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 2004 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 ever 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 replaced 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:
100,388 miles
Total Complaints:
66 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. have the car repainted (47 reports)
  2. not sure (14 reports)
  3. repaint (5 reports)
2004 Honda Accord body / paint problems

body / paint problem

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2004 Honda Accord Owner Comments (Page 2 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #46

Jan 012014

Accord V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 140,000 miles


The clear coat on my 2004 Honda Accord is failing. Keep in mind this car has been in a garage from the time I bought it new, Jan 2004. When I went to the dealer where I bought it they immediately said "NO", not even a sorry!

When I went to get an estimate on a repaint, the auto body guy said he sees a lot of this on the Honda Accords and there was a class action suit. But the dealer had "NO" knowledge of it. Can I say "BULLSHIT!" Does anyone out there know about the class action suit or warranty on the seal coat failure?

- , Nampa, ID, USA

problem #45

Sep 172014

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 117,000 miles

Honda refuses to assist with what is apparently a known issue.

- , Woodbridge, VA, USA

problem #44

Jan 012012

Accord LX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 143,000 miles

Paint job has complely deteriated, even after years in the garage.

- , Tracy, CA, USA

problem #43

Aug 012012

Accord V6

  • Manual transmission
  • 100,000 miles


I love my Honda but the paint is unsightly - I intend to keep my Honda another few years so I will have to pay out of pocket to fix the peeling paint that gets progressively worse. I've mentioned it to the dealer service technicians but the dealership hasn't offered to re-paint. I have not yet contacted Honda directly but will do so upon learning of the paint recall on Civics....presumably the paint is identical to what is on my Accord, why is this not under recall as well?

- , Germantown, MD, USA

problem #42

Jan 012007

Accord EX 2.4L L4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 134,900 miles

I just actually found out last year about Honda's defective paint problems last year when I parked next to another exact car/model/black with same problem. When I spoke with the owner they told me about the defective paint problem. I have been told for years from local Honda's dealers it was due to tree sap or just normal for age of vehicle. I contacted local Honda dealer and then the main company and informed basically nothing could be done by Honda. Only the Civic was being repainted for free due to defective paint.

- , Tampa, FL, USA

problem #41

Jul 182014

Accord EX 3.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 74,500 miles

2004 Honda Accord EX, 3.0, 76,000 miles. Clear coat paint is starting to peal on hood, roof and truck. Car is meticulously maintained and was garaged for the first 5 years of it's life.

I recognized this problem because my daughter had the same issue with her 2003 Accord when it was 4 years old. The Honda rep said the car was repainted and there was nothing Honda would do because it was out of warranty. I knew it was the original paint and when we had the car repainted a year later (it was in awful condition, hood roof and trunk badly pealing) the body shop confirmed that it was NOT repainted.

I've seen many Honda's with pealing clear coats. Honda has a major problem that they refuse to address. Don't they realize that their reputation is at stake when people see Honda's on the road with this problem?

As for me and my family, we will not be purchasing another Honda now or in the future

- , Youngsville, NC, USA

problem #40

Jan 012008

Accord LX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 48,000 miles


click to see larger images

clear coat started to peel clear coat started to peel clear coat started to peel

Just very frustrated that this dark paint problem is clearly a Honda paint problem and they do nothing about it. My family has purchased several Hondas (at least 5) and I don't think it's right to not fix problems on vehicles that you clearly cut corners on. I want my car repainted before I trade it in to upgrade from my Accord to a larger more family style vehicle. However, if Honda doesn't fix this I will not be upgrading with them. They will have officially lost my business.

- , Rancho Santa Margarita, CA, USA

problem #39

Jan 012010

Accord Limited V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles

We have had it looked at by Rousch Honda in Columbus Ohio and I was told they would not help. I went to Roush Honda in 2010 for repairs from wreck in the front quarter panel. When finished, the paint did not match the rest of the paint on the car. I complained to the manager, he said basically too bad.

A year to the month later, the quarter panel started to come off, a screw broke. I called Roush Honda again, they said it was only a year warranty. Too Bad! We purchased this car new and have taken care of it, so the engine and interior are in great order. The body is a mess. It is embarrassing to drive. We have purchased many cars since we purchased this one (have two sons) and I would NEVER buy another Honda.

- , Etna, OH, USA

problem #38

Aug 252013

Accord LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 118,000 miles

This peeling clear coat is too wide spread for Honda to not be responsible for repairs. The paint on a car is critical to car value and structural integrity. Almost every Honda Accord I see has this condition. Why has Honda been allowed to ignore their responsibility?

- , Huntsville, AL, USA

problem #37

Dec 262012

Accord LX Lx V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 82,000 miles

click to see larger images

clear coat started to peel clear coat started to peel clear coat started to peel clear coat started to peel clear coat started to peel clear coat started to peel

No, I don't think it's right that Hondas have a paint problem with the top coat on everybody's Civics, and Odysseys. They have this problem and nobody cares about doing anything about it. These are beautiful cars and with this problem, they look like trash. I can understand that nobody wants to paint everybody's car over but you could try to come up wit a good fix where it won't look like garbage.




