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Honda Civic: Problems & Solutions



  • I've never seen it happen on a car, but I know that if a puck hits the glass surrounding a hockey rink just right, it can shatter like that. So it could have been a rock. :(
  • hmpowerhmpower Posts: 20
    I had to change one of my headlights on my 99 civic - the small retainer clips that are used to hold in these type of bulbs are ridiculous - I was swinging it out of the way to get the bulb out, and it came off - and for the life of me I cannot get it back in properly - I have it kind of jammed in there now to hold the bulb in place, but I'm sure it will vibrate loose eventually - does anyone know how to re-install these things correctly if they come out, hopefully without having to remove the entire headlight assembly? I went to the dealer with it, and they couldn't do it either - their solution was to have me make a service appointment which they estimated would be 90 bucks...I laughed and walked out...Any suggesions are appreciated.
  • imhip2imhip2 Posts: 30
    Sorry I don't have the solution to your problem but I agree 100% with your assessment of Honda's customer service. Getting the number for the headquarters does not help. They are even more useless than the dealers. Honda has a big problem in the customer service area. They deny all problems until they know how to fix them. If you happen to be one of the few that has the problem then they blame it on you and say you have the problem and never offer any solution. You can take them to arbitration and they just plead ignorance and say there is no fix. Sorry, live with it. It is normal. My advice is keep fighting with these jerks (I know I am). Tell everyone you know how badly you have been treated. A dissatisfied customer is much more damaging than a happy one is good. For now Honda can get by on their past reputation but eventually enough of us will make a difference and these pompus customer disservice reps will be out of work as we all start to change our opinions about Honda quality and start to buy other makes.

    Now all of this came from a previoulsy Pro Honda customer, happily driving them for over 20 years. Too bad they aren't listening.

    Good Luck
  • alcanalcan Posts: 2,550
    Windshields are a laminate of glass, plastic, and glass. All other windows are made from tempered saftey glass which is designed to do one thing, shatter into very small pieces to eliminate sharp shards if broken. Although people may speculate as to the cause of your back glass breakage, the glass performed exactly as it was designed to do.
  • strong68strong68 Posts: 22
    I own a 2001 Honda Civic LX, here is the article below:

    TOKYO--Honda Motor Co. is recalling 52,297 Civic compact cars, including more than 8,200 in the United States, produced last year for faulty fuel-pipe tubing.
    The Japanese carmaker said Wednesday it is also recalling at least 100,571 additional vehicles sold in Japan for a defect in wheel bolts.
    Honda said the metal bands on the Civic fuel-pipe tubes were not tight enough, possibly leading to fuel leaks. The problem was detected during assembly work, and there have been no customer complaints or accidents related to the recall.
    Affected are 24,203 Civic cars in Japan, 8,205 in the United States, 4,883 in Great Britain, 2,093 in Australia and 12,913 in other nations.
    Also recalled were 100,571 vehicles involving 19 models sold in Japan for weak bolts that were manufactured earlier this year.
    Some of the models, including the Civic and Accord compacts, were exported to the United States, Canada, Great Britain, Australia and other nations. But Honda said it has yet to determine which models and how many exported vehicles need to be recalled.
    Honda said 37 cases have been reported in Japan of the bolts that could break, possibly causing the wheel to fall off. There have been no accidents related to that recall.
  • I has a civic 96 LX with 65,000 miles on it. I have been "almost" very happy with the car. The only problem I had with it so far is the odometer. It broke and was replaced.

    The only thing I don't like about my civic is its transmision is so harsh. It gets better a bit when the car gets warm. Sometime, I can even feel that it hesitates to shift. It is too harsh that when my sister testdrove it, she was scared and decided to buy to Toyota instead.

    Talked to tech several time about the problem, they said that's normal!!!!
    Anybody here has the same problem ?
  • brorjacebrorjace Posts: 588
    Strong, only some 8,000+ cars in the US? When GM Ford or Chrysler has a recall, it's hundreds of thousands of cars or trucks!

    hai_from_ya, I might expect girls being scared from high RPMs before shifting, but not a skilled, experienced driver. Hondas use RPMs for power so you can get away with a lower displacement engine and get great mileage when driving more conservatively. People who've owned Hondas for a decade or more know that high-RPMs do not necessarily mean less durability.

