Replace transmission on a 2002 Honda Accord?


#1

I have a 2002 Honda Accord that has a transmission that’s been on it’s last legs the last five years. It decelerated and died recently and is sitting at a repair shop until I decide what to do.

It has 189,000 miles on it and I depend on it regularly for commuting to and from work as well as transporting children.

Do I buy or lease a new vehicle or replace the transmission on the Honda? I can’t really afford new car or leased car payments with higher insurance and tabs. I do have the money saved for a new transmission.

Sam in Minnesota


#2

Hard choice, isn’t it. Given what you describe, I would repair the car, given that you know the history of it and you have reason to believe the rest of the car is well maintained and expect it to be reliable for a few more years. At first glance it may not make sense to spend that much money on an aging car, but the value comes from repairing it for, what, $3500, and driving it for a few more years. You probably couldn’t go and buy a used car that fit your needs and would be reliable for what it would cost to fix yours.


#3

How’s the rest of the car? Rust?


#4

If the rest of the car is in good shape with little or minimal rust I would definitely repair it.


#5

A 2002 with 189k miles may be probable for more repairs down the road. It might be time to look for a cheap lease, In 014 in sept. we looked at an 013 new Toyota Camry, and it was $140 a month for a 2 year lease, no money down. Sure that is probably only equal to 10 months of lease payments figuring a trans is at least $1400, but food for thought, and no repair bills, tires, brakes, whatever might be a risk worth considering.


#6

I would repair if the rest of the car is in very good shape.


#7

I would replace the transmission with a used one from the salvage yard if the rest of the vehicle is in good shape.


#8

It’s a Minnesota car. I’m guessing it’s pretty rusty underneath. With these Accords when they go to remove the transmission they will have to remove the front subframe, which will likely be so rusty that it will have to be replaced as well. This will add about $1,000 to the job. Now you are up to $4,500 on a car that will continue to need things like brake lines, fuel lines, fuel pump and filter assembly and more. All of these things are likely to go soon, if they haven’t already, and we haven’t even started talking about struts, suspension parts and brakes. Time to cut bait.


#9

Given your transportation needs, I think you’d be better off buying a new or newer car.


#10

Sam’71

I have a 2002 Honda Accord that has a transmission that’s been on it’s last legs the last five years.

On last legs for 5 years?

It decelerated and died recently and is sitting at a repair shop until I decide what to do.

Decelerated and died doesn’t sound like a trans problem.


#11

2002 was when Honda was having trans problems, I would want a guarantee on a used transmission.


#12

I would replace the transmission with a used one from the salvage yard if the rest of the vehicle is in good shape.

Ehh…Honda transmissions from that era are not particularly robust or long-lived. I don’t know that a used one would be worth the gamble.


#13

You really have to punch the numbers. Try to figure how much the next 50K miles of driving this old tired car will cost along with the transmission work. I would get a 2nd op on the trans, but would be more inclined to move on to my next car.


#14

Yeah I would never go with a used one either. Normally I would say it might be time to look around but a car without a transmission isn’t worth much. Still might want to take a look but I’ve discovered this is not a good time to buy a car. Too many are being sold and its a sellers market. Go figure.


#15

The MN rust would not only be an issue but what about the timing belt situation?

If that job has been neglected then one thing you do NOT want is to replace the transmission and have the timing belt snap and cause serious engine damage a week after the trans install.


#16

“Ehh…Honda transmissions from that era are not particularly robust or long-lived. I don’t know that a used one would be worth the gamble.”

Hmmmm…so are you saying that spending a lot more money on a rebuilt or new transmission is a better gamble on a car like this? I hardly think so. Used is the smart way to go.


#17

this car is well used in mileage and age.

The transmission faiilure is nail in coffin. Spend the $3k+ to fix on another newer ride.

There is likely $500ish value in car not moving.


#18

Like other said, if everything else is in decent shape I would definitely replace the transmission. I had a 1996 Honda Accord and replaced the transmission at 195K miles with one from a junk yard. The car lasted 455K and was finally totaled in an accident, otherwise I would have 455 million miles on it now :slight_smile: :slight_smile:


#19

It’s been my experience that about 35-40% of salvage yard units or parts have issues from minor to major. That percentage needs to be heavily considered when going with used parts.

I’m really amazed at the number of people who buy engines and transmissions from the pull-a-part yards even if they are dirt cheap.
Hardly any car in those yards is there because of a collision.

They’re there because:

  1. The engine is bad.
  2. The transmission is bad.
  3. Both are bad.
  4. The engine and transmissions are good and someone got tired of spending time and money in a vain effort to make it run again.

Sorting out the rare number 4 from the other 3 can be very difficult and even the regular salvage yards really have no idea what condition the stuff they sell is in.


#20

I have bought several salvage yard transmissions and only had a problem with one of them. I always buy when there is a guarantee with it so having a problem is only a minor irritation. The minor irritation is having to install it, remove it and returning it for another one. I’ve done the same with rebuilt (twice on one occasion) and even a new one which was assembled wrong at the factory (5-speed for a Dakota). I cut my losses by buying from a wrecked vehicle only. Buying one “off the shelf” at a salvage/pull apart yard is just asking for trouble.