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axistang, does that disconnection cause a check engine light? I think the dealers may do this when testing with their propiatary OBD readers. I think I remember someone doing a ride along with a dealer tech when thy were trying to nail
down some shifting issues and the tech wanted to take the VCM out of the loop for diagnostics. In any case, another thing I learned around here is that VCM does not activate if you are going over 80 MPH, so that could be why you never had any issues. What did the plugs look like when replaced? Twice now?
 

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Buy the VCM Muzzler
 

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axistang, does that disconnection cause a check engine light? I think the dealers may do this when testing with their propiatary OBD readers. I think I remember someone doing a ride along with a dealer tech when thy were trying to nail
down some shifting issues and the tech wanted to take the VCM out of the loop for diagnostics. In any case, another thing I learned around here is that VCM does not activate if you are going over 80 MPH, so that could be why you never had any issues. What did the plugs look like when replaced? Twice now?
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axistang, does that disconnection cause a check engine light? I think the dealers may do this when testing with their propiatary OBD readers. I think I remember someone doing a ride along with a dealer tech when thy were trying to nail
down some shifting issues and the tech wanted to take the VCM out of the loop for diagnostics. In any case, another thing I learned around here is that VCM does not activate if you are going over 80 MPH, so that could be why you never had any issues. What did the plugs look like when replaced? Twice now?
Yes it causes a CEL. I didn't want the VCM2 because I'd rather the VCM never cut back on vs sometimes for a number of seconds.
 

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Yes it causes a CEL. I didn't want the VCM2 because I'd rather the VCM never cut back on vs sometimes for a number of seconds.
If you were to choose to use either a VCMTuner II or an S-VCM controller, you would have VCM 100% disabled without a Check Engine light. As it stands now, if you were to have a problem that would normally throw a code and Check Engine light, you'll never know - the light is always on anyways.

It's true that both of these fully automated options are at the higher end of the price scale for a VCM disable device, but they work perfectly. Just a suggestion - I know your way has the distinct advantage of costing zero dollars.
 

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If you were to choose to use either a VCMTuner II or an S-VCM controller, you would have VCM 100% disabled without a Check Engine light. As it stands now, if you were to have a problem that would normally throw a code and Check Engine light, you'll never know - the light is always on anyways.

It's true that both of these fully automated options are at the higher end of the price scale for a VCM disable device, but they work perfectly. Just a suggestion - I know your way has the distinct advantage of costing zero dollars.
VCMuzzler 2 says 90% effective when sitting in traffic 1-2 minutes. When my vehicle goes into eco mode it causes a misfire code which then puts the vehicle into limp mode or safe mode whichever one you'd like to call it and you can only turn that off by resetting the fault codes. With the secondary oil pressure sensor unhooked the vehicle does not have a misfire at all because it never goes into eco mode.

So I should pay $120 to cut my check engine light off and possibly trigger the misfire code after sitting in traffic 1 to 2 minutes while it resets?
 

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VCMuzzler 2 says 90% effective when sitting in traffic 1-2 minutes. When my vehicle goes into eco mode it causes a misfire code which then puts the vehicle into limp mode or safe mode whichever one you'd like to call it and you can only turn that off by resetting the fault codes. With the secondary oil pressure sensor unhooked the vehicle does not have a misfire at all because it never goes into eco mode.

So I should pay $120 to cut my check engine light off and possibly trigger the misfire code after sitting in traffic 1 to 2 minutes while it resets?
The VCMuzzler II uses swappable resistors to adjust the output ECT1 - it can't promise 100% effectiveness because it can't respond on its own to changes like sitting in traffic compared to driving at speed.

The two options I mentioned (S-VCM and VCMTuner II) use a microprocessor to continually monitor and adjust the output of ECT1. Because these two can respond to changes in conditions without driver input, they can guarantee 100% disabling of VCM. The only time they stop working is if your engine is about to overheat. They can both recognize when that is about to happen and shut themselves off so that all the usual alarms and lights will go off.

Should you drop $120 on that? That's your call to make. But I can tell you that I did and I don't regret it for a millisecond. I consider it money well spent.
 

