1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Another WTF is Wrong with My Car Thread

Discussion in 'General Tech and Maintenance' started by |Chaz|, Jul 2, 2012.

  1. |Chaz|

    |Chaz| Well-Known Member VIP

    Messages:
    6,125
    Likes Received:
    253
    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2007
    Location:
    Washington
    Alright boys and girls, my 1992 Civic Sedan with a JDM D15b VTEC (not the three stage VTEC) has been driving... oddly. At the behest of Matts96HB, I changed my fuel filter because in the 205k miles of the chassis, it has never been changed as far as I know. I changed that because my car had been stumbling and hesitating while driving.

    That change seemed to help a little... but now it is back to feeling the same. Around town under 40 mph it feels a little less unsorted, but still down on power. Once on the freeway, it makes me worry if the car is even going to make it to work 10 miles away. It's not a dramatic hesitation or stumbling, but going downhill, pressing lightly on the gas pedal, I can feel the car hesitate and resume and hesitate and resume.

    I checked the spark plugs, they seem to be within the appropriate appearance according to the spark plug thread.

    The wires are slightly dirty looking and actually look like they have some wear to them so I think they could definitely be replaced at this point. I don't know however if this would cause my symptoms to the extent that I'm feeling.

    I have seen that a bad ignition coil could cause my symptoms or a bad rotor/cap/distributor.

    Any other ideas? Ask me questions and I'll do my best to answer them. This is my only means of transportation. My girlfriend and I carpool in this car everyday to work so we're pretty dependent on this stupid thing.

    Thanks in advance for your help.
    Chad
     
  2. SlushboxTeggy

    SlushboxTeggy It's only stupid if it doesn't work VIP

    Messages:
    9,392
    Likes Received:
    245
    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2004
    Location:
    New Jersey
    It's going to sound weird, but check your coolant level. If you have a leak/air in the system, it can cause the hesitation similar to what you're talking about.
     
  3. |Chaz|

    |Chaz| Well-Known Member VIP

    Messages:
    6,125
    Likes Received:
    253
    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2007
    Location:
    Washington
    Alright, I will. Now that you mention it, every now and then I'll pop the hood and there will a little puddle of coolant on the radiator... could be cracked.

    Would this also cause my car to feel down on power?
     
  4. SlushboxTeggy

    SlushboxTeggy It's only stupid if it doesn't work VIP

    Messages:
    9,392
    Likes Received:
    245
    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2004
    Location:
    New Jersey
    The way you described it it seems spot on. I'm actually in the midst of dealing with this issue with the 2nd radiator in my Teg. Yesterday, it was a scorcher and after a 20 minute drive air/vapor was actually hissing out of the radiator. I'll drive around with coolant in the trunk until I get around to fixing it.
     
  5. reckedracing

    reckedracing TTIWWOP VIP

    Messages:
    21,057
    Likes Received:
    1,180
    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2002
    Location:
    NY
    1. compression test to rule out motor weakness/failure.
    then move onto spark and timing
    low coolant usually first manifests itself with bouncing idle, if iac equipped

    check your inlets and outlets
    clogged air filter, or cat
    my money is on cat if it OE equipment

    edit1: put vice grips on fuel return to rule out a weak/smoked fuel pump

    any CEL? other symptoms?
    visually inspect cap and rotor for burn to a crispness

    heat related issues include bad distributor and potential main relay problems, but the main relay is usually a go or no go, wont even start the car
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2012
  6. 92stoccord

    92stoccord Big Member VIP

    Messages:
    4,595
    Likes Received:
    234
    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2008
    Location:
    Salem, Ohio
    I was going to also suggest checking your fuel pressure. Since changing the fuel filter seemed to help, perhaps it was that the fuel pump is weak and couldn't push through all the garbage blocking the filter. Other's suggestions seem to be a bit easier though, I'd check those first. What's supposed to happen if you clamp the return line?

