2020 Honda Odyssey Problems and Top Complaints – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Vehicle structure and electrical system issues among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

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Minivans might not be as popular as they were a decade ago, but there’s still a place for them on the road. Many busy families look for the 2020 Honda Odyssey because they think it will be reliable. While Honda claims this model will provide an “adventure for the family,” the majority of customers aren’t prepared to deal with the actual excitement. This minivan suffers from a defective electrical system and structure-related concerns”

Click on other model year to view more problems: 2019   2021   2022   2023

Problems with the Electrical System

The Honda Odyssey comes with a lot of high-tech equipment that must work right to provide an adventure-filled drive. Yet, even the basics in this system seem to fail.

Here is an eye-opening Edmunds review. “As a long time Honda owner I am EXTREMELY infuriated with the fact that I am already having an issue with a brand new vehicle. Purchased a 2020 Odyssey on May 26, 2020 and on June 25, 2020 the audio just stopped working mid drive. I get home, turn the car completely off and the display would not turn off. After troubleshooting over the phone to no avail we have had to physically taken it in. Mind you, there is a fuse you can disconnect or you can disconnect the battery in order to potentially force a reboot but the real question is WHY DO I HAVE TO DEAL WITH THIS IN THE FIRST PLACE WITH A BRAND NEW VEHICLE? After a quick google search it appears that Honda KNOWS about this issue with the 2018 and 2019 odyssey which further indicates they have done NOTHING to fix the actual problem and continue to knowingly sell DEFECTED CARS. Shame on you Honda! If you are considering purchasing a new Honda Odyssey, I strongly urge you to reconsider.”

The list of electrical-related recalls is pretty long, showing that the Odyssey has a lot of problems. The first, NHTSA Campaign Number 20V438000, talks about how more than 200,000 vehicles might allow water into the mounting holes around the rearview camera lens, leading to a distorted image. If an owner can’t see what’s behind them, it’s more likely they will run over something or someone.

Beyond this, NHTSA Campaign Number 20V4339000 talks about over 600,000 vehicles that might also have an incorrect instrument panel control module software, which can cause the owner to lose access to valuable information, such as the speed, gear position and engine oil pressure. Without this information, owners are driving blind, especially if this combines with the rearview camera concerns.

Finally, NHTSA Campaign Number 20V066000 states that nearly 250,000 vehicles might have a third row seat accessory power outlet wiring harness that might have been pinched between the rear trim panel and unibody during construction. If this happens, it could lead to a short circuit, which might result in a fire. Considering that kids are generally sitting in this row, this situation is even more dangerous. All three of these recalls show that the Odyssey might provide more adventure than most families want to sign up for.

2020 Honda Odyssey Complaint Summary

Complaint CategoryNumber of Complaints
Electrical System
Unknown Or Other
Forward Collision Avoidance: Automatic Emergency Braking
Fuel/propulsion System
Forward Collision Avoidance: Adaptive Cruise Control
Service Brakes
Lane Departure: Assist
Lane Departure: Warning

Vehicle Structure Problems

Changing focus to the structure, it’s clear that Honda took just as much care in putting together the overall structure as the company did with the electrical equipment.

Here is one NHTSA complaint to look at. “While traveling on the interstate at approximately 75 mph, the sunroof spontaneously shattered. I have a dash cam and when I reviewed the footage, there wasn’t any sign of rocks or debris that had caused the breakage.”

What’s more dangerous is outlined in NHTSA Campaign Number 20V437000. This recall shows that over 300,000 vehicles might have outer door handle cables on the sliding doors that allow water to get inside. If this water freezes, it might prevent the latch from securing properly. When this happens, the sliding door opens on its own, even while driving down the road. At this point, it feels as if Honda is trying to get rid of the children, by setting the back seat on fire or causing them to fall out of the second row. Considering that that word odyssey is defined as “an extended adventurous voyage or trip,” it might be better at this point to take that excursion with a different vehicle, for everyone’s safety.

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Brian Jones

About the Author:

Brian Jones spent more than 30 years working as an ASE Certified Master Tech and Parts Specialist at multiple dealerships. Brian has become an authority in the industry, traveling across the country to consult for car dealerships and contributing his expertise as a writer for several major automotive publications. In his spare time, Brian enjoys working on pickup trucks, muscle cars, Jeeps and anything related to motorsports.

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  • Lin M

    Totally, agree with comment above, most recent can’t get my FREE oil changes paid for with Extended Warranty. Told them in Charleston, SC moving back to Columbia, SC can I use them, “Of course” NOPE plus wanted to charge me $400+ for Transmission/Brake fluid change. Bought it 4/15/22 Honda Odyssey 2020 had 42,000 miles it should have been changed then!!!

  • Sarah S

    Bought a 2020 Honda Odyssey with 20,000 miles on it at the end of April. What a freaking piece of junk.
    The air conditioner takes an eternity to cool down.
    The button for the rear ac fan controls was broken.
    The sound system/electrical issue has been fixed twice and is starting to crackle and pop again.
    The doors randomly lock and unlock when I wash the car.
    A bolt and washer randomly appeared on the floor of the back of the van.
    The van started making terrible creaking and popping noises when the steering wheel turned.
    The shade for one of the windows rolled all the way down into the door panel (and my kids were not wild with it– we had a 2010 Sequoia for 6 years with the same shades and this never happened).
    Can I have my Sequoia I traded in back now? I will never buy a Honda again.

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