Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety. Notes: The 1998 Honda Accord suffers from widespread transmission failure, peeling paint, & subframe rust. We recommend avoiding this model year like the plague.

The transmission begins slipping & eventually has to be replaced, typically soon after 100,000 miles & with a repair cost of over $2,000.

Peeling paint has also been a huge issue for these Accords. Most of the complaints are with darker paint colors -- especially green & blue.

Subframe rust near the front passenger side wheel has become a problem recently, due to the poorly positioned A/C drain hose directly above that area. Repair cost to the subframe is over $2,000.


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
116,618 miles
Total Complaints:
42 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace transmission (19 reports)
  2. not sure (17 reports)
  3. rebuild transmission (6 reports)
1998 Honda Accord transmission problems

transmission problem

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1998 Honda Accord Owner Comments (Page 2 of 3)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #22

Sep 012008

Accord V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 133,000 miles


I purchased a 1998 Honda Accord V6 in Feb 2008 for cash after leasing a 2004 Honda Accord as attempt to save money to due the high cost of gas and daily living and now I found myself putting more into this car. I'm experiencing like the previous bloggers a thud when going from 1st to 2nd gear. I did the required maintenance at 126k for the Honda which cost around 1200.00 and now they say I need a new transmission which is estimated to be around 2100.00K I have also own an Acura and have purchased several Acura before thinking they were the best car that could give you the best mileage with less maintenance but after this situation and reading other comments I'm know I'm dead wrong. I wish I would have found this site before my purchase.

- , Chesterfield, VA, USA

problem #21

Jul 022008

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 67,000 miles

Okay. I had heard Hondas were great and that my car would be problem free for at least 150,000 miles except for standard maintenance. Well, after owning it for 5 years and only 67,000 miles my car started slipping in the transmission. It has gotten so bad that I am afraid to make left turns at stop signs as the car will not accelerate and then when it does, it's like a big thud. I also refrain from passing other vehicles. It is getting to the point that I am afraid of my car. I am a prisoner in my own car now. Afraid to make any trips, just go to and from work and locally. Thank God my work is only 2 miles away. I have had it checked out and was told I need a new transmission at a cost of $2,500 to $3,000. I now have 72,000 miles on my car. I am so disgusted with my Honda now I will NEVER buy another one. I am also letting my friends know to beware. I found this site by checking to see if others had had this problem, after checking with a Honda dealer and finding out there has been no recall, but many complaints.

I am saving my money to get it fixed because of the economy, but I will never trust Hondas again! Toyota is looking better all the time!

- , Alexandria, VA, USA

problem #20

Oct 202007

Accord 2.3L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 180,000 miles

When I slow down like when coming to a stop sign, the transmission stays in second gear for about 2 seconds after I am completely stopped. When it finally shifts back to first, it jerks real hard. Sometimes I thinks its in first already and I try to take off and the RPMs go up high then it jerks into first and chirps the tires. Its really annoying. Would changing the shift solenoids on my tranny help at all?

- , Greenville, TX, USA

problem #19

May 022008

Accord LX 2.3L V4 Vtec

  • Automatic transmission
  • 135,000 miles


Can't really say I have a "beef". After all my tranny did last 135k miles before problems started. The problem started with a little delay while shifting from 1-2. Over the course of 3 months or so, the delay turned into a slight slip. I had the transmission "serviced" which basically meant flushing and fluid replacement (this was a waste of cash). The problem continued until the shift from 1-2 was a prominent slip and clunk. I took my Honda to AAMCO and the estimates are as follows: Free computer diagnosis to possibly remedy any external transmission problem. $1095 to pull the tranny, identify the problems and re-install it (really not an option). $1395 to pull it, install a basic kit with gaskets new fluid and cleaning. $2200 to rebuild tranny replacing only broken parts. $2700 to rebuild and install all new clutches, bushing, gaskets plus a new torque converter. I chose the $2700 deal just to avoid later trouble with other clutches and the eventual torque converter replacement. It came with a 12 month 12k mile warranty which is upgradable for a price. I love my Honda and hope to drive it at least another 150k miles. Everything else is great with the vehicle as long as I truly stick to basic maintenance schedule.

- , Anaheim, CA, USA

problem #18

May 082008

Accord EX 3.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 176,000 miles

My 1998 Accord 3.0L V6 revs high then shifts hard from first to second gear. I just want to know how I can get this fixed for as little cash as possible.

