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.

CarComplaints.com Notes: Yes, the Honda Civic receives a lot of complaints because so many were sold. And sure, car parts only last so long and things eventually break. But it's never good to see this many transmission complaints, especially when the average mileage at failure is just north of 100,000 miles.

Especially when you consider that it's predecessor also has a nasty history with transmission complaints.

10.0

really awful
Crashes / Fires:
5 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
74,079 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2002 Honda Civic engine problems

engine problem

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2002 Honda Civic Owner Comments

problem #18

Apr 102015

Civic 4-cyl

  • 87,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

On my return home from work as I slowly came to my driveway car suddenly accelerated on its own tried to brake to stop the brakes did not help car hit the garage door that was closed still speeding inside the garage like wild bull. There was an old Mercedes Benz and a motorcycle inside the garage among other stored goods that stopped the car moving any further if the Mercedes was not there I would have been killed by hitting the concrete wall of the garage. There is lots of damage at this time in my garage and lots of deductibles I have to pay to get things fixed, for something of no fault of mine. I am so glad it did not happen before few minutes when I was still on the road at a traffic hour after work between 6 to 7 pm on Friday April 10th. During this accident my garage filled with smoke I was terrified thinking of fire hazard next I threw myself out of the car then came and turned off the car called fire department they came and saw the garage full of smoke but thankfully no fire hazard. I am lucky this did not happen on the road and I am thankful I am able to report this so someone else will not go through something like this.

- Issaquah, WA, USA

problem #17

Jun 172010

Civic 4-cyl

  • 110,000 miles
Cruise control suddenly speed up and down by itself and transmission not engaged on highway. I changed cruise control all parts with dealer non of them work and I got same happening every month 4 or 10 times on highway and suddenly my transmission makes whining sound I changed transmission fluid every 30000mi but it give me trouble. As I check on my issues in internet a lot of people got same trouble just like me even well maintained car owner got this same issues! something really wrong on Honda Civic 2002 transmission. I can not give it to my daughter for her first car cruise control speed up and down by itself and dealer can not fix and transmission suddenly makes funny action(sometimes disengage on middle of anywhere ). since June 2010, I don't use cruise control and somehow managed my Civic run on highway and I add up 40000mi more and I really feel guilty for other driver when I drive on highway!

- Frisco, TX, USA

problem #16

Nov 162012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 170,356 miles
I was driving early this morning around 6:45am. Was driving around to get coffee and such, then going 45mph to get to onramp of I-75. After accelerating normally to 68mph, the acceleration stopped and pressing on the gas did nothing. I slowed to around 20mph and that is the max speed I could go on the interstate until I pulled over. There were no weird sounds or smells or leaks, transmission fluid was full. I can start the car fine and drive it around going 20mph, but wont shift after that. Took to belle tire mechanics and they claim its a bad transmission. Everything I've researched online shows this to be a defective clutch pack carrier and is a known issue to Honda and most mechanics, but they claim to not know anything for obvious reasons to avoid having to pay for their mistakes. This needs to be fixed by Honda as this is not the fault of normal wear/tear. This is a blatant mistake by Honda!! someone needs to file a class action suit against Honda for this. I've seen hundreds of other people with the exact same issue.

- Grand Blanc, MI, USA

problem #15

Nov 082012

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 173,462 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

The contact owns a 2002 Honda Civic. The contact stated that while traveling 35 mph, the vehicle erroneously accelerated. The contact was able to get the vehicle to function normally by applying the brakes. The vehicle was towed to the dealer where the failure could not be replicated. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not contacted about the issue. The failure and current mileages were 173,462. Updated 12/21/12 the consumer stated the dealer replaced the fuse box assembly claiming it was defective. The dealer found a mouse nest in the linkage to the throttle. The dealer claimed that the fuse box and mouse nest were not related but, that defective fuse box could affect the throttle sensor. Updated 1/9/2013

- Avon Lake, OH, USA

problem #14

Feb 072012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 131,000 miles
I bought this car from a used car dealer. The horn works intermittently about 10% of the time. I was nearly run off the road on several occasions since then because I could not honk at people drifting into my lane. I have spent over $300 investigating this issue and replacing parts that I was told were the culprit. I do not know where else to turn. This is a serious safety issue, and it should be a recall with all Honda/Acura since they all use the same assembly.