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Sigh... I'm probably going to regret this...

@silverghost06 - we're in agreement about a few things. I wouldn't install a muzzler on a van with over 250,000 miles either. Personally, I wouldn't install a licence plate on a van with over 250,000 miles on it, but that's neither here nor there. "To each his own", right? In your specific case, you're absolutely right - why bother with a muzzler at this point? You've made it just fine thus far; let 'er ride. Your Ody has served you well and hopefully continues to for as long as you need it. Muzzling it at this point would be a total waste of time and money.

For both @silverghost06 and @jbudd - what sort of facts or evidence would satisfy you? Let's lay out some cold hard facts:

1. The problems are real. Here is copy of the settlement notice from the US District Court for Northern California:


I hope I don't need to explain that these things don't just get sprayed around willy-nilly by federal judges. I'll save you a tiny bit of reading (as in the first three lines of the very first page) - it specifically refers to Honda V6 engines equipped with VCM2 - nearly 1.6 million of them. No vehicle older than the 2008 model year is affected by this system or covered by the lawsuit and subsequent settlement. If only 1% of the vehicles covered actually had the ring replacement done at a price tag of about $2500 each, that would cost Honda around 40 million dollars. This is seriously big money that no one puts up unless they have to. And this scenario still allows for 99% of the vehicles to be "just fine". This isn't something made up by internet crackpots that have it in for Honda for one reason or another, conspiracy theorists or various other Chicken Little types. Honda's checkbook and a US Federal Court say this is no fairy tale.

So @silverghost06 - your own experience with VCM in your 2006 Odyssey is completely irrelevant to the conversations in this thread. I'm glad your van's been so good to you, but this really is not even a little bit about you. Sit down.

Now for everyone else, let's continue...

2. The proof that VCM disable devices work and are safe over the long term is already inside every single VCM2 engine, muzzled or not. The unique characteristic of VCM2 is that it allows the engine to run on 3, 4 or 6 cylinders. VCM1 and the most modern VCM3 are not like that - they are 3 or 6-cylinder mode only.

3-cyl mode4-cyl mode6-cyl mode
Cylinder 1NYY
Cylinder 2NYY
Cylinder 3NNY
Cylinder 4YNY
Cylinder 5YYY
Cylinder 6YYY

The cylinders most prone to fouling and piston ring problems happen to be the same ones that are being turned on and off by VCM; that is, cylinders 1, 2, 3, and 4. Only cylinders 5 and 6 fire in all three operating modes of VCM2, and it is consistently cylinders 5 and 6 that do not have fouling and misfire problems. It is so common for cylinders 1-4 to have these problems that they are the only ones which get repaired under the terms of the extended warranty Honda offered following that class-action lawsuit. Honda does not pay for new rings in cylinders 5 and 6 under the terms of the extended warranty. Cylinders 5 & 6 never get shut off and they never have problems. Coincidence? You decide for yourself, but Honda themselves obviously don't think it is. I'll go with them.

Honda eventually blamed the oil blow-by on low friction piston rings that were used up until 2013. They did not bother to explain why leaving those "faulty" piston rings in cylinders 5 and 6 was perfectly fine while the other 4 cylinders got "improved" piston rings that entered regular production for the 2014 model year. I think it's because they weren't the actual problem (or at least they weren't at the core of the problem), but I'll concede that's just me.

The wear on the active engine mounts is fairly straightforward - it's very difficult to get a V6 engine to run equally smoothly using 3 of 6, 4 of 6, or 6 of 6 cylinders, so Honda uses electrically controlled active engine mounts to help cancel the vibrations that naturally occur in 3 and 4 cylinder modes. Those things work very hard whenever VCM is active and I think they do an admirable job in most cases. But they simply wear out after a while; they are not a lifetime part. They are also a very expensive part that seem to nicely outlive the warranty so that owners are stuck with paying the hefty repair bill out-of-pocket. All other V6 engines (from ANY manufacturer) that don't have cylinder deactivation naturally run very smoothly all on their own without any fancy engine mounts. So if you don't disable cylinders you don't need active engine mounts, which is great for 2008 - 2010 Odyssey owners who have bolt-up replacements available because those vans could be had with either non-VCM or VCM engines from the factory. For us gen 4 owners who don't have the option to choose solid mounts, we at least don't worry about replacing something that will never wear out because the thing that wears it out never happens.

