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.


really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
109,539 miles
Total Complaints:
205 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (66 reports)
  2. paid for a new transmission (46 reports)
  3. replace transmission (38 reports)
  4. complete rebuild (15 reports)
  5. honda paid partial "goodwill repair" (15 reports)
  6. fixed with new warranty from transmission specialty shop (9 reports)
2004 Honda Accord transmission problems

transmission problem

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2004 Honda Accord Owner Comments (Page 5 of 11)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #125

Aug 282012

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,539 miles


I purchased a used 2004 Honda Accord with an automatic transmission in 2009 and regularly maintained it at a certified Honda Dealership. A few months ago the transmission started having issues shifting out of reverse and then a day later it would not shift out of 2nd. The car has just over 100,000 miles on it

I immediately stopped driving it and took it to a mechanic to diagnose the problem. I was told that a cooling part on my transmission had failed and thus caused significant damage to my transmission and the entire transmission would need to be replaced. I was also told this was a very common problem with Honda transmissions. I did some research regarding Honda transmissions and in fact found that this was a true statement as there are countless complaints from Honda owners that their transmissions have failed due to similar issues.

I also noted there was a recall to early 2004 models. I had the dealership check and I myself checked and my car was not included in the recall.. apparently Honda "fixed" the problem before my car was manufactured.

I took my car to a Honda dealership for a second quote on a transmission replacement (I hesitated to take it there in the first place as Honda has always charged me outrageous prices for other issues that my car has had) and they quoted me a replacement cost of $4,100 but if I submitted proof my car had undergone regular maintenance that they would give me a 15% discount, which I could prove. I subsequently called Honda Corporate and they expressed that they would not be able to offer anything else besides the 15%.

I find it absolutely ridiculous that there has been a recall, and a class action lawsuit and Honda owners are still finding that their transmissions failed after Honda "fixed" them and that my car was manufactured in the year that the recall was instated but was suspiciously not included in the recall but yet has the SAME PROBLEM AS ALL THE CARS RECALLED, and furthermore that they have insulted me by offering to discount the repair of my car by only $600. I bought a extremely upgraded Honda Accord because of their supposed reliability and am still making payments on this car and now must find a way to pay an additional $3500 so I can drive to work. Honda should cover the entire cost of the transmission replacement as it clearly is not my lack of car maintenance but a manufacturers defect.

- , Colorado Springs, CO, US

problem #124

Oct 072012

Accord EX 3'2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 125,000 miles

One night on the way home from work I pulled out to pass this car that was moving very slow and found my car hesitating not able to pass the vehicle. The next day I was force to take my car by the local Honda dealership. Maintenance informed me that I had transmission problems and sent me to a transmission shop in Vicksburg, Mississippi. I was force to check out a rental car and pay over $2200 for repairs along with over $300.00 car note.

- , Pattison, MS, USA

problem #123

Jul 312012

Accord ES V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 146,000 miles

Same as most others. Transmission slipped then complete failure. Lucky to have coasted off of main highway but pissed off a lot of other drivers who didn't know I couldn't go any faster. Honda wants $4300 and will not help with payment. Have a friend who will fix for less than half that. My son had a 2005 V6 accord that had transmission failure six months ago. This doesn't seem to be an isolated issue. I too will rethink my loyalty to Honda.

- , Richmondv, VA, USA

problem #122

Aug 022012

Accord LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 134,000 miles



Update from Aug 20, 2012: VIN # 1HGCM56434A109224

- , Westchester, IL, US

problem #121

Jul 072012

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 126,000 miles

I did the routine maintenance on my Honda Accord. I have followed all of the specifications regarding oil changes, maintenance on the transmission, timing belt replacement, etc. Unfortunately, even with the routine maintenance performed on this car, my transmission failed on a road trip on July 7, 2012. I was very disappointed when I found out that my friend who has a 2004 Honda Accord also experienced this exact same issue as well as a friend with a 2003 Honda Accord. After looking into this problem more, I understand that this is a very common problem with this model and year. It's very unfortunate that this issue isn't being resolved by Honda.

- , Pittsburgh, PA, USA

problem #120

Jul 132012

Accord EXL V6 3.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 114,000 miles

The transmission went out completely. No forward or reverse gears. I have religiously serviced this vehicle. I see that there were recalls on this problem. I have asked Honda to compensate for the repair. The quoted price is $3,600.00 for a rebuilt transmission.

