Honda V6 AISIN TKH-002 Timing Belt Kit – My review

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323
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Pacific NW USA
Objective: Provide a side-by-side comparison of the Factory Original Honda parts compared to the parts found in the AISIN kit, pictures included below. Spoiler/Conclusion: I highly recommend the AISIN kit. Same OEM parts. Different packaging. Way less cost. Read on for the details and view pictures. Note: All applications for this kit are listed below. Background: I am not a professional mechanic. I have been driving and maintaining my own Hondas since 2001. I have for the most part been a strong advocate for purchasing only Genuine Honda replacement parts. At the advice of many in various forums, I decided to take a gamble with the AISIN kit. Prior to purchasing I found a lot of good information about the AISIN kit online but not quite the depth I am going provide below. Scope: I will compare the factory original parts removed from my 2006 Honda Accord EX-L 3.0L V6 to the parts included in the AISIN kit. The price differential between Honda Genuine and AISIN parts will also be looked at with pricing found at HondaAutomotiveParts.com. AISIN Kit Purchase Price: I purchased my AISIN kit #TKH-002 from trueblueparts.com. True Blue Auto Parts has both an eBay and Amazon store. I bought my kit through eBay because at the time it was a little cheaper than Amazon. I paid $169.54 shipped. Compare to Honda OEM parts purchase price: WATER PUMP (YAMADA) - Honda (19200-RDV-J01) $127.36 BELT, TIMING (197YU20 VE-501) (UNITTA) - Honda (14400-RCA-A01) $70.94 IDLER, TIMING BELT (KOYO SEIKO) - Honda (14550-RCA-A01) $44.88 ADJUSTER, TIMING BELT - Honda (14510-RCA-A01) $98.40 TENSIONER, TIMING BELT AUTO - Honda (14520-RCA-A01) $121.36 Total = $462.94 Shipping = $21.08 Grand Total = $484.02 That’s a savings of $314.48 on parts alone for this timing belt replacement. Information on the timing belt. The AISIN kit comes with a MITSUBOSHI CD329 timing belt that is Made in Thailand. I acknowledge that Mitsuboshi is a world class belt maker and a long time OEM supplier to Honda. However, the factory original timing belt that came on my 2006 Accord is a Made in Japan UNITTA timing belt. UNITTA is the Japanese subsidiary of GATES. Given that the original UNITTA timing belt lasted over 115,000 miles on my car, I elected to buy a GATES T329 belt. I found it on eBay for $22.99 shipped, see pics. To me, this was cheap insurance but probably not necessary. My factory original water pump was AISIN. The online Honda dealer wanted to sell me a YAMADA water pump for $127.36. My original AISIN water pump lasted 12 years and 115,000 miles. The AISIN kit included a AISIN water pump so that was good enough for me. Another part that’s commonly replcead with the timing belt is the accessory drive belt. The OEM belt for my application is MITSUBOSHI #6PK2135M. I bought mine from Amazon for $22.05/shipped. The same belt from HondaAutomotiveParts.com cost $38.77, e.g., BELT, COMPRESSOR (MITSUBOSHI) - Honda (38920-RCA-A03) Now for the comparison pictures: TKH-002 Timing Belt Kit Water Pump Timing Belt Hydraulic Tensioner Tensioner Bearing Idler Bearing GATES/UNITTA T329 Timing belt MITSUBOSHI accessory drive belt AISIN #TKH-002 Applications: Acura MDX 3.5L 2003-06 MDX 3.7L 2007-12 RDX 3.5L 2013-14 RL 3.5L 2005-08 RL 3.7L 2009-12 TL 3.2L 2004-08 TL 3.5L 2007-17 TL 3.7L 2009-14 TSX 3.5L 2010-14 ZDX 3.7L 2010-13 Engine ID: J32A3, J35A5, J35A8, J35Z6, J37A1, J37A2, J37A4, J37A5 Honda Accord 3.0L 2003-07 Accord 3.5L 2008-15 Accord Hybrid 3.0L 2005-07 Accord Crosstour 3.5L 2010-11 Crosstour 3.5L 2012-15 Odyssey 3.5L 2005-15 Pilot 3.5L 2005-15 Ridgeline 3.5L 2006-14 Engine ID: JNA1, J30A4, J30A5, J35Y1, J35Y2, J35Z2, J35Z3, J35A6, J35A7, J35A8, J35A9, J35Z1, J35Z4, J35Z5 Saturn Vue 3.5L 2004-07 Engine ID: L66
 
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1,445
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MN
Great write up! I install these Aisin kits all the time at work, and I've yet to have a failure. Honda V6 timing belts are honestly one of my favorite's to do. I actually prefer these kits because they don't include that stupid "spacer" for the idler pulley that Gates includes with their kit. An unfortunate coworker of mine installed that spacer, thinking it was necessary, and ended up killing the front cylinder head on a customer's Odyssey. Lesson learned... I've never used the spacer myself. Honda had it right, they usually do.
 
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1,035
Location
Athens, GA
Yep, I've used this exact kit on my TL, and since the Accord is coming up on a T-Belt, I'll probably use it on that as well, good kit, good parts.
 
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1,335
Location
Kennett Square, PA
Absolutely no comparison between a belt made in the Gates-Unitta JV plant and a regular Gates timing belt. I have installed regular Gates timing belts and I do not like them. They are thick, stiff and noisy. I would definitely use the Aisin kit supplied Mitsuboshi unless I could get the made in Japan Gates-Unitta belt. I just installed this kit earlier this year on our 2010 MDX.
 
