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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Drove my MDX on Jan 8th and it was running fine when I shut it off
Overnight it was -26C (-15F)and windy
Next AM it would not start - starter motor would not turn and engine would not rotate (battery is only 2 years old)
Got a boost - nothing moved
Got a boost from a tow truck - nothing moved but got some smoke from starter
Towed to a local Honda dealer
They said it needed a new starter and got it running
Immediately on starting there was VERY loud knocking noises from the engine. Sounded like it was coming apart.
Dealer got the oil pan off and lots of metal bits in the pan and heavy scoring on #5 cylinder wall.
I was 600KM from home and 200Km to closest Acura dealer
Only 124,000 Km on the vehicle. Oil & filter last changed at 116,877 KM on Oct 24th and I had oil analyzed and the oil was fine and absolutely no abnormal wear was present.
A used 3.7L engine was installed by the Honda dealer to get me back on the road. Got the car back on Jan 21st. The engine was later disassembled and the #5 piston had a big chunk broken off of it. First 3 photos)
The reason for the failure is not 100% clear at this time.
I posted at MDXers.org and another MDX owner in Wisconsin had the exact same failure under the exact same cold conditions on the exact same cylinder on Jan 7th. Their #5 piston has a chunk broken as well. (Last photo)

Has anyone seen or heard of a failure like this?
Any theories on the root cause of the failure?
 

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FYI, I'm following your thread on MDXers with great interest. Just haven't really had any constructive input.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
FYI, I'm following your thread on MDXers with great interest. Just haven't really had any constructive input.
So I take it that you have never seen any failures like this?? There must be something unique about # 5 cylinder????

Found another failure that sounds identical - but in a 3.5L engine. (posted in 2012) Exact same #5 cylinder again.

"Has anyone else had a problem with their Ridgeline? We have a 2008 Ridgeline that we purchased new and had never had a problem until last weeK! Was driving on I-26 in the North Carolina hills and as I was going down the engine light came on. Before I could react to the light the rpm's shot up to over 6000. I quickly got off the highway but by then it sounded like the engine was coming apart (which is was!). I am not an engine person... but honda dealer told me that number 5 piston had broken (or burn off) and through debri all thru the engine! Engine is HISTORY! With 72,000 miles, garage kept, and every service record up to date and not one past issue I have blown engine! I kept being reminded that it was 12,000 miles out of power train warranty during the initial investigation (which was madding!) Now honda has agreed to pay 75% of the cost but we will still be out about $2000 for a new engine on a Honda that has 72,000 miles & maintained perfectly! Oh, it still has the original tires... I guess Michelens tires last longer that Honda engines! Anyone else out there had any issues with their Ridgeline!"
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Have decided to appeal directly to the President/CEO of Honda Canada for a review of my engine failure and interaction with Customer Relations.
 

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Can't say that I've run across anything like this personally, but more often than not people will contact me about problems that are far less "major".
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I've managed to get my broken piston and rings into a metallurgical lab to have some detailed inspections performed - hopefully will provide some insight into the root cause of the failure.
 

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Any help would be great

I was interested if you had any thing you can share about your outcome with Honda concerning the engine failure you encountered. I have a 2007 with 102 k had a misfire code shoe up on cylinder 5. Decided to take it to the dealer and have them diagnos and get the timing belt changed out since it was time. They called me back and said that cylinder 5 had 65 lbs of pressure and should be. Well over 100. I had them scope the cylinder and there is sever scaring on the piston wall. This essentially means that the engine is history. I have gone through the Acura case management thing and am getting no where. If you had any luck I sure would be greatful for any assistance in perusing this issue further.
 
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