- , Memphis, TN, USA

problem #36

Feb 032012

Accord EX I-Vet 2.4L Dohc

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles


My paint on my 2004 accord is peeling and looks horrible. I am embarrassed to be seen in a parking lot or by people I meet for the first time and this is an everyday thing. This has really dampened my self-esteem and self view point. And none of this my fault, it is all on my car and the Honda manufacture.

- , Macon, GA, USA

problem #35

Jan 012008

Accord EX 4cl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 220,000 miles

I have a great mechanically sound 2004 Honda Accord at 200K+ miles...that has a crappy paint job! This started in 2008, 4 years after car purchased NEW and has escalated at a rate that makes the car look worthless. I started to take notice that basically every older Honda I see, no matter what model, the paint job is coming off. I believe Honda needs to do a recall on all models from late 90's-2010 and do the right thing by giving new paint jobs. Honda has a reputation they should want to keep, especially with the thick competition with KIA and Hyundai being so evident. This is my 3rd Honda but is most likely my last as well. Come on Honda, do the right thing.

- , McDonough, GA, USA

problem #34

Aug 152012

Accord EX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,000 miles


- , fairmont, WV, USA

problem #33

May 052014

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

No sense in repeating what I have already read all over the Internet. The paint on my 2004 Accord looks disgraceful and I am hopeful the dealership where I bought both of the Hondas I own will assist me with the repaint of the Accord.

- , Torrance, CA, USA

problem #32

Apr 242014

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,450 miles

I love this car. However, I am pissed at the fact that the paint is peeling off my rear spoiler. Honda really disappointed me on the cheap clear coat. My car is 10 years old and only has 62k miles on it. This car was mint, until the paint started to peel.

- , Dover, DE, USA

problem #31

Mar 022010

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

I've noticed how horrible the roof of my car has gotten.. Pretty much all the clear coat is gone and I'm down to the base paint. I did some Google search to see if Honda had gotten this problem.. Well, surprise, surprise.. seems like everyone that owns a Honda has horrible paint problems. Hint, hint. I went to to see if there was a recall on this, and to my surprise there wasn't any.. only on my power steering.

So I called, talked to a rep, and of course they said that it wasn't covered.. I said that it was funny because, Honda Odyssey vans that have dark paint jobs, and that are within the same year range as mine are getting a recall and they are getting their warranty extended! so why am I left out??! I mean, I know people with Civics, and Accords that are having the same damn problem. Why are you only looking out for soccer moms Honda?!?! Very bad business. This would be my first and last Honda needless to say. Screw Honda and their cheap clear coat.

- , Miami, FL, USA

problem #30

Mar 042014

Accord EX-L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 145,500 miles

click to see larger images

clear coat started to peel clear coat started to peel

Have appealed to Honda through my local dealer for a repaint Even offered to meet them half way, hopefully they will come through. Other than the paint issue it has been a great car.

Update from Mar 17, 2014: Got a call from the dealership and Honda has declined to support a repair due to age and milage. I even offered to meet them halfway. So now I have a perfectly good car with terrible paint.

- , Crowley, TX, USA

problem #29

Nov 012012

Accord LX 3.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 97,000 miles

My 2004 black Honda Accord clearcoat/paint is chipping away. I have large spots all over my car where the clear coat/paint is now gone and also patches that will be affected next.

Honda recalled odyssey and Civics but not the Accords. The car looks like it is 30 years old.

Discussed with local and national Honda today. Told me they felt my pain but they were going to do anything about it.

Very sad. I will never buy a Honda again. I've had one for over 30 years. In my research, I found out that my year has a terrible transmission and fails frequently after 100K miles. Guess Honda joined the ranks of the other car companies that put out products that fail like this.

- , Westminster, CO, USA

problem #28

Nov 052012

Accord 2D SD 2.4L

  • Manual transmission
  • 188,000 miles

click to see larger images

clear coat started to peel

the car is in great shape. the paint peeling on the roof and the car look like hell

- , newburgh, NY, USA

problem #27

Jun 122011

Accord EX 4.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 81,423 miles

I purchased this car in 2007 and it was in mint condition. The car has 81,000 miles and has been well taken care of inside and out.

But last year the clear coat started to peel in a few small spots and has progressively gotten worse. It's peeling on the roof,trunk, hood, fender and all 4 doors!!!!!! When I took it to the Honda dealership where I bought it they gave me an estimate of$ 6,175.00 to strip and repaint the car at my expense.They said the peeling was an environment issue that Indiana has.....

I feel Honda should pay for this repainting as the clear coating is obviously defective and by reading the other complaints I see several people have had similar problems with Honda's red paint. So I'm hoping they live up to their stellar reputation and do the right thing with my issue...I will be patiently waiting for a reply.

- , Indianapolis, IN, USA

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