American Honda negligence

Anyone else have problems with American Honda (AH) over faulty SRS in 2002 CRV? Dealer says it’s a $900-plus fix at my expense on vehicle with 105k. Case Mgr at AH says nothign they can do, that airbag is secondary system. I noted a recall (P34) in June of 2004 on 130,617 CRV models built in 2002-2004 - wire harness of driver’s front air bag incorrectly wired. My 2002 CRV VIN not in range of recall. But, as recall says “in event of crash, air bag inflation would be incorrect, risking increase in risk of injury to driver.”

Any other recourse? Getting the run-around and no consideration from AH. The corporate philosophy, stated on its Web site, is “Respect for the Individual.” Anyone else disagree?

You have a 6 year old car with over 100,000 miles, you are out of warranty so any repairs are on you.

Your vehicle was not under the recall so you are out of luck again.

You give no information on exactly what is wrong with your car other than it will cost $900 to repair. So at this point I don’t think Honda has done anything wrong. If more information is forth coming I could change my mind.

Granted the SRS system is a safety issue but if the car is out of warranty Honda has no obilgation to fix it.

So what is wrong with your car? The “air bag system” is more than just a black box, it is a complicated system with multiple components.

If your car’s problem stems from the harness leading to the driver’s air bag, then I’d say you have a shot at a case. If it’s somewhere else in the system, you’re footing the bill for it on your 6 year old, 100k+ mile car.

Look at it this way: if a ball-joint fails and a wheel falls off, that will put you at risk of serious injury too, won’t it? But Honda shouldn’t have to repair a worn out ball joint. Nor should they have to replace a failed air bag system component at this kind of age/mileage.

When you bought your car should have known that the full warranty was three years or 36,000 miles. You had the option of buying an extended warranty and you seem to have chosen not to. Now six years and 105,000 miles later, you have a $900 repair to make and you want someone else to pay? That expectation doesn’t seem fair to me.

Respect for the individual doesn’t translate to caving in to evey person’s wishes.

If your car’s problem stems from the harness leading to the driver’s air bag, then I’d say you have a shot at a case. If it’s somewhere else in the system, you’re footing the bill for it on your 6 year old, 100k+ mile car.

I think this is the most reasonable expectation you can have.

Do you have an itemized estimate? You may be able to do better at an independent shop. Look for one that specializes in Hondas. We have a number of these in my neck of the woods; perhaps you do too.

I think NYBo and mr josh have the best take on this -

We don’t know what the $900 repair entails. If it is something that is the result of faulty wiring like in the recall that has existed since the car was new, then I think Honda should (and actually might, if pressured hard) pay up. It wouldn’t be unheard of for Honda to recall some cars, but not get every car affected by the defect covered under the recall. Its happened to them numerous times before, just as it has many other manufacturers…

However, if there is nothing wrong with the wiring and it is just a sensor that died or something, then I wouldn’t expect it to be covered.

I don’t think any of us would be happy about a $900 repair bill, though, especially for something that really couldn’t be pinned to owner mistreatment or neglect…

Technically, you’re out of warranty and up the creek.
Sometimes similar problems do exist outside of the specified VIN range and when it comes to the Feds, car makers, etc. they play a lot of politics on this stuff.

Maybe that VIN range is narrowed because that’s where the majority of problems occurred and AH managed to keep the VIN range as close as possible.
AH is no more reputable than any of the others and they will fight these things tooth and nail before even issuing a recall or TSB. Example;

You could consider paying an attorney 75-100 bucks to send a letter to AH and see if that could prod them into making what is called a “good will” warranty for you. They certainly have the discretion to authorize it and some legalese could tip them into covering this. Other than that, you’re out of luck.

Let us know if the lawyer letter works. My 2000 CRV with 106000 miles has a little rattle that is irritating the bejebus out of me and Honda wants me to pay for them to look at it. The nerve of some companies!


Could be a slight difference here. The OP has a similar year/model vehicle that is just outside the VIN range and the recall involves a safety issue related to the airbags.

AH knows that if they receive a letter from a lawyer it’s on record and if something happened to the car and occupants after this letter was received it could look very bad on them in a court of law.
They may decide that a good will warranty is far cheaper than facing a jury pool. The pool is probably not mechanically inclined and would no doubt assume the problems are related even if they’re not.
Fixing the problem at the warranty cut-rate costs would be far cheaper than sending one attorney to court for a preliminary or deposition.

