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.

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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
6 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
4 / 0
Average Mileage:
15,706 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.

2008 Honda Civic brakes problems

brakes problem

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2008 Honda Civic Owner Comments

problem #19

Sep 122011


  • 50,000 miles


First thing this morning I tried to set my cruise control at 65 mph, but it didn't work. The speed of the car kept decreasing, despite several attempts to set the cruise. I turned off the cruise and tried to press the gas pedal to drive, and the same problem occurred. In addition, as I tried to increase my speed, the car made a loud humming sound and the rpms on the dash began to increase. Then an indicator light turned on; after driving for a few minutes, more indicator lights came on, my brake stopped working completely, and my steering wheel locked. My gas pedal also stopped working completely. At this point, as I was going uphill I lost complete control of the car and put the car in park because that was the only way I could stop the car. Smoke began coming from the hood. I had the car towed to the midas in salt lake city at 875 East 2100 South. The service people told me the cars engine had heated so that it melted the equipment under the hood. Later, after a discussion with the Honda corporate office, I found out a recall had been issued in August 2010 for a problem with the engine blocks of 2006, 2008, and some 2009 Civics. The Honda representative said a letter had been sent to Civic owners. However, my experience today showed me the seriousness of this problem. I could have a life-threatening accident today, and when the issue is so grave Honda should call car owners to alert them to the recall. A letter sent out one time is not enough. The midas service representatives told me they had absolutely no information about this recall in their database, which proves how poorly this entire matter has been handled. There are many families out there driving these Civics. Get your cars checked out, and let Honda know that they must take better care and full responsibility for their customers!

- Midvale, UT, USA

problem #18

Jul 012010

Civic 4-cyl

  • 31,000 miles
Brakes when car hits a hard bump while braking, the car doesn't stop and keeps moving forward as if the brakes lift with a big vibration in the brake pedal. At the time it happens, the remedy is to lift the brake and pump once then reapply brake pressure. Took it to a Honda dealer and said it did not happen under test drive and noting can be found wrong.

- Monrovia, CA, USA

problem #17

Mar 182011

Civic 4-cyl

  • 24,880 miles
My front brake pads and shoes have to be replaced every 20,000 miles. The brakes do not give the expected high pitched "squealing" noise; and per my dealer, it led to brake over heating and "imminent failure!" the dealer states that the Civics have had this issue repeatedly.

- Wallingford, CT, USA

problem #16

Jan 262009


  • 12,935 miles


2008 Honda Civic's have a brake system problem. I had to replace my brakes all around at 12,935 miles, the front brakes had to be replaced again at 22,885, and then all around again at 37,417. I placed a complaint with Honda America, they are unwilling to admit that there is a brake system problem. I was told it is how I drive the car. There hasn't been a failure yet, I am trying to avoid a failure and would like to have this issue checked.

- Las Vegas , NV, USA

problem #15

Oct 232010

Civic 4-cyl

  • 13,000 miles
2008 Honda Civic repeatedly has failed to stop (three separate incidents, three different drivers). Honda refuses to replace vehicle. The consumer also stated, the vehicle would not start. Updated 09/20/12

- Farnington Hills , MI, USA

problem #14

Jul 262010


  • miles
I bought my 2008 Honda Civic LX in June 2008. At 15,000 miles I had a bunch of brake problems (loud noises, difficulty stopping). I brought the car into the dealership where I bought it and was told I had "contaminated" brake pads. They replaced them for free. Six months later, I was having the same problem. Took it in again to the dealer and they said nothing was wrong. I have continued to feel uneasy about my brakes as they don't stop like the three other cars I have had. Now, at 41K screeching noises have started again. They started on a Friday and I took the car to the same dealership Monday morning. They told me I have barely any brake pads left and it must be due to my driving. (incorrect as I mainly did highway driving and now have a 7 minute commute to work.) the dealership was absolutely horrible, claiming it is my issue and they are not responsible.

- Fairfax Station, VA, USA

problem #13

Jun 032010


  • 29,344 miles


I was pulling into a parking spot turning left and as I had my foot on the brake my car jolted foward and hit the an island the was next to the parking spot.

- Tewksbury, MA, USA

problem #12

Oct 012009


  • 17,223 miles
2008 Honda Civic VIN# [xxx] on June 5, 2009, I purchased a 2008 Honda Civic from white plains Honda located in white plains, NY for my 21-year old son. The purpose of this letter is regarding the ongoing brake problem he is experiencing. On October 1, 2009 (with only 17,223 miles on the car), my son's car was serviced at white plains Honda because of a grinding noise he was experiencing every time he would step on the brake. White plains Honda advised my son that he needed front brake pads and rotors. My mechanic advised me that brakes should last at least 30,000 miles. On the same day, my mechanic replaced 1 set of front disc brakes and 2 brake rotors. On March 26, 2010, my son's car again needed brake repair. At the time of service, there were 31,425 miles on the car which meant he added an additional 14,202 miles on the car since his last repair. Again, I have clarified from a few mechanics that brakes should last at least 30,000 miles. My mechanic advised me that there have been at least 4 Honda Civics he has serviced in his shop with the same brake problems. He can't figure out why there is a continuous problem with the brake wearing out on the driver's side. I have copies of all the repair receipts. I bought a Honda because I thought I was purchasing a reputable car for my son. In this economy, who can afford to replace brakes every 14,000 miles? information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Harriosn, NY, USA