I have a 2000 Honda Accord V6 that the transmission went out at 97,000 miles which was covered in an extended Honda warranty. Now this problem with a 2004. I have a 2006 and a 2008 Honda Accord V6 do I need to get rid of these cars before the transmission goes out?

- , Snellville, GA, USA

problem #119

May 282012

Accord EX 6 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 108,000 miles


I have the car serviced at the Honda dealership on a regular basis and the transmition gives out 3 hours from home. Had to have it towed and transmission replaced. Without a car for 7 days. No compensation from Honda.

- , Oklahoma City, OK, USA

problem #118

May 172012

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 69,000 miles

I bought a 1yr old 2004 Honda Accord V6 EX 2 dr coupe in 2005. Cash. Had a written 7yr warranty for the transmission or 100,000 miles. Honda refused to honor it. The tranny went at 69,000 and only at 6yrs. They kept telling me that the warranty was for a new car. It was signed by them. I had to go to the news media to expose them and it was just about ready to be seen on local TV by thousands! They knew it! Suddenly they said they would pay for most of the job and the radio/dash light that went out which was repaired at the same time. They took my car for almost a month and did not give me a loaner car before they decided to pay for most of the repair to try to break me down and go away. The word is persistent!

- , Coconut Creek, FL, USA

problem #117

Jun 182012

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 159,000 miles

The FIRST transmission failed in October of 2007 at 60,212 miles. Honda replaced under recall. That "remanufactured" transmission failed today at 159,000 miles. Cost to replace is $3,600. I agree that the replacement transmission from Honda was just as bad as the original. Owned 4 Pontiacs in the past and drove them all well over 150,000 miles each. Never a transmission problem with any of them. In fact, they were all much better cars. Will not purchase a Honda again. Not worth the hype.

- , Springfield, TN, USA

problem #116

May 092012

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

Same complaint as everyone else who experienced this problem with their transmissions. Honda Corp. was unhelpful in offering a remedy to my out-of-pocket costs for repair. I was going to get another Honda once this reached 250K, but no more.

- , Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #115

Apr 252012


  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles


Just had transmission fluid drain and the car started to jerk and stopped. The car was still running, but could not go forward nor backwards. The dealership where I purchased the car from is helping with towing the car to a dealer they use. I would like to know how do you file a complaint on Honda Corporation? This is so weird that everybody talk highly of Honda's and this is how they treat us. You know the LORD will have the last say so in this matter. I pray that know one has to lose a life or get hurt in a serious matter for the Honda Corp step up to the plate. Can I get the President involve or somebody that he knows? We should all email the Corporate Office of Honda this website.

- , League City, Tx, USA

problem #114

Apr 122012

Accord V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 94,365 miles

The transmission died on the road without any warning. Cars were beeping at me because the car would not move more than 2MPH. I managed to get off 2 main roads with cars whizzing by onto a side road where I had to call a tow service to bring it to a transmission dealer. Since it happened today I am not sure how much it is going to cost to fix.

Update from May 8, 2012: Consumers need to file their complaint with the Federal Trade Commission as well 877-382-4357 as well as the National Highway Transportation and Safety 1888 327-4236. They track complaints and if there are many, an investigation takes place.

- , Elmwood Park, NJ, USA

problem #113

Mar 302012

Accord V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,091 miles

I am a former Aircraft Mechanic and the transmission in our Honda appears rather significant. The car demonstrated a loss of forward momentum while in the Drive position; traveling at 30 mph; RPMs increased but car continued to decrease in speed. As others have stated - it was similar to placing the shifting lever into neutral. One day later, the transmission would not respond to the inputs from the shifter. Trans fluids good; car has been remarkably wonderful up to this point. Service record of the vehicle is remarkable; purchased used in 2006. Will not take to the dealer because they charge too high of a rate per hour. Seeking an answer from a certified transmission repairman in the local area. I will request to observe and photograph the failed items. I was going to video tape the actual symptoms, but feel it is a waste of time since I do not see the Honda Corporation doing anything to retify an obvious trend in a failed component. Good thing they do not build airplanes :)

- , Lakeport, CA, USA

problem #112

Mar 302012

Accord V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles

Prettty much the same story as everyone else. I was driving on the highway and all the sudden the transmission flipped into neutral. Giving it gas just revved the engine. It would not go into gear in either D or D3. I coasted down to about 30 mph before the gears would engage again. After nearly getting killed several times on the highway, I managed to make it off and take surface streets straight to the dealership. They said they wouldn't be able to look at it until next week, so I'm not sure if it's dead yet.

