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Discussion Starter #1
We bought a second-hand Honda Civic (April 06) SE 2.2 CTDi a couple of weeks ago and my wife had a really scary incident on Friday (12/01/07). She dropped her daughter off at school and left the car on an incline (most definitely NOT a hill) and put the handbrake fully on. Shortly afterwards, the car rolled down the incline, across the road, mounted the kerb (missing a bus stop by 10cm) and grazed the wall. Very fortunately, no one else was involved and no property damaged apart from a nasty graze on the rear bumper.

Two people were with her when she opened the car door and will bear witness that the handbrake was fully on and she took photos on her phone too. I had a play with the handbrake on Friday eve. and the photos clearly show it fully on. It is a 3 mile drive to school from home and therefore I don't imagine the rear discs would have been really hot (even with my wife's driving ;))

We took it to the local Honda dealer (not where we bought it) to have it checked and they made an adjustment to the handbrake.

The dealer we bought it from doesn't want to know and is basically saying it was my wife's fault. My wife has parked there many times before in other cars (including ones with rear discs) and has never had this problem before. Now I know all the stuff about leaving it in gear etc. but surely the parking brake should have worked in this instance? Otherwise, you may as well do away with it.

I have contacted Honda UK and am awaiting their response.

I would like to know where we stand legally on this, given witnesses etc. as we are absolutely adamant that this should not have happened. Surely if there is an issue with discs cooling (and I still can't see it applying to the above case) then on a modern car like the Honda, there should be some engineering solution to ensure the pads bind on progressively when cooling? Is this a design fault?
 

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I see where you are coming from but getting legal solutions to your problem I reckon would be nigh on impossible.

'Proving position of parking brake at the time of incident'

Not surprised from non reaction from Honda C.S.

It seems to be customer service in name only!

Shame really 'cos their cars are great!

With or without flat batteries & rain removal devices fitted to the rear.

"Did you ever notice that when you blow in a dog's face, he gets mad at you, but when you take him on a car ride, he sticks his head out of the window?"
Charles H.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
4 photos taken from different angles, with two witnesses who will corroborate that the photos were taken immediately after the incident?

If that's not enough, the law is an ass, as they say.

I'm just really disappointed they are so quick to dismiss it. If this is a reasonably common fault (one of the witnesses said it happened to her neighbour's Civic, although I can't confirm any accuracy on this), then surely something needs to be done before there is a serious incident?
 

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We bought a second-hand Honda Civic (April 06) SE 2.2 CTDi a couple of weeks ago and my wife had a really scary incident on Friday (12/01/07). She dropped her daughter off at school and left the car on an incline (most definitely NOT a hill) and put the handbrake fully on. Shortly afterwards, the car rolled down the incline, across the road, mounted the kerb (missing a bus stop by 10cm) and grazed the wall. Very fortunately, no one else was involved and no property damaged apart from a nasty graze on the rear bumper.

Two people were with her when she opened the car door and will bear witness that the handbrake was fully on and she took photos on her phone too. I had a play with the handbrake on Friday eve. and the photos clearly show it fully on. It is a 3 mile drive to school from home and therefore I don't imagine the rear discs would have been really hot (even with my wife's driving ;))

We took it to the local Honda dealer (not where we bought it) to have it checked and they made an adjustment to the handbrake.

The dealer we bought it from doesn't want to know and is basically saying it was my wife's fault. My wife has parked there many times before in other cars (including ones with rear discs) and has never had this problem before. Now I know all the stuff about leaving it in gear etc. but surely the parking brake should have worked in this instance? Otherwise, you may as well do away with it.

I have contacted Honda UK and am awaiting their response.

I would like to know where we stand legally on this, given witnesses etc. as we are absolutely adamant that this should not have happened. Surely if there is an issue with discs cooling (and I still can't see it applying to the above case) then on a modern car like the Honda, there should be some engineering solution to ensure the pads bind on progressively when cooling? Is this a design fault?


have saw 4 times this probleme in www.Civicyume.com ( france )
 

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This is a common problem with the strength that a woman uses to pull a handbrake 'fully on'.

After my wife uses our car her 'fully on' is easily taken off by me, but when she uses the car after me I get an ear bashing as she's had to use two hands to take it off!

On ANY incline (even on a driveway) the car should be left in gear; first if facing uphill and reverse if facing downhill.

The rear brakes could have been very hot if the handbrake had not been fully released from previously being applied and, coupled with a weak setting, could have freed as the brakes cooled.