problem #11

Feb 282010


  • 14,000 miles
Currently I have 32,277 miles and don't drive it, it's not safe to drive. I take a bus :) 1# trans locked at 60mph on hwy and caused almost a fatal crash! at 23,000 miles. Car was able to drive up to 15mpg having appx. 6000rpms. Car left at dealership and only PCM software was upd. No lockups are occurring, but trans is weaving, harsh start/stop often!/unexpected shutdown. Dealership found service bulletin #08-014 (harsh engagement), upd. The on board computer and symptoms are much worse than previously. Lower mpg ( 25-28 ), much worse performance, unexpected battery discharge, weaving, low accel. Dealer duplicated problems, but said "it's ok" and problems is untouched. Since they updated the system, the hybrid option is not kicking in as before. Prev. I was able to drive slowly only on hybrid, now I can't. no actions are taken to resolve the issue. Once they changed the ima batt pack, but this did not help and I see not a difference. Complained again, and absolutely no response. Brakes are malfunctioning. Brake fluid is missing, dealer said "[xxx], it's a mystery". depending on outside temp, battery charge level and car temp breaks work diff! occasionally while slowing down, the battery level reaches full and you must press the pedal as hard as you can to stop. This has caused small crashes and once brakes did not work, or I pressed too lightly ( cold outside with full battery ) and unfortunately I couldn't stop on time and ran over a pedestrian. She is badly injured and suing my insurance company! dealer rec. To "change car, better to buy not a Honda and don't bother them if nothing is broken." Police report ready to present. These are only the major issues I'm having. I would need much more space to write 20 pgs essay. Minor issues: - super fast tire wear ( after 20,000 ) and now again at 32,000 - not working climate ctrl system - check engine, ima light, brake system and airbag lights on. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #10

Aug 172009


  • 0 miles
The contact rented a 2008 Honda Civic from hertz. The contact stated that the emergency brake and the brakes failed while driving at 20 mph approaching a traffic light. When the brakes failed, he tried the emergency brake and he crashed into the rear of another vehicle. Three people were injured and transported to the emergency room. A police report is available if needed. The vehicle was towed from the scene. The manufacturer was not called. The rental and insurance company were notified. The failure mileage was unknown. The VIN was rejected from the system.

- Tallahasse, FL, USA

problem #9

Dec 312009


  • 11,000 miles


The contact owns a 2008 Honda Civic coupe. While stopped at a light the vehicle surged and crashed in another vehicle. She stated that her feet were on the brakes and she does not understand what happened. A police report was filed. There were no injuries. The failure mileage was 11,000. The current mileage was 12,356.

- Nashville, TN, USA

problem #8

Sep 012009


  • miles
While applying the brakes the car suddenly accelerates forward unexpectedly and does not stop. It has happened several times mostly lower speeds when approaching a stop sign/light and almost caused multiple rear end collisions.

- North East, MD, USA

problem #7

Jan 262010


  • 23,975 miles
2008 Honda Civic, purchased new. Premature front brake wear including rotors and pad at 23,975 miles. Car pulled to right and pulsating pedal. When apply brakes. Not safe to drive. Honda motor company denies there is a problem and will not compensate owner for the repairs.

- Highland, NY, USA

problem #6

Feb 042010


  • 200 miles
08 Honda Civic hybrid - when the batteries are fully charged, the generator is not used for braking. When the batteries are not charged, the generator is used for braking. During the transition, I have been surprised many times by the lack of brakes. When the batteries are not charging you have to really press hard on the brakes to even slow down. Then, if you are expecting to press hard and the generator has kicked back in, you are thrown forward as the brakes work fine. I thought this and the occasional herky-jerkiness that goes along with it is normal. But, after reading about the Toyota prius brake issue, the Honda is just as bad, if not worse. This has been going on since day one of ownership.

- Baldwin, MI, USA

problem #5

Dec 042009


  • 14,000 miles
While applying brakes the car suddenly accelerates. It has happened several times mostly at lower speed. So far I have not experience it on interstate.

- Presto, PA, USA

problem #4

Oct 152009


  • 31,000 miles
My 2008 Honda Civic LX sedan is in the dealer again for brakes. The front brakes were replaced at 18,000 miles in may of 2009 and now at 31,000 it needs them again. Rotors have to be turned again and brake pads replaced again. Our driving is mostly highway and we don't abuse our car. Brakes are undersized for vehicle, Honda agreed and fixed the first time, now are saying it is not there problem. I have owned 2 other Honda vehicles and never put brakes on either one of them. Dealer said this is typical wear and tear for vehicle model.

- Visalia, CA, USA

problem #3

Aug 012009


  • 17,000 miles
2008 Honda Civic brakes wearing out after only 16,000 miles of use. Honda Motors states that there is nothing wrong with the brakes but we will need to bring the Civic in for a brake replacement every 15-17000 miles or every 18 months.

- Oceanside, CA, USA

problem #2

Jul 272008


  • 353 miles
There has been no wreck or fire---this is a complaint for your tsb compilations....we have an 08 Civic LX: The transmission shifts roughly, and with delays. Slowing down and then re accelerating lightly causes a delay----as if the transmission/control module can't figure out which gear to get into--- and then a rough engagement. From D to reverse, there is a harder engagement than should be. It's as if there is a problem with the control module or the torque converter. My dealer says all these things are normal in a Civic auto transmission. We have an 07 Accord exl and it has none of these problems, nor did any other vehicles I've had in the past with a.T. it seems there should be some control module reprogramming or software patch for this transmission. Also, as a safety problem, it is harder to see out of this windshield during rain, esp. At night, than any car I've driven. Possibly the extreme slant of the glass? as a safety problem, as well, the brakes have a soft pedal, as well, and require more force than our Accord(much much more)or than any car I am used to, except one with air in the says this soft pedal is normal, as well.

- Carrboro, NC, USA

problem #1

Nov 092008


  • 8,500 miles
The brakes on my 2008 Honda Civic gave out while trying to make a left hand turn resulting in vehicle loss of control and the totaling of my car.

- Portland, OR, USA

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