really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
63,600 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.

2003 Honda Civic electrical problems

electrical problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2003 Honda Civic:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2003 Honda Civic Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #27

Aug 132016


  • miles


El carro prende la bolsa de aire. Un sensor de temperatura Y el switch

- Lanham, MD, USA

problem #26

Sep 052015


  • miles
The ignition switch has gone out.

- Antioch, CA, USA

problem #25

Sep 012015


  • 141,000 miles
Took car in for airbag failure recall and was told the SRS unit in the airbag system had an internal failure. However, this was not covered under any type of warranty or recall. This is an integral part of a safety system that should not fail under normal wear an tear. The part was on back order and required a deposit of $800 to order. We left the dealership not knowing if our airbags would work or not.

- Long Beach , CA, USA

problem #24

Mar 182010

Civic 4-cyl

  • 150,000 miles


The door will not lock using the key. The key either gets jammed in the door or wont go in. When it does go in, it wont come back out. Frustrated because I cant lock/unlock my car without a break-in kit.

- Ellijay, GA, USA

problem #23

Oct 162014


  • 124,174 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Honda Civic. The contact stated that the air bag warning light illuminated. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 124,174.

- Longwood, FL, USA

problem #22

Nov 152012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 91,325 miles
I got a recall notice (Nov. 2012) about 2003 Honda Civic's headlights failing. About a week later in the early morning as I was going to work, my car headlights failed as I left my driveway. I left the car at home and took another. On return from work I found both headlights out, no blown fuses, heater fan not working, both ABS and brake panel lights on. I scheduled repair at O'hare Honda, des plaines, il. I arrived at the service dept. With recall notice and also to have additional maintenance services. I left the car for them to work on it. Repair work done on invoice #410741 dated Nov.19, 2012. The service writer called me the next day and told me the brake light repair required the master cylinder to be replaced. I ok'd major work. Service writer called back to say the ABS module needed to be replaced too. I ok'd that repair at large cost also. When I picked up my car the service writer told me they "put in a free alternator as that too was bad". the headlight repair cost $1,877.77 ($1,326.17 for parts + $551.60 labor). I have been thinking about this repair and have come to the conclusion that the voltage regulator on the alternator failed and put a large surge on the electrical system of the car. This surge "fried" the electrics on the two brake parts and burned out the headlights. The "free" alternator should have been the clue to the cause of the problem. I don't understand why some device can not be installed into the electrical wiring system of the car to prevent this expensive and potentially dangerous failure. The final problem with this repair was that I had to immediately return to the dealer to have them install new headlight bulbs as they must not have checked them and they were still burned out. So much for quality control.

- Des Plaines, IL, USA

problem #21

Aug 122012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 111,120 miles


My ignition key is stuck. The key does not release from the ignition.

- Pico Rivera, CA, USA

problem #20

Feb 112012


  • miles
The contact owns a 2003 Honda Civic. The contact stated that she was unable to insert the key into the ignition or start the vehicle. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileages were unknown.

- Salinas, CA, USA

problem #19

Jun 062011


  • 70,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Honda Civic hybrid. While driving, the contact stated that the vehicle would hesitate when shifting into gear. The dealer replaced the battery and clutch fluid in an attempt to repair the defect, but the failure recurred. The manufacturer was not contacted. The failure mileage was 70,000 and the current mileage was 139,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Cornelius, OR, USA

problem #18

Dec 102010

Civic 4-cyl

  • 195,000 miles
I have a 2003 Honda Civic ex with the same problem listed in NHTSA campaign id number: 04V086000 my car was not included in the recall.

- Scotia, NY, USA

problem #17

Oct 042010


  • 124,000 miles


The transmission suddenly fails every 30-40K miles creating a traffic hazard that will result in a crash without warning. Also, the ima battery does not hold a sufficient charge creating a loss in power and a possible accident.

