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#3218625 - 12/16/13 03:21 PM Eco - what does it really do?
coopns Offline


Registered: 02/16/05
Posts: 721
Loc: Scituate MA
Honda Ody 12. I don't drive it much (wife does) but when coasting...Eco light comes on. Wife mentions it seems to 'suspend' the engine, she doesn't like the feeling. I just noticed it a bit the other day, could gently feel it.

Does it do something or is it just simply informing us?

Thanks.
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#3218642 - 12/16/13 03:34 PM Re: Eco - what does it really do? [Re: coopns]
Ramblejam Online   content


Registered: 11/05/13
Posts: 2213
Loc: Kentucky
Variable cylinder management -- the ECO light is illuminated when cylinders are shut down.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Variable_Cylinder_Management

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#3218646 - 12/16/13 03:36 PM Re: Eco - what does it really do? [Re: coopns]
UG_Passat Offline


Registered: 05/27/08
Posts: 1284
Loc: NJ
It may be shutting half the cylinders so it operates as a 3-cylinder engine for peak fuel economy.

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#3218682 - 12/16/13 03:55 PM Re: Eco - what does it really do? [Re: UG_Passat]
RF Overlord Offline


Registered: 11/08/03
Posts: 3512
Loc: Cape Cod, MA
Originally Posted By: UG_Passat
It may be shutting half the cylinders so it operates as a 3-cylinder engine for peak sludge buildup.
Fixed it for you.
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#3218710 - 12/16/13 04:14 PM Re: Eco - what does it really do? [Re: RF Overlord]
Trav Offline


Registered: 11/20/06
Posts: 13793
Loc: MA, Mittelfranken.de
Originally Posted By: RF Overlord
Originally Posted By: UG_Passat
It may be shutting half the cylinders so it operates as a 3-cylinder engine for peak sludge buildup.
Fixed it for you.


crackmeup Sad but true.
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#3218730 - 12/16/13 04:38 PM Re: Eco - what does it really do? [Re: coopns]
hattaresguy Offline


Registered: 06/01/11
Posts: 7180
Loc: CT
Its supposed to make you drive more conservatively to keep the light on.

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#3220778 - 12/18/13 02:56 PM Re: Eco - what does it really do? [Re: hattaresguy]
coopns Offline


Registered: 02/16/05
Posts: 721
Loc: Scituate MA
Is there much I can do to prevent or remedy the sludge buildup?

Does Techron or any off the shelf fix it?
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#3220897 - 12/18/13 05:34 PM Re: Eco - what does it really do? [Re: coopns]
TiredTrucker Offline


Registered: 01/04/08
Posts: 2288
Loc: Central Iowa
My guess is the only real solution is to find a way to keep cylinders from shutting down. Many of us with the GM V8's with the AFM feature have done that. Matter of fact, I disabled the cylinder shutdown thing on my 2013 5.3L within hours of bringing it home from the dealer. I paid for 8 cylinders, and they all have to pull the wagon. No UAW union inspired rest breaks are allowed. I realize that the government has had a lot of influence on GM. But my engine will not act like the government.... where 4 guys stand around while the other 4 work.
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#3220917 - 12/18/13 06:11 PM Re: Eco - what does it really do? [Re: coopns]
SIXSPEED Offline


Registered: 08/12/10
Posts: 523
Loc: Arizona
I think there's more to the ECO light than just VCM being enabled. The owners manual indicates Eco comes on and stays on while you are driving with good fuel economy, which may or may not be associated with running on 3 or 4 active cylinders.

The following linked article from Motor Magazine describes their observations and analysis of VCM operation on a 2012 Pilot. On page 18 they state that the Eco light had no correlation to actual VCM operation and that the Eco light came on when acceleration was not heavy or under a steady load.

http://www.motor.com/article_pdf_download.asp?article_ID=2108


Edited by SIXSPEED (12/18/13 06:13 PM)

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#3221305 - 12/19/13 07:14 AM Re: Eco - what does it really do? [Re: TiredTrucker]
Bamaro Offline


Registered: 08/03/03
Posts: 1314
Loc: Balto.
Originally Posted By: TiredTrucker
My guess is the only real solution is to find a way to keep cylinders from shutting down. Many of us with the GM V8's with the AFM feature have done that. Matter of fact, I disabled the cylinder shutdown thing on my 2013 5.3L within hours of bringing it home from the dealer. I paid for 8 cylinders, and they all have to pull the wagon. No UAW union inspired rest breaks are allowed. I realize that the government has had a lot of influence on GM. But my engine will not act like the government.... where 4 guys stand around while the other 4 work.

No more or no less than any other manufacturer that sells in the US.
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#3221392 - 12/19/13 08:36 AM Re: Eco - what does it really do? [Re: coopns]
Hokiefyd Offline


Registered: 06/24/04
Posts: 13736
Loc: North Carolina
Originally Posted By: coopns
Is there much I can do to prevent or remedy the sludge buildup?


Just use a good synthetic oil and change it at 5,000 mile intervals. Mobil 1 0W-20 is a fantastic oil, it's available inexpensively, and with it, your engine will probably go for hundreds of thousands of trouble-free miles.

It seems that the folks who follow Honda's rather lengthy OCI are the ones who are having the most issues. Especially back before Honda started using 0W-20, and the engines were getting conventional 5W-20 at 10,000 mile intervals.
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2009 Honda Ridgeline RTL
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#3221622 - 12/19/13 12:42 PM Re: Eco - what does it really do? [Re: coopns]
PandaBear Offline


Registered: 08/05/02
Posts: 13240
Loc: Silicon Valley
Is the cylinder that got sludge up the ones that's activated or deactivated?
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#3221673 - 12/19/13 01:26 PM Re: Eco - what does it really do? [Re: PandaBear]
Hokiefyd Offline


Registered: 06/24/04
Posts: 13736
Loc: North Carolina
Originally Posted By: PandaBear
Is the cylinder that got sludge up the ones that's activated or deactivated?


It's usually the ones that stay activated. Which are the front ones. So they're doing most of the work AND they're getting bathed with hot air blast from the radiator. It's a great way to cook conventional oil if left in for a long time.
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2009 Honda Ridgeline RTL
2005 Acura MDX Touring

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#3221681 - 12/19/13 01:32 PM Re: Eco - what does it really do? [Re: coopns]
R2d2 Offline


Registered: 12/08/08
Posts: 566
Loc: New York, L.I
VCM has gone though more than one iteration with Honda, although theres no denying pre 2012 version has had a small percentage of issues. Honda/Acura continue use it and it works well. The previous poster who stated the eco light being on doesn't necessarily mean cylinder deactivation is 100% correct.
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#3221694 - 12/19/13 01:49 PM Re: Eco - what does it really do? [Re: Hokiefyd]
willbur Offline


Registered: 06/06/13
Posts: 106
Loc: sw ohio
The front cylinders? Are you sure about that? Perhaps I'm wrong but my understanding is that the number three cylinder is the troublesome one and it's on the rear bank on the drivers side. This bank gets all the hot air.
Also, just how big a deal is this and is it a common problem?I have a 2008 with the VCM and it's been great. Called two Honda dealers and service managers both said it occurs "occasionally" on cars that were not taken care of.

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