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.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
93,537 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 electrical problems

electrical problem

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2002 Honda Civic Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #29

Jun 022016


  • 153,000 miles


While driving the low beam exterior headlights go dark leaving the high beams operable. I contacted Honda about this issue and am being told that it was fixed back in 2004 and in the same breath also I am being told that it does not apply to my vehicle. Then I was told I have to pay to have a diagnoses done when there is a recall notice for this issue. This has happened quite a few times over the last few months or so but as it is the high beams were operable and I didn't bother too much until now. I was going for an inspection and as the vehicle is being tested for inspection the low beams would go on and off and not stay lit as designed failing inspection. After this is when I contacted Honda knowing there was some sort of recall on this problem. So now what do I do?

- Brewster, NY, USA

problem #28

Feb 122015


  • 300,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Honda Civic. The contact stated that the passenger side low beam headlight failed to illuminate. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic who replaced the head lamp and fuse. The failure recurred after the repair. In addition, an unknown warning indicator illuminated and the air conditioner became inoperable. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 300,000. MA 09/25

- Baton Rouge, LA, USA

problem #27

Sep 052014


  • 92,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Honda Civic. The contact stated that the vehicle stalled and unknown warning lights flickered. The vehicle was taken to a dealer who diagnosed that the relay switch needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 92,000.

- West Palm Beach, FL, USA

problem #26

Dec 242014

Civic 4-cyl

  • miles


Ignition key suddenly will no longer go into ignition. Couldn't get key to go into ignition. Finally got key to go in but feels sticky and clunky and will not turn in lock so vehicle will no longer start. Stranding driver and passengers.

- Oakland, CA, USA

problem #25

Oct 152009

Civic 4-cyl

  • 69,100 miles
The SRS (secondary restraint system) light came on. It originally happened while the was under warranty with the previous owner. Under 36,000 miles. The Honda dealer where the car was serviced reset the light, replaced the seatbelt buckle but were unable to determine the cause of the SRS light coming back on. Multiple times. I believe this means the airbags are not working. Honda accepts no responsibility for this defect. And claim that since it occurred under warranty under the former owners of the car they are not responsible for fixing it.

- Durango, CO, USA

problem #24

Feb 142014


  • 165,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Honda Civic. The contact stated that a burning odor was present inside the vehicle. The contact exited the vehicle and returned to discover flames and smoke coming from the cruise control switch. The contact was able to extinguish the fire. There were no injuries. The fire caused damage to the driver's side of the dashboard. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The contact notified the manufacturer of the defect. The failure mileage was 165,000.

- Massillon, OH, USA

problem #23

Jun 142012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 78,000 miles


In June 2012 I experienced on my 2002 Honda Civic an odd behavior, ac stopped working (light would be on but no cold air), power locks also failed, door chime/key left in ignition switchreminder stopped working at the same time, remote entry via key fob was somehow disabled and the most important and somehow terrifying experience is that the windshield washer and wipers do not work properly, I was splashed some muddy water on the windshield and activated the windshield washer/wiper to clear the muddy water; the wipers failed and my vision was completely blurred so I had to look out the drivers window and safely stop. I'm aware of two recall notices for my vehicle model year, one of them involving the low beam lights (I experienced that as well and thought both bulbs, low beams had gone out at the same time) this particular recall is for the defective and/or low quality of the electrical contacts/circuitry of the headlight switch. For a couple of weeks the electrical issue was gone but came back and has stayed, same electrical issues that I think might have something to do with low quality materials (as the ones used on the headlight switch recall notice) at the fuse panel inside the cabin; I'm no expert but my family's safety and the safety of the people on the road is my concern, what if the materials used on this unit (fuse panel/multiplex connector?) overheat and start a fire in the cabin or what I've experienced, a sudden splash on the windshield that prompts a quick response to stop due to null vision? I've searched online and seems the culprit of the electrical issues all at once is a poorly designed/constructed fuse panel. I should feel safe when driving not "taking a risk" hoping nothing bad happens.

- San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #22

Aug 032013

Civic 4-cyl

  • miles
My car was recalled by the Honda due to the front airbag inflator in this year. The Honda dealer helped us to replace it at August. But the warning light still be on after fixation. So I believe that the problem is not fixed.

