2018 Honda Accord Won’t Start Brake System Problem – Causes And Solutions

A modern vehicle like the 2018 Honda Accord has numerous electrical components that all need to work together. When one fails, it can cause a cascade of issues. This seems to be the case with the dreaded “2018 Honda accord won’t start brake system problem” message that prevents your Accord from starting.

The most common culprit for this issue is a dead or dying battery. But there could also be other electrical gremlins at play. We’ll explore the various causes, troubleshooting tips, and repair options so you can get rolling again.

Main Causes Of The Problem

There are a few key reasons why your 2018 Accord is displaying the brake system problem message and refusing to start:

  • Low Or Dead Battery
  • Faulty Alternator
  • Parasitic Draw
  • Bad Battery Cable Connections
  • Brake System Wiring Issues

Low Or Dead Battery

The most likely cause of the no start and brake system issue is a battery that’s drained or no longer holding a charge. The Accord’s sophisticated braking system relies on electric power. When the battery is weak, the brakes can’t engage properly.

Many of the Accord’s systems need a minimum voltage to activate. The powertrain control module prevents starting to avoid driving without properly functioning brakes.

Faulty Alternator

The alternator charges the battery while driving. If the alternator malfunctions, the battery won’t recharge sufficiently while operating the vehicle. This gradual power drain will eventually leave you stranded when the battery charge gets too low.

Parasitic Draw

Some electronic component that should power down is staying active and slowly siphoning away the battery’s charge. This parasitic draw will eventually kill your battery if the underlying issue isn’t addressed.

Bad Battery Cable Connections

Corroded or loose battery cables cause high resistance in the electrical system. This prevents proper charging and provides weak cranking power for starting.

Brake System Wiring Issues

Problems with wiring connectors or harnesses related to the brake system can mimic low battery voltage. The brake components may be fine, but bad wiring creates communication errors.

Troubleshooting Tips

Before paying for repairs or battery replacement, there are a few basic checks you can perform:

  • Try jump starting – Connect jumper cables from a running vehicle with a good battery to yours. If it starts up, your battery is likely the problem.
  • Check battery voltage – Use a multimeter to test your battery. It should show 12.4-12.6 volts when fully charged. Anything less indicates a bad cell.
  • Wiggle battery cables – If your charge seems ok, loose cable connections could be the culprit. Wiggle the cables while running to check for intermittent charging.
  • Scan for trouble codes – Use an OBD-II scanner to check for stored diagnostic trouble codes that may reveal issues.
  • Test for parasitic draw – Use a multimeter in amp mode to measure draw with the car off. More than 50 milliamps indicates a parasitic drain.

These tests can help narrow down whether the battery, alternator, cables or an electrical issue is causing the no start condition.

Battery Replacement Cost

If diagnostics point to a dead or dying battery, replacement is the fix. Battery costs for a 2018 Honda Accord range from:

  • Basic – $120-$180
  • Mid-grade – $160-$250
  • High-end – $200-$350

Prices depend on battery type, brand, and where you purchase from. An ACDelco mid-grade battery costs around $210 at Walmart. The same is $175 from Amazon. Dealers tend to be most expensive.

You can save money with a basic battery, but a mid-grade provides better power and longevity. The factory Honda battery is usually a top-tier premium unit.

Here are average replacement costs from various retailers:

Honda Dealer
Local Repair Shop

Prices above are general estimates, but provide a good guideline for budgeting. Expect to pay $150-$250 for a quality mid-grade battery with 3-5 year warranty.

Other Repair Costs

In some cases, the problem may not be the battery itself. Here are cost estimates for other repairs:

  • Alternator replacement – $450 to $850, including labor
  • Parasitic draw diagnosis – $90 to $180
  • Electrical wiring repairs – $200 to $1200
  • Brake system sensor – $50 to $350
  • Cable and connection repairs – $150 to $350
  • Computer module replacement – $900 to $2100

Electrical issues can get expensive, over $1000 in some cases. Proper diagnosis is key before throwing parts at the problem.

Getting Back On The Road

  • Try jump starting the vehicle – If it starts, get to a shop to test your charging system & battery. Drive directly there while running to avoid killing battery during next startup.
  • Have the battery tested – Most auto parts stores do this for free. They can confirm if the battery needs replacement.
  • Check alternator output – Don’t just replace the battery if the alternator isn’t charging sufficiently.
  • Inspect electrical connectors – Battery cables and brake system wiring should be checked for damage, corrosion and snug connections.
  • Scan for trouble codes – This diagnostic check can help identify any sensor or computer failures causing system errors.
  • Consider towing to a shop – If you can’t get it started, a tow to a repair shop may be safest. Technicians have proper tools to diagnose issues.
  • Review warranty coverage – The battery may still be under the 3-year Honda warranty. Other components may also be covered.
  • Contact Honda support – Open a case with Honda for advice and support. They can assist with troubleshooting or locating a dealer for warranty repairs.

With some basic troubleshooting, you can likely get your 2018 Accord running again or determine if professional diagnosis is needed. Pay attention to any dash lights or other symptoms that can aid in pinpointing the cause.

Preventing Future Issues

To help avoid getting stranded again, here are some maintenance tips:

  1. Clean battery cables yearly – Use a wire brush to scrub away corrosion on terminals and cable ends.
  2. Check terminals are tight – Loose connections cause problems over time.
  3. Load test battery annually – Many auto parts stores offer free battery testing.
  4. Replace battery every 4-5 years – Average battery life is 3-5 years. Don’t wait for complete failure.
  5. Address check engine lights – Diagnose and repair any electrical issues promptly to prevent damage.
  6. Maintain electrical systems – Follow recommended service schedule for charging system, sensors, computers, etc.
  7. Park in a covered area – Avoid extended sun exposure which can shorten battery life.
  8. Disconnect if storing – Remove battery tender if car will sit unused for weeks. Parasitic draw drains battery.

Regular battery and electrical system maintenance provides the best odds of avoiding getting stranded by electrical gremlins. But even well-maintained cars can suffer failures. Use the guidance in this article to get back on the road quickly if your Honda won’t start.


Having a 2018 Honda Accord won’t start brake system problem can certainly ruin your day. But in most cases, the cause is a simple dead battery that just needs replacement.

Jumping the car or testing the battery yourself are good first steps. If you need professional diagnosis or repair, costs can range from $100 for a basic battery up to $1000+ for major electrical issues.

Also Read: Honda Accord Electric Parking Brake System Problem

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Ammar Masoud

I have had a long and fulfilling career in the automotive industry, primarily with Honda and Acura. With 15 years of experience as a Honda service technician, I became highly skilled in repair and maintenance, gaining a deep understanding of these vehicles. After many years in the automotive field, I decided to embark on a second career in industrial manufacturing. It was a significant change, but I found that the skills I had honed in the automotive industry were incredibly valuable in my new role. In my current position in industrial manufacturing, the demand for quality workmanship and meticulous attention to detail is paramount. Fortunately, these are traits that I have cultivated throughout my years in the automotive industry. I take pride in applying these skills to meet the high standards expected in the manufacturing sector.