engines cross odyssey generation lines (2003 - 2006 engines?)

Anyway, line the timing marks up, make sure it's tensioned ok, hand turn the engine over 2 or three times and recheck that the timing marks line up and you should be ok. Watch that rear cam sprocket! It will move on you if you don't watch it!
 

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Second on the tool to hold harmonic damper, you can it the bolt off via the starter trick, but to get it torque back on you will need the tool. You should be able to find the tool else where to about $25
 

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Just did this job a couple of weeks ago. Unless you work on tractor trailers or heavy equipment I don't think you'll find a tougher nut to break loose. Concerning the reteach..remember this, if nothing moves during the job the van doesn't know it has a new timing belt. To ensure that I had not moved anything I put a mark on each pulley, removed the belt and then counted the teeth between each mark and transferred these marks over to the new belt. Put the belt back on in a counter clockwise direction (just like the service manual says) and your new marks should line up with the ones you made on the pulley. If something has inadvertently moved during your work you will know it. For me this, this method took ALL of the worry out of it. When I started the van I knew it was right.
 

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When my mechanic replaced the TB on my Ody, he had a hard time removing the Crankshaft Pulley Bolt. A special tool was needed with a long handled breaker bar. The stick was so strong that he needed a helping hand from another tough guy!!! Well, yours may not stick so bad
 

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I did my TB several months ago with no "relearn" needed.
I used the starter method of breaking the bolt loose, then lined up all timing marks before proceeding.
Then make sure you don't move anything.
Make sure the cam pulleys don't move at all! I wired mine in place by weaving aircraft safety wire through the spokes of the pulleys before removing the old TB. Bailing wire would serve the purpose as well. Just make sure they can't move when the belt comes off.
Overall, the job took me half a day. I replaced the TB, pulley, tensioner, water pump, accessory belts, acc. belt tensioner. Get a handfull of the clips for the fairing beneath the engine bay so you can destroy a few to speed up removal.
I got the parts through Majestic Honda online and saved a couple hundred over my local dealer's cost. They are all genuine Honda parts.
There is an excellent tutorial somewhere in this site and a few videos on YouTube.
 
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