    --- Bror Jace
  • mcbuddahmcbuddah Posts: 3
    Goodness. I am now on my third alternator. I had the brushes replaced in the original in Dec. 1997, then in August 1998 I had to purchase a remanufactured alternator, as the repaired one went out. Finally, last week capped my big year in Honda reapairs. A surprise stranding with yet another needed replacement of an alternator. I have only driven 30k miles since I bought the Civic in 1997. Is there anything that causes an alternator's brushes go go bad? Perhaps it is just a ploy by remanufacturers to make you keep coming back for 70/per hour honda repairmen and 200 dollar alternators!?

    Never replaced clutch and I have 155k
    Just got a new head gasket though, ugh.

    I still dig my civic, but I might have to begin the hunt for a newer one if this keeps up (1100 in repairs in last 5 months).

    Any word on alternator troubles would be great!

    Also, I have noted the following recurring 1990 Civic Sedan problems:
    1) They all seem to have condensation in the headlamps (funny clips to try to unhook the glass cover from the plastic, but what do you do to separate them after you get the clips off?
    2) Almost all have rear taillights that fill up with water after the seals go bad around the lights.
    3) Trunks usually leak
    4) CV joints go out after 100k miles
    5) Axels require replacement after 100k miles (at different times)

    Any additions? :)
  • strong68strong68 Posts: 22
    Yep..8000+ cars recalled is a very small U.S recall. Bet Ford didn't have those numbers with the Focus.

    Yeah I have heard that Honda's rev high and the RPM's will climb high before the auto tranny shifts. My 2001 Civic seems to do this but I have never thought it was a problem, it just felt normal and the engine purrs beautifully. So all Honda's hit high RPM's before they shift in Auto? This clears up an argument I had with a friend who said it hurts and destroys the engine. I told him yeah..that must be why all you see is old Honda's on the road.
  • mdrivermdriver Posts: 385
    The only reason Honda is recalling only 8000 Civics is because there were only a small percentage of Civics imported from Japan. Ford has sold over a million Focus worldwide and so its recalls will obviously be larger. Also, the Focus came in ahead of the Civic in JD Power quality survey, which is certainly surprising. Although this survey is just one indication, it does show that either the Civic's quality is slipping or Ford is finally building a competitive small car, probably a combination of both. As a Honda Civic owner, I have been disappointed with the G7 Civic and the survey rating was another blow to the Civic's status.
  • markd7markd7 Posts: 8
    to those JD Powers numbers because they weigh all problems equally. Erratic gas guages and radio code problems are in a different league from some of the issues with earlier Focuses. I had to buy a car last month, and it had to have an auto transmission. Weighing reliability, gas mileage, and passenger room led me to choose the G7 Civic. Had the next gen Toyota Corolla been available, I would have gone for it in a heartbeat - based on experiences with a Publica in Japan and a Celica here. So far, the Honda seems competent and I have no complaints. It's a new model and there will be problems. If Honda resolves them, and they are minor, then I can live with that.
  • civic2001civic2001 Posts: 30
    Considering I just bought a 2001 EX with Auto. a week before the JDP survey, the results are certainly discouraging. I have been reading all the postings here prior deciding on the car. Therefore, I am fully aware of all the complaints regarding this new model (radio, gas gauge, etc.). I am looking at these problems two ways. On one hand, they may be minor issues and do not affect the long term reliability of the vehicle. However, they are still problems/ nuisances that the customers do not want to deal with (especially based on Honda's reputations). So far, I am happy with my purchase. The only comment is the engine is fairly noisy at low gear.

    I also did quite a bit of research before buying, comparing Civic to Mazda Protege, Nissan Sentra, and Hyundai Elentra. Even though Civic is the most expensive one in the group, there were other considerations that were particularly important to me personally,

    1. Sentra - could not find one with ABS. The dealer even tried to bad-mouth ABS.
    2. Elantra - dealer was unfriendly. Also, Service department does not open on Saturday.
    3. Protege - Again, does not offer Saturday service.