Bad news I'm afraid, but I don't see any recompense from Honda or your dealer.:(
 

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Discussion Starter #6
My wife works out regularly at the gym and used to be an active sportswoman, so I don't think that stands up either. Also, I imagine (not tried it) that the computer will bleep loudly at you if you try to drive off with the handbrake on? It is very good at everything else like that.
 

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, I imagine (not tried it) that the computer will bleep loudly at you if you try to drive off with the handbrake on? It is very good at everything else like that.
Mine wasn't even working on delivery!

I couldn't set the speed warning indicators.

Obviously missed out on the PDI.

Working now tho'.

"Does pushing the lift button more than once make it arrive faster?"

Charles H.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I accept that things can get missed on a PDI - in our case, checking the adjustment of the handbrake. It's when the dealer won't admit it and doesn't want to know after they've taken your money which makes me mad.

This is my first Honda and the experience so far is not a good one.
 

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My wife works out regularly at the gym and used to be an active sportswoman, so I don't think that stands up either. Also, I imagine (not tried it) that the computer will bleep loudly at you if you try to drive off with the handbrake on? It is very good at everything else like that.
So does my daughter, but that didn't stop her Beetle rolling down the slope outside our house. My wife (soft handbrake setting) was at the gym when I replied (she goes three times a week at least).

I'm not apportioning blame, just mentioning possible causes.

Incidentally, it's also a good idea to turn the front wheels in towards the kerb; that way, if it rolls, the tyre only touches the kerb instead of rolling forwards or across the road.

Oh, and brakes can really overheat if the handbrake is not fully released. I should know as I was involved with a vehicle stopping 50 metres from me, catching fire from the rear brake drums and igniting detonators that caused a tonne of TNT to explode. That was back in 1989 if I remember correctly. The driver failed to release the handbrake fully when he stopped at lights 2 miles away as he drove through the city centre in Peterborough.

My apologies if you felt that I was blaming your wife; I was just stating possible causes. Incidentally, my daughter got nowhere with her claim against VW. Luckily your damage is minor and no-one was injured.
 

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By amazing coincidence, on Saturday this happened outside our house. A woman had parked there for the day to work in the town. Around 10am I saw the car on the opposite side of the road jammed against a Disco belonging to a neighbour. He wasn't very happy. He called the police because it was almost blocking a junction. They tried to contact the owner, and having failed, they had it towed away. About 6pm we got a knock on the door - it was her asking if we'd seen anyone steal her car! I guess that will have cost quite a bit to retrieve it, so in some ways you were quite lucky. This really is a common problem - some years ago a friend came round in his brand new Golf GTI (Mk1), and after coming in for a cup of tea he found it across the road with a flat tyre and a badly damaged alloy wheel. It's all about hot discs cooling till the calipes don't grip any more. So - as said above - ALWAYS leave in gear (or Park for Auto, obviously).
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Incidentally, it's also a good idea to turn the front wheels in towards the kerb; that way, if it rolls, the tyre only touches the kerb instead of rolling forwards or across the road.
I agree, and one thing I and my wife always do in addition to leaving it in gear - on a hill. Seriously, this was not a hill. I live in the Pennines and I know what a hill is :)

Oh, and brakes can really overheat if the handbrake is not fully released. I should know as I was involved with a vehicle stopping 50 metres from me, catching fire from the rear brake drums and igniting detonators that caused a tonne of TNT to explode. That was back in 1989 if I remember correctly. The driver failed to release the handbrake fully when he stopped at lights 2 miles away as he drove through the city centre in Peterborough.
Yikes, that sounds scary. I'm pretty sure (not 100% as I don't have the manual in front of me) that a car like the Civic with all its clever electronics will bleep at you if you try to set off with the handbrake on - maybe I'm wrong here?

My apologies if you felt that I was blaming your wife; I was just stating possible causes. Incidentally, my daughter got nowhere with her claim against VW. Luckily your damage is minor and no-one was injured.
I didn't feel that at all - all I was saying is that she does know how (and has the strength) to put a handbrake on fully, that's all. Thanks for your comments - not particularly what I wanted to hear :( but useful to know.
 

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When purchased my car was told by Dealer to leave in gear when parked so that this would not happen. Mrs Thiswilldo had it happen to her, a police officer parked in front of her on an incline, warm day, hand brake applied, and 10 mins later car rolled back into her. Luckily she knew Officer and was all sorted on Insurance.

This is to do with the brakes expansion when warm and contraction as cool.
 

