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.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
66,446 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.

2004 Honda Accord windows / windshield problems

windows / windshield problem

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2004 Honda Accord Owner Comments

problem #12

Feb 182012

Accord 6-cyl

  • miles


We were driving down the highway one afternoon and it began to rain. We turned on our windshield wipers and nothing happened. We were forced to pull over on the side of the highway to wait out the storm since we had zero visibility without the wipers. Our wipers have not worked since that point. I have noted that the 2003 Honda Accord had a recall for a defect in the windshield wiper motor and this seems to fit that description though Honda has informed me that no recall has been issued for the 2004 Accord, despite this being an identical issue that is not common outside of this defect and is on a similar model. It is a rather dangerous situation to occur since one will only notice the wipers stopped working during a rainstorm.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #11

Aug 152011


  • 118,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Honda Accord ex. The contact was driving 25 mph in rainy weather when the windshield wipers failed and became stuck in mid-operation. The vehicle was taken to a local mechanic who inspected the failure and advised that the motor for the windshield wipers failed and would need replacing. The vehicle was then taken to the dealer who advises that there were no recalls for the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 118,000 and the current mileage was 130,000.

- Columbia, SC, USA

problem #10

Oct 182011


  • miles
I was coming home from work while it was raining and my windshield wipers stopped suddenly I was unable to see or use them and had no prior indication this was going to happen. Just so happened I did not have an accident but this could have been worse not only for me but other drivers as well.

- Fort Mill, SC, USA

problem #9

May 022011

Accord 4-cyl

  • 50,000 miles


In early 2011, I noticed that the backlights for the HVAC controls, radio, and gear shifter all went out. The cabin is completely dark when driving at night. When I contacted Honda, they said that this is an identified problem on some 2003-2004 Accord but that my car is excluded from the extended warranty. The repair is $1,000 which is not a reasonable cost for a manufacturer defect. It is very difficult to operate the vehicle at night without a properly lit cabin.

- Portland, OR, USA

problem #8

Jul 142011

Accord 6-cyl

  • 111,300 miles
1. no events leading up to this failure. 2. driving highway in rain, windshield wipers suddenly fail, consequences are severely decreased visibility. 3. windshield wiper motor is determined to be the failure. Replacement costs are $500.

- Or, OR, USA

problem #7

May 312011

Accord 4-cyl

  • 96,000 miles
Windshield wipers suddenly stopped working. No previous indication of failure. Fuse is good, wiper motor won't turn on.

- Cranston, RI, USA

problem #6

May 112011

Accord 6-cyl

  • 69,651 miles


At 69,600 miles the wiper motor failed on my Honda 2004 Accord ex V6 navi. Had the motor replaced for $470. Upon dis-assembly corrosion was discovered in the motor housing. This is what is described in the Honda 2003 Accord recall. Part number: 76505-sda-A011. The recalled part was -A01; with replacement part being -A11. My replacement part is -A11. The problem was discovered in my driveway; had I been driving at the time of the failure it could have been catastrophic. Request Honda issue a recall for this safety issue.

- Montclair, VA, USA

problem #5

Dec 212010

Accord 4-cyl

  • 54,000 miles
Windshield wiper do not work properly when driving in the rain. I live in san diego and it rarely rain here so I rarely had to use my wipers. Every time I use my wipers in the rain it would stop working after about 5 minutes - the wiper would start moving sluggish as if getting stuck then it would actually stop midway on the windshield. I had to turn the wipers off and on a few times to get it working again and then after a few seconds the same thing happened again. I no longer drive this car in the rain fortunately it does not rain very often in san diego. It works fine when not raining (windshield fluid cleaning window). I checked the recall for Honda and found that the 2003 Accord was recalled for defective wiper motor and this recall was issue on 4/17/2008. I can't help but wonder how many other Accord years were affected with the same defective wiper motor issue. Honda Accord 2003-2007 are basically the same body style so it is very likely that the same type of wiper motor defect exist in all these models. I was going to ignore the problem however last month, san diego had a huge rain storm and I had to use my Accord and nearly got in an accident since I was unable to see. I am going to get this wiper fixed now since it is too much of a risk not to (I have a second car so it is rare that I use the Accord when it rains - which too is rare in san diego).

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #4

Sep 132009


  • 61,509 miles
Windshield wipers failed to work on my wife's 2004 Honda Accord ex. While it was raining. Wiper motor replaced.

- Fruitland Park, FL, USA

problem #3

Aug 282009


  • 85,086 miles
The windshield wiper motor failed to operate on 2004 Honda Accord while my wife was driving the vehicle with my two children during a rain storm. She pulled off to safety, until the rain passed, and proceeded to a safe location. The vehicle has 85,000 odometer miles, and is beyond the 3 year/36,000 mile warranty. I noticed the 2003 Honda Accord had a recall relating to the wiper motor failing due to corrosion. I called american Honda August 28, 2009 regarding the problem I was experiencing with the 2004 Accord and they advised me to take it to a dealer to diagnose, and if in fact the part number and condition were the same as they were experiencing with the 2003 they would stand behind their product and take care of it. I was assigned a case number N012009-082801597. On Sept 9, 2009 I was able to get an appointment with performance Honda dealership to diagnose and fix the problem. Tom riley from their service department (manager) tried to contact american Honda regarding the problem and they did not acknowledge the problem as their responsibility, although it was the exact same part number (76505-sda) that is failing in the 2003 model and the exact same condition of failure they have seen in the 2003 models. Performance Honda replaced the windshield wiper motor at a cost of $239.67. This is a major safety item, and realizing the 2008 recall of the same issue, same part in the 2003 model, I suggest that the recall be expanded to include more VIN's before a serious accident occurs as a result. I am appalled that american Honda knows they have a safety problem with this component, but is failing to do anything to address the problem. As a professional engineer, I feel compelled to report this critical safety issue. Steve O'hara

- Union, KY, USA

problem #2

Aug 222009


  • 91,800 miles
I was traveling on route 50 and my windshield wipers stopped working on the kent narrows bridge in the middle of the down pours that we were having here in centreville Maryland on Saturday 8-22-2009. I called Honda of America today after speaking to my mechanic and he said that there was a recall on some of the Accord for the motors corroding due to water getting under the windshield wiper motor covers. Honda of America told me that only covered the Honda Accord for the year of 2003. This recall occurred July 2008. I had the same problem and my motor stopped working on route 50 in traffic traveling with no visibility. I could have been killed as I could not see a thing in front of me and I had my 13 year old son in the car with me. I had the motor replaced today 8-24-2009 if you need the part I would have to know by tomm so that I could get my mechanic to keep it for me. I have seen other persons on line that have had this same issue. Pl;ease help as this is extremely dangerous to be in a down pour and to have your windshield wipers stop working in traffic. On a major highway where the speed limit is 55mph.

- Centreville, MD, USA

problem #1

Sep 052008


  • 60,000 miles
I have a 2004 Honda Accord sedan ex, during the tropical storm hanna, I was driving in heavy rain, when my windshield wipers stopped working. Very dangerous situation and this could have been tragic. There is a recall on all 2003 Honda Accord for faulty windshield wiper motors, but no recall on the 2004. My mechanic has found that it is the same situation as the 2003 cars and will be replacing the motor. This is a huge issue, when they quit working while driving in a bad storm. Honda, should be notified of this and seriously consider a recall. This could have been life threatening.!!! I have reported my incident to them, and would like to see some action taken on this matter. Sarah king

- Ashburn, VA, USA

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