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.


fairly significant
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
52,046 miles
Total Complaints:
3 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. cleaned and reassembled drain hose (3 reports)
2003 Honda Accord AC / heater problems

AC / heater problem

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2003 Honda Accord Owner Comments

problem #3

Jun 142008

Accord V6 3.0L

  • Manual transmission
  • 62,137 miles


I have been reading all the issues with the '03 accord! every issue mentioned is bang on with my car! problem after problem! Good thing I am just in a lease. I ll give the damn thing back before it ends up costing me Porsche prices just to keep it running properly. I switched from VW to Honda because I was let down by quality after driving one to 455K then buying a new one, and scraping it at 190K. Typical Corporate cash Grab....... Poor quality....Good service............they will be back attitude! NOTHING LASTS AS SOON AS THE WARRANTY IS UP! RUN BY A COMPUTER! WHO PROGRAMMED IT!


- , Napanee, Ontario, Canada

problem #2

Jul 142007

(reported on)

Accord EX 3.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 16,000 miles

Water leaking all over passenger side floor. Plus the sound of water flowing when taking a turn.

clogged AC drain -- I blew compressed air into drain and a whole bunch of water came out. Don't know if this is a premanet fix, but it was easier then taking panels apart.

- , West Bridgewater, MA, USA

problem #1

Jul 232006

(reported on)

Accord LX

  • 78,000 miles

My honda Accord had an annoying water leak in the Heater/AC .. at least I thought it was a leak, it was actually water buildup from the ac condenser that was unable to leak to the outside. First we noticed lots of water on the passenger side floor, the ac filter was dry as a bone, no outside water, the water didn't smell sweet or wasn't green (radiator), so when I removed all the panels I noticed a little hose, after removing the hose I noticed it was bent and sealed, it only took a little press of the hose ansd a huge!! amount of water came out.. this hose was badly assembled from the start, probably a bad day @ the assembly plant, I reassembled the hose.. problem fixed, It just going to take a couple of days for the soaked interior to dry, I removed it just in time, the water was starting to get to the blower fan

- , El Paso, TX, USA

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