- , Charlotte, NC, USA

problem #17

May 262008

Accord LX V4, Vtech

  • Automatic transmission
  • 107,000 miles


- , Pahoa, HI, Pacific Islands (US)

problem #16

Apr 022008

Accord EX 3.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 118,900 miles



- , Gilroy, CA, USA

problem #15

Aug 012007

Accord 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 83,000 miles

I just sold my 1998 Honda Accord today. Not sure about the trim (it had leather interior, sun roof, am/fm/cd, keyless entry, security system, alloy wheels). Automatic transmission. I bought it used about 3 1/2 years ago at 39,000 miles. Last summer at about 83,000 miles the check engine light came on. Advance Auto hooked up a hand-held computer to it and the print out said it was a catalytic converter/O2 sensor problem. Shortly after that I noticed a rough shift in the lower gears. It got progressively worse. The local Honda dealer does not have a good reputation and my experience there has left something to be desired but I reluctantly took it in. One of the mechanics drove my car and a few minutes later someone came in to tell me that my transmission was going bad. They did not know how long it would last but said it would eventually need to be rebuilt/replaced. They also said that I could not have this work done by the dealer and could not get a replacement transmission from Honda. They suggested I take it to a local transmission shop. They couldn't get me out of there fast enough. They didn't even charge me to look at it. I even called the Honda Corporate office and was told that since there was no transmission recall on my VIN and the warranty had expired, there was nothing they could do. After much debate, I finally decided to sell it. By the time I paid to have it fixed, I may have had more money in the car than it's book value (I still owed money on the car). I sold it to an individual and mentioned the transmission problem in my ad. I took a pretty good loss on the sale because of the transmission problem. I really liked the car and wish I didn't have to sell it. I was very happy with the car until this problem. I have owned Toyota's in the past and currently have a 1984 Supra with under 35,000 miles. I bought a 1994 Camry with 68,000 miles last week to replace the Accord I've sold. Most of my family has owned Toyota vehicles (Supras, Corollas, Trucks, Tercel, etc.). We have never had transmission problems or any other major problems with any of the Toyota vehicles we've owned. I needed a car when I bought the Accord and could not afford to buy a new one. I knew quite a few people who owned Honda vehicles, Accords in particular, and had good things to say about them so I bought it. No more Hondas. My next vehicle will be a new Toyota Camry.

- , South Charleston, WV, USA

problem #14

Sep 082003

Accord EX 3.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

Just stumbled upon this site because I am thinking of just replacing the transmission once and for all! I have been driving this car for more than 4 years now with the car searching for gears in first and second. When it first started to act up I had 3 years leaft on a five year loan. So needless to say I couldn't afford to do it. I am debating getting a new transmission finally and driving it for 5 more years but the more I read....I should probably replace it and sell this piece of SH*T!

- , Milwaukee, WI, USA

problem #13

Sep 212007

(reported on)

Accord LX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 200,000 miles

I bought My Accord V6 for cheap due to it was already slipping and shifting under high RPMs from first to second gear. in some cases it would peel out if u maintain it at a constant 4000 RPM in first gear. the car had high mileage a little over 200k due to the previous one owner since new drove it daily from Rockford IL to Chicago on a daily basis which is around 100 miles one way. i drove the car for a few months w/ the tranny problem it didn't get severe at all, i just had no option thinking it would cost me an extra 2500 to fix it. however, i took it to my personal mechanic and he gave me an estimate of 1300 for a rebuild and labor. plus a 2 year/24,000 mile warranty on the job. i immediately dropped the car off and took a taxi home. 3 days later went to pick up the car and now for the past year and half its been shifting like new.

tho.... i miss it back when it use to slip from first to second it gave me a quicker pull under high RPMs which is something different in a auto transmission car. but 18 months since the fix and still not a single problem.

my mechanic suggested i flush the tranny fluid yearly especially before the winter hits its the best thing you can do to a honda accord w/ the V6 engine. i recently had it flushed on 9/02/07 to get it prepped for the winter use. this suggestion seem to works well and i have had another friend do this theory after his second rebuild of his 01 accord EX V6 and it took him 96K before it went out the first time, then again at 178K and then thats when i told him the trick he's now at 225k miles and nothing unusual happened so far and to him unusual is happening saying that "its actually unusual because i would assume my car's tranny would give out or should've started slipping already but no nothing at all.... thats the unusual part of it".

