Honda Accord Brake Questions

ddnyddny Member Posts: 20
Anybody with 2004 accord V6 brake problems?

I know all about the 2003 accords and their inherent brake problems. How many 2004's out there are having similar problems?

My 2004 V6 sedan needs all 4 rotors replaced @ 30,000 miles...


  • crankkycrankky Member Posts: 45
    As I posted over in the general Accord maintenance forum, I've had some strange brake noises on my '04 EX Sedan, 4 cyl. First problem was with the emergency brake lever. When engaged, it was so tight that I could not release it without beating on it with my fist. And, even when it was all the way down, the release button would remain depressed. The dealer was supposed to replace the lever, but I suspect all that they really did was adjust the tension.

    Secondly, as I previously reported, I have a very disconcerting grinding sound from my brakes after the car has been parked for a period of time. It doesn't seem to have anything to do with moisture or temperature. The first couple of brakings after the car starts result in a grinding sound and feel that is exactly like what worn out brakes feel/sound like. I do not mean squeeling or squeeking. I mean metal on metal grinding like when the pads are worn out and grinding into the rotors. After a few brakings, the sound goes away and all is normal. The dealer's shop foreman heard what I was talking about and simply said that all of the Accords make that sound because Honda uses cheap brake pads.

    The deal has "fixed" the e-brake lever problem but I wonder if the rear brakes had been dragging all along. What to do?
  • thegraduatethegraduate Member Posts: 9,731
    The grinding noise IS normal, and was/is experienced by all three of our 2003+ Accords, even my 2006 w/ 5,100 miles on it.
  • ddnyddny Member Posts: 20
    I can't say that I ever noticed the rear grinding noise, even though I was told my brakes were 'on' for 20K miles, but I'll try to pay attention from now on.

    Do you even use the handbrake? I don't since it's an automatic.

    2nd or 3rd opinions are always good...
  • ddnyddny Member Posts: 20
    Yes - mine does have that noise on first use after rain or any other moisture. Not on dry days though, and only the back.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Member Posts: 9,731
    Use the handbrake; in Park, only a pin about the size of a crayon is holding your car in place. If that breaks, well, its not pretty.
  • crankkycrankky Member Posts: 45
    I didn't use the handbrake much at all before getting it fixed. Now, I use it if I'm on any kind of significant slope.

    As far as the grinding noise goes, I've not been able to determine if the sound is coming from the front or rear. And, it doesn't seem to be as bad in warmer weather. Moisture has nothing to do with it, as I've heard the grinding noise in perfectly dry weather as well.

    I guess what bothers me is that the car didn't do this when it was new, else I wouldn't have bought it. And, in fact, in my 25 years of driving I've never heard any car make that particular brake noise unless the pads were completely worn out and were actually grinding into the rotors. That's why, with all due respect, I can't quite accept that this is a normal sound despite what a few posters, and the dealer, say.
  • mrbill1957mrbill1957 Member Posts: 823
    What do the rotors look like? Smooth and shiny, or rough and ridged? You need to look on both sides to see what could be going on.

  • crankkycrankky Member Posts: 45
    From what I can tell, they look fine. Shiny and smooth, no noticable ridges. Can't really see the inside surface of the rotor.
  • radiojogradiojog Member Posts: 1
    I just bought a 2003 Accord EX. I noticed vibration when applying brakes. It also flutters in idle in D. What are inherent brake problems you spoke of?
  • rvadikrvadik Member Posts: 11
    I have a 2005 EX V6
    Have a warped rotors problem. Only 30K.
    I did bring it in to the dealership, the sad that brakes are not covered under the waranty, and suggested resurfacing for around $400
    :mad: :mad: :mad:
  • don42don42 Member Posts: 1
    Does anyone know why the rear brakes on our 2004 Honda Accord EX would be shot at 22K miles. This car is driven my wife, she is not a hot rodder by any means. I have never replaced rear brakes on a car before at least 50K. My 03 Acura TL needed front brakes at 30K which were replaced by the dealer for no charge. I don't get this, and the Honda dealer was absolutely no help. Now at 24K the front brakes make the strangest noise when first applied after start up. Does our car have lemon brakes or are others having problems. Does anyone know if we can buy beefed up or better quality pads? The dealer could not offer any opiton when we inquired, except the "standard" honda brake pads.
  • wcgwcg Member Posts: 1
    I had the same problem with my wife's 2004 EX V6 Accord. She was getting terrible vibration when braking on hills or at highway speed after only about 10k miles. We took it to the dealer and were told that the rear brake pads were defective and the rear rotors were warped. They replaced the pads and turned the rear rotors under warranty, but that really didn't do much for the vibration. At 20k miles the front brake pads were worn out and the front rotors were warped. We were told it was normal wear and we had to pay to fix the front brakes. Then at 26k miles the front rotors were warped again. I asked the service manager at the dealership why these rotors would not hold up and he told me with no hesitation that Honda put low quality rotors on the car and they could not stand up to the heat generated from in town driving. He said that would be a constant problem with this car. I never expected such a candid response to my question. Last weekend the master brake cylinder died. It will take a week to even get the part in. I am planning to sell this car rather than deal with the constant brake problems and worrying about when the transmission defect is going to hit. This was my first Honda, and I suspect it will be my last.
  • tasaytasay Member Posts: 36
    Hi all,
    Does anyone has 2006 that has problem too? I am ready to buy but hate to have to replace brakes or rotors in an early stage on owning it. Please advise.

