Today I’ll be replacing a starter in a 2004 Honda Accord V6 (7th generation 2003–2007). Replacing a starter is largely the same in most cars but I’ll include specific information like bolt sizes and locations for this car. As always, I’ll include affiliate links to the tools I used.
The starter is always attached to the transmission so it usually pretty easy to find. In our case it is on the right side of the transmission below and to the left of the the battery. The first step is to disconnect and remove the battery because it blocks access to the starter’s bolts and also because there is a hot unfused wire (+12v) connected the starter.
With the battery out it’s easier to see the starter. Mine has an orange sticker and I am pointing to it below.
You can try to get the starter out with the battery tray in place but I recommend removing the battery tray for easier access. The tray is held in with two 12mm bolts that are facing up and easy to get to (and two more that are less easy to get to).
The next two 12mm bolts are below the tray on the right side bolted sideways (toward the driver side). You can see me reaching under the tray with my Ryobi impact wrench and an extension. I could also do this with a standard wrench or ratcheting wrench but it would be a little tedious due to how little space there is to turn the wrench. Tip: Don’t remove these two bolts. Just loosen them. The battery tray is bolted via slots not holes so you can slide it out when the bolts are loosened just a little bit.
With the battery tray out we can freely access the starter. There are 2 wires that we must detach from the starter. One is very small (female spade connector) that you just pull off with no tools. This is the ignition signal to activate the solenoid — this is what gets power (+12v) when you turn the key. I pull it off in the picture below. Don’t get thrown off by the aftermarket aluminum intake pipe in the picture that your car probably doesn’t have.
The next one is the main power coming from the battery that is held on with a 14mm nut. Don’t confuse this with the slightly smaller connection right next it. That one goes from the starter solenoid to the starter motor. We want the one going from the battery to the starter solenoid. If in doubt, follow the main power you disconnected from your battery to the starter. See below where I have already disconnected it in the green circle. The cable you can leave connected is circled in red.
With the two cables disconnected we can now remove the starter assembly. It is held on the transmission with two 17mm bolts. A short one on top and a longer one on the bottom. It’s hard to photograph but you can’t miss them. I broke them each loose with a 3/8" breaker bar and deep well socket.
After I break them loose I removed them with the same Ryobi impact wrench.
At this point (with both 17mm bolts removed) the starter will basically just fall out. This car has over 290k miles on it so I’d say we got our money’s worth out of the old starter.
There’s no secret trick to installing the new starter. Just re-do everything you just undid using the original 17mm bolts.
Reconnect the small power wire by pushing the spade connector back on.
Reconnect the main power. My new starter came with a new 13mm bolt so I’m using it.
You’re in the home stretch now. Re-install the battery tray and battery. Make sure the connections are tight on the battery and go start the car (after you make sure you didn’t leave any tools in the engine bay).
Thanks for reading!