- Jenison, MI, USA

problem #13

Mar 152012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 99,000 miles
The cruise control feature will just turn off, and the car will begin to decelerate. This can be dangerous if a driver does not realize they are decelerating (due to the automatic of driving and the effects of driving hypnosis). There have been too many electrical problems with all Honda in the 2002-2004 years that have the potential to increase the risk of a crash that I do not think the consumer should have to pay for any of those repairs. The cruise control just turning off at very high speeds is one example of the many problems I have had.

- Toms River, NJ, USA

problem #12

May 022011

Civic

  • 122,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I was driving my car on the freeway up a slight incline. My Honda was usually sluggish going uphill and would rev to about 3000 rpms before shifting into 4th gear at approx 55mph. However, on this particular occasion, I kept accelerating the car up the incline, but at 60mph the car's rpms were increasing to the red line zone meaning the car was not shifting. Since my car had never done this before, I was confused and also I was concerned the rpms would increase too much so I attempted to apply the brakes to slow the speed of the car. The brakes felt as if they had locked up, would not press down, and barely slowed the car to 55mph. I took my foot off of the brake pedal and without my foot pressing down on the accelerator or the brake pedal, the car quickly accelerated on it's own to 70mph and the rpms were red lining. I quickly applied the brakes again, which were doing little to slow my car. The brakes were competing with the acceleration and myself and my two passengers could smell the brakes burning. I checked that the floor mat was out of the way and it was. I checked that cruise control wasn't turned on and it wasn't. I applied the brakes as hard as I could and was able to decelerate the car to 40mph with the rpms still red lining. Then I shifted the car into neutral, and although the cars rpms were out of control, the shift into neutral decelerated the car to about 10 mph. I pulled the E-brake and shut off the engine. At this time the brakes were visibly smoking. I contacted the Honda dealership who was incredibly reluctant to help. In a meeting with the manager, he even stated, "how do we know your foot wasn't on the accelerator the whole time?" I inspected the air cleaner box cover myself and saw no damage (due to a recall I read about on that make/model). Honda found nothing wrong, said the car was "operating as designed" and sent me home with a bill.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #11

Dec 212010

Civic

  • 112,000 miles
The contact owns 2002 Honda Civic. The contact stated that the vehicle independently accelerated to 80 mph without the accelerator pedal being depressed. The contact attempted to apply the brakes but to no avail. The vehicle stopped independently and was towed to the dealer for inspection. The dealer advised that the throttle position sensor had failed. The vehicle was repaired. The failure and current mileage was 112,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- San Antonio , TX, USA

problem #10

Nov 182010

Civic 4-cyl

  • 140,400 miles
I was trying to slow in a school zone when, although my foot was on the brakes, my 2002 Honda Civic suddenly started accelerating. Even with continued pressure on the brake the acceleration continued. When I was able to stop the car I put it in park and the engine was revving. I turned off the car and when I restarted it was fine. It has not happened since.

- Middleburg, FL, USA

problem #9

Apr 042010

Civic

  • 146,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Honda Civic. The contact stated that she pulled into a parking space and when she put the vehicle in reverse it suddenly accelerated forward and hit a brick wall.the contact stated that she had not placed her foot on the accelerator pedal. The front bumper fell off due to the crash. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealership for a diagnostic test but the dealer could not duplicate the failure. The current and failure mileages were approximately 146,000.

- Annandale, NE, USA

problem #8

Aug 072009

Civic

  • miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

The contact owns a 2002 Honda Civic. She stated that while driving at 3 mph when parking and having her foot on the brake when the vehicle started to idle fast and accelerated on its own. While driving over a speed bump the vehicle rolled backwards and stopped. The failure has occurred 3 times. The vehicle was towed to a Honda dealer. The dealer was unable to duplicate or diagnose the failure. No repairs were made to the vehicle. The failure mileage was unknown and the current mileage was 19100.

- Gresham, OR, USA

problem #7

May 292005

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
2002 Honda Civic, automatic transmission. Three times since purchase new in 2002, the engine has suddenely accelerated and continues to rev up to 3000rpm while braking, definitely not with foot on accelerator, twice in reverse and once in drive. Vehicle lurches and only very hard braking prevents vehicle motion until the engine can be turned off. There is no floor mat involved.