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Messages
1,335
Location
Kennett Square, PA
Originally Posted By: 14Accent
Great write up! I install these Aisin kits all the time at work, and I've yet to have a failure. Honda V6 timing belts are honestly one of my favorite's to do. I actually prefer these kits because they don't include that stupid "spacer" for the idler pulley that Gates includes with their kit. An unfortunate coworker of mine installed that spacer, thinking it was necessary, and ended up killing the front cylinder head on a customer's Odyssey. Lesson learned... I've never used the spacer myself. Honda had it right, they usually do.
Gates kits are pure junk, especially their hydraulic tensioners and water pumps.
 
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14,450
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The Old North State
Excellent comparo write up and just happens to be the exact application I'll be needing. Glad you included accessory belt information as well. Can't say I blame you for the piece of mind purchase of the Gates Unitta belt, though as you note likely unnecessary. I'd previously done some research on the subject and decided the Gates kit was out, and only AISIN pump would be acceptable to me if not buying from dealer. Cool to know AISIN is OE. Wasn't so sure about rest of parts in the AISIN kit though. Nice to see all the parts in the kit side by side with OEM. And the cost savings speak for themselves. Thanks for taking the time and effort to post this. thumbsup
 
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Gates has gone downhill since Tompkins bought them.Many more of their items (especially hydraulic fittings) are now China sourced,not USA.Oh...who would have thought that the days Gates was really "National Rubber Products" would be missed...??
 
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24,145
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MA, Mittelfranken.de
Nice that you found the Japanese UNITTA belt but if one was not available I would have no problem using the Mitsuboshi belt. I was reading an article that Bando and others opened state of the art factories in Thailand for no other reason than being closer to the materials that otherwise had to be exported to Japan. Aisin make a very nice kit and as you found out you save a lot of money buying them without loosing quality. With the Aisin you spend a little more than Gates, Dayco, etc but you get a lot of value, with the others you spend a little less and get a poor quality almost worthless kit. Great write up and pics! Thank you.
 
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1,335
Location
Kennett Square, PA
Originally Posted By: Trav
Nice that you found the Japanese UNITTA belt...
Trav, OP said he bought a Gates TB because his car had a Gates Unitta belt. He did not say the replacement belt he bought was a made in Japan Gates Unitta belt. I would rather use a Mitsuboshi belt that a regular Gates belt made outside of Japan.
 
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946
Location
Virginia
Originally Posted By: artbuc
Originally Posted By: Trav
Nice that you found the Japanese UNITTA belt...
Trav, OP said he bought a Gates TB because his car had a Gates Unitta belt. He did not say the replacement belt he bought was a made in Japan Gates Unitta belt. I would rather use a Mitsuboshi belt that a regular Gates belt made outside of Japan.
Look at the pics. wink
 
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1,335
Location
Kennett Square, PA
Originally Posted By: cpayne5
Originally Posted By: artbuc
Originally Posted By: Trav
Nice that you found the Japanese UNITTA belt...
Trav, OP said he bought a Gates TB because his car had a Gates Unitta belt. He did not say the replacement belt he bought was a made in Japan Gates Unitta belt. I would rather use a Mitsuboshi belt that a regular Gates belt made outside of Japan.
Look at the pics. wink
Oops, egg on my face! Great job by OP to find Unitta belt. I tried my [censored] a few years ago and I could not find one.
 
Messages
24,145
Location
MA, Mittelfranken.de
Originally Posted By: artbuc
Originally Posted By: cpayne5
Originally Posted By: artbuc
Originally Posted By: Trav
Nice that you found the Japanese UNITTA belt...
Trav, OP said he bought a Gates TB because his car had a Gates Unitta belt. He did not say the replacement belt he bought was a made in Japan Gates Unitta belt. I would rather use a Mitsuboshi belt that a regular Gates belt made outside of Japan.
Look at the pics. wink
Oops, egg on my face! Great job by OP to find Unitta belt. I tried my [censored] a few years ago and I could not find one.
That is NOS from somewhere that you don't see often on the market so its no surprise you couldn't find one.
 
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1,335
Location
Kennett Square, PA
Originally Posted By: boom10ful
How bad is it to buy an NOS timing belt?
Earlier this year I did a lot of research on this. Probably can’t find it now but I read a white paper describing extensive testing of NOS timing belts. If properly stored, they can sit on the shelf for many years and still be as good as brand new. I would not use a NOS timing belt but the test data say it can be ok if you know how it was stored.
 
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24,145
Location
MA, Mittelfranken.de
Originally Posted By: boom10ful
How bad is it to buy an NOS timing belt?
Going by the condition of the box, no water damage of UV fading I don't think there is a problem.
 

GemStater

Thread starter
Messages
323
Location
Pacific NW USA
Originally Posted By: Trav
Originally Posted By: artbuc
Originally Posted By: cpayne5
Originally Posted By: artbuc
[quote=Trav]Nice that you found the Japanese UNITTA belt...
Trav, OP said he bought a Gates TB because his car had a Gates Unitta belt. He did not say the replacement belt he bought was a made in Japan Gates Unitta belt. I would rather use a Mitsuboshi belt that a regular Gates belt made outside of Japan.
Look at the pics. wink
Oops, egg on my face! Great job by OP to find Unitta belt. I tried my [censored] a few years ago and I could not find one. That is NOS from somewhere that you don't see often on the market so its no surprise you couldn't find one.
The wife is out of town and it's a slow night around here. My curiousity got the best of me so I decided to do a quick 7:30p.m. on a Saturday night O’Reilly run... smirk Link - O'Reilly Auto Parts - Gates T329 MADE IN JAPAN Updated package Same label as on mine -> Gates Unitta Asia [/quote]
 

GemStater

Thread starter
Messages
323
Location
Pacific NW USA
As far as age of my timing belt, I'm going to call Gates and see about a date code. I reason it's probably not any older than July of 2008. Don't know if that is "bad" or not?
 
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