2018 Honda Civic Top Complaints and Problems – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Electrical, steering, airbags, structural and fuel system issues among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

The Honda Civic has been in production since the early 70’s. It’s been a staple on American roads since then, with newer models claiming to be “exhilarating inside and out.” What we find is that the 2018 model does offer plenty of adventure, but more of the white-knuckle kind. It seems to battle with electrical, steering, airbag, structure and fuel system problems.

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Electrical System

A car’s electrical system must work properly to protect the occupants. All of the modern systems run on this power, so consumers must pay attention to what’s happening.

This driver suffered from numerous problems. That’s why this report was left on the NHTSA website. “Tire Pressure Monitoring System comes on. Tire pressure is exactly 34/35 PSI as door panel advises. Reset the TPMS system to fix the warning. Also, after driving 100 miles, the cruise control, lane keep and collision mitigation system failed. Had to stop car, turn it off and restart to get warnings to disappear.”

This particular problem doesn’t show up in the manufacturer communications, but Service Bulletin #A18-001talks about some audio system trouble. Among the difficulties discussed in this bulletin, there are 20 different symptoms. Many of them relate to voice recognition and the system doesn’t connect to devices. While this isn’t as dangerous as safety technology not working, many people can’t stand the long commute to work without a connection to the iPhone playlist.

Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2018 Honda Civic Electrical Problems:

2018 HONDA CIVIC – EX-L. INFOTAINMENT SCREEN (RADIO, HEAT, NAVIGATION SYSTEM, A/C, ETC CONTROLS TOUCHSCREEN) WILL FLASH OFF AND ON WHILE DRIVING INCLUDING DURING BACKUP CAMERA AND NAVIGATION SYSTEM USE. ISSUE IS INTERMITTENT AND NOT PREDICTABLE. HONDA DEALERSHIP HAS ATTEMPTED TWO RE-FLASHES OF THE SOFTWARE TO CORRECT THE ISSUE WITH NO POSITIVE RESULT. HONDA REPRESENTATIVE STATES THAT THE ISSUE HAS NO RESOLUTION AND WILL DO NOTHING FURTHER TO CORRECT THE ISSUE ON MY VEHICLE AND MAY HAVE A FIX AT SOME POINT IN THE FUTURE

THE ENGINE WIRING HARNESS COVER COMPOSITION IS ATTRACTIVE TO RODENTS. SQUIRRELS CHEWED INTO THE HARNESS LEADING TO LOSS OF ACCELERATION. THE ENTIRE HARNESS NEEDS REPLACING DUE TO THE SOY BASED WIRE COATING. THE FAILURE WAS FIRST NOTICED WHILE AT SPEED (APPROXIMATELY 35 MPH IN CITY TRAFFIC. SUBSEQUENT ATTEMPTS AT STARTING THE VEHICLE RESULTED IN ROUGH IDLE AND DANGEROUS HESITATION WHEN MERGING.

BACK UP CAMERA IS FUZZY WITH VERY LOW RESOLUTION ESPECIALLY DURING THE EVENING OR LOWER DAYLIGHT. THIS MAY CAUSE SERIOUS INJURY SINCE RESOLUTION IS VERY POOR. CAMERA LENS IS NOT DIRTY OR SCRATCHED

Steering

When a driver gets behind the wheel, it is simply expected that the car will move as the wheel is turned. The 2018 Honda Civic seems to have trouble understanding this concept.

One reviewer on the NHTSA website wrote this, “My son was driving his 2018 Honda Civic Sport Hatchback on base as he is in the Army National Guard. When he came to a bend in the road, he turned the steering wheel to the right. Then, he heard and felt a pop and the car became unable to be steering in the direction that he was turning the steering wheel. The car went left even though he was trying to turn right into the bend. He went across the road and into a ditch causing significant damage to the vehicle. Thankfully, he was unhurt. There were others who witnessed this because he was driving in a military convoy at the time it occurred.”

The company did issue a recall for this car because of steering issues. It’s labeled with NHTSA Campaign Number 18V663000 and talks about a magnet that might become dislodged, leading to steering issues. If this occurs, the dislodged magnet can cause the steering assist to apply in the wrong direction, leading to a crash. The only fix is to replace the steering gearbox assembly. Otherwise, drivers will start to head one way, but the car might just have a mind of its own and lead the vehicle right into danger.

Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2018 Honda Civic Steering Problems:

2018 HONDA CIVIC, HATCHBACK SPORT TOURING. AFTER ARRIVING AT MY DESTINATION THE VEHICLE WAS TURNED OFF AND LOCKED. WHEN I CAME BACK TO THE CAR, I DISCOVERED THAT THE CAR WOULD NOT START. ALL THE LIGHTS WERE ON IN THE DASH AND STAYED ON.. HAD THE CAR JUMPED, AND IT STARTED. ON MY ATTEMPT TO DRIVE THE CAR HOME, THE CAR WAS PULLING HARD TO THE RIGHT AND I HAD TO FIGHT TO KEEP IT STRAIGHT. THE CAR WAS PICKED UP BY THE DEALERSHIP, BUT THEY COULD NOT FIND WHAT CAUSED THE PROBLEM. SO, I RESEARCHED ON LINE AND FOUND A RECALL A RECALL (#18V663000) FOR THE ELECTRICAL POWER ASSIST SYSTEM. I INPUT MY VIN#, BUT IT CAME BACK WITH ZERO RECALLS. ALTHOUGH MY VIN WAS NOT EFFECTIVE, I’M HAVING THE SAME ISSUES DESCRIBED

Airbags

The airbag is a standard device used in all modern vehicles. When this basic system malfunctions, everyone in the front of the vehicle is in danger. The 2018 Honda Civic is not immune to airbag issues.

