2008 Honda Civic engine NHTSA complaints: Engine And Engine Cooling

NHTSA — Engine And Engine Cooling Problems

2008 Honda Civic (Page 1 of 2)

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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
44,776 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.

2008 Honda Civic engine problems

engine problem

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2008 Honda Civic Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #32

Mar 012019

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 137,039 miles


The contact owns a 2008 Honda Civic. While the vehicle was parked in the driveway, the contact noticed a puddle of coolant under the engine. The vehicle was towed to lundgren Honda (163 Washington St, auburn, MA 01501) where it was determined that the engine block was fractured, leaking coolant, and needed replacement. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 137,039.

- Southbrisge, MA, USA

problem #31

Oct 182014

Civic 4-cyl

  • 65,000 miles
I was rear ended at low speed at the end of September. The bumper was replaced and when I got my car back, I started noticing changes in vision, headaches, and hearing loss. About two weeks later, I was traveling on the highway at about 70 mph when I started feeling faint. I pulled over to the side of the road and thought I was well enough to drive. I got back on the highway and started to feel worse. My vision dimmed, my left hand started cramping, I started sweating and shaking, and a very nearly fainted while operating the vehicle. I was able to pull over and call 911 and was taken to the hospital. The doctors could not find anything wrong with me. The following week, I had issues with forgetfulness, disorientation, and impaired vision and hearing. My roommate, who drove the car home from where I left it on the side of the road to go to the hospital, also felt strange after she drove it. I've since been to a neurologist and a cardiologist and neither can find an issue with me and agree it must be something related to the car. The longer I've been away from the car, the better I've felt. I've taken the car to an independent repair shop and a dealership and neither can find the source of the issue. It's not carbon monoxide (I have a sensitive detector in my car), but it has to be some substance. The independent shop found a hole in the sealing around the rear quarter panel, which was resealed, but I drove it this weekend and started having issues again. I was traveling at about 60 mph when something came out of the air vents. Immediately after breathing it, I felt strange again and my vision and hearing are again impaired. I am about to junk the car and sell it for scraps because I don't want anyone else becoming ill from driving it. There are no lights to indicate that there is a problem but clearly there is. I am able to drive other cars without issue.

- Riverdale, MD, USA

problem #30

Oct 032014


  • 46,667 miles
The car was vibrating so hard that it felt like the motor was going to fall out. According to two mechanics this is very early for this type of problem in a car with less than 50000 miles. Had to replace the lower rear engine motor mounts and the front right engine mount.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #29

Jul 012014


  • 75,000 miles


I have a 2008 Honda Civic sedan. Since the car was new the air conditioner never worked properly. The symptom that I noticed was a lack of water dripping from the bottom of the car (from the evaporator coil). I asked Honda about it when I took it in for a routine visit and they said it was fine and the air temperature from the vent was in spec. The car was cooling so I never worried about it much. At 75K miles the A/C compressor just stopped working. The A/C system had a full charge but the compressor wouldn't compress the gas to allow the refrigerant to flash cool. I had a take it to local car repair place to have the A/C compressor, expansion valve, and drier replaced. Now after spending $$$$, the A/C works great and water drips from car when the A/C is on. The A/C system from the factory seems to be an issue and numerous people have complained about it. There should be service bulletin or recall for this issue.

- Owasso, OK, USA

problem #28

Apr 072014

Civic 4-cyl

  • 96,000 miles
The air conditioner is no longer blowing any cold air. Went to the dealership and was told that the air compressor needs to be replaced, along with the coils, and A/C clutch engagement for the air compressor. Vehicle is only 5 years old and there is no extended warranty to cover the cost of replacing the air compressor. Discussed with several mechanics in my area and have seen forum discussions posted that have similar issues and have listed it as a "known issue" but Honda has not formally acknowledged. Previously I have owned a 1997 Honda Civic with all original parts and it did not have such an issue. I have also submitted a direct complaint to Honda regarding my defective air compressor.