  • mrbill1957mrbill1957 Member Posts: 823
    I have an 04 EX-L and haven't had any brake problems (and I'm fussy) If there was any pulsation/vibration, I would have returned to the dealer.

    Yes there have been postings concerning brake problems, but I question the problems being any greater then any other car out there. Honda most likely has more then one supplier of brake parts, so it could be all vendor related. Something like this should be taken care of quickly, Honda doesn't want to deal with warranty-non warranty issues as any other car.

    People will post when there is a problem, not when everything is working fine, so you will see one complaint for every XXXXX number of happy people.

  • mikee3mikee3 Member Posts: 4
    I have a 2006 SE that the dealer says they have to replace the rear pads and I have 22K on it. Didn't have to do anything to my 03 CRV until about 60K. They said it was normal wear. I am calling Honda customer service on this. I thought my Altima was bad at 30K.
  • mamaralmamaral Member Posts: 1
    I just had the 30k maintenance done to my 2004 Accord EX V6 on Saturday and had asked them to check the brakes as I had been having intermittent pulsation which sometimes left them feeling like they weren't working effectively. The dealer told me that the rear pads were worn down and needed replacement, along with the rotors which were likely warped and couldn't be resurfaced since they're already too thin when new. Of course I was surprised since the car only has just over 33K miles, of which at least 60% is highway mileage. I've never had a car's brakes wear out that soon - it's definitely a surprise to think I have to spend $500 to repair the rear brakes on a car with only 33K and less than 2 years old. Sounds to me like Honda isn't using quality components which is a surprise since that's supposed to be what their focus is in manufacturing their cars......

    After paying the 30k service fee, it's a bit hard justifying another $500 for brakes, but of course, you have to replace them.... I'm thinking I'll just take care of it myself to save the labor and inflated dealer parts prices.

    Has anyone had any luck chasing Honda on this issue?
  • 06accordx206accordx2 Member Posts: 17
    My 06LX makes a "click" sound from the front brakes the first time I touch them..after sitting awhile. After the initial useage, the brakes are normal. Weather makes no difference. It didn't start doing this untill about 9000 miles, I have 12,500 now.
    The other thing I've noticed is a loud rumbling noise when I have to brake hard, like for a yellow light that I just can't run. But I think it might be a tire noise from the crappy Bridgestone tires on it. My wife's 06SE doesn't do it with Michelin tires, but it only has 2000 miles so far.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Member Posts: 9,731
    I have this same issue, and have read many other people experiencing this... it has to do with the "floating" caliper design of the disc brakes. They tend to "pop" into place upon first usage (like after backing out of the driveway). I have the same issue.
  • ddnyddny Member Posts: 20
    Sorry to hear about your troubles. I wouldn't put too much blame on the bridgestones - they're usually pretty good, as are the michelins. 14K miles is about when my accord started exhibiting brake issues also. Keep an eye on 'em, always get 2nd opinions, and good luck.