    To me, safety, reliability and convenience are the most important factors. I think we all have our own criteria in deciding what car to purchase. Hopefully, the decision will be correct.
  • massagemassage Posts: 7
    can you give me more info about your odometer what happened ? what was actually replaced ? I have a 92 civic and every so often the speedometer goes to 60 then down to 0 stops for a couple miles
    then works fine again can any body help me??
    honda says they can't check it unless it is stopped when they check it!!!
  • To mdriver:

    I wouldn't put too much faith in the survey. I think the buying public is more a testament to "quality". Sure, no car is perfect. Before deciding on the Civic, I looked at the Sunfire, Echo, Focus. Out of all of those the quality in the Civic was the best. It was the most refined.

    The only complaint I have is about the fuel gauge. The empty light comes on when there is still around 10-12L of gas left.

    If you like to purchase cars based on a survey, fine. I would rather test-drive and look at cars myself to decide what I want to buy.
  • fxashunfxashun Posts: 747
    Everyone has a problem with any survey that anyone comes up with. Especially if they don't agree with the results. But what other measurement is there? The bottom line is that no matter what the problem was there and someone complained about it.
    The proof will be seen in about three to five years when the Civic proves it's problems were assembly line glitches and the others problems were engineering defects.
    582- You could have been hit by a rock or someone may have got you with a pellet gun.
    snowman-A 2K Neon is a 2002 Crapon. You'll be lucky if it's still running and it won't be worth fixing if it's not.
  • brorjacebrorjace Posts: 588
    Gee, I've never heard of a Honda having that much trouble with a silly alternator. After the 2nd set of brushes failed, I'd have asked for a free replacement ... or gone aftermarket for replacement.

    I am disappointed with the latest Civic when compared to its predecessors (I have a '95 Coupe). I'll be keeping my eye on the Civic as I'm thinking of buying an RSX in the next year or two. For those that don't know, the RSX (formerly Integra) is based heavily on the Civic.

    When looking at JD Powers' surveys, keep in mind the manufacturers pay for them so JDP can make them say anyhting they want to. They are merely awards-for-hire.

    --- Bror Jace
  • fxashunfxashun Posts: 747
    I guess Lexus must really be rich then.
    Maybe it's the battery or the wiring and NOT the alternator. Usually when I need to change out the alternator I find that the battery has been damaged.
  • Brorjace, thanks for your insight. I agree with you that Civic RPM is too powerful and I need to get used to it although I used to drive a mustang 6-cyc before I bought the civic in 1995. I can tell you that as soon as I put my foot on the gas pedal, the RPM jumps up to 2500RPM (2 1/2 of the RPM sticks).

    Massage, the problem I had with the odometer is different than yours. The speedometer worked fine. It was the mileage counter that broke. It stopped increasing the count. I could choose not to bring it to the shop for a while but my conscience didnot allow me to do that :-)). So I decided to bring it back to the dealer and they replaced the whole odometer (that's I was told).
    Because the law doesnot allow to manually set the mileage counter, the tech had to put my original mileage on the door jamp, and let the new counter started from 0. So now, everytime I want to know my current civic's mileage, I have to do the addition myself. It really sucks!!
  • brorjacebrorjace Posts: 588
    My first Honda was actually a 1990 Acura Integra and I drove it from New York to Chicago. I couldn't believe how high the RPMs were on that thing at 80mph. About 4,000 if memory serves. Many people around me predicted the 'wimpy' 4-cylinder motor wouldn't last. I sold it to my best friend's wife years ago and she now has over 170,000 miles on the clock and the motor is still running strong.

    In short, don't let the RPMs bother you. If you had a 5-spd, you'd ENJOY winding the little motor out. Your automatic is merely doing the same thing.

    I have a '95 Civic DX and that thing is HOWLING at 80mph with my aftermarket intake and exhaust on it. I don't know how many RPMs I'm turning but I bet it's around 4,500 ... and I'll drive like that for an hour or more at a time. I use synthetic oil and continue to drive it like that. It has 102,000 miles on it and if it blows up in another year or two (unlikely) I'll just get another, better one.

    I BEGGED Honda for a 6-spd transmission for the last decade and they are only now coming out with one ... on selected models like their new RSX. I only hope that the top gear is tall enough for efficient, highway-speed cruising.

    --- Bror Jace
  • brorjacebrorjace Posts: 588
    For those of you still looking for a source of 5W20 oil (other than the high Honda dealership price or the Motorcraft (Ford) formula at Walmart) Chevron will be offering a 5W20 oil soon if you haven't already seen it:

    Most Chevron products are pretty scarce in these parts but I'm sure that's not the case with all of you folks.