- Hawthorne, NJ, USA

problem #27

Dec 102013

Civic 4-cyl

  • 51,000 miles
After 51,000+ miles, the right engine motor mount on my 2008 Honda Civic 2-door coupe failed. The engine vibrated when the engine was cold or when I first started it in the morning. There were minimal problems after the engine warmed up. Two repair shops said the motor mount needed to be replaced. The repair shop replaced the mount with a new one from the Honda dealership in the area. He said the dealership had some in stock, which he said was highly unusual because these mounts are very expensive. The parts person at the dealership did not even have to look up the part number, he knew exactly what was needed. Both of these suggest that this is not an uncommon problem, and the Honda replacement part has been redesigned. I have never had to replace a motor mount on any of the cars I have owned in the last 45+ years. All of the above information I have provided indicates to me that the mount is defective and should be recalled by Honda.

- Fredericksburg, VA, USA

problem #26

May 012012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 80,000 miles


This summer, from the month of may onwards, I felt difficult in breathing, blurred vision and sometimes a sudden chest pain while driving my Civic with ac running, it blew cool but not cold air, and there were many instances that I almost fell off and my body became off balance while walking around after driving the Civic. At first, I thought it might be I am getting old, 46yrs. But. Later, I found out that there is a freon leak within the car when ac is engaged. A tif 5000 detector was used to check and confirm the present of R134A in the cool air inside the Civic. The check was carried out under condition that ac system is blowing closed circulatiuon air within the car. I felt that this type of incident might post a greater risk of automobile accidents for elderly drivers as the R134A, freon, is poisonous and once the drivers unaware of its present and inhale it and physically lose control of their vehicles. Especially elderly ones are more vulnerable and accidents happen. There are many accidents might be due to this type of ac defect. The public or the investigators may have not realized this is one of the possible causes of accidents, as the crashes may have physically destroy all the evidences of defective ac system. I hope you will look into this problem. Not only Honda automobiles but all cars in the usa.

- Woodbridge, VA, USA

problem #25

Apr 022012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 75,000 miles
I have a 2008 Honda Civic, the A/C works intermittently, sometimes it cools sometimes it does not. I have it checked by a dealership and a Firestone shop, they said the 'freon' level and pressure is ok and both recommended replacing the compressor, etc. If the compressor is broken then why does it still work (on and off)" I've read in some of the forums that there are a lot of Honda Civic 2008 owners had the same problem. Is there a recall or class-action complaint about this? is there a fix where you don't need to spend tons of money on it"

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #24

Mar 042012

Civic 4-cyl

  • 66,000 miles
Car made an intermittent high-pitched whining noise. I noticed the engine temperature indicator was in the red. There was a smell of burnt anti-freeze. Checking the radiator and radiator reservoir showed there was no coolant. Had to put water in the radiator and reservoir to drive back home. Mechanic and dealership confirmed that the engine block was cracked causing all the coolant to leak out. The engine block has to be replaced. Fortunately I was made aware that Honda will cover this manufacturing defect and my cost should be zero.

- San Rafael, CA, USA

problem #23

Feb 252012


  • 65,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Honda Civic. The contact stated while driving approximately 70 mph, the vehicle stalled without warning. The contact successfully maneuvered the vehicle to the shoulder but the vehicle would not restart. The vehicle was then towed to an authorized dealer and the contact was informed that the motor overheated and seized. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 65,000.