- , Woodridge, IL, USA

problem #12

Sep 262007

(reported on)

Accord 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 157,900 miles


Well Great. I thought Hondas were reliable cars. Mine is a 98 Accord LX automatic 4 cylinder 4 dr.

I accelerate and it revs high before finally popping way too late into 2nd gear. I have noticed that there is an unusual amount of dust all over my engine... and read something about the transmissions not having a filter which causes buildup?

Anyone know anything about that?

- , Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #11

Jun 042007

(reported on)

Accord EX V6 V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 142,000 miles

please stay away from honda. The v6 trans design is trash. The sad thing is THEY did not fix it at all. my 05 acura tl is starting to have the same prob my 98 v6 accord has. accord trans replaced at 142k and now will be replaced at 170k.

My advice get a maxima or a camry stay away from any honda product that has a v6 engine in it.

- , Plainfiled, IL, USA

problem #10

Jun 072007

(reported on)

Accord V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles

I bought my '98 V6 Accord Sedan 3 years ago. It only had 66k miles on it & I was excited to own a car that would be reliable, looked great, and I could hopefully keep until 200k miles. I bought an extended warranty through my credit union for more peace of mind. Soon after I bought the car I noticed the difficulty shifting from 1st to 2nd gear. The rpm's kept going up w/o shifting. It wasn't consistent, and I took it into a shop complaining of the problem 3 times over 18 months. They never experienced it upon test drives. Last week another shop confirmed a problem that I've been aware of for over 3 years - transmission trouble. My extended warranty has since expired, and upon submitting copies of receipts documenting my complaints, they have stated that they would not honor the repair. At this point, I have 1 year remaining of car payments, and and going to continue driving the car as I have for the past 3 years. I might have it repaired after paying it off, but I don't see the point in spending $2k + if the car is still taking me from point A to point B. I'm not happy, I'll never buy another Honda again. I thought I'd avoid this problem by not buying another Dodge. Obviously I was mistaken. Screw Honda.... this should be a recall issue. And I also have the loud noise upon putting the car into reverse. I commiserate with many of you. Argh.

- , St. Louis, MO, USA

problem #9

Jun 192007

(reported on)

Accord EX 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 73,000 miles

isn't there a petition or something for these transmissions because i just bought mine used, and it was having the crappy 1st to 2nd gear problem. I took it into Rosen Honda in Illinois and i mentioned that i had heard about this problem before. The mechanic i guess played dumb because he assured me that this wasn't a major problem, even though he estimated $2500 worth of damage for them to rebuild the trans. Or i could shell out $4000 for a brand new tranny, than pay $1100 in god damn labor. isnt there anything we can do besides complain, the only comfort i have with all this is that im not alone.

- , Palatine, IL, USA

problem #8

Mar 122007

(reported on)


  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles

This is a real scary problem that needs to be corrected and we need to be reimbursed.

- , Edmomton, KY, USA

problem #7

Sep 142006

(reported on)


  • 148,000 miles

Honda did a poor job with the transmissons in the V6 model Accords. I will be putting my second transmission in this vehicle. counting the orginal transmisson I have had a total of three transmissions in this car. I have done alot of research on this problem because it seems highly unusual for a car with the reputaion of Honda to have this many issues with its transmission. Apparently, I am not the only one with this problem, I have read many complaints about this same problem. Honda needs to recall these transmissions, and, or re-design the drivetrain. Something just is not right. This issue needs to be addressed by Honda!

- , Rocky Hill, CT, USA

problem #6

Feb 092007

(reported on)

Accord EX 3.0 V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 107,000 miles

I have a 1998 Honda accord V6. I always liked hondas and toyotas. My problem started a couple of weeks ago when my transmission started giving me a stud "noise" when shifting from 1st to 2nd gear. Later it started slipping like the transmission would be in neutral. That is when a check engine light came on. I am still deciding what to do with it. They told me it would probably cost me more than $3,200.00 to fix it. I will probably change transmission or rebuild that one for 800.00 with a friend and later get rid of the car within a year. I wish Honda would do something about it because it is obvious that there is a problem with these V6 trans and they know about it...

