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Honda Odyssey Transmission Problems



  • rfreitasrfreitas Posts: 63
    How long do you think they should last? Would you buy one knowing you had to replace the transmission every 70k???

    They should put in the maintenance schedule replace transmission every 70k for only $3000.

    You might want to start selling Toyotas.

    Ex Honda buyer.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,593
    edited July 2010
    Actually, I officially retired after 14 years last month so I really don't have a "dog in the fight".

    You are definatly pushing things if you are saying that an Odyssey transmission only lasts 70,000 miles. Not the norm at all!

    It's true, there were a few years that had far more troubles than people expect from Honda. honda stepped up to the plate and extended the factory warranties for a large percentage of these people. They didn't have to do this for out of warranty cars but they did. I watched Honda step up to the plate over and over again.

    Maintenance schedule? It was the experience of our shop that a lot of the Odyssey transmissions that had troubles appeared to NEVER have had a fluid change in 100,000 or more miles.

    Mini vans get called on to haul large families, pull boats and trailers and generally have tough lives in a lot of cases. I was only curious as to just how long a car has to go when a transmission failure is acceptable?

    Oh, I could have sold Toyotas. They are a great car that I have always believed in. They too, have some transmission problems and seem to be subject to sludge and engine failures IF they don't receive proper care.

    Someone complained that they had a transmission failure at something like 165,000 miles. That is why I asked if they expected to NEVER have a automatic transmission go bad?

    Just asking out of curosity but if and when you find a car that NEVER breaks, let me know and I'll buy one!
  • jvhwoodjvhwood Posts: 8
    edited July 2010
    :lemon: Read my earlier post #758.
    First failure at 38,000 fix new tranny.
    Second failure at 102,000 fix new car (Toyota Sienna)
    Senior driver only no towing, maintenance freak always done on schedule.
    From 38K to 102K miles honda had a super tranny cooler installed and fluid changed every 15,000 miles. With all this it lasted 64,000. miles.
    Remember the muscle cars of the 60's and 70's when you could get them with a positraction rear end? Well honda only offers a POS tranny at no charge to all Odyssey customers I.E. POS = piece of sh**. :lemon:
    If you were in service instead of sales you would have first hand knowledge of the monumental problem these trannys were known for. Google this "honda odyssey transmission problems" If the 1,040,000 hits you receive doesn't wake you up, then dream on.
    Happy Toyota Sienna Owner
  • gavanmomgavanmom Posts: 32
    I've had three transmissions put in my van by our Honda dealer and I have 40000 miles on it. The first one was replaced after 1300 miles, next at 6000 miles and the last at 13000. These mileages are approx, I'd have to look up the actual miles. After all this and having my 2007 van out of commission for 9 months of the first 13 we owned it, Honda has a sour taste for me. All of the replacement trannys and the work done on my van left us with the same problem....... very hard downshift and broken engine mounts. Finally, after replacing the tourqe converter, again and two computer re programs, no more downshift problem, no more broken engine mounts. Amazing, it only took them 3 years to fix the problem. My only saving feature is that we were smart enough to buy the 120000 mile 8 year warranty (from an online Honda dealer that has been mentioned on here before} and push Honda to fix it. We have been fought from the bottom up, first by the service techs, then the service manager, then the local Honda rep, finally to American Honda. Only after some high up guy rode with me and was about jerked out of his seat did he admit there was a problem. Second and last Honda for us.
  • rose40rose40 Posts: 1
    We just bought a '08 Honda Odyssey June 1, 2010. After 2 weeks we started feeling a vibration at about 35mph. Recently it started doing it on the highway at any mph. I read on this forum about transmission problems and came to #1514 which has a link to a service bulletin that was sent out to Honda dealers, dated May 1, 2010. It states that the transmission software on all '07-'08 Odysseys and certain '09 Odysseys need to be updated. "These vehicles must be updated before they are sold or leased." The CarFax did not show this was done and the engine compartment's VIN would have a punch mark above the 7th character if it was done. It was not updated before they sold it. There was a previous update available (not sure when it came out), but it did "not address all the transmission concerns." So now this latest transmission software is out. Honda has a name for this vibration feeling. It is called a "judder." The bulletin says that if "the judder returns sometime in the future, after the transmission software is updated, the torque converter will need to be replaced."

