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CarComplaints.com Notes: The 2003 Honda Accord suffers from widespread transmission failure & problems with the stereo backlight failing. We recommend avoiding this model year like the plague.

The transmission begins slipping & eventually has to be replaced, typically soon after 90,000 miles & with a repair cost of over $2,000. Transmission failure has been a huge problem for the Accord & several other Honda models all through the early 2000s model years. Honda extended the transmission warranty to 93 months/109k miles for the 2000-2001 Accord as a class action lawsuit settlement, but owners of other Accord model years with transmission problems are out of luck.

The stereo backlight problem has been an issue since these Accords were only a few years old. Honda eventually issued a recall which covered the repair for 7 years/100k miles, which was nice while it lasted but now that period is over. Honda initially was replacing the entire radio ($800) but eventually began replacing just the PCB which at ~$300 is much cheaper. That sounds like a deal, but keep in mind we're talking about a backlight bulb that costs $2 to fix in most other cars.


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
66,601 miles
Total Complaints:
10 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. this problems needs to be added to honda's recall list! (5 reports)
  2. not sure (3 reports)
  3. replace the wiper motor (2 reports)
2003 Honda Accord windows / windshield problems

windows / windshield problem

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2003 Honda Accord Owner Comments

problem #10

May 012006

Accord LX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 37,000 miles


Both window regulators broke. It started with the windows clunking and getting stuck. Then finally the windows completely broke. They wouldn't roll down. It was as if the motor had died. I'd push the window button and nothing would happen. I took it to a mechanic who charged me a few hundred dollars to change the motors. That didn't work. So the mechanic changed the motor again, and that didn't work. (And no, I did not get refunded). I then took it to the dealer who gave me a proper diagnosis (broken window regulator (not motor)) and the dealer tried to charge me a fee for this diagnosis. I threw a fit w/ the manager, and convinced them not to charge me this diagnostic fee. They wanted to charge me something outrageous to replace the regulators. I said NO WAY. So I am still driving around w/ windows that won't roll down. It's been since 2006 that my drivers window hasn't rolled down, and a little less than that since the passenger window has rolled down. I called Honda headquarters and tried to get help. I took it as far as I could, but they said NO WAY. It was past the warranty, past 36k miles, past 3 years. She was rude too (at Honda headquarters). She told me I could complain to my attorney general. How stupid is that. Shouldn't our attorney general be busy fighting crime and fraud? Honda should recall these regulators!! I'm selling my Honda Accord ASAP, before the transmission goes out.

- , Kansas City, Missouri, USA

problem #9

Mar 052013

Accord EX 3.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 56,800 miles


- , Easthampton, Massachusetts, USA

problem #8

Oct 212010

Accord EX 3.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 77,210 miles

having too many car problems, left window would not go up, had to replace regulator.

- , Augusta, GA, USA

problem #7

Mar 012011

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 122,000 miles


Contact Honda American Motors. The numbers will be in your owners manuel. Get the fax number from the person you talk to then write a letter to Honda. They will not give you any telephone numbers or email addresses. Everything is done by fax.

They may be willing to help.Ii am now on my 4th motor(s) in each window. then the main "something, blah blah blah" went out. It sent smoke pouring into my car. That cost another $480.00...Honda needs to add a recall on this as well as theirr transmission problems. Oh, did I mention I had my transmission replaced to? They paid 90% and I paid 10% on that replacement.

- , Pasadena, MD, USA

problem #6

Mar 052011

Accord EX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles

There was a recall on the windshield motor and i had it done but obviously Honda didn't fix it correctly and would not fix it a second time, and of course it quit working when i was driving on interstate and it started raining, very interesting trip.

- , Great Bend, KS, USA

problem #5

Jun 152009

Accord LX 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,000 miles

It all started one day when it was raining I noticed that after I had let my window down at a drive thru window, it would not come back up. After having pressing the button several times it finally did come back up. After then, it just stopped working. If I tried to let it down it smelled like (wires) were burning. Now the passenger window is doing the same thing!! After speaking to a coworker, (who owns the exact same year & model as I) I learned that she is having the same problem. I believe that Honda needs to add this problem to their recall list!! I am pretty sure there are several other people who have experienced the same problem & Honda needs to be the one who fixes this!!!!

- , Lexington, Mississippi, USA

problem #4

May 062006

Accord LX V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,000 miles


When I first purchased my Honda Accord I had problems with a leak emanating from the passenger side dash board area. I took the vehicle to the worst "Sloane" Honda dealer where I had purchased the vehicle. I was told that some big person sat on the passenger side and pinched the hose with their big feet. I laughed and at the same time was annoyed because I was a female they thought I was a dumb ass. They allegedly fixed the problem. I then had problems with my sun roof which was not operating correctly; again I was told they was no problem. Somehow it fixed itself. I am now having problems with the left side window which does not roll down. Is this a common problem?

- , Phila, PA, USA

problem #3

Sep 052007

(reported on)


  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles

my wiper blades just quit, it is raining now and i have been without my car for 2 1/2 days. the mechanic called the Honda dealership for the motor that needed replacing and was told they had to order it. they also said they had sold 12 this year, when he called local salvage yards, he found three 2003 Honda accords, all of them had already had the wiper motors removed. this seems to be a reoccurring problem with this car. am wondering if a recall is necessary since so many happened in just my little town. believe me, losing your windshield wipers during a storm can cause an accident.

- , Texarkana, Arkansas, USA

problem #2

Nov 202006

(reported on)

Accord EX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,000 miles

My sunroof stopped opening/closing. I have to close/open manually! I've been told that it's the motor. This went out @ 50K miles. WTF?

- , Burlingame, CA, USA

problem #1

Feb 042005

(reported on)

Accord EX

  • 25,000 miles

After owning my car for almost two years, among the other problems, a few minor ones happened also. For one, my motor for my passenger window quit on me. My passenger door lock that pops up and down became loose and danced around til it was fixed. The whole car is plastic and justs pops together and apart when it wants. I am beginning to hate Honda and their crap!

- , Wichita Falls, TX, USA

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