Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Honda Odyssey Transmission Problems



  • Does sound like a good price given the mileage, but the transmission issue is a concern. We bought our 2001 Odyssey used in 2004 with around 25k miles. Transmission failed at around 60k, replaced by dealer under warranty, new one failed at around 99k miles, replaced by dealer again under warranty. We're now at 128k miles and no problems so far, but just waiting for this transmission to go bad, knowing that this time we won't have the warranty coverage to pick up the bill.
  • Your 2001 has the same transaxle as my 1999. Service the transmission at least annually. Install an external cooler and filter. If you do this and don't drive it like a race car the transaxle will live a longer, happier life.
  • longo2longo2 Posts: 347
    " 2004 with around 25k miles. Transmission failed at around 60k, replaced by dealer under warranty, new one failed at around 99k miles, replaced by dealer again under warranty."
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------- ----------------------------------------
    Honda just doesn't get it on this a/t problem, never did and apparantly never will.

    Rather than replace the problem parts in the thing with upgrades that last, they just keep putting OEM rebuilds back in with the same unreliable parts until you run out of warranty or 'Good Will' then the dealerships $woop in for the kill with a/t repair bills worth more than the Van..

    Too bad anyone who is thinking that the Honda brand stands for quality, misses reading these forums first!

    Find an independent re-builder who understands the Honda a/t problems and can gaurantee a proper re-build, or get rid of it, cut your losses and move on. :sick:
  • I just had my second transmission fail on my '01 Ody. Basically Honda USA said "Too bad, the warranty has expired". If anyone has advice on how to get any kind of help from Honda I would appreciate it.
  • kazmazkazmaz Posts: 13
    Having scoured the Internet there is no doubt Honda has a real design problem with several transmissions (accords, civics, pilot) in addition to the Odyssey. Replacement transmissions don't solve the problem, as judged by subsequent premature failures. What to do? I plan to sell my 2002 Odyssey, despite its' 67K reliability to date. That's a pity cos it's otherwise a great van to drive, that's why I selected it over all others. I'll likely replace it with a Toyota, which at least has a decent reliability record. Bottom line: NO MORE HONDA's FOR ME. I HOPE HONDA IS LISTENING! Their reputation will ultimately suffer.
  • kazmazkazmaz Posts: 13
    Check out Jasper transmissions: Transmission/Honda_rebuilt_remanuf- actured_new_transmission_informations.html Ask them what is the problem and what do they do to fix it. Can't find the link where I read a list of changes they make, but they seem to know more than Honda is willing to tell.

    This reminiscent of my Subaru SVX that similar tranny woes (shared by Nissan Pathfinder, same tranny), and needed extra cooling. Like Honda, Subaru never stepped up to help. And it was a terrific car to drive. Independent mechanical shops thankfully brought out modifications, including a popular manual O/D tranny. Never thought it could be so hard to select a reliable car. The faster we move, the worse it gets.

    Good luck!
  • kazmazkazmaz Posts: 13
    Does anyone know the % of Odysseys that have actually reported tranny failure?
    Also, are failures less common in Odysseys mostly driven on the highway? I'm trying to determine whether the tranny fails in stop-go traffic type driving. At least it's a start.
  • longo2longo2 Posts: 347
    edited December 2010
    For many years Chysler/Dodge/Plymouth Mini Vans also had biodegradable automatic transmissions that regularly fried and failed. The Indy shops that did re-builds figured out where the problem areas where in the things and came up with a "Repair Kit" that had all the parts for a re-builder to install in the weak spots.

    I had a problem 1992 Dodge Mini Van tranny done with the "repair Kit" parts and I'm still driving it today... December 2010. In a Class ACtion Law suit against Chysler for knowingly producing disfuntional a/t's, the "repair kit" was used as evidence against them.
    (Chysler blamed 'user error' or any other lame excuse their lawers could dream up to continue the a/t farce and deny deny deny) I think they wrote the book on how to stall and fight warranty claims on their a/t's.

    Honda will at least cut you some slack on an OEM re-built if you had a warranty claim, and they extended the milage under coverage, BUT without a re-engineered pile of replacement parts the Honda re-built is just as likely to die of the same causes as the old one.
    Hopefully some Indy re-builders will come up with better aftermarket parts that will really fix the Honda a/t's and not just patch it up until it breaks again.