    Owners of affected vehicles are supposed to be sent a notification of this product update.

    The car has 28,000 miles on it. I do expect it to make it to AT LEAST 100,000. They also should have taken care of this before selling it to us. I would NEVER have bought this car had I known this MAJOR flaw.

    We are supposed to drive out to Colorado (we live in Illinois) and rent a 1400LB popup trailer while we are out there in 1 week. What are we supposed to do? Do I trust that this software will do the trick while we are climbing up a mountain pulling a trailer? After we get the software update, will we have to replace the torque converter? Will I be on a highway with my kids when the transmission goes out? I almost want to trade it in for a Sienna, but we probably would just be getting other problems. On the other hand, what do we have coming with this car? If we do have more problems, the trade-in value of this car will go down quite a bit. So far, it is NOT looking good.

    The plan is to take the car in tomorrow to the dealer where we bought it to have it looked at. I will show them the bulletin and ask them why they didn't have this done BEFORE selling it to us. It usually comes down to money. It was a gamble for them; maybe this car wouldn't have a problem. If it does, the owner will bring it in.....Or maybe they even knew it had a problem when they sold it.

    I wanted to post this to inform all about the bulletin and thank #1514 for putting the link about the bulletin out there. Another reason was to maybe get some advice.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,593
    Actually. I spent a lot of time in service since that is where I got my beginning.

    Your experience is HIGHLY unusual and I have no explanation other than to say there are a lot of high mileage Odysseys out there that have never had a problem.

    It has to be remembered that forums like this attract the people who have had problems like a magnet and no matter what the make or model, problems tend to be over amplified.

    I'm surprised you weren't worried that your Sienna's engine wouldn't sludge up and stop running! That one was blown WAY out of proportion to...big time!
  • I'm looking at buying a 2003 honda odessey with 140,000. I was thinking it was a good buy. Not sure now. My neice has a 2000 and loves it. ??? :confuse:
  • stimmonsstimmons Posts: 2
    I have a 2002 Odyssey and I've had I'm on my 3rd transmission ( 1st one under warrenty, the second with Honda's minimal support $3500). Additionally, I've had to replace the motor mounts ($120), replace the sliding door motors and rollers ($800 each door). The motors on both vent windows went out three years after I bought the van. I didn't fix them because I rarely used them. You couldn't pay me to buy another Honda. :lemon:
  • doggrandmadoggrandma Posts: 144
    I know what you mean! However, if you read enough of these forums, you will see that every car maker has problems, and some people do get lemons. I really wanted a minivan to haul the grandkids and the grand-dogs, so I did finally buy a 2010 Odyssey several months ago. So far, it has been a wonderful vehicle, but I see where a lot of people don't have that saem experience.

    All I can say is to be careful when you buy. If you know the seller, so much the better. Ask to see the service records, check out the Carmax report (although those are not foolproof!), and pay a local mechanic whom you trust to look over the vehicle before you buy, especially with a vehicle that has so many miles on it.

    I hope you are able to find a good vehicle that fits your needs.
  • We have enjoyed our 2003 Odyssey - except when the transmission needed to be replaced at 79,000 miles. We now drive it minimally and will replace it before the new transmission warranty expires. Just put about $6,000 aside for additional repairs above normal maintenance items and you'll probably be okay.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,593
    So, what will you buy?

    You can go to any "problems" forum on any car and read the stories of woe.

    Honda's "minimal" support? They didn't have to do anything.
  • First I want to mention that I purchased from Honda the extended bumper to bumper warranty (5yrs or 100K Miles) which is still active for another 7 months. All my service work has been done by Honda (oil changes etc.)

    To date the warranty has covered the replacement of the following: replaced the CD changer due to skipping, replaced the power steering pump due to whining after long distance travel and replaced the catalytic converter which tripped a code that it was failing/clogged. Honda did not give me any problems with these replacements and based on the repair costs I'm flush on what I spent on the warranty.