- St Louis, MO, USA

problem #21

Dec 192011

Civic 4-cyl

  • 134,865 miles
This car was purchased by me brand new in September 2002 and has been maintained following manufacturers recommended schedule at Honda and at 134,000+ miles, the transmission is shot due to a bad torque converter. I want this corrected by Honda especially because I was victim to a hit and run at a red light and fixed the car out of pocket for over 5,000 and would have like to know by Honda that there was an issue with this car so I could have bought a new car rather than fix it. It is so dangerous for me as an only parent to have my transmission fail while making a left turn with oncoming traffic or while driving over train tracks!!!! this is scary to me and I want resolution for their failure to admit the torque converter lemon in my car caused the failure!!!!

- Oakland Park, FL, USA

problem #20

Apr 052013

Civic 4-cyl

  • 98,860 miles
I was driving today and suddenly the SRS light came on. The radio shut off for a few seconds while the light came on. When the SRS light shut off, the radio went back to working properly. A few minutes later, the SRS light came on again when I was at a red light and the vehicle stalled. I brought the vehicle to my mechanic who ran a diagnostic test. He stated that the problem I had experienced did not register; thus, he couldn't find an underlying cause. After researching this topic further on, I discovered that many other people have had similar problems with the same make and model.

- Stoneham, MA, USA

problem #19

Nov 082012

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 173,462 miles


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 #18

Oct 162012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 150,000 miles
I took my Honda Civic 2002 into condon auto in sioux city, Iowa, for a light switch recall. The recall was completed. I drove the car home. Tried to start the car again and no starter. $350 later they replaced wires to the starter and the car runs again. It is possible this was a coincidence but beware having recalls done at this location.

- Dakota Dunes, SD, USA

problem #17

Oct 242012


  • miles
The contact owns a 2002 Honda Civic. The contact stated that the vehicle was repaired under NHTSA campaign id number 12V136000 (exterior lighting: Headlights: Switch) and since then have lost functionality of the gear shift indicator. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not contacted. The failure and current mileage was unknown.

- Hyattsville, MD, USA

problem #16

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 #15

May 242012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 132,895 miles
Low beam headlights failed to work when driver switched from high to low beam. American Honda motor company and local dealer contacted. I was informed that this individual vehicle was not a part of NHTSA campaign 04V086000. I would like to register my complaint as I find it ironic that the same problem would occur on vehicles not included in the original recall.

- Moore, SC, USA

problem #14

Jan 012012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 90,000 miles
The driver side window does not go up as fast as it used to. When it gets close to the top, it goes very slow. I suspect that this may be the modulator. At this current rate, my driver side window probably won't be operational by the end of this year.

- Toms River, NJ, USA

problem #13

Apr 152012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 100,000 miles
There are so many electrical problems with my Honda that it just seems to underscore a much greater problem - Honda using subpar components - that I find this one also important to note. There is a problem with one of the interior lights in the car. When in the "on" position, the light may not turn on. However, it will eventually turn on (sometimes immediately, sometimes hours later), but when illuminated, the light will just cut out (sometimes immediately, sometimes minutes later). The issue is that the "on" and "off" position for the light is the same position; the only difference being whether there's light. Basically, someone can't tell what position the light is in if there is no light to begin with. This could cause the battery to die if someone leaves it in the "on" position, not realizing that it would most likely turn on later.

- Toms River, NJ, USA

problem #12

Feb 012012


  • 67,500 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Honda Civic. The contact stated that the brake warning light illuminated. After the failure occurred, the driver's side door was unable to be opened manually or using the electronic key fob. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who advised the contact that the multiplex for the fuse box assembly needed to be replaced. The failure and the current mileage was 67,500.

- Maddisson Heights , VA, USA

problem #11

Jan 132012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 96,000 miles
Both low beams failed at the same time. High beams unaffected. Inspected combination switch and connector, switch is failing and low beam wire and connector is discolored indicating overheating. It is obvious that NHTSA recall 04V086000 / Honda service bulletin 04-015 applies to this vehicle even though the Honda service bulletin and dealer claims it is out of range... updated 02/06/12.

- Renton, WA, USA

problem #10

Jun 012011

Civic 4-cyl

  • 142,000 miles
2002 Honda Civic LX the car will shut down with no indication that anything is wrong. The engine shuts down, but all other options work-radio, A/C, lights, etc. After letting the car sit for 10-20 minutes the car fires up as nothing is wrong at all. This has happened 5 times in the last 4 weeks (500 miles of driving) 142,000 miles on car. I have replaced coil packs, relays and fuel pump. I believe, after researching online, that this issue is related to the ignition switch just like the 1997-2000 Honda recall on 3.3 million Honda products in May 2002. We have been fortunate enough to safely get the car to the side of the road at 70 mph (coasting). I will be replacing my ignition switch to solve this problem asap..

- Spring, TX, USA

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