Honda Odyssey 2003 Steering column jams

Of late my steering column has been getting stuck in park and I have to fool with it and manipulate i between moving the steering wheel and pressing on the brake until the column releases and then I can move it into drive.

There is a Service Bulletin, but I don’t know if the Park light is lit or not.

Shift Lever Stuck In Park , P In Shift Indicator Not Lit

Honda Service News January 2004

Shift Lever Stuck in Park; P in Shift Indicator Not Lit

2003-04 Odyssey

Got a shift lever stuck in Park and the P in the shift indicator not lit? Refer to page 138 of the 1999-03 Odyssey ETM, and check the pin fit of all wires from E17 at the driver’s under-dash fuse/relay box to ground G101. If all the connections are OK, then replace the transmission range switch.

There is this Gem of a Honda Serv Bulletin.

Starting System - Unable To Key In Ignition Switch

Can’t Turn Ignition Switch? Check for Locked Steering

Got a service customer complaining he or she can’t turn the ignition switch to start the engine? The reason could just be the steering column lock pin is engaged with the front wheels turned. Here’s what typically happens:

Some folks use the steering wheel to help support themselves while climbing in or out of the vehicle. This is very common among elderly or disabled drivers. Doing this turns the front wheels, which twists the tires against the ground. The twisted tires apply torque to the steering column. With the ignition switch in LOCK (0), the steering column lock pin is engaged. But the applied torque on the steering column binds the lock pin, making it tough to turn the ignition switch. The ignition switch won’t turn to ON (II) if the lock pin isn’t disengaged from the steering column.

Tell your customer there’s nothing wrong with the ignition switch itself. All he or she needs to do is turn the steering wheel from side to side while turning the switch. This usually releases the lock pin so the engine can be started. In some cases, though, your customer may need to give a good tug on the wheel. This could easily happen when parking on a hill and the wheels are turned sharply before the engine is shut off.

It was the brake light switch. Replaced the brake light switch $12.95 for the part and the issue was resolved.

Thanks for posting the solution @geri. There’s a safety interlock w/the brake. It’s there so that if a small child is in the car, standing on the front seat say, he won’t be able to shift the lever out of Park, b/c he won’t think to press on the brake, or more likely, he can’t even reach the brake pedal. I didn’t realize the brake light switch was involved in the safety interlock though. Good to know.