    Now here's the kicker. The last 3 times I brought the car in I also complained about the intermitent shudder at 40mph where it seemed the transmission couldn't decide which gear to go into. Shift up, shift down (back and forth) 10-15 times before it settled down. The problem developed at around 60K miles and the car currently has 68K on it. The first time I brought it in the service man who handled my work could not replicate the problem as it was intermitent. So he told me to contact them again if it returned. At the next scheduled maintenance I mentioned to the man on the phone who I was making my appointment with about the issues and was told it was the torque converter and that they would diagnose and fix it this time. So I brought the car in. However the man I spoke to on the phone was not the person I ended up with. My service work was redirected to another person. I thought that was weird but did not make an issue of it. She told me she could not find anything wrong with the transmission and to contact her if the issue returned. She seemed to be very adept at conforting the customer and downplaying the issue. Since that time the issue has gotten worse and occurs at other speeds and gears as well. I did as much research on the internet as possible on the issue and to see if similar complaints were occuring and as you know very well they are. So I called again to make another appointment for service and was mentally prepared to fight if necessary to get the car fixed under warranty and hoping that this would not be necessary. I brought the car in and spoke to the service rep I made the appointment with and was immediately referred to the same woman that handled me last time. So I asked the guy why her and not you and he reluctantly told me he didn't know. So now I knew I was in for a battle. She immediately tried to talk me out of it this time telling me that this shudder was normal, there's nothing they could do to correct it and that even though it was under warranty it was not an issue. So now the fighting begins...just loud enough for other customers to hear but not to look like a crazed idiot. Every illogical claim she made I countered a logical response showing her logic made no sense. Not going into every detail but in short most customers would have backed down by now. She got increasingly unmoveable with me and so did I with her. In the end I made it very clear to her that when I bought the car new it did not have this issue and that it developed over time and was not normal and I insisted it be fixed before the warranty runs out so I didn't have to foot the avg bill of $2,200. She told me she had to refer my case to the service mgr. I said that's fine and to hold on to the car as long as she needed to properly diagnose and fix the car.

    The following day I run into a friend in the elevator at work who was exceited to tell me he just bought a brand new Honda (same dealer) and got the extended warranty like I did but had not taken possesion of the vehicle yet pending detailing. I told him what happended to me. The reason why he got the warranty was because the Sales Mgr told him that he got one for his wife on her new Honda due to the torque converter issues. So my friend went back that evening and spoke to the sales mgr and mentioned that I had my car in the shop with the very same issue and that they were not going to honor it. So the sales mgr went to the service mgr and pulled my work order. All the sudden I'm getting a phone call from the woman working on my account that they were able to relicate the issue and that they would be contacting the warranty company about a full transmission replacement. What was also intersting is that my car never left the same spot it was first placed in the day I brought it in. So much for really replicating the issue seeing they never test drove it or brought it into the garage to run tests (I checked the car twice a day and it never moved an inch). After several days I contacted her to find out when I should expect a resolution and she told me that they got approval to replace the entire transmission and that it would be another week before they got the part and completed the work. I drove by yesterday and now the car was on the lift and the mechanic was dismantling the tranny. So far it looks like I'm going to get full satisfaction but the work is not complete yet. I will let you know the final outcome.

