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.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
30 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
34 / 1
Average Mileage:
24,687 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 seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2002 Honda Civic Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #43

Dec 042009


  • miles


2002 Honda Civic. Consumer states air bag on driver's side did not deploy upon impact during a collision the consumer stated her father was the driver of the vehicle and subsequently died from his injuries.

- Smithtown, NY, USA

problem #42

Aug 312003


  • 36,000 miles
I bought a new 02 Honda Civic ex. On Aug 31 03 it had been raining and I looked down for a moment and when I looked up I was on the edge of the road jerking my car back onto the road my car slid impacting a mailbox on my passenger front side then preceded to flip several times. Neither airbag deployed (I was told due to the first impact was not to the front). While flipping my seatbelt released me throwing me out of the driver window landing face first in the middle of the road. My injuries my left arm was severely burned doctors conclude my seatbelt wrapped around my arm due to the flipping the seatbelt cut my arm 3/4 of the way almost amputating it. I went through 6 surgeries and now have radial nerve damage and limp wrist. I can not extend my fingers and will never be able to.I also broke that arm having an external cast since my arm was cut. I fractured my front & back hip on my right side, my left pelvic bone and the left front hip bone. I spent over a month in the hospital. I was determined at 25 disabled! I was told by attorneys the wreck was my fault so therefore my car malfunctioning and my injuries received was my fault to deal with it. Which I have and will from now on. I hope one day someone will do something about what has happened to people. The wreck was my fault, but the injuries I received was not!

- Semmes, AL, USA

problem #41

Dec 202010


  • 69,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Honda Civic. The contact was attempting a left turn at 10 mph when he was struck in the front at an angle by a vehicle coming from the other direction. The passenger side air bag deployed but the driver side air bag did not. The contact was reported as injured. A police report was available. The passenger seat was unoccupied at the time of the crash. The vehicle was towed to a repair facility were the contact was informed that the vehicle was being deemed as destroyed. The vehicle was not inspected for the air bags failures. The failure and current mileage was 69,000.

- Wildwood, MO, USA

problem #40

Jul 302010


  • 86,061 miles


SRS light came on without any reason... dealership assures that no recalls have been issued on my make/model of car... however acknowledged that is common scenario for my make/model year... while SRS light is lit up indicates problem with seatbelts and/or airbags, the issue with seatbelts is that they will not engage/lock when brakes are slammed on and airbags will not deploy while SRS light remains lit up... Honda charges $90 to hookup to diagnostic system to determine if seatbelts or airbags, seatbelts are covered under lifetime guarantee and airbags are not... if it is a known issue as apparently it is while viewing complaints on both and Honda forums the diagnostic fee should be waived as well as recall be issued to repair any and all issues with SRS, isn't important to ensure safety and save lives....

- Florence, KY, USA

problem #39

Jul 162010


  • 60,600 miles
2002 Honda Civic, 60,800 miles. The SRS light stays on and can result in death in case of accident if the air bag is not working. Honda should take responsibility and fix this for free (recall) since this seems to be a common problem.

- El Sobrante, CA, USA

problem #38

Aug 012007


  • miles
2002 Honda Civic--SRS light came on. I brought the car to the dealership where they replaced the seat belt. After about a month, the light came on again, it remains that way because I do not believe the mechanics are all that good and would automatically replace the air bag and charge me for it.

- Baldwin,, NY, USA

problem #37

Feb 172010


  • 84,000 miles


On February 17, 2010, I had a front end collision. The driver side air bag didn't go off. Even though there was no one on the passanger side, only the passanger side air bag went off and I didn't get any protection on my chest from the steering wheel impact.

- Vacaville, CA, USA

problem #36

Feb 102010


  • 53,100 miles
SRS warning light illuminated on my single-owner 2002 Civic LX coupe at approximately 53,100 miles and has remained lit at current mileage of 53,249 for no apparent reason. After reading numerous complaints regarding faulty airbags, seatbelts, and general SRS system failures, I will attempt to have vehicle serviced at Honda dealership using csc-10024565, as it states "the inspection is free of charge, even if there is not a problem with the opds control unit or the opds sensor and your vehicle is within the extended warranty time/mileage period (10 years/150,000 miles)" which it is. From information gathered from other complaints, evidently when the SRS warning light is illuminated, the airbags will not deploy in the event of a collision. After running my VIN on Honda's recall website,, I discovered my vehicle was not involved in the current airbag inflater recall campaign #Q96, NHTSA #09V259000.

- Joliet, IL, USA

problem #35

Oct 242002


  • 6,000 miles
I was a driver in a 2002 Honda Civic LX. I was in a corner to corner crash. My airbag deployed. The airbag was overinflated. The car was totaled.

- Schaumburg, IL, USA

problem #34

Apr 202009


  • miles
The SRS light came on recently and did not go off. The diagnosis by Honda costs $90 if the problem is not cover by the extended warranty, which deters people to take the risk to check the problem. Honda should cover the whole diagnosis cost because it is related to safety issue.

- Gainesville, FL, USA

problem #33

Jul 282008


  • 108,537 miles


I have Honda Civic 2002. SRS light is on I take it to dealer to check & they found my driver side seat belt buckle has sensor in it makes trouble Honda warranty comes with life time warranty on the buckle but dealer say in order to fix they have to change buckle but its not covered by warranty. I call and complaint to Honda care center they made decision to pay only $95 for diagnosis fee & they will repair it for free only one time but I guess seat belt fail is also trouble with inside SRS sensor too but how com they separate this issue like a seat belt is ok but sensor is not ok and you need new sensor which comes with seatbelt buckle than pay to Honda otherwise your SRS light is on and your car airbag not working you could die by not working airbag. Your seat buckle is work but senor not working so it makes more trouble but life time warranty not cover this issue"?"