    Edit: My second guess is also the cat if it's old/never been changed. I just drilled a 1 inch hole in my girlfriend's aunt's Taurus's cat. It went from barely climbing a hill to having considerable power with full A/C on. It's surprising how much it can effect it.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2012
  7. Dual-500

    Dual-500 Well-Known Member VIP

    Messages:
    2,205
    Likes Received:
    216
    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2008
    Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
    What is the gas mileage. I would be tempted to clean the injectors. Check for exhaust backpressure in front of the cat too. Many time when fuel injectors get dirty, they won't flow correctly and will not seal - i.e. leak and make the engine run rich.
     
  8. |Chaz|

    |Chaz| Well-Known Member VIP

    Messages:
    6,125
    Likes Received:
    253
    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2007
    Location:
    Washington
    I'm getting about 32-35 mpg. How do I check for exhaust back pressure in front of the cat?
     
  9. 92stoccord

    92stoccord Big Member VIP

    Messages:
    4,595
    Likes Received:
    234
    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2008
    Location:
    Salem, Ohio
  10. |Chaz|

    |Chaz| Well-Known Member VIP

    Messages:
    6,125
    Likes Received:
    253
    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2007
    Location:
    Washington
    Sorry, no check engine lights (CEL). Put that in case some noob comes along and reads this thread. Took me forever to figure out what CEL meant when I was a noob, I was a dumb noob.
     
  11. CAFROG

    CAFROG Honda Minion VIP

    Messages:
    4,417
    Likes Received:
    154
    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2009
    Location:
    NOR-CAL
    Shot in the dark......but TPS can start to fail and have similar symptoms.

    In terms of catalytic converters.....you can take you cat out and look though it (at the sun...like a scope) if you can't see any light....cat is clogged.
     
  12. 92stoccord

    92stoccord Big Member VIP

    Messages:
    4,595
    Likes Received:
    234
    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2008
    Location:
    Salem, Ohio
    If its bad enough, beat it a little with a hammer, stand behind the car and have someone rev it, and put your hand behind the muffler. If you get flakes on your hand its time for a change.
     
  13. Dual-500

    Dual-500 Well-Known Member VIP

    Messages:
    2,205
    Likes Received:
    216
    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2008
    Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
    That's good mileage - probably not dirty injectors or the cat. TPS would be next on my list as CAFROG suggested.
     
  14. dc4dude

    dc4dude Member

    Messages:
    904
    Likes Received:
    17
    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2008
    Location:
    chicago, il
    real quick question, does the hesitation get worse at low rpms, and go away at higher rpms? do you get a POP under acceleration at low rpms? might be a coil going out. check the cap for any carbon tracking, check the coil for any cracks or carbon tracks... and when any of this happens, it usually wont trigger a cel.. tps will set off a cel (usually)
     
  15. dc4dude

    dc4dude Member

    Messages:
    904
    Likes Received:
    17
    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2008
    Location:
    chicago, il
    also, with the engine running, LIGHTLY spray water over the wires to see if they are arcing... listen for a arcing wire, watch for the spark...
     
  16. Matts96HB

    Matts96HB . Moderator VIP

    Messages:
    6,483
    Likes Received:
    390
    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2006
    does it vary based upon how much gas is in the tank?
     
  17. thsancho86

    thsancho86 Member

    Messages:
    132
    Likes Received:
    3
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2007
    Location:
    SC
    When I changed out the header on my 97 ex I knicked the O2 sensor wire and had to cut and reconnect them, several moths later mine was kind of doing the same thing. It would do okay in the city but wouldn't go over 50 without bogging down. I properly reconnected the wire and it ran perfectly fine after that. So that might be a connection to check.
     
  18. Dual-500

    Dual-500 Well-Known Member VIP

    Messages:
    2,205
    Likes Received:
    216
    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2008
    Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
    ^ Did it throw a CEL code?
     
  19. thsancho86

    thsancho86 Member

    Messages:
    132
    Likes Received:
    3
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2007
    Location:
    SC
    Oddly enough it didn't. I had changed plugs wire and my fuel filter all before hand and when that didn't do it I did the wire repair as a shot in the dark.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2012
  20. Dual-500

    Dual-500 Well-Known Member VIP

    Messages:
    2,205
    Likes Received:
    216
    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2008
    Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
    ^ I've had TPS sensors with rough spots in them that didn't trip the CEL threshold.
     
Verification:
Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page