The Honda Odyssey was equipped with various variants of the H5 transmission, including the P36A, BGRA, PGRA, BYBA and B7TA. But they aren’t without their problems though, so let’s look at some of the most common Honda Odyssey transmission problems, look at cost estimates and figure out what you can do about them.
Honda Odyssey Transmission Models
Honda Odyssey Transmission Replacement Cost Estimate
Pricing varies by exact engine size and year. To be 100% sure on pricing, have your VIN# handy and use our Get An Estimate feature to look up your transmission by VIN#.
What are the DTC codes related to Honda Odyssey transmission problems?
P0766 – Failed Shift Solenoid D – This DTC can be stored when there is a problem with a shift solenoid or the valve body.
P2703 – Failed Friction Element D – This trouble code can be triggered by a failed friction element like a clutch disc.
P0720 – Failed Input Speed Sensor or Output Speed Sensor – This trouble code is caused by a bad speed sensor on the transmission.
P0730 – Incorrect Gear Ratio – This issue could be caused by a number of problems, including a fault in the transmission control module, dirty transmission fluid, or a bad transmission solenoid.
P0657 – Voltage Problem in the ‘A’ Circuit – This transmission problem is often caused by a short, or bad ground on the PCM or PCM wiring harness.
P0700 – Malfunction in the transmission control system – This DTC is often triggered when there is a problem with the TCM, a wiring harness, a solenoid, or the valve body.
P0715 – Input/Turbine Speed Sensor Malfunction – This code typically gets stored when the input sensor cannot read the engine RPM, which can prevent the transmission from appropriately shifting gears.
P0717 – Input/Turbine Speed Sensor No Signal – This trouble code is generated when the PCM does not get a signal from the input speed sensor, which will prevent the computer from being able to determine when the transmission needs to shift.
P0791 – Intermediate Shaft Speed Sensor ‘A’ Circuit – This error can occur when there is a problem with the intermediate shaft speed sensor, most likely due to a bad sensor, wiring problem, or a failed shift solenoid.
P0793 – Intermediate Shaft Speed Sensor Circuit No Signal – The computer will generate this DTC when it cannot communicate with the intermediate shaft speed sensor.
Back in 2004, Honda was forced to admit there was a problem, and recalled some 1.1 million vehicles, at a cost of $153 million dollars.
The recalled Honda models included:
- 2002–04 Odyssey
- 2003–04 Pilot
- 2001–02 Acura MDX
- 2003–04 Accord V–6
- 2000–04 Acura 3.2 TL
- 2001–03 Acura 3.2 CL
2006 Honda Transmission Class Action Settlement
Honda settled a class-action lawsuit over the matter in 2006, where they were accused of misleading consumers by selling them vehicles with defective transmissions. Naturally, Honda denied the charges, and settled so they wouldn’t have to admit there was actually a defect.
1999–2001 Honda Odyssey owners that were covered by the lawsuit were given an extension to their transmission warranty from the date they first purchased the van, which amounted to 93 months/109,000 miles (whichever comes first). The plaintiff’s lawyers also got nearly $5.5 million, plus expenses. However, a majority of the Odyssey’s covered by the lawsuit had already exceeded the time/mileage limits of the extended warranty. So these owners were forced to pay the $2,000-$4,000 repair bills themselves.
The second generation 1999-2004 Honda Odyssey was designed to be reliable and family-friendly. They got the usability part right, with power sliding doors, a fold-into-the-floor 3rd row seat, and side airbags. Unfortunately, the reliability bit wasn’t as well executed, because many owners experienced complete transmission failure due to faulty components used in the Honda B7XA 4-speed automatic, and Honda BYBA 5-speed automatic transmissions.
Honda claimed the faulty transmission parts were manufactured by outside suppliers. “Obviously, these components were not made to specification,” Honda spokesman Mike Spencer said. He went on to explain that Honda engineers had identified the root of the problems a few months prior, and have since redesigned the transmissions. “The four-speed models were afflicted with a bad bearing that could break apart, scattering fragments of metal that clogged fluid passageways in the transmission, causing it to shift erratically”.
Regarding the later 5-speed BYBA transmission problems, Spencer stated “The five-speed models typically were damaged by premature wear of the third-gear clutch pack. As the clutch friction material abraded, it scattered bits inside the transmission case, clogging fluid lines and causing erratic shifting. Drivers might suffer slipping, poor or no shifts, or sudden down-shifts from 5th gear to 2nd gear”.
But wait, there’s more! In certain situations, a second 5-speed BYBA transmission problem can arise, in which case 2nd gear itself would overheat and break. If this happens, the transmission would completely lockup, and your Odyssey will come to a sudden halt.
Honda Odyssey Recalls
Recall ID – Honda: P30 / NHTSA: 04V176000 – 2002-2004 Odyssey
After numerous customer complaints, Honda recalled the 2002-2004 Odyssey because certain operating conditions can cause the transmission to overheat. If this happens, extreme heat buildup between the countershaft and secondary shaft second gears, could result in broken gear teeth or complete gear failure.
