Having the engine oil changed regularly is one of the most important maintenance tasks for keeping your 2011 Honda Odyssey running smoothly for years to come. Honda recommends getting the oil changed every 5,000 miles or 6 months, whichever comes first. To keep track of when you need to change the oil, the Odyssey has an oil life monitoring system. This system lets you know when it’s time to reset the oil life after getting an oil change.
Resetting the oil life is a simple process that only takes a minute or two. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to do it.
Table of Contents
- Understanding the Oil Life Monitoring System
- What You’ll Need to Reset the Oil Life
- Step-by-Step Guide to Resetting the Oil Life
- Helpful Tips for Resetting the Oil Life
- Why Proper Oil Changes Are Vital for the Odyssey
- Signs Your Odyssey Needs an Oil Change
- DIY Oil Changes on the Odyssey
- Maintaining Other Fluids in Your Odyssey
- Why Following the Maintenance Minder Is Important
Understanding the Oil Life Monitoring System
The 2011 Odyssey’s maintenance reminder system monitors driving conditions to calculate when the oil needs changing. It tracks factors like engine temperature, RPM, and time elapsed since the last reset.
Based on these variables, the van will display a maintenance code on the information display when it’s nearing time for an oil change. Codes range from A to E, with A indicating only 5% of the oil’s life remains. Code B equals 15%, C is 25%, D is 40%; and E means 80% of the oil life is left.
Once the code reaches A, the odometer will display “Oil Life 0%” and the maintenance reminder light will come on, letting you know it’s time to change the oil. This takes the guesswork out of remembering when to get vital maintenance done.
What You’ll Need to Reset the Oil Life
Resetting the Odyssey’s oil life monitor is done using just the controls on the steering wheel. No tools or devices are needed.
Here’s a quick look at the two buttons you’ll be using:
- Select/Reset button: Located in the lower left portion of the instrument panel. It’s the button with an arrow pointing down.
- Information button: found in the lower right section of the instrument panel. This button has an “i” on it.
So as long as you’re inside the vehicle, you’ll have everything needed to complete the oil life reset process.
Step-by-Step Guide to Resetting the Oil Life
Without further ado, here is the simple step-by-step process for resetting the oil life on a 2011 Honda Odyssey:
1. Turn the Ignition to the “On” Position
- The first step is to turn the key to the On position without starting the engine.
- The instrument panel and information display will light up so you can see the oil life reading.
2. Press the Select/Reset Button to View the Oil Life
- Press and release the Select/Reset button on the steering wheel.
- This will bring up the oil life percentage on the information display.
3. Press and Hold the Select/Reset Button
- Once the oil life is displayed, press and hold the Select/Reset button.
- Continue holding it down until the reading changes to “100%” along with the maintenance item code(s).
4. Press the Information Button to Complete
- Finally, press and release the Info button on the steering wheel.
- This will return you to the normal driving screen.
The oil life reset is now complete! You can now safely drive until the maintenance minder system reaches 15% oil life remaining before the next oil change will be needed.
Helpful Tips for Resetting the Oil Life
Here are some useful things to keep in mind when resetting the oil life monitor on your 2011 Odyssey:
- Only reset the oil life after getting an oil change, not before. Resetting before will provide an inaccurate reading.
- You can reset the oil life Display at any time, you don’t have to wait until it reaches 0%.
- Use the proper motor oil viscosity and grade as recommended in the owner’s manual. This helps ensure optimal performance.
- The oil change reminder system is a guide, not definitive. You may need changes more or less frequently.
- If the battery was disconnected, the oil life will revert to 5%. Be sure to reset it after reconnecting.
- Don’t forget to also reset the tire rotation reminder when getting them rotated.
Resetting the maintenance minder is an important part of keeping your Odyssey running well. Following the routine maintenance outlined in the owner’s manual helps prevent serious issues down the road. Taking a quick minute to reset the monitor after oil changes will help keep your van in great shape for years to come.
Why Proper Oil Changes Are Vital for the Odyssey
To understand why staying on top of oil changes really matters, it helps to review what oil does inside the engine:
Lubrication – Oil coats all the moving metal components in the engine, keeping them slick to prevent wear and tear. Good lubrication reduces friction.
Cooling – As oil circulates, it also picks up heat from the combustion process and moving parts. The oil helps regulate operating temperatures.
