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Honda Accord (2003-2007) Maintenance and Repair



  • michael2595michael2595 Posts: 72
    edited October 2010
    you shouldn't have to flush it unless you contaminate it with some other type of fluid or water. I am pretty sure it is just a money maker and should not be done. What does the owners manual say.? Did you ask the dealer why.... Thats a lot of money when you can basically do it yourself... Take the fluid out of the reservoir with a turkey baster and add new fluid.. As the reservoir gets lower add more fluid... Just call the service parts dept and ask them what fluid to use... I changed my fluid at 100k.. If there is something wrong I would ask if they use the BG Flush system.. If not, find a dealer that does. It is simply amazing.. It will probably cost about the same
  • 2003 EX V6 - Two problems diagnosed by dealer that I don't understand, any help much appreciated! 1) Engine light is the Air-Fuel Sensor. How many do I have? What's the difference between a $50 one and a $300 one? -and- 2) Brake light is the "Brake Fluid Level Switch" - is this a replaceable part or do I have to buy a new Master Cylinder? Cheers, steve
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 40,320
    Do you mean oxygen sensor? Not sure how many a V6 has, but it is more than 1. If it is the MAF sensor, that is probably more money.

    The brake light fluid level is supposed to indicate the fluid has dropped due to the pads wearing out (unless it is leaking somehow). As the pads wear, they don't release as far so essentially there has to be more fluid pushed into the lines to create contact. The manual even says not to add fluid, since it is an indicator of pad wear.

    Unless you mean that the fluid is full, but the low level light is on anyway?

    Probably best to have a shop check out the brakes at least. The chains all do it for free.

    Oops, I see that the dealer told you these were the problems. So in that case, I have no idea about the switch, but it sounds like it does not require a new MC, since they would have told you that, and those babies are expensive! How much to replace the switch?

    2020 Acura RDX tech SH-AWD

  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,735
    You need to know the error code number, to know which sensor. Here is a Service Bulliten on those numbers.
  • chucko3chucko3 Posts: 793
    Level switch is replaceable. It's a 2-pin connector at the bottom of the brake fluid reservoir.
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,735
    2) Brake light is the "Brake Fluid Level Switch" - is this a replaceable part or do I have to buy a new Master Cylinder? Cheers, steve

    I used to have a TSB about this problem. From what I remember, the float gets stuck in the down position, and the float is not removable. Tap on the master cylinder near the switch/float (with a big screw driver handle), and see if you can free the float, if not the master cylinder would have to be replaced. This is what I remember from the TSB, so it may not be totally accurate.
  • I have 2004 Honda Accord EX 4-door automatic with 77.3k miles....about 2 weeks ago I noticed a squeaking noise while driving and and today I realize the squeaking noise occurs when I initially step on the gas pedal but by the time I press it down further the squeaking stops.

    Also, when I let go of the gas pedal near the top it also squeaks--so my gas pedal squeaks only when it is positioned slightly away from its "rest" position. Do you think the squeaking can be resolved by applying grease/lubricant to the gas pedal mechanism?

    I won't be going to my auto mechanic until about 2 months for my scheduled maintenance, so do you think it's better to wait until I go to my auto mechanic to get the problem diagnosed?
  • chucko3chucko3 Posts: 793
    Looking at the brake pedal repair picture, it shows an application of grease at the bolt. So give it a try.
  • I have a 2003 Accord that just had the compliance bushings fall apart. This was very disappointing. I bought this Accord for its supposed dependability - my first Honda. I should not have a $400 repair plus alignment at less than seven years. If Honda can't use quality materials in their parts, they will lose their dependability reputation. Oh yeah, the serpentine belt was also falling apart. I might as well have bought a Hyundai or Ford for less money.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    How many miles are on this car?
  • It has less than 64K. The dealer said the bushings had dry rotted. That tells me they self destructed because they were not made of quality material.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    So, one repair in 7 years constitutes a poor-quality car? I politely disagree. Did you get a second opinion on the car before you let your dealer replace them at that cost?

    I'm not trying to argue here; I actually recently sold my Accord because of niggling quality issues. Luckily, all were covered under warranty (a 2006 2.4L EX Sedan).
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,482
    I would consider these "expendable" parts that deteriorate over time and age on most cars. Besides, the dealer has no expertise to judge the chemical composition of rubber parts or their quality versus other cars. It wasn't a very helpful remark and only serves to undermine your confidence in what seems to have been a very good car for you overall.
  • Uh, that was two repairs, the bushings and the serpentine belt. Those were not the first repairs. My Infinity G20 had no repairs for 11 years and 110,000 miles.
  • " Besides, the dealer has no expertise to judge the chemical composition of rubber parts or their quality versus other cars." Huh? The dealer cited dry rot. I judged the parts to be inferior to what should have been. Sure parts deteriorate over time. By my judgement, the time frame was too short. I expected better from Honda. As I said, my Infinity G20 went 11 years and 110K miles with no repairs. Is that too high a bar for Honda?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,482
    edited October 2010
    Yeah, I'd have to say that your expectations for bushings and serpentine belts are too high. These are just normally deteriorating parts, like paint on a house or the soles on your shoes. If anything, I'd have to say your serpentine belt was overdue, or at least, due, for replacement.