    I've been just driving mine for the past 5K miles in a rotten state, trying to forstall the inevitable 4-wheel rotor change...
  • biskitboybiskitboy Member Posts: 1
    I've been having a similar problem with my 2004 EX V6. I first reported the problem at 8k miles. The dealership resurfaced the rotors. This temporarily fixed the problem. I went back at 21k miles (although it was happening at around 16k). They did the same thing, resurfaced the rotors. I brought it back at 32k, they replaced the front rotors and resurfaced the rears again.

    I'm in the process of bringing the car back yet again at 42k miles. I do not know if this is a widespread problem or not. From what I can tell, the problem does not appear to be in the front rotors anymore. I think the majority of my 'shake' is with the rear brakes since I feel the shake more in the seat than in the steering wheel. The steering wheel does not appear to shake much (if any), however, I'm just now tracking this and it's after they replaced the front rotors at 32k (@42k now). I believe the bulk of my problem is with the rear brakes, but it wouldn't surpise me if they were all warped.

    I'm hoping the dealership will actually FIX the problem instead of fixing the SYMPTOM. I should only be resurfacing my rotors when the pads wear out and I need to replace them. Resurfacing every 8k miles is definitely a problem.
  • hoddickahoddicka Member Posts: 2
    I have a 2006 Accord LX, with now 21000 miles on it. I had brake problems from 15000 on, but was told this is normal and not tto worry about the 19000, conveniently 1000 miles past the NY Lemon Law cutoff, the front brakes failed completely, very nearly causing a serious accident. The dealership "resurfaced" the rotors and drums, both of which were badly warped. Wehn a week later I again experienced chattering and premature antilock activation, I took it back, and they replaced the front rotors which were again warped.....a weeklater it started again, again causing a very near accident....when the rear drums locked up, when braking off the interstate to a ramp....they replaced the drums and pads.....not 5 days later, again chattering when braking.....they resurfaced both rotors and drums....these are NEW, 10 days later it is happening again....and the dealer says they haven't got much left to do.....they want me to meet with the regional service guy, sometime next week.....My wife refuses to drive or ride in the car.....we bought this, because everyone, from Consumer Reports on, including Edmunds, said it was the most reliable, safe, and solid car around.....SO WHAT THE HECK TO WE DO NOW!
  • ddnyddny Member Posts: 20
    Yes, I empathize completely....Mine got so bad that the rotors would lock upon hard braking, and I'd just skid as if I had no Anti-lock.......I ended up getting a good deal from Mavis Tire for 4 new rotors and pads (< $500,NY) since at this point I figured I was putting my family's life in jeopardy, and my car's actually better than new now.....All I can say is save your receipts for the eventual Class Action suit....
    Good Luck.
  • elroy5elroy5 Member Posts: 3,735
    Wow, all of this about brake problems is strange to me. I have an 03 EX V6 sedan with 40k miles on it, and my pads still look good on all four wheels. I think the emergency brakes are dragging, either because they are set too tight, or because they are not releasing. If I were having this problem I would jack the car up, turn each wheel, and check for resistance and noise. Good luck
  • ray_h1ray_h1 Member Posts: 1,134
    )) "Use the handbrake; in Park, only a pin about the size of a crayon is holding your car in place. If that breaks, well, its not pretty." ((

    Probably WAY too freakin' late to help anyone at this point, but on a front wheel drive car, the use of the handbrake will not affect whether the parking pawl (pin) in an automatic transaxle does or doesn't break in the event the car is front or rear-ended while parked. (On rear wheel drive cars, the issue's an entirely 'nother matter.) The reason? The hand brake only works on the rear wheels (Dohh!... :surprise:). The front wheels are locked by the pawl and if the car is bumped sufficiently hard to move it, the pin breaks - whether the handbrake is set or not. What can the owner do to prevent this? NOTHIN'. It's impossible to leave the vehicle in "Neutral" and remove the ignition key. The only reason to justify routine use of the handbrake I can think of is that when parked on an incline, there'll be less wear on the pawl and frustration taking the transmission out of "Park" at startup and drive-off. (If I were "king" for a day, my first royal decree would be to elliminate parking pawls entirely from front wheel drive automatic transmissions and install an ignition key interlock such that the key couldn't be removed from the ignition switch until the handbrake is set HARD. Right - like that's gonna happen...)
  • ray_h1ray_h1 Member Posts: 1,134
    )) "Now at 24K the front brakes make the strangest noise when first applied after start up." don42