Cleansing – The oil picks up debris like dirt, metallic particles, carbon deposits, and gasoline byproducts. The oil filter catches contaminants.
Sealing – Oil seals the tiny gaps between piston rings and cylinder walls. This compression is vital for proper combustion.
Corrosion Protection – Many oils also contain anti-corrosive additives to protect critical engine parts from rust and damage.
When you change the oil regularly, you ensure all of these vital functions continue. Old, dirty oil loses its ability to do these jobs properly, leading to accelerated wear and potential engine damage. Proper oil changes prolong the life of your Odyssey’s motor.
Signs Your Odyssey Needs an Oil Change
Don’t rely only on the maintenance schedule for oil changes. Watch for these common indicators that the oil is ready for replacement:
- Dark, Murky Oil Color – Fresh oil has a transparent, amber tone. As oil ages it turns dark brown or black.
- Changes in Oil Texture – Oil may start feeling sticky or gritty, rather than silky smooth. Thickening or clumps in the oil point to issues.
- Excess Odor – Oil itself has little odor. Strong gasoline or burned smells indicate problems.
- Oil Consumption – Using more than one quart per 1,200 miles can mean it’s time for a change.
- Check Engine Light – This warning light can illuminate for various issues, including problems from dirty oil.
Don’t prolong oil changes if you notice any of these warning signs. Catching problems early helps prevent extensive repairs down the road.
DIY Oil Changes on the Odyssey
The maintenance schedule calls for professional service technicians to handle oil changes. However, some owners choose to take on this routine maintenance themselves at home to save money.
If you want to change your own oil in the Odyssey, keep this in mind:
- Use jack stands for safety, never just a floor jack to support the van.
- Allow ample time for the old oil to fully drain from the pan before refilling.
- Have an oil filter wrench ready to loosen the tight filter.
- Use a quality oil like those meeting Honda’s certifications for your climate.
- Dispose of used oil at authorized recycling centers, not in the trash.
- Reset the maintenance minder system when finished to keep the tracking accurate.
DIY oil changes can be safe and effective if performed correctly. But they also take time, tools, supplies and proper disposal of used oil and filters. Determine if the cost savings outweigh the hassle for your situation.
Maintaining Other Fluids in Your Odyssey
While engine oil gets the most attention, several other fluids also impact how your Odyssey runs. Be diligent about checking, changing and refilling these vital liquids when needed:
Transmission fluid – Allows smooth gear changes and lubricates internal components.
Brake fluid – Provides vital hydraulic pressure for safe, responsive braking.
Coolant – Helps regulate engine temperatures and prevent overheating damage.
Power steering fluid – Gives sensitive steering responsiveness and lubrication.
Windshield washer fluid – Maintain this reservoir for cleaning visibility.
Consult your owner’s manual for the recommended replacement schedule of these other fluids. Periodically check their levels and top them off as needed. Proper levels will keep your Odyssey running great.
Why Following the Maintenance Minder Is Important
The maintenance minder system in your 2011 Odyssey takes out the uncertainty about when to change the vital fluids and perform other needed service. But to get the most from it, be sure to follow these guidelines:
- Check the Display Regularly – Make a habit of monitoring the oil life percentage so you’re never caught off guard.
- Don’t Exceed the Recommended Interval – Once you see the “A” maintenance code, get the oil changed promptly.
- Use the Proper Grade Oil – Make sure to use the manufacturer’s recommended viscosity and oils that meet specifications.
- Reset after Each Oil Change – Don’t forget this key step to keep the system’s tracking accurate.
- Note Other Codes – In addition to the oil, pay attention to codes for other maintenance items needing attention.
- Consider Severe Conditions – If you frequently tow heavy loads or drive in extreme conditions, you may need to service your Odyssey more often than recommended intervals.
Following the company-designed maintenance schedule tailored for your Odyssey helps prolong its life and your satisfaction. The oil life monitoring system takes the uncertainty and hassles out of proper maintenance.
Staying diligent on routine maintenance goes a long way toward getting the most miles and enjoyment out of your van. The maintenance minder takes away any doubts about when fluid changes are due. Just be religious about resetting the monitor after each oil change to keep it accurate.
Here’s wishing you many more happy years and road trips ahead in your Odyssey. Take care of it, and it will take care of you and your family!