    What I can say as criticism of your dealer or whoever services your car, is that both these items should have been noticed long before they got to the disintegration stage.

    As for your G20, I'd bet that a good mechanic could have examined it closely and found items that were overdue for replacement, but just didn't break altogether during your tenure.

    Every car is a little different in how it is used, what it is exposed to,things like that. Age, environment, road conditions, climate---all of this affects why one car gets 64K on bushings and another 94K.

    That is, after all, almost 3 times around the earth!

    Visiting Host
  • I have to say your expectations for bushings and serpentine belts are too low. These parts should last at least ten years and 100,000 miles. This is my first and last Honda. Toyotas and Hondas from 15 to 20 years ago did not have these problems. Fords and Chevys did. You have your opinion. I have mine. I still maintain my high expectations. You can have your low expectations.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    I've always heard belts should be replaced after 7 years or 100k miles (timing belts, serpentine, etc) because they'll crack/rot. That's why I'm not surprised by your replacement. The serpentine belt I don't consider a repair, I consider it maintenance. Your G20 went past due and nobody caught it; congrats.
  • I just spoke to the guy who bought my G20. His daughter drove it another 30K miles and the original serpentine belt had not failed. That made 140K miles with the Nissan belt. Maybe "a good mechanic" could have noticed that it was toast seventy thou miles before. Or maybe a quality belt could have lasted. Or maybe,

    I assume you are a Honda employee and have to defend the brand. If you really want to defend the brand, encourage your employers to not let quality control slip.

    Ford or Hyudai? Or, four times around the earth?
  • chuck1chuck1 Posts: 1,405
    I am in sales and have a '07 Accord. In 34 months I have put 86,000 miles on it. It has been FLAWLESS. (I did have to lube the rubber weather stripping around the windows due to rattles).

    At 100K, the water pump, belt, and fluid levels will be changed. The belt could go longer, but it's maintenance.
  • chucko3chucko3 Posts: 793
    The windows rattling started in 2003 model. After 4 years, Honda still couldn't find the way to fix it.
  • Honda doesn't make serpentine belts, so how can you blame them for how long the belt lasts? Their application isn't anything different then other auto manufacturers.

    BTW, My 04 Accord still has the factory belt and it has the printing "made in the USA"

  • chuck1chuck1 Posts: 1,405
    Not making excuses for Honda, but the light Japanese grease they sell will quiet the rattles when applied once a year......
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,482
    edited October 2010
    Belts and hoses and wipers and bushings are all maintenance items. They are what we call "expendables", and mileage is only one factor in the rate of wear.

    The brand of car is quite irrelevant to me.

    I routinely replace belts and hoses in my cars, based strictly on time and mileage. It's not worth it to me to risk an engine for a few hundred dollars.

    Battery hits 5 years? Gone. Belts and hoses hit 60K? Gone. Wipers? Once a year, they're all replaced. Brakes? 3/4 wear, they're out. Tires? 4/32nd, they're gone. Coolant? Every two years. Brake fluid? Every two years. A "nut and bolt" all-around- the- car tightening? Every two years.

    Given the tremendous good luck I've had with my cars, I'm staying with the "pro-active" approach rather than the re-active one (i.e., fix it before it breaks, not when it breaks).

    Is my cost per mile higher than most people's? Probably. Will they break down more often or lose their car sooner? Probably. Machines are by nature unpredictable.

    Oh, I don't wax my cars though. I mostly care about reliability, because it's so important to my livelihood.
  • wise1wise1 Posts: 91
    Yes, it is too high for Honda and just about everybody else. They don't make cars out of Quality parts anymore, its all about Quantity. More cars to sell more money to steal!!!! Rarely does a vehicle go 100K miles without some kind of problem, if you're blessed it will be minor if not it will be major.Way too many major problems in all vehicle lines. I researched several years before my last purchase and I knew I would likely have a problem and it showed up within 79xx miles. So count your blessings if you DO GET 100K miles without a major problem!!! :shades:
  • dudleyrdudleyr Posts: 3,469
    I have owned many Honda's and Toyota's and never had a major problem. 225k on my Integra 145k on my 1st gen Odyssey, 95k on my 2007 Accord. To be honest I think the accessory belts on the Integra are original (I have replaced the timing belt twice because I can't see it and it would be bad to have it break). I look at them every time I change the oil and if they are not cracked or worn they stay on.