    I have a 2003 Honda Odyssey AND a 1992 Dodge Grand Caravan, so I'm well aware of the consequences of owning these rolling time bombs..
    For more than you ever wanted t know about Honda Odyssey a/t's look here....
  • I'm also on my second transmission w/a 1999 Odyssey; put in the new one this past June for $4000, but the dealer refused to give any kind of warranty. Now 5 months later I'm starting to have problems shifting out of Park, and can't shift into anything lower than D-3. I think the outcome is that dealerships are making some big $$ replacing transmissions in these things, so there's no problem as far as they're concerned. For those of us who own them, it's a BIG problem. One that they're not willing to address with a long-term solution?!?
    Would you please post the reply you get back from customer support? Thanks.
  • kazmazkazmaz Posts: 13
    Here's the response from Jasper Engineering, and I quote:

    "We have found through many failed units inspected that these have a high failure rate due to cooler issues. We provide a larger stand alone trans cooler with our units.
    This is info we advise the shop on the unit you are asking about....


    Due to overheating & bluing of the torque converter, 100% of these units will include the required transmission cooler (P/N LPD4490). Installation instructions will be included along with the unit & cooler. NOTE: Please allow an additional 2 hours for the installation of this cooler."

    Jasper seems have nailed the problem, as expected, to overheating due to lack of cooling. Although obvious to all Odyssey owners, why has Honda so little to say except replace the defective A/T with the same A/T that ultimately fails again?

    Anyone had experience with the Jasper replacement A/T??
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 26,381
    simple. They won't come out and say it, or start putting these coolers on replacements, since they would effectively be admitting it was a design flaw all along, and create a flood of people looking for free coolers.

    2018 Hyundai Elantra Sport (mine), 2013 Acura RDX AWD (wife's) and 2015 Jetta Sport (daughter's)

  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,516
    edited December 2010
    >effectively be admitting it was a design flaw all along, and create a flood of people looking for free coolers.

    ...people looking for free coolers along with replacement transmissions since theirs had already been damaged by running how with the lack of proper cooling.

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • kazmazkazmaz Posts: 13
    When you read this it's a wonder any A/T lasts at all:

    It doesn't take much to overheat an A/T, be it stop-go city driving or high speed highway driving in hot weather. Best thing you can do, however, is to add a larger cooling unit to keep the temp down and reduce wear. All you Odyssey (and Civic, Accord, etc)-owners out there take heart: there may still be time to save your tranny with this simple "fix".

    Give me a manual 5-speed tranny any day!
  • kazmazkazmaz Posts: 13
    Does anyone know of a 5-speed manual transmission for the Odyssey? It's been done for the Subaru SVX.
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 26,381
    well, if they had offered one when the 2005 redesign came out, I know they would have sold at least one. And I wouldn't worry about putting miles on the van, trying to nurse it through a full life span so I can trade it before getting stuck with a big bill!

    still annoyed I waiting too long at the beginning to get an extended warranty, when there were people over at odyclub selling them at almost dead cost.

    2018 Hyundai Elantra Sport (mine), 2013 Acura RDX AWD (wife's) and 2015 Jetta Sport (daughter's)

  • stickguystickguy Posts: 26,381
    oh, if you want to try it, it may not be possible no matter how much money you want to invest.

    the powertrain is there, from the Accord V6 6 speed, but I would not be surprised if there isn't enough room in the footwell for a clutch. But, I will check that out this weekend!

    could be interesting choice though in 1-2 years when it is time for new wheels, if I can get the wife to consider the ford C-maxx, if that is offered with a stick (or the Mazda 5 which is).