    --- Bror Jace

  • bklynboybklynboy Posts: 16
    See number 586 above for the info, or also copy this link into your browser address window. I haven't heard anything about it except here and in Car and Driver. Nothing in the mail from our friends across the Pacific. Yet.
  • dudkadudka Posts: 451
    if you replaced the alternator at honda dealership, you should had the other two alternators replaced for free. most of the times when you replace something at the dealer they give you a one yar warranty on the part. i am wondering though, if you drive into deep puddles, water can do alot of damage on the alternator. also, check if the inner fender is intact, if the plastic is bent, the water and road debris would be thrown into the alternator, causing it to fail. also, check the electrical systems, and do you have an aftermarket stereo, lights, driving lights, aftermarket speakers, subwoofers, ect. anyone of those would put additional strain on the alternator and causing it to fail as well. if you do have any of those, think about upgrading thr alternator and battery, to a higher amperage rated ones.
  • clack3clack3 Posts: 1
    Hello all,
    I have a 1993 Civic Coupe and have been relatively happy with it.
    I have replaced the head gasket twice already and it has just gone again...
    1)Any suggestions as to how I can solve this problem for good?
    2)I have heard this is a problem with these cars, so I also wanted to know if anyone has been successful in getting Honda to cover the costs?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

  • dudkadudka Posts: 451
    i have had a few hondas and never had head gasket problem. one was and 85 civic with 250 000 miles when i sold it. never needed head gasket. i would check whether there is something wrong with the cylinders. as far as i can remeber the steel cylinder sleeve is just sitting in the alluminum block. maybe it is not secured and keeps ripping the lip on the gasket. try an aftermarket gasket designed for turbo and super charged engines. i am not 100% sure about the steel sleeve, i may have mistaken it for some other engine.
  • aim1121aim1121 Posts: 1
    I've noticed there are very knowledgeable people here, so I wanted to address a few concerns I have with my 2001 Civic EX Coupe.

    Back in December I traded in my '95 EX for a '01. I'm pleased with it overall (although I did love the 95). Anyway I'm due for an oil change, so before I go to the dealer, I was wondering if anyone has similar issues.

    Radio: I've read about the troubles many are having, and although I've never had to reset it, I notice it is very staticy when I have the rear defroster on. Also the scan/seek does not accurately work with the defroster on.

    On certain rough roads, the front passenger dashboard (or something) is rattling.

    I also noticed that when my headlights are on and I close the windows when they are already closed, everything dims. (Is that normal?)

    I think that's it for now.
    Thanks for your help!
  • gasguzzgasguzz Posts: 214
    You probably noticed this idling in your garage. Yes, there is an electrical dip when you hit the switches, the windows have 30a circuits. You'll also notice the computer/engine will compensate by raising RPM. You can only have so much load/resistance on the Civic batt/alternator. The same scenario is normal when you switch on the defogger/AC. Of course, there should be enough capacity so as to dim your lights when you step on the brakes or use the turn-flashers.
  • gasguzzgasguzz Posts: 214
    Of course, there should be enough capacity so as NOT to dim your lights when you step on the brakes or use the turn-flashers.
  • soberssobers Posts: 496
    Friend has 2001 Civic with 1000 miles & had developed a oil lickage problem. He took it in after oil warning light came on (infrequent) in the last week. The dealer kept it one day & still to come up with any solution. Mechanica also said they will need some welding etc.

    Any ideas ?
  • jsylvesterjsylvester Posts: 572
    I'm confused. You're friend has an oil "lickage" problem? I've seen the neighborhood dogs that seem to have a lickage problem, but never a guy with a fondness for licking oil.

    I'd guess it is leaking oil somewhere, that would be my guess.
  • I own a 1999 Civic EX. Today, I noticed a fellow employee's car have some water drip from underneath the engine bay once he shut off the car. It was extremely hot and he had the AC running. When I got home (also had the AC running), I parked my car and looked underneath. Guess what --> puddles of water dripping. I double checked to make sure it wasn't oil, auto tranny fluid or coolant.

    Is this normal for Civics? Could it be condensation from the AC compressor?

    I find it odd to have water dripping from the car's engine bay. This is the third time I have noticed this on a Civic.
This discussion has been closed.