Hoanda Accord Starter Problem


I have a Honda Accord 2013 Superior. Its takes a few times to start.

I got a diagnostic done from Firestone (see attached results). Based on results, mechanic is recommending that I change the starter. The part that he is going to install is BOSCH SR1355X. He is asking ~$500 for the part and $125 for labor.

I could use your expertise for the following:

  • Based on diagnostic results attached do I really need to change the starter?
  • If I do have to change the starter; are there cheaper alternatives available than fetching out ~$700

He found the battery marginal and the alternator OK, and the starter OK.

Looks to me like a new battery is the way to go. How old is it?

Just curious, I have never heard of a Honda Accord Superior . Is that a none US model?

Hi Bill, Thanks for getting back.

I just replaced the battery; it didn’t solve the problem.

He recommended a new starter? That does not seem reasonable or honest. A 5 year old battery needing replacement sounds more like it. I can’t read the starter test results, but would not rely on this diagnosis.

If I have starter problem I remove it and fix it myself (clean the solenoid innards and maybe bend or replace copper contacts) or take it to a local auto electric shop. They can bench test it thoroughly and repair it, or recommend something else.

Actually its not (I just searched the net) and looked at my documents. Its Honda Accord EX. I guess superior was put by previous owner on the back of my car…

Hi, I replaced the battery but that didnt help the problem.


Please describe in detail what you mean by “it takes several times to start.” What exactly is it doing?

At very least, you should take the car elsewhere for a second opinion.

When I push the start button the first time it gives out a click noise and nothing else. The second or third time the engine starts.

Well, if you’ve replaced the battery and the alternator tests OK, the starter is the logical choice, despite the diagnostic results.

Shop around for a better price, but replacing the starter is logical with those symptoms and that history.

Testing a starter while it is working properly will usually give passing results, you would have to test it when it is malfunctioning but I doubt the mechanic will want to come to your house to test the starter when it isn’t working.

With the description of the problem there is good reason to believe the starter solenoid contacts are worn. A remanufactured starter from a Honda dealer is $400, if you shop around you may find a better price than that.

BTW, your car was probably sold by Superior Honda in New Orleans when new.

The starter current draw should be tested while mounted on the car to see if the armature is dragging and/or the commutator is worn. Starters are not a common problem with Hondas unless there are extenuating circumstances.

Those circumstance could be a bunch of key cycles \starting the car a lot of times.
Another could be (since New Orleans is mentioned) maybe this car was under water during a hurricane.
I’ve got a daughter who lives in Baton Rouge. Her house is on stilts but the lower storage area badly flooded the last time around. She said the water was up to the headlights on her Jeep CJ.

Starter failures are a common problem with late model Honda Accords, there are 90 complaints of starter failure for the 2013 Accord on car complaints and perhaps a dozen on this message board.

The tests show the battery is the problem, but you just replaced the battery.
There is always the chance that the battery was bad right off the shelf. It won’t be the first time.

This vehicle is only 5 years old and there should not be much corrosion at the battery terminals, but the battery could be off gassing from a poor seal at one or both posts.

I would pull both battery cables and clean the posts and the inside of the terminals.

You can buy a tool like this that cleans both.

If it still has trouble starting, then move on to the starter.


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I doubt you will find corroded battery terminals just one week after replacing the battery, it would be very unusual to have a new battery leak that badly.

Before you get a second opinion or pay for a new starter, make sure the issue isn’t the neutral safety switch (if it’s an automatic) or clutch safety switch (if it’s a manual).

If it’s an automatic there is a simple test you can do. When it doesn’t start, shift from park to neutral. If it starts in neutral, the switch is the problem. I’m not sure how to test a clutch safety switch without bypassing or replacing it.

Just from personal experience I’ve seen batteries replaced without the cable terminals being cleaned.
Servicing the cable ends should be part of any battery replacement job, but…

I mailed a friend of mine in OK City this morning. I used to work with him at the Honda dealer there. He has worked strictly for Honda since 1977 so he’s got plenty of Honda wrench time under his belt.
I asked him if there was a chronic problem with late model Honda Accord starters and his reply was…

“Only once in a blue moon…”

I agree, but if the old battery was the culprit, causing the corrosion…they may not have cleaned the terminals when they put the new battery in.


This is a 2013 Honda Accord tread with 16 complaints of starter problems;