    2018 Hyundai Elantra Sport (mine), 2013 Acura RDX AWD (wife's) and 2015 Jetta Sport (daughter's)

  • kazmazkazmaz Posts: 13
    I would appreciate whatever you find. Never thought of the Accord V6. Funny, I was recently looking at the Mazda5 for the 5-speed stick option. Trying to convince my wife it's big enough after the huge Odyssey.
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 26,381
    the wife is ready to downsize. Although she tends to take 2x what we need when we travel, so getting the van was feeding the addiction!

    now that 1 kid is in college and the other in HS, and in a year can start driving, we really can live without the seating capacity, and spend most of the time driving around a big empty box (with 1 person too).

    so in theory, a 5 would be a perfect alternative, although she seems to not like the van aspects. So I expect some sort of mid-size CUV (Santa Fe size) is more likely.

    but, we shall see what she likes and what the budget allows when the time comes (probably not for 2 years at this point).

    2018 Hyundai Elantra Sport (mine), 2013 Acura RDX AWD (wife's) and 2015 Jetta Sport (daughter's)

  • American Honda treated us horribly! Our transmission began slipping and eventually quit on us while we were beginning our vacation. We had it towed to Fox Honda in New York. They replaced the tranny and handed us a bill for $3,500. We called American Honda and after 4 months of runaround, they told us we were SOL! We WERE a Honda family.
  • We're on our third transmission in our Odyssey :mad: ! Now the TCS engages at ambient temps below 50F, and we have to wait more than 45 minutes before we can restart the engine and drive. Otherwise, the TCS stays engaged and we have to drive with the brakes partially engaged and are unable to accelerate at a safe rate.

    Our Honda dealer told us we need to buy a new computer ($1,000) in order to fix it.

    To make matters worse, the motors in both cargo doors have stopped working and we aren't able to use those doors!

    This vehicle has been a real lemon!

    BOOOOO, HONDA!!!!!

    If anyone can help, please let us know!
  • Hello all from Ignoranceisbliss,
    Yes I was happy for the last 3.75 years with my 2007 Honda Odyssey EX-L. Grey leather seats for 8, sun-roof, no problems, just beautiful. I was planning to buy out lease in April of 2011 and then I checked the latest Consumers Report magazine. From well above average for "Transmission Major" for the last 3.75 years to the "basement" well bellow average all of a sudden. Excuse my language and I am civilized and well educated but WTF!!!!!!!! First of all CR you really "dropped the ball" What happened here????? I researched the internet and holy smokes CR open your eyes!!!!!
    Secondly, Honda you've got problems. These torque converters of yours have to hit the dust bin.
    Fellow Odyssey owners if you want to know whats going on go to website:
    This article is for a different transmission but it explains when and why you feel "judder" and why the Honda "judder recall".
    Honda admits they didn't program the Ridgeline transmission correctly for the Odyssey. Incorrect shift points was causing the converter to burn up and break up and bits possibly entering the rest of the transmission. If you got reprogrammed early then perhaps you were saved the damage such as I was. If you got a reconditioned converter put in count on it lasting only about 60K.
    Anyway, keys are going back to Honda in April "Thanks but no thanks!"
    You certainly won't be getting the $18,000 buy-out. HA HA HA HA!!!!!
    It's yours in April BABY!!!!!
    Anyway for the rest of you who are keepers chin up. This Ridgeline transmission may prove to be realiable even though the converter will be replaced every 60K so maybe the 2007 won't be that bad after all.
    Signing off,
    Ignoranceisbliss Butexpensive
  • Ignoranceisbliss,
    Oh yes. More useful information for Honda Odyssey owners. Go to Wikipedia.
    It's really shameful for Honda when Wikipedia discusses your transmission woes on their website.
    Anyway this site tells you what your transmission problem is for your particular year.
    99-01 was the 4 speed had a bearing break-up problem.
    02-06 was the 5 speed tranny with 3rd gear clutch pack problem and cooling of 2nd gear.
    It doesn't say so but the 07 got the Ridgeline tranny.
    08-11 got a different tranny yet.
    Look up MDX and Pilot they too have torque converter problems.
    The problems go on and on and on and on and on and on!!!!!!!
    Honda, engineer a bicycle transmission first and see if you can get it right!!!!
    Ignoranceisbliss Butexpensive
  • How many of you have had to replace your transmisisons while you had a cooledr installed? :confuse:
  • longo2longo2 Posts: 347
    CR has been an Enabler for Honda now for many years, even if the bosses Odyssey went up in flames in the parking lot CR would ignore the smoke.