    "My 06LX makes a "click" sound from the front brakes the first time I touch them..after sitting awhile. After the initial useage, the brakes are normal." 06accordx2 ((

    Late again to this party, but on the off-chance this'll halp someone, betcha one or both of ya' got ABS, huh? That initial click after engine startup and initial drive-off is probably normal - it's a self test the ABS system performs. (All cars with ABS do this, though not all do so audibly.) It's telling you that you're literally good to go. If it fails, you get an ABS warning light that doesn't go away until the underlying problem's fixed.
  • elroy5elroy5 Member Posts: 3,735
    After paying the 30k service fee, it's a bit hard justifying another $500 for brakes, but of course, you have to replace them.... I'm thinking I'll just take care of it myself to save the labor and inflated dealer parts prices.

    I know that the pads are not covered under the warranty, but the rotors should be. The dealer would have a hard time convincing me that warped rotors are normal wear items. Honda of America would get a call about this one, for sure. Good luck.
  • wildman63wildman63 Member Posts: 27
    Most modern car manufacturers are interested in reducing vehicle weight to improve mileage (and reduce manufacturing cost). One place they attack is brake disks. Might not be smart, but it's a fact of life.

    In addition to a 2006 Accord, I own a 2001 Dodge Dakota pickup. These trucks have bad reputation for warped disk rotors. Mine have never been a problem. At the 30,000 mile check, I was told the brakes had 90% left on them and the rotors were fine.

    Driving "smart" can greatly improve brake life in any car. I'm sure you've driven behind cars where the brake lights are on as much as they'er off.

    Knowing that brakes are not as hardy as they were back in the good old days, take care of them with smarter use. This doesn't mean don't use them when you need them, but lay off them when you don't. Bet this will improve your fuel economy as well.
  • elroy5elroy5 Member Posts: 3,735
    I live in an area that has absolutely no hills (flat land), so maybe that's why I don't have brake problems. I can see how someone who lives in an area with a lot of hills, and has to use the brakes more than I do, would have more problems. If I were having brake rotor problems, I've heard great things about Brembo rotors, and would probably try them (don't cost very much for basic blanks). Just a suggestion.
  • mrbill1957mrbill1957 Member Posts: 823
    Here are some Honda comments on clicking brakes

  • fxcardenfxcarden Member Posts: 8
    For the past year, I have had nothing but problems with the brakes on my car. First, a speed sensor died, making the ABS not work, then a rear caliper stuck, causing the pads to wear out, then the master cylinder died, then I had the fronts done on my own, then the rear rotors were warped within 6 months of them being replaced, and now I have the same caliper / master cylinder issue (at least the same symptoms) happening again.

    The dealer has been somewhat helpful and understanding, but the design and the quality of the parts is subpar by any standard. I think I will dump Honda soon, and switch to maybe Acura or (gasp!) Toyota. It's too bad, because I really love my Accord. I just don't feel safe on a car that has this many brake issues.

    Oh yeah, I drive 90% highway.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Member Posts: 9,731
    That noise, as it was explained to me, comes from the inherent design of the "floating" calipers. For example, when backing up, the brake pads slide in their positions slightly (like moving the hinge of adjustable pliers), setting to the rear. When going forward, they readjust back forward, causing the fairly loud "pop" noise.

    The ABS is a different noise (more of a buzz/vibration) that occurs at 4 MPH whether or not you are touching the brake pedal I believe. I feel it every morning I drive my 2006 EX Accord... the popping only happens after I've backed up (actually popping when I back up, then when I'm going forward too - going back to their original positions). The ABS happens after cranking, at ~4 MPH, and isn't nearly as obvious as the pop/click noise of the calipers resetting.
  • stickguystickguy Member Posts: 46,877
    Yup, the click noise the first time you apply the brakes after you back up is the calipers clicking into place. Seemingly a feature unique to Honda, at least I have never driven another car (and I've driven a lot) that did it.

    On my '05, I never hear the ABS self check, even though it is very noticable on our '05 Odyssey.

    I have about 8.500 miles now, and haven't noticed any issues with the brakes. I'll see at my next oil change how they are doing (the dealer I use gives you a summary with all the stats on it).

