A couple of months ago, I mentioned that the Honda Odyssey's sliding doors were acting up. Any time I was parked on an incline, the doors would not close all the way. I have had to either turn off the power mechanism and close the sliding doors manually or simply give the door an extra push to help it through the point at which it seems to catch. Either way, it was becoming an annoyance.

Before I was able to take it in, an issue with the Battery Monitoring System surfaced. I received a Technical Service Bulletin in the mail from Honda, stating that the BMS needed a software update. Additionally, the Maintenance Minder system alerted me that the minivan was in need of an A123 service. All these issues certainly added up to a much needed visit to the dealership!

When our Odyssey finally made it in to the local Honda dealership for a check-up, I brought to the mechanic's attention all the issues I have been experiencing. Thankfully, I was able to replicate the problem with the power doors in the dealership's driveway and they suspected the door tracks were in need of lubrication. As for the technical bulletin, they simply asked to see the paperwork I received in the mail. These two items would be covered under warranty with no cost to us. On the other hand, the A123 service, which consists of replacing the engine oil, air cleaner element, dust and pollen filter, and transmission fluid, rotating tires, and inspecting the drive belt, would require a somewhat hefty charge.

I left the Odyssey with the folks at the Honda dealership in the morning, and received a call from them mid-afternoon saying the minivan was ready to be picked up. They had lubricated the side doors, which alleviated the problem I was experiencing. (I was able to test the power opening and closing on site before leaving the dealership). The total charge for the A123 service visit was $314.49, half of which was labor costs. As stated before, we were not charged for the BMS update or the power door fix, as they were covered under warranty.

Since the service visit, I have double-checked the power sliding doors while parked on the hills around my house and they seem to be working flawlessly. I have yet to test out the Battery Monitoring System and don't foresee an opportunity anytime soon to leave the van parked with its doors open for hours at a time. Besides, at this point, I've developed the habit of turning off all the interior lights anytime I leave the doors open. If I want to run the radio while the van is parked, I leave the engine running, but it never hurts to keep a set of jumper cables with you, no matter what you're driving.


Our Car
Service life 12 months/26,932 miles
Average fuel economy 21.6 mpg
CO2 emissions 0.90 lb/mi
Energy consumption 156 kW-hr/100mi
Unresolved problems None
Maintenance cost $502.31 (3 x oil change, tire rotation, inspection; 1 x cabin air filter, transmission fluid change, engine air filter)
Normal-wear cost $0