    People have used CR as the first line defence against buying Lemon Prone Loser cars and trucks,,,But CR is so out to lunch on Honda they gave the best buy on the Odyssey for years, until the a/t problems got so bad you could smell the burnt transmission fluid in the air.
    CR finally started to back off on the great ratings..but too late to protect the public and Honda has sold boatloads of Odysseys in North America. They also unloaded hundreds of thousands of other Honda and even Acura cars onto the buying public using the same poorly designed a/t's. the Odyssey does. All the newest CR rating are doing is making our old Odysseys worthless on the market.

    Yes the Tourqe Coverters are junk, and yes there are gears that run dry and burn up, and yes, the poor design of the a/t housing didn't alow for any servicing of the fliter, now full of debris from all the carnage going on thoughout the transmission.

    So it's a long series of problems Honda ignored and chose to keep their heads down and simply replace the a/t's with more of the same rather than re-design the things and leave themselves open to a total a/t recall if owners found out that Honda knew what the weaknesses were.
    A/T rebuilders are still working on the Honda problems as some of them actually warranty their work for longer than Honda did on the original transmissions. One re-builder in Draper Utah (certifiedtransmission) sends his re-builds out with a 5 year warranty.
    He is constantly working on the Honda a/t's (seems every second house in Utah has a mini van) and so, has a lot of answers...but Honda chooses to just slap in another factory re-build with the same wear issues and guess what, with the same disasterous results.
    I think Honda's just 'toughing it out' until our older Odysseys are all scrapped or abandoned because the a/t re-build costs more than the Van is worth. (I paid $34,000 for mine in 2003) Then with CR's help and eager car reviewers singing praises they hope to sell the latest model and hope we all just forgive, forget and buy another new one.
  • Yes you are absolutely right. I called CR about their most recent rating change for the Odyssey 2007 and their response was "We have no information about why the rating changed."
    Meaning....we surveyed thousands of our readers and found a "spike" recently in "Major Transmission" problems for the 2007 (reports from customers) but didn't bother asking what the problem is??????????????? this really informative or useful to their readers?
    Maybe a little embarassment on their part?
    People do rely on their information, but what is preventing from digging a little deeper?
    Is CR's relationship with the Japanese automakers really at arms length?
    I also find it very suspicious that on page 42 of their latest guide, vehicle ratings, that Honda has mysteriously disappeared from the minivan ratings?
    I see Toyota Sienna FWD at the top, next Sienna AWD, followed by Kia Sedona, Sienna LE, Volkswagen Routan, Chrysler Town and Country......hey where did Honda go.....oooopppssss.......What's going on CR? Dropped the ball finally?
    Forget the CR guide. In my eyes it is no longer useful.
    Lets look on the bright side though.
    North American automakers welcome back!!!!
    North American atuo plant jobs welcome back!!!!!
    GM's auto plant is Oshawa (Toronto), Canada is hiring like crazy.
    Why????? They make the Camaro, Equinox, and Regal here. WOW HAVE YOU SEEN THESE NEW CARS!!!!! I was in a GM showroom and I must say I am impressed.
    Some prince in Saudi Arabia just bought a major stake in GM. Is he on to something here?
    As I said earlier....keys on my lease are going back to Honda in April.
    Equinox is my next car...which CR "recommends" but I'm not relying on that!!!!!!
  • Even Hondas with the tow package (tranny and steering coolers) are burning up their trannys. Please go to Wikipedia (Honda Odyssey) transmission problems area. ....tow package gives insufficient cooling.
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 26,381
    CR is not a conspiracy. The ratings are solely based on the survey responses. More problems, that rating dropped. They aren't in the business of investigative reporting to ferret out exaclty what is going wrong, but it gives you a heads up to research further.

    and if the Odyssey disappeared, it is most likely because the old model is no longer for sale, and they had not yet tested the new one. So, there really isn't anything for them to rate!

    2018 Hyundai Elantra Sport (mine), 2013 Acura RDX AWD (wife's) and 2015 Jetta Sport (daughter's)

  • Okay fair enough. But CR does provide "predicted reliability" for older vehicles for used car purchase.