So there is no mechanical harm done by disabling VCM - as a matter of fact, you simplify the engine's job by disabling VCM. So now let's move on to the scarier part...

3. You're not screwing with the engine computer by disabling VCM. Relatively little of the critical engine functions depend on the temperature of the coolant. Probably the most important function controlled by the coolant temperature is the radiator fans and for that there is a secondary engine coolant temperature sensor - ECT2. The fans' operation is also influenced by other factors, like whether or not the AC compressor is running. The remainder of the cooling system like the radiator and thermostat are completely mechanical and receive no input from the PCM - they do their thing the same whether VCM is active or not.

The normal warmed up temperature range for a fourth generation Honda Odyssey engine is around 170°F - that is the temperature at which the thermostat opens on my 2015. VCM is allowed to function by the PCM at a temperature of 167°F. An S-VCM controller or VCMTuner II hold the ECT1 sensor output at 161-163°F. The engine warms up fully. A couple of degrees up or down only matters to the VCM system.

The air/fuel ratio is determined by the O2 sensors as soon as the PCM goes into closed loop, a few moments after engine start. The amount of time the engine runs rich to get itself started is basically unchanged because the PCM does not rely on coolant temperature alone to determine whether it's warmed up enough to go into closed loop. I know this is true because I have a Scangauge II connected to the OBD II port in my van and I can monitor parameters like open/closed loop and short-term and long-term fuel trims. The engine does not run rich with a muzzler installed. I can monitor the engine's health by watching parameters like engine timing, exhaust gas temperatures, catalyst temperatures, O2 sensor outputs and engine loading. None of these give any kind of abnormal or out-of-spec reading on my muzzled engine, and that's only logical because...

4. Running in full-on 6-cylinder mode is not unnatural to the engine. It is legitimately one of the three modes possible under VCM2. Disabling VCM does not force the engine to do anything it wasn't designed for. We're not hot rodding the thing. It's totally OK for a V6 engine to use all 6 cylinders. Really.


I'm sick and tired of having to explain stuff like this umpteen times around here, so now I'd like to turn the tables here a little bit. I've laid out a few things here in support of my general contention that disabling VCM is safe and appropriate if you choose to do it and sometimes even advisable. Can the skeptics back up their position? Let me hear about the reasons why you believe VCM should not be disabled. Is there anything there other than blind faith? "That's how Honda made it so that's how it should be." Show me the facts that prove I'm out of line (if you can).
Thank you for this post.

Information, most often, is as useful as it is specific.

You mentioned something else here, and it's about that expensive computer controlled engine mount that's prone to failure. Disabling the VCM might very well extend its life. If the front mount does need replacement, perhaps a standard front mount from another Odyssey model, without computer control, could be used as an inexpensive replacement. You would probably know -
 

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Thank you for this post.

Information, most often, is as useful as it is specific.

You mentioned something else here, and it's about that expensive computer controlled engine mount that's prone to failure. Disabling the VCM might very well extend its life. If the front mount does need replacement, perhaps a standard front mount from another Odyssey model, without computer control, could be used as an inexpensive replacement. You would probably know -
Disabling VCM will absolutely extend the lifespan of the engine mounts which is especially important for the really expensive active one.

Unfortunately, the engine mounts for the gen 4 Odyssey are different from the gen 3 ones which was the last generation an Odyssey could be bought with a non-VCM engine. They are not interchangeable across generations.

There are no cheap alternatives for us gen 4 owners (except for the crappy aftermarket mounts that usually give out within a year or two and you're just doing it again). So preserving the factory pieces - which really are very high quality but lead a hard life when VCM is active - is in an owner's best interests. It turns out to be the cheapest way to go of all.
 
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