    I'm very surprised at how this whole was handling to this point. I bought the car and the warranty fro them, had all my service work done by them and it took my friend threatening not accepting his new car in order for me to get satisfaction. Needless to say I will not be buying another Honda from this dealer and may not ever buy another honda either.
  • Honda did assist me - it only cost me $3,000 to replace the transmission - but that decision by Honda was made extremely reluctantly and only after some very hard negotiation. You're right - "they" didn't have to do anything since my car was a 2003, not a 2002. Without extreme coaxing they would have chosen the route of doing nothing - other than charging top dollar for a replacement and wishing me well. I give them credit for doing "something." Stimmons, which Honda dealer do you work for? The Honda transmission problems are well documented and Honda knows full well that they chose and installed an inferior transmission in these cars. That is the only reason a car company that promotes reliability as a primary reason to choose their brand would actually do "something" when pressed against the wall about this embarrassing situation. I would hope that the new version of the Odyssey has overcome this manufacturing deficiency, but someone considering purchasing a used 2003 Odyssey should know the facts . . . these transmissions fail with greater regularity than they should . . . and they should not expect Honda to do anything to assist them. Buyer beware.
  • samspade1samspade1 Posts: 5
    How many miles does your daughter's 2000 have on it? I ask because our 2000 Odyssey is currently undrivable, sitting in our driveway due to it's transmission problems, and it has only 75K mi. We purchased it new and serviced it regularly. We have been buying Hondas since 1988, and were always impressed with their reliability, etc. Now, we are being punished for having low mileage because the Honda dealer we purchased it from says it has been too long since our warranty expired and the warranty extension that Honda America issued a few years ago. We had a 100K mi warranty that we purchased when we bought the car. In virtually all other respects, this Odyssey has been a great car for us. Now, we are reluctant to buy another Honda because they are not honoring their product. Honda is making a big mistake on this issue. Whatever it takes to repair/replace the transmission on our Odyssey, we intend to sue Honda and the dealer for cost + whatever grief they've caused due to their irresponsible behavior...
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 14,154
    just had the trans fluid changed today on my 2005 (at just about 60K). 2nd time for this, since I decided (based on all the reported problems) to go with a 30K change interval, on the better safe than sorry schedule!

    well that, and if something does happen prematurely, no way Honda will be able to argue that I did not take care of the van, since they are the only ones that have touched it (other than for tires), and I am going way beyond what is required.

    also, for the 75K 2000 model, that one you have a reasonable chance of getting assistance, and even if they split the cost, it probably makes sense to spend the 2-3K on it, since it has so little value as it sits, and should be good for a lot longer if you get it fixed (especially compared to what else you could get for the value of a dead van + repair costs!)

    I would not touch a 140K one, unless it was super cheap, and had a replacement tranny already installed not too many miles before.

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's), 2007 Volvo S40 (when daughter lets me see it), 2000 Acura TL (formerly son's, now mine again), and new Jetta SE (son's first new car on his own dime!)

  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,593
    edited July 2010
    I guess it's hard to say where they have to draw the line. 75,000 isn't very many miles but ten years is a long time.

    You might want to take this to the next level and be sure to stress the fact you bought en extended warranty and took good care of the car.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,593
    I change the trans fluid iour Hondas every 30,000 miles and I have always done this in all of our cars. 60,000 miles just seems like a long time.
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 14,154
    well, 60K isn't even the recommended interval. That is, I think, 105K or 120K!

    Of course, that was decided upon by the same dim bulbs that think it is a good idea to only change the filter at every other oil change. But, I guess if you are desperate to save $5, it might be a good idea!

    2013 Acura RDX (wife's), 2007 Volvo S40 (when daughter lets me see it), 2000 Acura TL (formerly son's, now mine again), and new Jetta SE (son's first new car on his own dime!)

  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,593
    I'm too lazy to pull out an Owner's Manual but I believe it's 60K on trans services.

    The bean counters and the engineers argue all of the time. some prospective buyers are more concerned with how little money they will have to spend on maintenance that they stretch change intervals as long as they possible can.

    People need to remember that these are MINIMUM service reccomendations.

    Some people like to take better care of theri cars than that.
  • j orbj orb Posts: 4
    Having the same issue with my '05 Odyssey at 69K miles and it's at the dealership right now. At light throttle around 35 mi/hr, the car will shudder if going up an incline at about the time the transmission is about to shift into a lower gear. It seems to happen more often when cold. I too have the Honda extended warranty and it will be interesting if I will need to argue the point to get the torque converter replaced. The service writer was also talking about a software update on newer models but of course that would not be covered by the extended warranty. Very surprising how the "bumper to bumper" extended warranty that was sold to me seems to cover nothing.
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