    The survey part is just the number of problems reported by readers. The "predicted reliability is CR's estimate for a used car purchase for different model years.

    In the last issue, mentioned above, they show the predicted reliability for the 2010 model Odyssey. Used car prediction is well above average. How can CR come to this conclusion. The 2007 "transmission major" just dropped through the floor. Previous model years ratings for the Odyssey "transmission major" are continually dropping.
    This should be a red flag to CR. Known problems from 99-01 of a bearing burning up. In 2002 a change in transmission to a 5 speed. More 5 speed transmission problems reported re: 3rd gear clutch pack and 2nd gear burning up. Every new issue the ratings drop more and more for the 02-06.
    Honda goes to the Ridgeline transmission for 07. Ratings for this transmission drop through the floor from well above average, last issue, to well below average to the latest issue. Honda goes to another transmission for 08-11. The 08 "major transmission" has already dropped to above average. A declining trend. Is there anything telling CR right now that Honda has got it right this time? Based on the poor past history of Honda transmissions CR has to look very closely at their current "predicted reliability" for the 2010.
    Widespread reported transmission problems in the Accord, TL, MDX (ratings still dropping to the year 2006 for the MDX). Shared transmissons across several platforms. Very poor survery results for these vehicles as well for "transmission major". Even Hondas tranny repairs are only temporary so they cannot even figure out the fix after 11 whole years!!!!!!!

    So there really isn't any investigative reporting going on here. Widespread knowledge of these transmission problems. Even in Wikipedia....holy smokes!!!! So then looking at all of this information I do not understand how CR gives the 2010 an above average used car buy for the 2010. This is the problem I ran into in 2007 when I looked at CRs predicted reliability for the 2007. I made my decision based on their ratings.
    CR is really doing wishful thinking and not a historically, statiscally based estimate of future predicted reliability. To guess that Honda has really solved their transmission problems this time around is a wild guess and not based on history. Is there something telling CR that Honda has finally got it right? If they know something the public does not know they should come out with it. Their "predicted reliability" has to be based on past history. Nothing in the Odyssey's (or other models mentioned) history says the 2010 is an above average used car buy. Telling the public that the 2010 is an above average used car buy is just setting them up for more disappointment. Someone looking at the 2010 rating would say, "I'm buying the brand new 2011 because look at the above average rating on the 2010". This is exactly what happend to me and this has to be brought to a stop. CR...tell it like it is until Honda proves otherwise. Drop the 2008, 2009, 2010 rating for used car predicted reliability to below average (just like for my 2007) until Honda proves otherwise with a clean track record for at least a couple of years.
    This will tell anyone considering buying a 2011...hold on a second here.....Houston we have a problem!!!!!! : :sick:
  • So I have a 2007 EX and I had two clunks in the past two months from my transmission - I only have 23k on the car and am getting worried about it.

    I have CR's 2011 Buying Guide which was issued just recently (a month? two months? I can't remember) Ody 07 Transmission Minor and Major are rated "Much Better Than Average" in terms of Reliability. Based on what I saw above, I looked at their online version and it is the worst rating, "Much Worse Than Average." What changed in the last two months? I realize they just ran a survey again but did the results come in so quickly that they changed it again?
  • For the 2007 it appears that torque converter failure is occuring at around 60K.
    Because 2007's are getting close to this mileage there appears to be a "spike" in failures reported to CR.
    See my post #1731. You could be experiencing the early signs of "judder" as per Honda's TSB for transmission "judder".
    You should have received a letter from Honda asking you to come in to have your TCM (transmission control software) reprogrammed. If you don't get it done you could experience torque converter failure (explanation in my post #1731 at website. is for a different transmission but exact same problem.
    Apparently if the software update does not remedy the problem your torque converter will be replaced. I think you have to be under the 5 year, 60K warranty for it to be free or try "Goodwill replacement".
    If you did have the above work done, go to an independent mechanic and have him change, not flush, the transmission fluid with Honda's new DW-1 (synthetic) through a coffee filter and see if there are any metal shavings in the tranny to see the state of your tranny.
    This may help you decide what to do rid of it?
    Hope this helps.
Sign In or Register to comment.