2016 Honda Pilot long-term road test: the first service stop

July 29, 2016

It's been six months since we took delivery of our long-term 2016 Honda Pilot Touring AWD, and we have been packing on the miles as quickly as one can. After just over 8,000 miles, our Pilot's trip computer informed us it was time for its first service stop.

How did we get to over 8,000 miles in six months? Lots of errands, road trips from Atlanta to Florida, Atlanta to Detroit, Chicago, its current home, Minnesota, and, of course, some family road trips to the cabin in Northern Minnesota.

Automakers are calling for longer intervals between service stops than ever before, and while we don't necessarily love the idea of putting 8,000 miles on the odometer before performing an oil change, we're abiding by Honda's recommendations.

So, what does the first service stop include for our Pilot, and what was it like?

2016 Honda Pilot Touring long-term road test, first service stop

2016 Honda Pilot Touring long-term road test, first service stop

The actual service requested

Our Pilot's trip computer gave us a chime along with a pop-up notification at 8,216 miles informing us the A 1 maintenance was due soon. Scrolling through the trip computer we noted the Pilot's oil sensor was reading that there was 15% oil life left.

We called our local Honda dealership and learned the A 1 service is an oil change (that's the A part) and tire rotation (that's the 1 part). We made an appointment and off we went.

In addition to the A 1 service we noted a few other things needing to be checked over with our Pilot. One of the clips on the front passenger door's molding had popped out of place at some point either due to a passenger's foot hitting it while exiting or from catching on something when closing the door. While we were able to pop it back in ourselves, it wasn't as tight as it should be.

We've also noted some discrepancies in the average fuel economy our Pilot's trip computer is reporting versus the fuel economy we are actually recording. We reached out to Honda about this and it is being looked into, but as requested by Honda, we noted it to the dealership as well during our service.

2016 Honda Pilot Touring long-term road test, first service stop

2016 Honda Pilot Touring long-term road test, first service stop

The experience

Upon pulling into the service area on a busy Monday morning we were immediately greeted by a friendly advisor. Soon we were introduced to our scheduled advisor, Angie, and we walked through the required service and other requested items. Within minutes we were off to the waiting room for some free coffee, cookies, TV, and wifi.

2016 Honda Pilot Touring long-term road test, first service stop

2016 Honda Pilot Touring long-term road test, first service stop

2016 Honda Pilot Touring long-term road test, first service stop

2016 Honda Pilot Touring long-term road test, first service stop

2016 Honda Pilot Touring long-term road test, first service stop

2016 Honda Pilot Touring long-term road test, first service stop

2016 Honda Pilot Touring long-term road test, first service stop

2016 Honda Pilot Touring long-term road test, first service stop

What they found

Our service technician, Shane, quickly performed an oil change that included both changing the oil and the oil filter. Nothing appeared out of the norm.

The tire rotation recommended by the dealership was what's called a "modified X," where in the rear tires are moved to the front and the front tires swap sides and move to the rear. This gives you more even tread wear, which hopefully helps extend the life of your tires. Last but not least the tire pressure was checked. We noted that tires are only balanced if a customer states there's a vibration or specifically puts in a request.

Upon checking the front passenger side lower door molding, Shane found it was indeed a bit loose and replaced one clip. This tightened it back up, but he did note that with the design it will happen again if someone isn't careful and accidentally kicks it while getting out of the vehicle, or it catches on something when closing. Pilot owners, make a mental note: be careful with your lower door moldings.

To address our fuel economy issues with the trip computer, Shane checked to see if there were any software updates for our trip computer. There weren't any.

Weirdly, Shane noted that a bolt was missing from one of our under body shields, which has led to that shield slightly hanging down in that one spot. A replacement wasn't on hand and had to be ordered, which means we'll be going back to the Honda dealership for Shane to install the missing bolt once it comes in.

What it cost

Our Pilot is still under warranty, so the trim, missing bolt, software check were all free. The A 1 service itself? Not so much. The oil change and tire rotation ran us a total of $66.40 after tax.

Breaking that down oil change, which included new oil, oil filter, and drain washer, was $38.80. Rotating the tires was $23.95. Throw in $2.05 for environmental fees and $1.60 for tax, and you have yourself an A 1 service stop.

2016 Honda Pilot Touring long-term road test, first service stop

2016 Honda Pilot Touring long-term road test, first service stop

What's next for our Pilot?

In terms of service, the Pilot's next service according to Shane will be an A 1 2, which will be another oil change (service A), another tire rotation (service 1), and a new cabin air filter (service 2), likely in about another 8,000 miles.

In the mean time, we'll be tracking our fuel economy very closely and bringing you another update, taking a look at the apps in Honda Link and the infotainment system, talking about the safety tech, and poring over the available accessories.

Of course, we'll continue to put it through family-life and challenges ranging from more road trips up north, seeing just how much family gear this thing can hold—and, who can forget that we'll be looking at how child safety seats fit.

As winter approaches, we'll also see how the Pilot's all wheel-drive system handles the snow, and what that cold weather will do to the fuel economy.

Be sure to follow along, connect with us down below in the comments, on Instagram, Twitter, and let us know if you have a task or question in mind for us.

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