    This is in SD though - not much pollution to eat at the rubber.
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,735
    As I said, my Infinity G20 went 11 years and 110K miles with no repairs. Is that too high a bar for Honda?

    If your Infinity was so great, why didn't you buy another one, instead of the Honda? I would bet that not all G20 owners were as lucky as you, and actually had a problem or two before the 100k mile mark. My first Accord (92) was so good to me (12 years 140k miles), I bought a new one in 03. The 03 has been just as reliable as the first, to this point (7 years 81k miles). People claim Honda's reliability has gone down, but I don't see it from my view. The 03 has been just as reliable, and is bigger and better than the 92 was, in just about every respect. By the way, my original serpentine belt and compliance bushings are still doing great. Honda owners get lucky too.
  • daneeldaneel Posts: 19
    Could not agree more, Elroy5, my sentiments exactly. Like your 03 Accord our 04 EX V6 and 2008 LXP are absolutely rock solid and, thus far, gave us a combined almost 90,000 trouble free and highly enjoyable miles. Like I said previously, I will buy a new Accord without any hesitation.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,482
    edited October 2010
    Perhaps the fact that modern cars are so good and offer us so many choices, has raised our expectations such very high levels that our chances these days from complete satisfaction are very slim?

    You know, in the old days Honda made a Civic, an Accord and maybe (?) a Prelude around that time. That was it. And for 1979 or so, the Civic was a pretty good car---but today we wouldn't consider buying a brand new 1979 Civic--we'd think it unsophisticated, noisy and unreliable. Torque steer was really bad, and you had to manually shift the automatic transmission to get into high gear. It was so tinny you could total it with your bare hands. It had tiny tires and cloth seats and had trouble getting up steep hills.
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,735
    I think people always compare their current car, with the best car they've ever owned. The love for that "best car I ever had" clouds the few times it did have issues, to the point where it becomes flawless over time.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,482
    I think people buy Hondas for "peace of mind" but realistically, that's very hard to buy in any area of life.

    But you can't argue with the success of the Accord. I mean, GEEZ, has there ever been a more successful Japanese car? Corolla, maybe, but it's in a different price class where price was a strong factor.
  • dudleyrdudleyr Posts: 3,469
    My brother has a G-20 and it has its share of problems. Most notably the gear shift will pop out of 5th while driving on the highway. Know issue for the stick version.

    The car has over 300,000 miles on it now, so it has been reliable overall.

    I expect my Accord to go just as far. Nearly at 100k now after 3.5 years. I'll give it to one of my boys when it gets about 200k and he can drive it for another 100k miles.
  • chuck1chuck1 Posts: 1,405
    Not a bad plan, especially insurance wise, at that point one can put the minimal amount of insurance on the car if one chooses.
  • chucko3chucko3 Posts: 793
    My 03EXV6 is 8 years old with 91K miles.
    Will wait another 5K miles or 4 more months.
  • just bought a used '03 accord EX... everything on the dash cluster comes on EXCEPT for the "D" gear indicator. how do i fix this?
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,735
    everything on the dash cluster comes on EXCEPT for the "D" gear indicator. how do i fix this?

    This could be a lot of things (shift position switch, MICU, ECU, wiring). You could get trouble codes from the MICU (Multiplex Integrated Control Unit), which is part of the under-dash fuse box, but it's a pretty complicated procedure. Got a Helm shop manual? If the "Check Engine" light is not on, the ECU (engine/transmission computer), you probably wouldn't get any codes with a scanner.

    Are there any other problems associated with the "D" light? Transmission shifting funny?
  • My 2003 Accord sedan (V-6) is almost 8 years old but has only 42,000 miles of use. It has beem maintained by the book and is in excellent condition. Recently my mechanic recommended I change the timing belt (plus water pump, tensioner, etc. that goes with the package). While Toyota recommends this service at 105,000 miles, the mechanic says that the age of the belt makes the work necessary.

    Any thoughts on this? Also, does this engine (V-6) suffer other damage if the belt breaks?
  • buyahomebuyahome Posts: 26
    edited November 2010

    I have a similar question. My 2003 Honda Accord has less than 15,000 (yes 15,000) miles on it. It was always garaged, has been very well taken care of and is a V-6.

    I was told by several people that I should replace the timing belt NOW as opposed to waiting...(based on age alone). I heard there could be severe engine damage if the belt lets go. The rubber gaskets, the paint, the vinyl moldings are all in incredibly nice shape. Could it be the timing belt rots with AGE that much? Anyone out there that would take a chance and drive it for another year or two? I plan to drive it less than 12,000/year from this point on.
  • Most probably will total the engine when your timing belt breaks.. Is it worth taking the chance? Too bad , the 4 cylinder has a chain.. I would change the belt in a New York minute in order to give me piece of mind. Who knows how the quality of those belts are in the first place. * years is a long time... I have the same problem with my subaru but unlike the Honda if the belt breaks the engine just stops, no damage..

