fairly significant
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
106,400 miles
Total Complaints:
1 complaints

Most common solutions:

  1. rebuild the transmission (1 reports)
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problem #1

Nov 212017

Accord EX V-6 3.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 106,353 miles

Used car purchase from 2nd owner at 100,500 miles. 1st owner had transmission replaced/repaired @ 25,000+ miles under the original recall. (HOnda service manager printed whole repair history for me at an oil change, and it showed that replacement/repair, and consistent oil-changes and transmission fluid changes by 2nd owner). Wife took car to work on Tuesday night, said Engine Light came on. I read the code the next afternoon, the P0741 code which indicates a generic 'Torque Converter Circuit, circuit off.' This sounded like an electrical issue to me. Took to Rusty Wallace Honda, Knoxville, TN, for review of issue and suggestions. The service writer suggested a flush. Having heard for years a flush can often kill a transmission, I asked that before a flush is done, I want to see what the technician finds in the fluid. Technician brought to me the magnetic Drain Plug with spikey matter on it. I thought it might be metal shavings, but I squeezed the spikes and it went to mush. Likely only normal transmission wear particles that had accumulated. The drain funnel had a small screen for catching large particles of metal, but no metal shavings of any size was in that end. I opted for a drain & fill ($89 + tax) and we reset the computer. Wife drove Accord to work that Sat night. No code came up. I thought we might be out of the woods. That was a round-trip of 26 miles. I drove Accord to church, 22 miles, one-way, and on return trip, about 8 miles from church, the CEL came on again, with the same P0741 code. Heart sank, as one imagined, as all Honda Forums call this code 'the code of death.' I've taken the car to local shop recommended by a national radio host, who claims they're exceedingly honest and up-front. Local reviews also give them superior ratings for service, explanations and assistance. I was driven to my work by one of the counter-girls, who said they usually do an Odyssey per week with that same torque converter issue. She said that their solution is an upgraded TC and an upgraded solenoid switch that controls the lock-up. I'm hoping that I caught it early enough to avoid a $3500 - $4500 repair. (This Accord is Accord #2, since 1998, and Honda #5 since 1985, one after the other. I've only been without a Honda for about 1 year in that ownership period. Never experienced this level of expense, nor worry, in Honda ownership. My first purchase in 1986 was a used manual transmission Civic DX sedan. It was the best little car and I had worry-free ownership.) It's disheartening to read so many comments that Honda Corporate has ducked further responsibility, for earlier problem related to transmission failure, nor made any offers of heavier/sturdier Torque Converters, or heavier/sturdier Clutch packs for upgrading this transmission. Would that not have been more economical, overall?

Update from Jan 10, 2018: Transmission shop I used did a 12 month/12,000 mile warranty rebuild. Used Precision Torque Converters and Raybestos rings/clutches, replaced fluid with DW1 (recommended Trans fluid) and added 8 oz of an additive called Lubri...something. I saw the bottle, but don't remember it. They also had to dial-in to a Honda repair line and get a new software coding for the shift points. The shop manager didn't know what the software actually did, though. There was a TSB that she gave me a copy of that detailed the procedure, though. Final billing was approx $3570, with taxes, out the door. So far, nice performance. Only complaint on that is with taking off from stand still, when cold. When I move forward, the car moves, but I hear an electrical bzzzz, then it ends when the car shifts into second. I don't know if that means they took out the oil-jet modification from the first transmisson repair via Honda, or if it's just an anomoly of the rebuild. Honda of America called me after I submitted a Better Business Bureau complaint. The contact and I have been back-and-forthing messages about contact, but have yet to make a connection. I'm going to ask for partial compensation, but figure that since I used a private shop, instead of Honda dealership, I'll receive absolutely nothing. It's worth the shot, eh?

- Jeff S., Knoxville, US