- Spring Hill, FL, USA

problem #22

Sep 122011


  • 50,000 miles


First thing this morning I tried to set my cruise control at 65 mph, but it didn't work. The speed of the car kept decreasing, despite several attempts to set the cruise. I turned off the cruise and tried to press the gas pedal to drive, and the same problem occurred. In addition, as I tried to increase my speed, the car made a loud humming sound and the rpms on the dash began to increase. Then an indicator light turned on; after driving for a few minutes, more indicator lights came on, my brake stopped working completely, and my steering wheel locked. My gas pedal also stopped working completely. At this point, as I was going uphill I lost complete control of the car and put the car in park because that was the only way I could stop the car. Smoke began coming from the hood. I had the car towed to the midas in salt lake city at 875 East 2100 South. The service people told me the cars engine had heated so that it melted the equipment under the hood. Later, after a discussion with the Honda corporate office, I found out a recall had been issued in August 2010 for a problem with the engine blocks of 2006, 2008, and some 2009 Civics. The Honda representative said a letter had been sent to Civic owners. However, my experience today showed me the seriousness of this problem. I could have a life-threatening accident today, and when the issue is so grave Honda should call car owners to alert them to the recall. A letter sent out one time is not enough. The midas service representatives told me they had absolutely no information about this recall in their database, which proves how poorly this entire matter has been handled. There are many families out there driving these Civics. Get your cars checked out, and let Honda know that they must take better care and full responsibility for their customers!

- Midvale, UT, USA

problem #21

Jun 122011

Civic 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles
The contact owns 2008 Honda Civic. The contact was driving 30 mph when she realized that the vehicle would not shift gears. In addition, the vehicle would stall intermittently. The contact did not take the vehicle to a dealer or local mechanic for inspection or repairs. The failure mileage was 30,000. Updated 10/21/11

- Hillside, NJ, USA

problem #20

Apr 302011


  • 39,073 miles
Took car in for oil change 4/30/2011 at Honda dealer. Service department performed reflash campaign 10-034 without asking. Previously had declined this service and is noted in service records not to perform this service ever. Car performance has been significantly diminished since this service has been performed. Car will not reliably accelerate smoothly from standstill (red light) or when merging into highway traffic at 40-50 mph. When accelerating from a stop, vehicle may or may not move at acceptable speed causing the potential to enter traffic with inadequate power to get up to speed of oncoming traffic creating a hazardous situation. This is an accident waiting to happen, especially since the performance is now inconsistent and you do not know when it may not accelerate as needed. The engine will rev very high but the car will only go 5-10 mph with pedal all the way to the floor. Honda dealer has been unresponsive. I am limiting driving this car as much as possible as this car is unsafe in traffic situations. Also, the auto-stop feature does not work as prior to the reflash, engine idles much higher at stops and does not cut off. This has decreased gas mileage significantly.

- Lawrenceville, GA, USA

problem #19

Apr 052008


  • 96,672 miles
The engine on my Honda overheated and got so hot it actually melted some of the components. Faced with a $4000 repair bill, I did some internet research and found that Honda had been aware of engine problems with 2006 through 2008 Civics. Honda had issued a bulletin to letting mechanics know there was a problem with leaking coolant. My husband was exiting a freeway when the car just shut down and started smoking. Had it happened sooner, there could have been an accident. I think Honda should have recalled these cars rather than wait until a breakdown happens and then do repairs. Even the service manager at Honda told us they had been doing of lot of these repairs lately. The potential for a breakdown in an unsafe area and cause an accident is great. Or at least make sure they get the information to their customers. They know where to find me to send my monthly bill, why not the warranty?

- Victorville, CA, USA

problem #18

Oct 152010

Civic 4-cyl

  • miles
Honda gave us a warning that our Civic could lose it's coolant and break down. They refuse to do a recall. We complained to the state of Oregon and they agreed with us but could not get Honda to recall our car just extend the warranty. We are retired and purchased the car to drive to la to visit our grandchildren and are now afraid to do so as we can't look forward to a breakdown on the highway. It also creates a diminished value for resale for which the state consumer complaint bureau agreed but was unable to get an agreement from Honda on. I have all of the documents from Honda and the state of Oregon and could forward to you if you have the same views that we have. We have only 4500 miles on our Civic and have asked them for an ability to trade it in on another car for near what we paid for it for peace of mind in our travels or repair the vehicle. They said that if the problem has not yet occurred they won't address it yet they know that it may occur. At our age and hoping to keep the car for a long time the extended warranty doesn't work for us and it is just a way for Honda to avoid a recall and keep their problem out of the medial while pushing the outcome on us with no recourse except to wait for the problem to manifest itself at our inconvenience. They say that the engine would stall so that would lose our power brakes and steering which scares us on top of the inconvenience of an interstate breakdown while both my wife and I have medical issues that cause us concerns in that potential. I can email you the letter of potential engine breakdown potential and the letter from the state of Oregon if you are willing to help in this matter.