    The problem is You have been told by many to change the belt and you now have that in the back of your mind.. Do you wait till 20,000? No answer.. Not worth the worry.. Change it .. You should own the car and not the car owning you
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    They aren't trying to cheat you. If you check an owner's manual (if like the '96 and '02 Accords in my driveway) it'll tell you to do it at 105k miles - 90k for my '96 - or 7 years, whichever comes first. If that belt goes, you might as well buy a new car because it won't be pretty.

    Shop prices on a belt and water-pump, they can vary wildly with reputable shops. My normal shop wanted $720 to do the job. My dealer? $850. The mechanic who worked on my car after an accident charged $400 plus the price of the water-pump. I went there, spent $478. This was two years and 30k miles ago, so figure $600-$700 a good price, maybe a bit higher for your V6.
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,735
    edited November 2010
    I also have an 03 V6, and it has 82k miles on it right now. I haven't changed the timing belt yet. I took the front timing cover off (easy to do) and inspected the belt. It looked pretty good compared to the new belt I bought last month. I will probably change it over the Christmas holidays, when I have more time. The interval for timing belt change is 105k miles, or 7 years. I inspected the belt because you never know if a seal or gasket has leaked oil or coolant onto the belt shortening it's life. If you do put off changing the timing belt, listen to the engine periodically. If you hear noises coming from under the timing covers, don't hesitate to get it checked out. Personally, I think the belt could last a few more years, but I'm not going to be the one to tell you to wait, even though I am waiting a few months.

    PS: Yes, if the timing belt breaks, it will do major damage to the engine.
  • chucko3chucko3 Posts: 793
    Mine is also 03EXV6 with 91K miles and 8 yrs + 5 days old.
    Coolant & oil still not leaking or burning. Knock on woods.
    Dealer said the timing belt is due to time.
    I thought of postponing it for a few more months, but with the winter is coming the last thing I want is to be stranded on the highway with a snowstorm.
    Not worth the risk. Will do it after Thnaskgiving.
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,735
    Unless you take one of the timing belt covers off, and inspect the belt, you will not know if one of the seals/gaskets has leaked on the belt. A pulley bearing will usually make plenty of noise, before it goes out completely, but a coolant/oil soaked belt may not make a sound, until it slips or breaks. If you are going to wait, I would suggest inspecting the belt for wear and coolant/oil contamination.

    I hang around on 4 or 5 different Accord forums, and I have yet to hear of one J30 (7th gen Accord V6) engine with a timing belt failure. That tells me these engines aren't prone to timing belt failures.
  • dudleyrdudleyr Posts: 3,469
    Never had any belt of any kid fail on any car I have owned, and have never heard of one failing either. I do change the timing belt on my cars because I can't see them, but the other belts go 200,000 miles or more over 10 or 15 years without breaking. And I inspect them when I change the oil.

    I did change a regular belt once on my 1980 Scirocco, because it was a little frayed, but it was nowhere near breaking.
  • no nothing is wrong with the transmission, the car runs great. just earlier, i did notice that the "D" indicator does come on when the key is turned to on position....(when all the warning lights show and then dissapears). it will come on for a few seconds. when the engine has turned over and running, that's when it fails to light up. .
  • Just to be clear about this belt/water pump issue...

    The need for replacement at 90k/7 yrs. applies only to V6 engines, correct? I have never heard of a similar chain replacement recommendation for the 4 cylinder, and I'm definitely not looking forward to such an expensive job with my 2006 I4.

    Chains have been known to fail as well (I once owned a Chrysler K car where it happened) but I haven't heard of any such problems with Accords. Is it not reasonable to expect to drive the car for 10 yrs or more (or say 100k miles) without any such problems?
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Timing chains started being used in the K-series of engines for 2003-current (2.4L I4 models). The 2.2L and 2.3L I'm talking about in the '96 and '02 had belts.
  • I didn't know about the change from belts to chains. Thanks for the info.

    So, the bottom line on gen7/I4's is that the track record is a short one. I put my trust in the Accord power train when I purchased the car, and I've never doubted my judgment. I don't expect any rude surprises, but you never know for sure, I suppose.
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,735
    Some chains do go bad. I had to change the chain on my truck twice, but the chain was not the problem, it was the tensioner. I haven't heard of any chains, or tensioners going bad on the 4 cylinder Accord engines, so that should be one less worry for you.
  • gordy6gordy6 Posts: 14
    I have a 2004 Honda Accord EX V6 and controller for both the outside power mirrors is no longer working. I reviewed the list of fuses in the owners manual as well as under the cover on both the interior and under hood fuse boxes. However, it doesn't tell me which one is for the mirrors. Does anyone know which fuse I should check?

    Thanks in advance for your assistance.
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