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4 photos taken from different angles, with two witnesses who will corroborate that the photos were taken immediately after the incident?

If that's not enough, the law is an ass, as they say.

I'm just really disappointed they are so quick to dismiss it. If this is a reasonably common fault (one of the witnesses said it happened to her neighbour's Civic, although I can't confirm any accuracy on this), then surely something needs to be done before there is a serious incident?

they will turn round and say 'how do we know u didnt put the brakes on after the accident?' doubt u will get anywhere with this tbh, especially as there was no injury/damage etc. sorry dude
 

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Discussion Starter #16
they will turn round and say 'how do we know u didnt put the brakes on after the accident?' doubt u will get anywhere with this tbh, especially as there was no injury/damage etc. sorry dude
Well, there are two independent witnesses who were with my wife at the time she opened the door and will testify as to what happened. It is usually witnesses' testimony which is used in any dispute.
 

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This happened to me as well when I'd had the car for less than an hour.

Took it for a lovely drive (as you do), went home and parked on the drive (which has a fairly sharpe incline) only to have a knock on the door ten minutes later by a neighbour asking if the nice new car that was now parked neatly in the middle of an Audi S3 (which was parked horizontally at the bottom of the drive) belonged to me.

I could have died but I swear to this day that the handbrake was on. I always park in gear but for some reason I took it out of gear to do something and forgot to re-engage - a mistake I will NEVER repeat! Of course nobody believed me as it was a) under an hour old therefore it was assumed I do not know how to operate a handbrake and b) I'm a woman.

I was left doubting myself as I couldn't believe there could be a problem with the handbrake on a new car but this has given me hope that it was a handbrake failure!

Unfortunately I didn't take a picture as my top priority was detaching it from the Audi! We live and learn.
 

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The latest is that Honda UK don't want to know. :mad: I am hardly surprised as obviously there is an element of subjectivity and they wouldn't accept that anything is wrong. The dealer who checked the car insists that the parking brake was OK, despite making an adjustment but I am still not convinced as there is no way this should have happened, in my opinion.

It strikes me that there is a problem with the Civic by virtue of having discs at the rear, and no backup mechanism (I know other cars have backup drums for the parking brake), and therefore the disc brake cooling issue can obviously come into play, as clearly happened to my wife and, by the looks of it, quite a few other people.

I note that the Civic handbook states that on an incline, all that needs to be done is that the parking brake should be applied firmly, which indeed my wife did do. It only mentions using gears and turning the wheel on a hill. OK, I accept there is an argument about when does an incline become a hill etc. but this is a serious issue and there should be warning stickers and leaflets about this. We were very lucky in some respects that the incident didn't cause any injury to anyone - this was outside a school.

It strikes me as bizarre that there is a lot of effort put into airbags, crumple zones etc. but this seems to be a serious problem which is just not getting the attention it deserves. It's no good expecting everyone to understand the physics of disc brake systems - most people would expect a parking brake on an incline simply to work.

I have a bee in my bonnet about this now - where's that Watchdog e-mail:?:
 

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The latest is that Honda UK don't want to know. :mad: I am hardly surprised as obviously there is an element of subjectivity and they wouldn't accept that anything is wrong. The dealer who checked the car insists that the parking brake was OK, despite making an adjustment but I am still not convinced as there is no way this should have happened, in my opinion.

It strikes me that there is a problem with the Civic by virtue of having discs at the rear, and no backup mechanism (I know other cars have backup drums for the parking brake), and therefore the disc brake cooling issue can obviously come into play, as clearly happened to my wife and, by the looks of it, quite a few other people.

I note that the Civic handbook states that on an incline, all that needs to be done is that the parking brake should be applied firmly, which indeed my wife did do. It only mentions using gears and turning the wheel on a hill. OK, I accept there is an argument about when does an incline become a hill etc. but this is a serious issue and there should be warning stickers and leaflets about this. We were very lucky in some respects that the incident didn't cause any injury to anyone - this was outside a school.

It strikes me as bizarre that there is a lot of effort put into airbags, crumple zones etc. but this seems to be a serious problem which is just not getting the attention it deserves. It's no good expecting everyone to understand the physics of disc brake systems - most people would expect a parking brake on an incline simply to work.

I have a bee in my bonnet about this now - where's that Watchdog e-mail:?:

Can you get the handbrake checked for possible problems independantly?

I wrote to Honda CS again this weekend - I did mention Watchdog!!

Incidently who is your main dealership?
 
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