    Just to caompare, at 21,000 miles, the brakes on our Odyssey were fine (backs like new I think), although I did have the front pads changed under a TSB (for squealing, but they weren't worn out).

    I have a stick shift, and in my experience, brakes last a little longer on a stick. WOnder if that is true, or my imagination?

    2020 Acura RDX tech SH-AWD , 2022 Ford Maverick Lariat Ecoboost FWD.

  • thegraduatethegraduate Member Posts: 9,731
    I have a stick shift, and in my experience, brakes last a little longer on a stick. WOnder if that is true, or my imagination?

    Generally, with a stick shift, people tend to use more engine braking by downshifting before stopping than people in automatics, thereby saving some brake life. So it's not just your imagination, it makes perfect sense!
  • fxcardenfxcarden Member Posts: 8
    Update: The dealer just informed me they are installing a new master cylinder again. This will be the 3rd master cylinder on this car. THe car is 30 months old, and has 36K miles on it. Way to go, Honda.

    I'll never bash an american car again.
  • stickguystickguy Member Posts: 46,877
    And not knowing the details of your problem, it might not apply, but I have found in the past when a particular part keeps failing, that isn't the real problem, just the most likely culprit, so they keep throwing the part at it. Or, there is another problem that does something to cause the master cylinder to fail?

    Or, you could just have real crappy luck with them! I assume the 2nd one was a rebuild, and I still think the failure rate on rebuilt parts is higher than on new ones.

    2020 Acura RDX tech SH-AWD , 2022 Ford Maverick Lariat Ecoboost FWD.

  • fxcardenfxcarden Member Posts: 8
    I don't know if the replacement M/C was a rebuilt or a new part. I would assume that since the dealer did it, they used a new part. Either way, I picked up the car on Friday afternoon, and drove it about a mile, and found that the pedal was going almost to the floor to make the car stop. I brought it back, and had a different tech look at it with me in the car this time. The tech said "wow...this isn't supposed to be this way", and said to leave it. I also explained that it seems the pads are not grabbing evenly, as the car dives to the right/front when you step on the brake. Someone mentioned a proportioning valve as being a possibility. I don't know if this is a separate part, or something that is part of the master cylinder. Either way, I paid for an Accord EX, and I am driving a dirty loaner Civic LX which stinks of cigarettes. I am giving Honda exactly one more chance to fix the problem, and then I might invoke the NJ Lemon Law.
  • ray_h1ray_h1 Member Posts: 1,134
    Might be something as simple as the brake lines not being properly bled of air after installing the replacement master cylinder.
  • fxcardenfxcarden Member Posts: 8
    Yeah. Sounds like the tech was in a hurry to go home on Friday. Still doesn't explain why I am on the 3rd master cylinder........the car is 30 months old, and has 36K miles on it......thus far, I've had both fronts and rear brakes redone, rotors recut, caliper replaced, and speed sensor for the ABS......doesn't sound like a car I want to trust too much safety wise.....

    BTW, one of the other cars in the household is an '04 Acura TL, and that one is coming up on 60K with the original brakes and it is still going strong, although it does need new pads in the front.

    Go figure.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Member Posts: 9,731
    3rd Master cylinder by 36k miles is an awful lot!

    I just had mine replaced in my Accord (1st replacement), although it is a 1996 model (built Sept. 1995) with 167k miles on it.
  • pgh111pgh111 Member Posts: 11
    Someone please help me, I have an 03 EXL 4cyl accord. Was my wifes car until last week when she got an 07 Impala. When I drove the Honda I could never get used to the brakes. The first 1/2 to 1 inch of depressing the pedal does nothing, but then beyond that is like slamming on the brakes. I used to think that I just wasn't used to them since I never drove the car. Now I drive it everyday and I have to actually think about gently depressing the brake pedal so I don't put myself through the windshield. It's not a grabbing effect, rotors are not warped, if I try hard, I can stop smoothly. Are all the brakes on this generation this touchy or do mine need some sort of adjustment? Thanks to all who reply.
  • elroy5elroy5 Member Posts: 3,735
    Yes, the brakes on my 03 Accord seemed a little grabby at first, but I've gotten used to them now. You just have to think "soft" when pushing the pedal down. It doesn't take much effort to get a response. I find Chevys have unusually soft brakes, and the total opposite of Honda brakes. I can imagine it being hard to get used to, when you are switching between the two.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Member Posts: 9,731
    elroy is right on this one... I replied to you on the maintenance thread...