- Yuma, AZ, USA

problem #6

Nov 122002

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 24,200 miles
I was driving up an incline at about 35 mph on the parkway, and needed to accelerate up the hill. I pressed on the gas pedal, and it hardly moved and I got no response. All of a sudden, the pedal pulled away from my foot downward towards the floor, and the car accelerated uncontrollably. With the possibility that cruise control was accidentally put on (which I hardly ever use), I immediately stepped on the brake to stop the acceleration, and there was no response. I was still accelerating, so I put the car into neutral, and it was still revving out of control. (the RPM was in the red zone) I finally put the toe of my boot under the gas pedal to try to lift it up off the floor, and it finally gave, and went back to normal. I then proceeded toward home, at a voluntary 20 mph. I am taking it to the Honda service center for evaluation.

- Bronxville, NY, USA

problem #5

Mar 302003

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 15,000 miles
While leaving parking lot it was very dark as lights were out in front of and behind me and it was difficult to see behind me. I proceeded slowly in reverse and lightly hit the cement base of light behind me. I felt the impact on back right. I immediately placed my right foot on the brake. The car was stopped. I then tried to put the car into drive while doing this I noticed that the engine was loud and revving up speed and actually moving while I had my right foot on the brake and no foot on the gas. My first thought was that from the revving noise the accelerator pedal was stuck. I checked this with my right foot and felt that the gas pedal was up and not down as it sounded. I next put the car into park, we continued to move at an accelerated pace. I then placed both my feet on the brake pedal. I used as much force as I could, I did this by stepping on the brake with both feet and pulling up on the steering wheel to give me more force and pressure. The car did not slow down, did not skid, showed no signs of slowing down. I next pulled the emergency brake as hard as I could with my right hand, still the car did not slow down. There was a dumpster ahead to my left, a large parking lot light with a cement base to the right and a fence between them. I aimed the car between the dumpster and light. The car was still accelerating, no signs of slowing down. I made the decision to go over the curb hit the fence in the hopes that this would slow the car down in order to gain control. While going through the fence both feet were applied to the brake, no foot was on the gas and the emergency brake was up and in place. We went up another curb onto a road going in the wrong direction, for another 100 feet and the car slowed and stopped. My 13 year old son was with me in the passenger seat. (a few days prior while driving in a mall parking lot the car made a loud noise but no identifiable impact to the speed or drivability of the car at that time.)

- Sea Girt, NJ, USA

problem #4

Dec 142002

Civic

  • Automatic transmission
  • 3,000 miles
The vehicle accelerated when the brakes were applied resulting in the vehicle hitting a parked car. The occupant of the parked car was not injured.

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #3

Apr 102002

Civic

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
When on a slight inclin, in drive, the car will roll backwards if you take your foot off the brake. You must drive 2-footed on an incline as though its a manual transmission. I took it to the dealer and was told this is a quirk in the engine, its normal, and just be careful on inclines.

- Livonia, MI, USA

problem #2

Jul 262002

Civic

  • miles
While braking vehicle will slowly accelerate, and it will be hard to stop. Dealer notified.

- Albuquerque, NM, USA

problem #1

Mar 072002

Civic

  • miles
2002 Honda Civic 1.6 automatic gear equipped with cark-91 nokia car kit crashed. Possible reason was interference of electromagnetic signals of car kit with electronic throttle control. Car was in parking place. Cellular phone (nokia 5110) installed to car kit. Engine has been started. Rear gear selected. With slow input to throttle caused rapid acceleration to back. My wife tried to stop the car with braking but possibly with panic she pushed the throttle pedal instead of brake pedal. The back of car crashed hitting and damaging a small truck. I investigated for the manufacturing error. Service declined it and also there was no clue about manufacturing error (even in computer record of the car). After the delivery of car (03/28/2002) my wife lived similar incidence. She installed nokia 5110 to car kit, started engine, selected rear gear and engine has started acceleration. My wife has been experienced now and immediately shut the engine down with turning car key to shut down. Now, she drives the car with cellular phone closed. I think that possible reason of this accident is the unattended triggering of throttle to full open by electromagnetic signal created by car kit. So, this shows that insulation of throttle control system is weak in this model. It has to be much better insulated to screen the electromagnetic noise created by any other equipment.

- Istanbulturkey, AK, USA

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