If the internal components heat up to the point that the 2nd gear breaks, the transmission could lockup, bringing your minivan to a sudden halt, and possibly cause you to loose control.
On vehicles with less than 15,000 miles, Honda dealers were instructed to modify the oil cooler return line so that it provided more lubrication to the second gear. For vehicles with over 15,000 miles, dealers would look for discoloration on the gears, which signaled that overheating had already occurred. If overheating damage was found, the entire transmission would have been replaced. If no damage was found, the dealer would have simply modified the oil cooler line. Owners can contact Honda at 1-800-999-1009 (refer to Honda Odyssey recall P30). Or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration at 1-888-327-4236 (refer to recall 04V176000). This recall was issued on April 21, 2004
Recall ID – Honda: S73 / NHTSA: 12V573000 – 2003-2004 Odyssey
On certain Odyssey vans, the interlock lever inside the ignition switch may become deformed, allowing the ignition key to be removed without the gear selector being in the Park position.
If the ignition key is removed before the transmission is shifted into Park, the Odyssey could rollaway unexpectedly, increasing the risk of injury or property damage.
Dealers were instructed to install an updated shift interlock lever, or an entirely new ignition switch. Owners can contact Honda at 1-800-999-1009 (refer to Odyssey recall S73). Or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration at 1-888-327-4236 (refer to recall 12V573000). This recall began on Issued February 7, 2013
Honda Odyssey Technical Service Bulletins (TSB)
2011-2012 Odyssey – TSB 12-064 / 10046880
A software issue can cause a slight hesitation, a surge, or a judder as the transmission shifts into 2nd, 3rd, or 4th gears.
To correct this issue, the PGM-FI software will have to be updated to the latest version, and the ATF will have to be changed as well.
Common Problems with the Honda Odyssey Transmission
Lack of Response
Grinding or Shaking
Whining, Clunking or Humming
Refuses to Go Into Gear
Torque Converter Issues
Valve Body Issues
Transmission Noisy in Neutral
No 3rd or 4th Gear
No 1st or 2nd Gear
Trouble Codes / Check Engine Light
Can I drive with a transmission problem?
If your Honda Odyssey can still make it up and down the road, you might say “It’s fine, I’ll just drive it until I can get it fixed”. But that is not always a good idea, depending on the symptoms. You see, there are a lot of (very expensive) moving parts inside of a transmission, and if something isn’t right, continuing to drive with a transmission problem could damage something else.
How often does a Honda Odyssey transmission need to be replaced?
The overall lifespan of a Honda Odyssey transmission largely depends on how well it was maintained. Factory design flaws also factor into this equation, along with how/how hard you drive. But on average, we’ve seen the Honda Odyssey transmission last for between 130,000-180,000 miles. A high quality replacement transmission however, can last considerably longer if all of the factory design flaws have been addressed and the vehicle has been maintained.
How are Honda Odyssey transmission issues diagnosed?
It is fairly easy to guesstimate what the root cause of your Honda Odyssey transmission problems might be, but you won’t truly know unless you have the right tools and experience. A good mechanic or transmission repair center will be able to connect your truck to a computer and find out which diagnostic trouble codes (DTC’s) have been stored. Once they know what to look for, they can perform a visual inspection to verify the problem.
How is a Honda Odyssey transmission replaced?
In order to replace your Honda Odyssey transmission, the truck has to be lifted from the ground in order to gain access to all of the parts that will need to be unbolted. Then the transmission can be lowered to the ground (typically with a transmission jack), so the new transmission can be installed.
Recommendations for Honda Odyssey transmission issues?
To save time and get back on the road faster, have your 17-digit VIN# handy and you can get an online quote for a reman Honda Odyssey transmission here, then find a local shop using our Find a Shop guide to install it for you.
How to Solve Honda Odyssey Transmission Problems
Solution A: Buy a Used Honda Odyssey Transmission
The quickest way to fix your transmission problems is to simply buy a used transmission or used transmission. These can be found at most junk yards, and they often come with a 30-90 day warranty. However, there’s no way to determine the actual condition of the internal components, so you could be spending a bunch of money to have the exact same problems. Plus, that warranty only covers the transmission if it’s defective, not the labor costs that you’ll have to pay.
Solution B: Buy a Rebuilt Honda Odyssey Transmission
Another option would be a rebuilt transmission or rebuilt transmission. A local repair shop will remove your transmission, then install a bunch of new parts during the rebuild. The problem here is, the skills and experience of each transmission rebuilder will vary widely from shop to shop, so you could have problems from something that wasn’t adjusted properly. And the 1-2 year warranty might only cover you at certain transmission repair shops, in a specific geographical area.
Solution C: Buy a Remanufactured Honda Odyssey Transmission
Many owners depend on their vehicle to commute and get things done. Their gasoline engines are designed to go 100’s of thousands of miles, so it makes sense to invest in a remanufactured transmission.
What Problem Does Your Honda Odyssey Have?
Let us know the year, mileage and problem you’re having as well as any trouble (OBD) codes you’ve found. If you’ve been given a quote or paid for a repair, we’d like to hear about that too!
What Transmission Does a Honda Odyssey Have?