- , Orlando, FL, USA

problem #5

Mar 072007

(reported on)

Accord LX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles

My first car was a 1988 Honda Accord and I drove it for 12 years with nothing more serious than brake problems and I put 120,000 miles on it before selling it for $800. In 2000 I purchased a 1998 Honda LX at the oldest and largest Honda Dealership in San Francisco(San Francisco Honda). I bought the warranty and maintained it diligently. This past Sunday I was crossing the Bay Bridge from Oakland into the city when the engine light went on and my car did what every other complaint on this site is saying their cars did. The engine revved, the power decreased, the car lurched, etc. etc. TOTAL nightmare. I'm glad I'm still alive. I was somehow able to make it to the Honda Dealership that afternoon and they told me they needed to do a "diagnostic evaluation" at a non-refundable $140 to determine the problem!! So they called me the next day to tell me that the transmission needed to be replaced at the cost of $5,000 parts and labor and that it would take about 2 weeks to get the transmission in stock? I went up the ranks at the dealership and got nothing but evasive answers and lame excuses as to how and why this happened when I have my whole service record for 5 years on their computer database???? It's beyond pathetic that they choose not to deal with the issue and instead just said "sometimes it happens". I paid my $140 blood money to get my car out of there and will never go back and will NEVER recommend them to anyone and having read these other reports will continue to badmouth Honda and their "customer care" as nothing but lip service. Having read these reviews I've decided not to waste my energy/$$$ trying to repair/fix what is obviously a problem Honda refuses to take responsibility for. Now I have to decide if I should donate the car to charity and get a tax writeoff that I don't want/need or try to sell it in broken down condition and put the minimal money into another car.

I'm very disappointed in Honda but it does make me feel sane that others experienced a similar problem and similar frustration.

- , San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #4

Feb 252007

(reported on)

Accord EX 4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 140,000 miles

At 100,000 miles the car would very intermittently have a very hard shift into 1st while stopped but in Drive. I'd be at a light, in Drive, and there would be a big thud that felt like someone rear-ended the car. I finally figured out it was the transmission just doing shift into 1st. It was only happening once every 3 months in the beginning. Dealer (whom I have had the car thoroughly and frequently serviced) changed the transmission oil. After that it started happening slightly more frequently.

At 120,000+ car would miss the shift from 1st to 2nd when under a load and cold. Engine would rev to 4,000, or more, then shudder a little and drop into a taller gear and be OK. It felt like the wheels were spinning on ice for 1-2 seconds. Generally only happens once per trip when the car was cooled down and accelerating under a load. I complained to the dealer, but after the usuall transmission oil change had no effect, I just lived with it for 3-4 years.

At 180,000 miles, I left the car sitting in Winter for about 3 weeks. When I drove the car for the first time it missed that first shift up (as expected), but this time it never dropped into the taller gear. I was doing about 25 miles an hour and the car just coasted in Drive. I could rev the engine from 2,000 to 4,000 RPM as if it was in neutral. After it coasted to about 15 miles an hour there was a big thump and it got back in 1st gear again. Stepping on the gas the car speeds up to 25-35 miles an hour and misses the next shift again. Repeats this process until the temperature guage starts to warm and then finally catches the next gear. The transmission oil is full (slightly over full if anything), and smells slightly burned. Dealer changed transmission oil again, and now it has gotten even worse.

At 186,500 miles, it is now on its last legs. It takes longer to "warm up" and get into the taller gears. Sometimes it never shifts into 1st while sitting at a light, and it's stuck in 2nd or 3rd. So it accelerates at a snails pace with the engine straining, and then sometimes at 25-35 it finds 2nd gear and accelerates quickly, only to get confused again and drop it into the wrong gear again. Symptoms seem to go away above 50mph but if it's cold it will once it a while shift to a different higher gear for a few seconds (with no change in load or drive conditions) then drop back to where it was before. Dealer willing to keep changing transmission oil, but wants $2500 minimum to put in another used transmission with a 90 day 3,000 mile warrantee. This is about 50% of the value of the car with no real guarantee it wont happen again. Still thinking about what to do with this car.

- , Sudbury, MA, USA

problem #3

Feb 222007

(reported on)

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,500 miles

Bought my 1998 V6 Accord EX new. Only driven carefully by me and my wife. Always received factory service. Took it to local Honda dealer for 90,000 mile service (at 90,500 mi) and also mentioned that the last few months the transmission has been shifting roughly from time-to-time and sometimes clunking into gear and slipping, especially when cold. Dealer called back this afternoon to say my car needed a new transmission. Did not admit this was a common problem. I'm trying to determine how pervasive this problem is and what Honda is prepared to do about it. This website has been helpful and informative.

- , Wichita, KS, USA

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