- Beaverton, OR, USA

problem #17

Sep 162010


  • 38,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Honda Civic. The contact took the vehicle to an independent mechanic who stated that the there was coolant leaking into the engine. The contact took the vehicle to the dealer because it was under warranty, but the dealer stated that there were no leaks. The leak caused the vehicle to over heat several times. The failure mileage was 38,000 and the current mileage was 47,000.

- Lathonia, GA, USA

problem #16

Nov 012010


  • miles
2008 Honda Civic. Consumer states problem with the engine and brakes the consumer stated the air conditioner was not working properly for 20 -30 minutes at a time while driving. The ac knob was turned on, but the blower was not working. When the consumer returned to the dealer, she was informed dye had been placed in the ac system and to return in 3 weeks to see if there were any leaks. The consumer returned 3 weeks later and no leaks were found. The dealer advised the consumer that nothing could be done unless ac/heater blower was not working at the time. In December 2009, while it was raining, the windshield became fogged, because the blower was not working. The consumer was able to get to the dealer in time for them to witness, that the ac/ heater blower was not working, but as the technician went to drive the vehicle into the service bay, it began working again. On one occasion when the consumer arrived at the dealer, the blower was not working, but when the door was closed, it began working again. The consumer believed there is a wiring problem. The consumer also stated the engine would surge when the brake was applied.

- Abingdon, MD, USA

problem #15

Nov 042010


  • 31,709 miles
2008 Honda Civic hybrid ima dash light and engine light come on at approximately 31,000 miles. I was driving and all of the sudden the integrated motor assist light on the dash and the engine light came on. I stopped and read that this indicated a problem with the integrated motor assist and that performance would be affected which it was. Acceleration was sluggish and slow from a stand still. I took it to the dealership immediately and was asked if I had received a recall notice which I said I had not. They said they were aware of the problem and that it required a software upgrade. I left the car for about 30 minutes and when I returned they said that they flashed the computer and did an upgrade. After this there were no more problems. I have looked at NHTSA and Honda site and there is no mention of this problem or a recall listed on any site. I just wanted to let you know that this may be a problem. Thank you.

- El Paso, TX, USA

problem #14

Oct 112010


  • 89,000 miles
Have a 08 Civic hybrid with 89K miles. Got the recent battery software upgrade several weeks ago. Have had a sudden drop in battery charge down to one or two bars, both before and after the upgrade. Recovery usually fairly quick, driving on the interstate, 72 mph, all of a sudden dash went dark and engine stopped. No warnings or lights beforehand. Coasted to the side of the road. Able to restart immediately. Happened twice more over the next 30 minutes. These times put the car in neutral and restarted as I coasted. Tank about 1/3 full with shell gas. Filled the tank with off brand gas and drove the rest of the way ok. Took it to Honda dealer. They checked engine (no codes) and electrical system. Nothing found. Have to drive this car every weekend for 400 mile round trip. Concerned about upcoming weekend.

- Perrysburg, OH, USA

problem #13

Sep 242010


  • 32,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Honda Civic ex (N/a). The contact was traveling 45 mph and attempted to accelerate when the vehicle suddenly began losing power. The check engine light illuminated so the contact pulled over to the shoulder and turned the vehicle off. The vehicle was then towed to an authorized dealer and the contact was informed the bottom of the engine had a crack. The service manager then called back and stated that there was a problem with the headers and the radiator was melted because the vehicle had overheated. The failure mileage and current mileages were approximately 32,000.

- Washingtonville, NY, USA

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