- Irving, TX, USA

problem #32

May 022008


  • 68,324 miles
SRS light came on for no reason but was told the seat and safety belt were the problem but the sensor would need to be replaced. The air bags will not work till fixed and then he was not sure as I found out several people have had this same problem. We have had the car in the family since new. No wreck or accident happened.

- Madison, TN, USA

problem #31

Jun 122008


  • 65,100 miles
SRS light came on today for no reason. Car has never been in an accident. In doing research noticed that this seems to be a common problem. It appears that Honda is ignoring the problem and stating that air bags are not a safety issue (why are they mandated by law then?). responses from other owners reveal that this costly repair may not fix the problem (estimates from $300-$1,000 or more). I can pay to have this problem fixed, however I don't want to continually have to repair the same problem. How many of these complaints must be filed before NHTSA acts" does it require actual death of an owner because of a failed airbag to cause action to take place" I've read complaints here that date back to 2002.

- Richardson, TX, USA

problem #30

Jan 162007

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 96,000 miles
1)2002 Honda Civic sustained drivers side head-on collision with another vehicle at approximately 35 mph. 2)drivers side air bag did not deploy. Passenger side airbag did deploy with no passengers. Driver was wearing seat belt. Drivers face collided with steering wheel, resulting in broken tooth due to air bag not deploying. 3)nothing has been done to the vehicle as of yet. Vehicle has been released to insurance company.

- Davie, FL, USA

problem #29

Mar 272006


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
My 2002 Honda Civic LX was totaled in a low speed 2 car accident. The driver and passenger front airbags deployed. My passenger suffered minor bruising from her seat belt. My injuries included second degree burns to my throat and the top of my hands. The emt's, medical personnel in the er, and doctors at the burn unit said the burns were caused by chemicals emitted from the airbags. In addition to severe pain and medical bills, I lost three weeks of work while my burns healed. The treatments at the burn unit and the daily treatments at home were nauseating and at excruciating. The scars on my hands have faded but are still evidenced by the patches of red discoloration. The burn on my throat has healed without scaring but I have to protect the area from sun exposure. I must protect my hands from the sun for at least a full year after the accident and have to be careful not to scratch my hands as the skin is still delicate. The Honda owners manual and airbag booklet for the car both say that the powder that comes out of the airbag is harmless unless you already have respiratory problems and breath in the powder. They say absolutely nothing about the dangers associated with chemical burns resulting from this powder, even though, as the emt's and doctors informed me, they commonly treat these burns. They did stress that the burns were chemical and not just abrasive. I called and spoke with a Honda representative not long after my accident who was very insistent that my burns in no way could have resulted from the chemicals in the airbags, even though he is not a medical professional and did not witness my injuries. It was insulting to have my claims thoroughly dismissed by Honda after all the loss and pain my burns caused. My concern is that Honda and other automobile manufacturer's (I've looked at other owner's manuals) not only fail to warn consumers about the risk of chemical burn from airbags but actually claim that the chemicals are harmless!

- Wooster, OH, USA

problem #28

Aug 222005


  • miles
I was a passenger in a 2002 Honda Civic (2-door) involved in a head on collision with a Hyundai elantra. My airbag (passenger side) did not deploy, but the driver side air bag did deploy. Additionally, my seat (passenger side) broke loose from the floor mounts and did not restrain me from smashing forward into the dash with my legs and forarms taking the impact. As a result of the seat becoming un-fastened I suffered bruising and lacerations on my legs and arms and neck and back injuries from my head whiplashing because a lack of airbag deployment. The driver did not suffer any back or neck injuries because his airbag restrained his head from "snapping" forward. To summarize: Passenger seat came loose from floor mounts and passenger side airbag did not deploy.

- Highland Park, IL, USA

problem #27

Jul 222005

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 64,000 miles
My daughter rear ended a Chevrolet Tahoe at 35 mph, her 2002 Honda Civic's passenger airbag deployed but not the driver side airbag. Her car was totaled. My daughter was not seriously injured thanks to god looking after her and the fact she was wearing her seat belt. She did however hit her head on the steering wheel. The adjuster from state farm insurance company could not understand why the airbag did not deploy.

- Lynn Haven, FL, USA

problem #26

May 282005

Civic 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • miles
I own a 2002 Honda Civic LX 4dr vehicle, I was in a rear and front in collision in this car. The front bumber fell off, and the raiditior got bent in and the brake fluid container broke off. The passenger air bag went off, but the diver air bag did not. Is there any other cases of this, that happened to thid year and make model, also I can email you pictures of the vehicle

- Moreno Valley, CA, USA

problem #25

Feb 162005


  • Automatic transmission
  • 36,000 miles
Consumer's vehicle struck another vehicle head on and the air bags did not deploy. Consumer and passenger sustained injuries.

- Brookville, IN, USA

problem #24

Aug 312004

Civic 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 40,396 miles
Vehicle was involved in a crash when a pick up truck cut in front of consumer's vehicle. Upon impact, neither frontal or side air bags deployed, and both driver and the passenger seat belts failed to hold. Driver and passenger sustained injuries, and were transported by ambulance to a local hospital. Dealer was not notified.

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

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