- Walnut Creek, CA, USA

problem #16

Jun 302010


  • 120,000 miles
SRS light stays on, Honda service department claims the air bag computer is bad and needs to be replaced, $700 + and it is not covered by any warranty. The car is a 2003 Honda Civic hybrid that has never been in any accident. I have replaced the hybrid battery (at 95,000 miles), and the car now has about 120,000 miles on it.

- Cary, NC, USA

problem #15

Aug 012007


  • 60,000 miles
Window switch meltdown happens in earlier Honda Civics. I recently read that Honda was recalling cars for a window master switch that melted when it got moisture in it like when it rains with the window down. This problem has persisted for years. My 2003 Civic melted and could have caused a fire three years ago after a little moisture. Where was the recall back then if we were really concerned about this problem?

- American Fork, UT, USA

problem #14

Oct 062009


  • 195,000 miles
My Honda Civic hybrid 2003. The accelerator sometime increases by itself. You can actually see and feel the pedal leave your right foot by itself. My car went as high as 90mi. The only solution is to step on the brake and shift to low gear. So the car will slow down.

- Rowland Hts, CA, USA

problem #13

Jul 302008


  • 65,040 miles
I have a 2003 Honda hybrid with 65,000 miles. The ima warning light went on a few days ago and they have determined the hybrid battery needs to be replaced. I am concerned that the Honda batteries are not living up to expectations and could lead to failure in other areas (faulty steering during turns, etc.) which could pose a safety hazard. When I bought the vehicle, I was under the understanding that the battery life would outlive the vehicle life, and finding it to be untrue. I am having the battery replaced today on warranty, but they have not been able to tell me if it is a better battery or higher developed battery than what was originally installed. Since I am most concerned about safety, I wanted to report this to you. Sincerely, roger soucy

- Mission Viejo, CA, USA

problem #12

Dec 222006

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 113,470 miles
Suddenly lost power when driving, stalled-started again, all lights came on dashboard when driving, engine light stayed on. Repairs @ gardena, told it was electrical, Honda-control module engine replaced, O2 sensor, w-bulb (12V 21W) drove car less than 2 hours same problems occurred (day car was picked up).

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #11

Aug 172006

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 7,500 miles
The problem is intermittent, ongoing for the past 2 years. The failure is that the transmission will not come out of park, there are no brake lights, there is no brake regeneration in the hybrid system, and the auto stop function does not work. Over the last 24 days there the car has been started 75 times with 24 times failure of the brake system to work. I've kept a log since the last dealer visit. The last time in shop they tested/replaced ignition switch and brake light switch (second brake light switch in 2 years). The dealer " cannot duplicate the problem, even when it is acting up when I take it in. There seems to be a correlation between failure and lower temperatures and high humidity/rain. The problem is driving without stop lights and never knowing while driving if everything is working. At some point I'm going to be rear end, hopefully the kids will not be in the car.

- Granville, OH, USA

problem #10

Mar 272006

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 13,744 miles
On 3 occasions over past 3 years we have had key/ lock/ ignition switch problems. Result: 1. inability to start engine; 2. unable to unlock driver side door; 3. unable to open trunk. Latest repair on 3-28-06 consisted of replacing trunk lock tumbler and driver side door lock tumbler. Repair advisor verbally stated trunk lock tumblers were badly worn; door lock tumblers needed lubrication. We consider consequences of failure could be serious given circumstances at time of failure.

- Citrus Heights, CA, USA

problem #9

Apr 052005

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles
My 03 Honda Civic hybrids electric (hybrid) motor needed replacing.

- Whitefish Bay, WI, USA

problem #8

Apr 042004


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
The air bags in my vehicle did not deploy in a front end collision that I was involved in. It caused me to fly forward and injure myself, almost hitting the front windshield. In addition to this problem, I have discovered that the cigarette lighter plug-in does not work in my vehicle. I have found that the transmission in my vehicle had a defective part that a car repair man fixed.

- Visalia, CA, USA

Read the next 7 complaints »

Not what you are looking for?