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I have a brand new 01 MB EX. I am going on a road trip from MD to Charlotte NC (approx 400 miles one way.) In the Owner's Manual there is nothing about the driving above 55 mph during this period. I have a 95 Toyota Corolla and I remember that I had to limit my speed to 55 during the first 500 miles when I first got it. Has anyone taken there new Ody on a roadtrip before the end of the break in period ? If so, did you limit your speed ?
 

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Well, actually it does mention a break in period in the owners manual. It's located somewhere in the middle of the book. Not where you would expect it. It mentions about not driving too fast, doing hard accelerations, that kind of stuff. If you can't find it in the manual, let me know and I'll track down the page number.

As for a long road trip during the break in period, driving it home for me was about 400 miles. I kept the speed ~70 but tried to keep the accelerations down to a minimum.

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Warren - '01 GG EX
 

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I already read the Break in period section prior to my post. I just didn't see anything about limiting the speed during the break in period. Otherwise, I have been following the recommendations. I see you drove your Ody 400 miles @ 70 mph. Have you noticed any performance issues since then ?
 

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You will probably receive a lot of "advice" on this one, but here is my "two cents."

Engines DO need to break in... any engineer will tell you that. The metal components must "wear" themselves into condition. How long it takes is very debatable. What I would say is don't drive the same (constant) speed for at LEAST the first 1,000 miles. That's right, no cruise control for you! My experience has been to avoid highway driving all together. I agree that you should completely avoid hard acceleration. At 55 mph the Ody's engine isn't turning very fast, so I wouldn't be so concerned about vehicle speed. I'd be concerned about engine load... large hills, deep grades, passing trucks/cars, etc. Those circumstances put a large load on the engine and, in my opinion, should be avoided during break-in.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for your input cmt4. It was worth more than "2 cents." :) I did plan on using my cruise control, but I guess I can go with out for this trip. I will try to vary my speed as much as possible and take several rest stops. Thanks again for your 26K worth of input ;-)
 

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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by aneal:
I already read the Break in period section prior to my post. I just didn't see anything about limiting the speed during the break in period. Otherwise, I have been following the recommendations. I see you drove your Ody 400 miles @ 70 mph. Have you noticed any performance issues since then ? </font>
I haven't noticed anything wrong. Again, I haven't driven one recently that was "properly broken in" to compare. So far so good....

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Warren - '01 GG EX
 

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My 2001 EX GG has 2200 miles on it. The dealer had told me NOT to use the cruise control for at least the first 500 miles ( and I still haven't - except to make sure it works!). He said a constant speed is not good during the break in period - but keeping it dowm to 55 wasn't necessary JEFF
 

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As an engineer I can tell you that what you are looking for are different loads on the engine. This is crucial during the first 500 miles (1000 km) because you are seating in the piston rings. Each load level changes the contact area between the piston ring and the cylinder liner.
A constant speed on flat terrain will eventually cause the rings to wear in one particular area. This may lead to ineffective combustion sealing and poor gas mileage.
As an example the large marine diesels that I broke in had to operate at 20%-0-40%-0-60%-0-80%-0-100%. Note that these are load levels not rpm levels. Each level was maintained for two hours and ramped up. Between each level was about a hour run at no load.

I know the Odyssey does not have a house sized marine deisel but the priciple is the same. This is why city driving with moderate and smooth gas pedal usage is best during break in but the odd highway trip is also good if for a short time.

If you must do 400 mi+ on the highway see if you can vary speed a bit. Maybe 5 mph above and below the posted limit so as not to annoy traffic.

Hope this helps.

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Edmonton, Alberta
2001 Fern LX
 

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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Canodyssey:
As an engineer I can tell you that what you are looking for are different loads on the engine. This is crucial during the first 500 miles (1000 km) because you are seating in the piston rings. Each load level changes the contact area between the piston ring and the cylinder liner.
A constant speed on flat terrain will eventually cause the rings to wear in one particular area. This may lead to ineffective combustion sealing and poor gas mileage.
As an example the large marine diesels that I broke in had to operate at 20%-0-40%-0-60%-0-80%-0-100%. Note that these are load levels not rpm levels. Each level was maintained for two hours and ramped up. Between each level was about a hour run at no load.

I know the Odyssey does not have a house sized marine deisel but the priciple is the same. This is why city driving with moderate and smooth gas pedal usage is best during break in but the odd highway trip is also good if for a short time.

If you must do 400 mi+ on the highway see if you can vary speed a bit. Maybe 5 mph above and below the posted limit so as not to annoy traffic.

Hope this helps.
</font>
The need for consumer break-in kinda begs the question-why can't the manufacturer do this before the engine is mounted in the car, or at least make it a part of the assembly process? I imagine the answer will be highly cost-driven, but this approach seems like the best way to control the nature and quality of the break-in of the engine and could be tailored to the specific engine design. It would not help any break-in requirements for the brakes, transmission, etc, but there might be a way to deal with those issues in a similar fashion. Who knows-maybe it would actually make the engine more reliable and reduce the warranty repair and replacement costs incurred by the manufacturer enough to pay for itself (now that would DEFINITELY get their attention). It would also tend to eliminate any specific requirements on how one drives their new car during the first few hundred miles, at least for the sake of engine break-in requirements. I'm a satellite engineer, NOT an automotive engineer, so I may be missing something obvious here-comments and criticisms are encouraged.

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2001 EX
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They could do it but it probably comes down to cost. Would you pay another $500 to $1000 to have a properly run-in engine?
Since no other manufacturer does this it would be unprofitable.

Just my 2 cents..,
 
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