I have an 09 Pilot that on very cold mornings will make almost a squeaking honking noise just as the engine turns over. Once the vehicle has warmed up it doesn't make the noise any longer and I have tried to take it to the dealer but it is intermentant and they can never duplicate.
Noise on cold start up on 2009 Honda Pilot
by mbc0997 in Tucson, AZ on January 27, 2010
ANSWER by Bret Bodas on January 27, 2010
These types of problems are very difficult to address. Make sure the dealer checks all the technical info from Honda, they are very good about sending the dealer a ton of info, but the mechanic needs to read it other wise it's useless, so inquire about this. Try to leave the vehicle overnight with them when the temperature is going to be cold overnight, and show up there in the morning so you can be there when they start it to point out the noise if you hear it.
ANSWER by Visitor on August 11, 2010
I experienced the same noise accompanied with a vibration on the steering wheel(but didn't mention the vibration) and was informed it was the power steering pump. Only after the diagnosis did I know it was accurate due to the steering wheel vibration. I was told it won't hurt anything and not to worry about it.
My pilot makes a knocking sound when idling. Could this be sticking lifters ?