As I left the dealership, the car decided to work just fine, but I'm afraid it will die again in the next couple of days. I took it to my normal mechanic who said it may be a flaky solenoid in the transmission, and wait to see if it happens again...Judging by the rest of this forum it's going to happen again, and it's going to be expensive.

Did anyone start that class action? If so, I'm in as soon as this thing dies in the next couple days.

- , Grand Rapids, MI, USA

problem #111

Mar 222012

Accord LX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 78,000 miles

My car had 78,000 miles and with no warning, noise, or grinding, the transmission went. I called Honda and they said it would cost between $4000.00 and $5000.00 to put in a new transmission. They told me it was not under warrenty. I found this article.

Despite a huge recall in 2004 and a class-action settlement in 2006, many Honda owners are still having serious problems with the automatic transmissions of their Accords, Odysseys and Pilots, requiring thousands of dollars in repairs.

In some cases, transmissions have failed on vehicles recalled in 2004 for a repair that Honda told the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration would fix the safety defect.

Below is the link

- , Cape Coral, FL, USA

problem #110

Mar 022012

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,600 miles

There was no warning no symptoms, as I pulled away from a stoplight it was like the transmission was put into neutral I barely got it off the road to a turn lane. I let is sit, put it back in low and it moved the car enough to get it out of danger but obviously something had failed. I had it towed to honda dealer who told me they got it to repeat the problem and the transmission had to be replaced, not repaired they aren't allowed to repair them so it is a transmssion rebuilt by Honda. What a rip off. This car has not been driven hard or abused, with only 88,500 miles, this is obviously a design or engineering defect, The fluid was clean and full. I am amazed they have gotten away with this and have not been hung out there like Toyota. If there is a class action suit being filed, I would like to know about it. We have really liked our Hondas (my wife has a CRV) but it too had a premature AC compressor problem. I think a Subaru or Fords may be in our future especially if Honda won't make restitution and make it right. I am calling their representative tomorrow.

- , Lake Mary, FL, USA

problem #109

Mar 062012

Accord EX 3.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 99,000 miles

I have a honda and just like everyone else complaining the transmission is failing at 99k miles. wtf i bought a honda because of reliability this sucks so bad honda needs to do something about this too many complaints about this. i am disgusted with honda

- , Lithonia, GA, US

problem #108

Jan 252012

Accord EX V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 87,000 miles

On 1/25/12 with 87k miles my transmission decided to go out. I have faithfully had the transmission fluid changed at approximately every 30k miles, which is more frequently than recommended. While driving to work (70 miles from my house) my transmission decided to fail while merging into traffic, nearly causing me to get broadsided. The only warning I had was the transmission slipped a little when shifting and only that same day. I shopped around found that AAMCO would rebuild the transmission for $3500 and was the only company that offered a lifetime warranty. So after paying $3500 for the rebuild and $150 for a car rental for the week, my transmission was repaired. I contacted American Honda customer service today hoping to get some Goodwill Repair reimbursement and was told that they don't reimburse for "rebuilt" transmissions and that Honda just installs a new transmission. Why would I pay upwards of $5k for a faulty transmission that might last me another 60k miles? This makes no sense. If anyone is aware of a class action lawsuit or would like to be involved in one please contact me. With over 100 people on this site alone, I believe this is a valid complaint.

- , Modesto, CA, USA

problem #107

Jan 252012

Accord DX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles

American Honda customer service says its again there policy for a customer to talk to a manager on the phone. My car has only 75000 miles on it and the transmission fails. That should not be the case. Then they have the nerve to attempt to make me pay to tow it, pay to diagnose it and pay to tow it back. Honda is serious attempting to rip me off and now help me at all. Especially with there was a recall on models ranging from the 1999 to 2004 Honda accords. I own a Honda accord 2004. I guarantee is this situation isn't resolve I will not longer support Honda vehicles anymore. This is just not far, Honda is aware of the issue regardless of what car it is and should definitely honor the transmission if its defective.

- , Brooklyn, NY, USA

problem #106

Jan 102012

Accord LX 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

is any class action to join?; I can see that it is Honda manufacturer fault, please let me know.

- , Loan Modification, TN, USA

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