    Brakes seem grabby, but are really fine...
  • hoddickahoddicka Member Posts: 2
    Following up on the above message.....I again took the car to the Honda dealer, last week. The dealer set me up with a rental car and said they were going tot rip the system apart to sort out what was happening....well, it sounded like they were finally going to take this seriously.....RIGHT.....the next day, I get a call saying all is fixed and please return the rental car.....I get to the dealer only to have the service manager feed me a line of BS that they had found one of the tires to be 3/4 oz out of balance, and someone, ie. my mechanic, had overfilled the tires to 36 pounds(mind you this same dealer did the most recent servicing, which allegedly includes checking the tire pressure values).....Oh, and they noticed that when they had replaced the front rotors, 2 weeks ago, they had not replaced the pads, so they have now replaced the front pads; I've checked with a number of mechanics, and 2 other honda dealers re this pad issue.....everyone I spoke with was stunned that the dealer had replaced rotors, without also replacing the pads....All were equally surprised that the svc guy actually expected me to be thrilled that he had had them replaced now, instead of when they should have been dealt with.....BUT, if it all now worked well, I might be happy, BUT IT DOESN'T! The front end still rumbles and shakes on braking, from highway speeds onto ramps.....there still is a squeak coming from the rear brakes, which appear to be dragging, or at least out of round, again.
  • pgh111pgh111 Member Posts: 11
    Thanks to all who replied about the brake in my accord. I am guessing it's just an adjustment period for me until I get the hang of them. If they are all this way, then it is obviously me, and not the car, that is having the issue. Thanks again.
  • ray_h1ray_h1 Member Posts: 1,134
    Are the front brake pads on the current generation Accords ceramic by any chance?
  • ddnyddny Member Posts: 20
    Ceramic is the spec on the 2004 Sedan V6...
  • ddnyddny Member Posts: 20
    Hod, (response to #44)
    I had all the same stuff as you, and here's something to try, and it's what made me figure out my problem: at the speed you would normally feel thumping, use the hand brake (hard) instead of the pedal brake. If you thump, your rear rotor(s) are probably as shot as mine were.....I found this out after getting my fronts done(not by Honda) and at the time, the guy said the rears were 'fine', probably on a visual inspect...Once he actually took the rears apart, he said he was sorry he missed the warp, wasreally bad. Open a case with Honda America - the more of us they hear from, the more likely of some sort of reimbursement, since the dealers just aren't fixing these properly......Best of luck, and drive safe!....dvd
  • bf109acebf109ace Member Posts: 77
    This is my first car that has ABS brakes on it. It's a 06 Accord VP with disc brake in the front and drum brake in the rear.

    How does the ABS brake feel? I mean what I should expect to feel (through my feet) when I break - ABS brakes vs Non-ABS brakes? I don't know how to describe the difference but they are different.
    A kind of 'trembling' with the ABS.

    Is it normal? Would somebody describe how the normal ABS brake should feel under normal braking and hard braking in fine weather, rains, and snows. Thanks.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Member Posts: 9,731
    Under normal conditions, (non-hard braking), the brakes should feel just as any others (the Accord's brake pedal is firmer and requires less input than cars like Camry), but that has nothing to do with ABS.

    The ABS will function when it senses a wheel/wheels locking up. The pedal will vibrate and make a ticking/thumping noise; this is the ABS system pumping the brakes for you. You will still have complete control of the car (steering input, etc...) unlike when brakes lock and you skid.

    Check this link for information on how ABS brakes work.
  • gopikgopik Member Posts: 11
    i have a 2006 accord lx 4 cyl with only 8000 miles on it. i get some vibration in the brake pedal when i apply brakes at high speeds (60-70mph). i took it to the dealer who test drove the car and said that the rotors need resurfacing and that it will be completely covered under warranty.

    my question is this; is a little bit of vibration in the brake pedal normal while braking at high speeds or should there be no vibration at all.

    the vibration is not annoying to me and i can live with it. so should i get the rotors resurfaced now or wait to see if the vibration increases and then get it resurfaced.

    thanks very much for your inputs

    i am not annoyed by the vibration
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