One reviewer on the NHTSA website wrote this, “On 11/28/2018, I was driving on the freeway and the airbag in my car deployed with no reason. I sent the car to the dealer for investigation. The dealer told me that the airbag is deployed because they found a dent on the rear control arm which I found hard to believe. When the airbag deployed, there was no collision. I was driving on the freeway, so there are surely no bumps on the road. Even if they found a dent on the car, there is no proof that the dent is made on the same day that the airbag pops up.”

Sadly, there are no manufacturer communications related to the airbags. With all the recent scandals regarding the trouble with airbags, it doesn’t make sense for the automaker to pretend that there aren’t problems. It doesn’t make the issues go away just because they aren’t talked about, no matter how much they are ignored.

Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2018 Honda Civic Airbags Problems:

ON APRIL 20, 2019 MY HONDA CIVIC HATCHBACK WAS HIT ON THE FRONT DRIVER SIDE. ONLY THE PASSAGER AIRBAG DEPLOYED

Structure

The structure of a car is often not discussed, or considered to be a significant component. When something begins to go wrong, then difficulties with the structure are finally looked at.

In this NHTSA review, you see what can happen when the structure faces difficulty. “While washing my 2 day old car, a chunk of paint blows off the lower kick panel. Dealer told me it was my fault and they weren’t going to pay for it. I told them they could have the car back. Suddenly, they were going to repair it. They told me they replaced the entire panel. 2 days ago, almost exactly 1 year to the day, I was washing my car and in the exact same place a chunk of paint blows off (a bit ironic). I went to a different dealer. I called Honda, they said no problem to take it to another dealer. The dealer I took it to said I would have to pay for the repair since Honda said they had paid for the fix once. No way they replaced the panel because they have no record of it ever being replaced and the paper work I have does not state the panel was replaced. They didn’t change the panel, they slapped some touch up on it and sent me on my way.”

Among these structure issues, the automaker also acknowledges some strange noises coming from the car. In Manufacturer Communication #APaS08172018901, Honda discusses the unusual sound that comes from the front when turning or going over a bump. It sounds like a knocking or clicking. While they don’t list the cause, they do ask for additional information to help find the root of the problem. In the meantime, there’s no fix listed. Among a faulty steering system, electronics that don’t work and defective airbags, drivers now get to enjoy a symphony of strange sounds while driving.

Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2018 Honda Civic Structure Problems.

THE FRONT BUMPERS ON ALL 2018 HONDA CIVICS ARE NOT SECURED PROPERLY, HONDA IS AWARE OF THE ISSUE BUT HAS NO FIX FOR THIS. THESE BUMPERS COULD FLY OFF THE CAR AT HIGHWAY SPEEDS AND HURT OR KILL SOMEONE.

Fuel System

The majority of drivers only think about the fuel system when stopping at the gas pump. Honda Civic owners have to think about it a lot more often, especially when they start smelling fuel in the car.

That’s exactly what this owner wrote about on the NHTSA website, “At 2,025 miles, my 2018 Civic that I had for 2ish months started smelling like fuel in the cab. So I looked it up and the Earth Dreams motor is having oil dilution problems and it is becoming more common. So I checked my oil and found my car a quart overfull with fuel in my oil. I then had it towed to the dealership where they gave it a free oil change and said there is no fix and it is normal. The oil viscosity will deteriorate eventual leaving me with a knock or disabled on the side of the road. It is an issue that can cause a crash or sickness when the noxious gas smell comes back. I have no put 450 miles on it since the oil change and am smelling fuel in my oil again.”

Honda doesn’t talk about this despite the countless other complaints saying the same thing. What they do talk about is a possible hairline fracture in the crankshaft sprocket that causes a knocking sound. In Service Bulletin #ATS180603, the automaker recommends that technicians replace the broken parts. What’s most interesting about this problem is that is occurs with less than 1,500 miles on the engine. Is there a problem this car doesn’t experience? If so, it hasn’t been discovered yet. It’s not likely that many drivers want to continue driving the car in hopes of finding a redeeming quality.

Here are some actual complaints logged with the NHTSA about the 2018 Honda Civic Fuel System Problems.

OIL DILUTED WITH FUEL (3/4″ ABOVE THE FULL MARK ON THE DIPSTICK) – THIS IS A PROBLEM WITH HONDA’S 1.5 TURBO ENGINE (CIVIC, CRV). OTHERS WITH THIS ISSUE HAVE REPORTED THEIR VEHICLES STALLING WHILE DRIVING AT 70 MPH — DEFINITELY A SAFETY ISSUE.

EXCESS FUEL IS ENTERING THE ENGINE OIL WHICH IS DILUTING THE OIL AND CAUSING PREMATURE WEAR.

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