Many recalls start out with a relatively small number of complaints that are brushed aside for the most part. When the heat gets turned up a bit the recall gets issued.

Oh, I agree that it is possible, but I think we (being responsible human beings) have an obligation not to seek reward for something that is not someone else’s problem. If his problem is related to the recall, then by all means, contact a lawyer. However, this could be a number of other issues. His car served him for 6 years and 105,000 miles. I don’t think Honda owes him a thing- unless it is truly related. I also do not think we should encourage people to promote our asininely litigious society in an effort to get away from their responsibility.


Well, there’s nobody hates frivolous lawsuits and bloodsucking attorneys more than me.
My point here is that the OP has an identical model vehicle in the year range, if not the VIN range.
Honda is no different than any other car maker. They will try to keep a low profile on automotive problems and recalls are only issued if the PR factor appears to become a problem.

One of the best examples of a cover-up I can think of is one related to the Subaru XT cars. These vehicle had a tendency to go into a severe speed wobble at freeway speeds and this could occur on a random basis. You can imagine what a vehicle owner might do in a panic situation.
Subaru sent their parts reps out around the country calling in owners of the XTs and performing a pinion spring change on the steering rack. The parts reps were the ones doing the actual work.

They would not allow the dealers or mechanics to do this job for one reason. It was done to prevent bad PR and head a recall off before it started. The customer never knew of the seriousness of the problem and there was no paper trail to prove this problem ever existed. Speed wobble? What in the xxxx are you talking about?

My suggestion is not to be construed as a real effort to file a lawsuit; only that a letterhead from a lawyer may prod them into a good will repair since the problem could POSSIBLY be caused by the same thing that is causing the legitimate recall. If the vehicle were 12 years old, on its 4th owner, etc. or the problem was totally unrelated to any current recalls on similar vehicles then I would not even make the recommendation.

You always have recourse if you are dissatisfied with service from any company. Always note who you talked to (ask for last name) and when. Write a letter to the Better Business Bureau, copy American Honda, and send a copy to your State Consumer’s Protection Office. If American Honda plays any games about not receiving the letter, send a copy by certified mail (cheaper than Fed Ex, and can be traced) for about $3.00

Do all of this before calling an attorney.

If American Honda is truly giving you the runaround, this should help sift through the issues.

Disagree on the 6-year-105,000 mile philosophy. Is that all we expect from a car these days? After that, we just throw them away? I agree about our litigious society but we also have a throwaway one going on.

A govermmental consumer affairs office has the ability to take action against an offending business while the BBB…is virtually useless from many perspectives. So, the OP might as well forget about the Better Business Bureau, IMHO. If anyone does not know why I say this, then post back for an explanation.

So how long should the warranties be and why have a length of warranty if people get repairs well after? Currently, we still have no idea what the real issue is. I agree with OK if the issue is related to the recall. However, it could be something completely different. In that case, it is like asking Honda to cover a window regulator after 6 years when there was a recall on the switch.


Disagree if you want but the car is out of warranty and Honda doesn’t owe him a thing. If the recall doesn’t cover the car he is responsible for the repair which is normal for a 6 year old car with over 100,000 miles.

Plus no one said it was time to throw away this car. I think you will find most of the regular posters on this board (myself included)agree that a 6 year old car with 100,000 miles has many years and miles left on it.

I would still like to hear from the OP as to what exactly is wrong with the car.

Just to be perfectly clear here, I do agree that when the warranty is up, it’s up. Over and done and nothing else should be expected. If the car maker, no matter who it is, refuses to do a good-will warranty then that does not mean the car maker is evil or doing anything wrong.

My concern on this particular instance was the year/vehicle type and the problem being in the same narrow window as the recall. Just because the VIN does not fall into that narrow window does not mean the vehicle is not suffering the same problem as the recalled ones.

Just wild guessing here, but my feeling is that if anyone owned a similar vehicle and was involved in an accident that led to the deaths and injuries of family members due to the airbags not going off a lawsuit would be filed PDQ over this issue even if it was known this vehicle was out of the VIN range beforehand.

I agree OK, but only if the problem is related. All the OP has stated is that it is a faulty SRS- the wiring harness (the recalled issue) is one part of a system with hundreds- perhaps thousands of parts. All I am saying is that until we know what the actual problem is (and that in and of itself appears to be a problem with people posting), then the likelihood is great that his issue is unrelated. At that point, he should pony up like all good car owners and pay for the repair.