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Honda Odyssey Problems

RepairPal has identified the most common problems with the Honda Odyssey based on complaints from actual vehicle owners. We'll tell you what the problem is and what it'll take to fix it.

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Known Problems

There have been some issues reported with the electric sliding doors. Our technicians remind us that proper diagnoses will be necessary to determine the cause of various faults which may occur.

The front brake rotors can warp and cause a vibration when braking. The rotors will need to be machined or in cases where they are worn to thin, replaced to correct this issue.

The Honda Odyssey may develop issues with the automatic transmission.

Rough shifting may occur, and the “D4” light and check engine may begin to blink. The check engine light will also illuminate, and OBD trouble codes P0700, P0730, P0740, P0780, P1768 and/or P1768 will be stored in the computer.

If the transmission shifts roughly, the failure is very likely mechanical failure of the transmission. If the transmission performs normally, a faulty sensor, or dirty transmission fluid may be the case.

In most cases, it is necessary to use professional diagnostic equipment to provide a diagnosis, and complete the repair.

The longevity of the transmission is dependent on strict adherence to the manufacturer's recommendation for ATF replacement intervals and procedure.

The clock light has a tendency to burn out.

The Honda Odyssey has a known issue with engine oil leaking from the ignition distributor shaft seal.

Leakage from the shaft seal coats the electrical components of the distributor with engine oil causing:

  • Failure to start 
  • Engine randomly misfires 
  • OBD Trouble code(s) P0300, P0301, P0302, P0303, P0304, P1336, P1337 
  • Engine vibrations  
  • Hesitation or stalling 
  • Cleaning the distributor cap and rotor can help or resolve driveability issues temporarily, but the mentioned issues will return shortly.

    Once this issue is diagnosed, the ignition distributor shaft seal must be replaced, and the distributor shaft bearing must be inspected.

    A rear engine mount that is broken can cause an engine vibration felt in the vehicle. Replacing the failed mount will repair this problem.

    Third row seat latch cables can come loose from the handle and can prevent the seat from unlatching. Reinstalling the cables and retaining them with clips should correct this issue.

    The Honda Odyssey may have issues with the idle air control system, causing:

    The idle air bypass system is made up of vacuum lines, an idle air control valve (IACV), the throttle body, and intake manifold, and allows enough air into the engine to idle when the throttle body is closed. The OBD trouble code P0505 refers to this system to inspect for failures.

    The most likely cause is a dirty or failed IACV, but vacuum lines, intake manifold gasket, throttle body gasket, and IACV gasket should be inspected.

    In all cases involving the IACV, the throttle body ports should be cleaned prior to installing the IACV onto the throttle body.

    There have been reports of Catalytic Converter failure that causes the Check Engine light to come on. Replacing the catalytic converter will repair this issue.

    The front axles are prone to failure on the 1995-1998 Honda Odyssey. This will be evident as fast clicking or popping sounds will be audible while driving, most commonly when the steering wheel is turned while the vehicle is in forward motion.

    Constant velocity (CV) axles, sometimes called a “half-shaft”, are designed to allow the wheels to be driven by the transmission, even when turning the steering wheel.

    They are manufactured of a shaft with a gear at both ends. When one of the gears on the end of the shaft fails, it will make noise as the vehicle is driven.

    The axle should be replaced immediately, or damage may occur to the wheel bearing/hub assembly if left unattended.

     

    The 1995-1998 Honda Odyssey engine oil pressure sensor is known to leak from normal operation.

    More information about the oil pressure sensor here.

    To correct the leak, the sensor must be inspected, properly sealed and installed, or replaced with new.

    Smelling burning engine oil is common on the 1995-1998 Honda Odyssey 4-cylinder engine, and is associated with oil leaking from the valve cover. It is most common to smell the oil burning at a stop light, or just after you shut off your engine.

    Engine oil leaks from the valve cover, drains down, and settles on the exhaust manifold, which burns the oil upon contact due to high exhaust gas temperatures. This creates an odor that comes through the vents, and can be smelled around the front of the vehicle. 

    The valve cover gasket should be replaced in a timely fashion to prevent engine misfires resulting from oil contamination of the ignition coil, which is fairly common.

    Valve cover gasket replacement will correct both the leak and the smell of burned oil at the same time. If the ignition coil or spark plug wire was soaked in oil, it will need to be cleaned or replaced to stop or prevent misfires.

    The 1999-2016 Honda Odyssey may have problems with the EVAP canister vent solenoid. It stops responding to commands to open and close, and the following occurs:

  • Illumination of the check engine light
  • OBD trouble code P1457 is stored
  • Engine takes longer than usual to start
  • Fuel mileage decreases noticeably
  • The valve is located on the charcoal canister, and is meant to open and close upon command. It fails due to corrosion breaking one of two internal seals, which allows air to escape the system, signaling the OBD trouble code P1457.

    Correcting the problem can be done by replacing the vent valve, or, in some cases, cleaning and resealing the vent valve has been successful. You can get an estimate for this repair here.

    A worn, missing, or loose gas cap can cause the same issues.

    The camshaft seal, located at the end of the cylinder head, has a reputation for failure on the 1995-1998 Honda Odyssey van.

    This seal wraps around the camshaft to prevent engine oil from leaking where the camshaft exits the cylinder head.

    Replacing the leaky seal requires timing belt removal, so timing belt and water pump may be recommended if your vehicle is near the service interval.

    The exhaust recirculation valve (EGR) on the 1999-2016 Honda Odyssey V6 may fail, causing:

  • Illumination of thecheck engine light
  • OBD trouble codes P0401 and P1491
  • Rough idle
  • Reduced fuel economy
  • Engine vibrations
  • Hesitation or stalling
  • Long cranking before engine starts
  • Failure of state or federal smog tests
  • The EGR valve has open and closed positions, and opens or closes on command from the computer.

    Exhaust gases constantly pass through the valve when it is open, leaving carbon deposits on the valve. These carbon deposits may lead the the valve sticking in the open or closed position.

    To correct this issue, sometimes it is sufficient to clean the valve, but replacement is recommended in all cases.

    For further information on your vehicle's issue, try out our diagnostics tool here.