hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
83,833 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 Element brakes problems

brakes problem

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

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

2003 Honda Element Owner Comments

problem #3

Jul 152004


  • 25,000 miles


There is a definite breakdown with the brake calipers. I am not a mechanic but realized the fast deterioration of the calipers and have not heard of that problem with other vehicles. I was told to replace the brake rotors and pads and I have several times but the brakes were never the same. The vehicle has trouble stopping with new brakes. I flushed the brake fluid with official Honda brake fluid and recently noticed the issue is with the calipers. They are rusty and the metal flakes off and the pistons do not function properly on any of the brakes. Some brakes don't fully brake and one rear caliper is stuck while driving so the pads are on the rotor while driving. I hope that makes sense, the calipers are to squeeze and release and they never have soon after I got the vehicle new. I am disappointed with the Honda dealers I have taken it to, before knowing that the problem is with deteriorated calipers. The vehicle was never in a flood or anything like that. I can't imagine I'm the only owner with that problem and I didn't know where to file a complaint earlier or what a caliper was. I would like it investigated and recalled if necessary. Thank you.

- Lynnfield, MA, USA

problem #2

Oct 122012

Element 4-cyl

  • 117,500 miles
The ABS brake system has always had a nice firm pedal pressure. Recently when coming to a stop I noticed the pedal to feel spongy, soft and travel close to the floor. I checked fluids etc. And all seem normal. Still have adequate pad thickness on all pads. This problem with the soft, spongy pedal seems to be consistent now. Checked the internet and see this seems to be a problem on 2007 and 2008 Elements. Believe it might also be showing up on other years also. We also have a 2004 Element and the pedal pressure is as the 2003 used to be. The 2003 is an ex 2wd auto and the 2004 is an ex auto AWD model.

- Park Hill, OK, USA

problem #1

Sep 282012

Element 4-cyl

  • 109,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Honda Element. The contact stated that while the engine was running and as the brake was depressed, there was smoke seen coming from under the hood. As a result, the vehicle stalled. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who inspected the vehicle and stated that they could not diagnosed the failure. The vehicle was then taken to a mechanic who inspected the vehicle and advised the contact that the smoke was coming from the brakes seizing when they were depressed. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified. The failure mileage was 109,000. Updated 10/18/12 the consumer stated to disregard the complaint. The issue was fluid contamination. Updated 10/19/2012

- Alhambra, CA, USA

Not what you are looking for?