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post #1 of 8 Old 04-28-2010, 11:18 PM Thread Starter
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7th Gen. Honda Civic, any thoughts?

My parents got a used 2001 Civic for my younger sister a while ago. It has a lot of miles(around 160k) but has been well cared for by the previous owner(a good family friend). I've driven the car a few times, it runs fine now overall, except that there is an annoying droning noise that I know isn't normal and I know it definitely is not road noise. I then did a bit of search and found that transmission and torque converter failures seem to be pretty common among this gen. of Civics, especially the 01-02 model years and it certainly has us concerned a little.

My question is, has anyone here owned a 7th Gen. Civic(2001-2005) and what's your overall ownership experience with the car?

Also, I am thinking about doing a drain and refill of the transmission fluid sometimes soon. Would this be a good idea, given the higher mileage and the potential transmission problem with the car?

Any input is greatly appreciated.

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post #2 of 8 Old 04-29-2010, 05:06 AM
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I owned a 2002 civic lx 4 door before my accord and also my sister currently has a 2004 ex coupe. The thing I ran into was that there was an unnoticed leak in my tranny, even the dealer didnt say anything when it was in for service a week prior to it dying on me. But that aside, I didnt have any problems with it and havent experienced anything thus far with my sister's car.


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post #3 of 8 Old 04-29-2010, 05:31 AM
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My niece has an 02 Civic - auto trans died last year at <100K miles. Luckily Honda covered the replacement. Other than that it's been reliable.

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post #4 of 8 Old 04-29-2010, 08:26 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the feedback guys.

Quote:
Originally Posted by oh3EX View Post
I owned a 2002 civic lx 4 door before my accord and also my sister currently has a 2004 ex coupe. The thing I ran into was that there was an unnoticed leak in my tranny, even the dealer didnt say anything when it was in for service a week prior to it dying on me. But that aside, I didnt have any problems with it and havent experienced anything thus far with my sister's car.
Actually, I'm not surprised to hear your sister's 04 is holding up well. Hondas(and most cars I suppose) made later in the model years usually have less problems than ones made in the earlier production runs.
Just curious, when/at what mileage did you find out about the tranny leak? And what kind of symptoms did you have with the car prior to finding out that problem?

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Originally Posted by cajun View Post
My niece has an 02 Civic - auto trans died last year at <100K miles. Luckily Honda covered the replacement. Other than that it's been reliable.
I've read about similar stories too. I hope nothing serious happens to our car, but if something does come up hopefully Honda is willing to consider good will repair.
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post #5 of 8 Old 04-29-2010, 08:30 PM
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Originally Posted by HADriver06 View Post
I've read about similar stories too. I hope nothing serious happens to our car, but if something does come up hopefully Honda is willing to consider good will repair.
At that mileage, I wouldn't hold my breath! But maybe the original owner already replaced the tranny once
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post #6 of 8 Old 04-29-2010, 09:00 PM Thread Starter
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At that mileage, I wouldn't hold my breath! But maybe the original owner already replaced the tranny once
hehe I think you missed the sign I used at the end. Of course I'd be a lunatic to expect an 100% good will from Honda if the tranny goes bad at ~160k. It'd be highly unlikely but still, it'd be nice if they are willing to cover 1/2 or even 1/3 of the cost of repair if something does come up.

Hm... based on the detailed records from the previous owner the transmission doesn't seem to have been replaced. But there does seem to be quite a few repairs/maintenance items that IMO seem pretty excessive for a Honda so something related may have already surfaced in the past. I'll probably look more closely again.

Anyone want to comment on the trans fluid change? Would you do it?
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post #7 of 8 Old 04-30-2010, 07:55 PM
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I see few issues with Civic autos that have had at least a few fluid changes.

The drone you're hearing, check the entire exhaust from front to back. If this car is equipped with a "catifold" (manifold and cat integrated into 1 unit) they have a very large propensity to crack. They leak when cold and cause really odd vibrations at certain rpm ranges when running.

Does the drone go with engine rpm, road speed, etc. Does it stop if you shift it to neutral at speed and let the engine idle?

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post #8 of 8 Old 05-01-2010, 05:04 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fredsvt View Post
I see few issues with Civic autos that have had at least a few fluid changes.

The drone you're hearing, check the entire exhaust from front to back. If this car is equipped with a "catifold" (manifold and cat integrated into 1 unit) they have a very large propensity to crack. They leak when cold and cause really odd vibrations at certain rpm ranges when running.

Does the drone go with engine rpm, road speed, etc. Does it stop if you shift it to neutral at speed and let the engine idle?
Thanks for the very informative response, Fred.

I am not really knowledgeable about the car's exhaust so I might have to read up a bit more to determine if it has catifold or not.

As far as the droning noise, we will probably wait till after we replace the old tires on the car with new ones. Again, I doubt it has much to do with tire/road noise, but strangely that noise doesn't seem to affect the way the car drives either so far. If it's still there and as loud as before after the tire replacement, then obviously something else is wrong(like the exhaust as you mentioned) with the car.

Yes, the drone does seem to go with engine rpm. I think it begins at around 1,000 rpm and peaks(loudest) between 2,000 to 3,000 rpm. I haven't really driven the car on the highway so I can't really be sure if it's any better or worse at higher rpms. There is no drone at idle when car is not moving, but I'm not so sure whether it does this when shifting to N as it moves though.
--------------------------------

I think you're right on target, Fred. I just read up a bit more and it seems cracked exhaust manifolds is also one of the more common(maybe not as common as the 4AT failure) problems on 2001 Civics. I also looked closely at the service/maintenance records and noticed that the catalytic converter has already been changed. I don't know if it means anything but hopefully it's nothing too serious. We'll definitely get the exhaust checked and will report back the findings.

The tranny fluid has been changed twice, once at 60k, another at 120k, so it's definitely due for another change very soon(I'm not gonna wait till 180k lol).
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