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Honda Accord (1990-1993) Maintenance and Repair



  • pandia1pandia1 Posts: 1
    I am proud of the choice made ~ 15 years ago to buy this. Pity the SE leather was a '93. Chose the EX because I wanted the sunroof - every other perk like alloy wheels, etc., were icing. The alternate was the really "fabulous but expensive V6 Maxima'. At 119000 miles, TLC and "JUST HONDA" quality has kept this a beauty.
    A major problem, literally affecting about a million cars 2nd to 4th generation honda Accords! At the start,(like U&I pay attention!) D4 starts flashing - code -15 , AND the car cruising at 50-70mph suddenly quits the transmission, and speed drops quickly to 20mph before limping to a stop - life threatening on a major road. !#*$^! Honda is too good a company to be so so stupid about this. Remember the "K" cars.
    The problem is the A/T TCU-TCM. A $4 to $40 issue! Labor is about 0.5 billable hours!!! A small component of the "TCU" is blown like an old-time transister! My friendly local mechanic actually pulled the whole unit, opened the A/T Unit and pointed out the blown piece to me. The Honda factory price is $519.74, plus labor, misc., pushing a grand - my car's retail cost - $4,540 - for an excellent car!
    My kingdom for a horse shoe-nail comes to mind! All every one, dealer or eBay, does is replace a $5-$15 dollar unit on the board! This is why the internet, eBay or even the dealer wants you to , respestively, WANT YOU to return the old A/T TCU or ask you to send them the unit, fix it, and turnover is two days! Just one burnt component on a circuit board! `
    So, find some kid with soldering skill, a 'shack visit, and all is fine. Concurrent solenoid/s may need replacement, not related to the life-or-death A/T TCU. hONDA WILL NOT SELL JUST THE IC-BOARD. The A/T unit we see is just a very good housind for the board. This is the actual part number from Accord book, and the price from Honda's eStore: CONTROL UNIT, AT 28100-PX0-731 or 28100-PX0-732 - both priced $519.74. Then, labor costs! The ECU is attached but is not affected, and that costs $893.22!
    Since the numbers involved are maybe milions, why did Honda recall and fix the circuit board? How come hundreds of lawyers are not filing CLASS-ACTION suits?
    Does someone have to die or numerous maiming "accidents" have to happen, before the fiasco of the K cars are repeated?!
  • hey i was wondering if by any long shot if Honda offered any type of discount or any noterity given to cars that crack the 300k mark. my accord is close to breaking 300k and is running fine aside from the regular maintanence and oil changes this car has been running fine on the same transmisson.

    i was thinking of sending honda an email and photo of my car's life story and how it has endured throughout the years. what do you think the chances of getting anything from HONDA are?
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,637
    Congrats on your good care of your car---I really don't think though that this will impress Honda all that much, but they might send you something, what the heck, why not?
  • chan5chan5 Posts: 1
    I have a 93 Accord, Anniversary edition.
    When I turn the AC switch on, the condenser fan does not run. however, when the engine temp goes up, both fans (condenser and radiator) run.
    Is the condenser fan not supposed to run when ever the AC is on.
    I was charging my AC system, and noticed that the Cond fan wasn't turning and it took for ever for the 134 freon to charge. When the raciator fan kicked in, the charge started filling.
    I am wondering if there is any specific relay that turns the cond fan when AC is turned on.
    Help from the Forum will be greatly appreciated.
  • songbyrdsongbyrd Posts: 2
    i have a 90 honda accord lx. Its bee running warm recently, but that was attributed to the timing belt being adjusted too high. Unfortunately i discovered steam coming from under the hood and a hot spring coming from a small crack in the top of the radiator, and another at the top of the overflow resevuare. I was told the radiator was metal, it turns out its plastic. Why is water coming out of the top of the overflow bottle when the bottle is not even half full and is there a patch made for the radiator for a short term fix? :confuse: :lemon:
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    It won't be their first 300k mile car, that's for sure, but it is notable! I read (in Motor Trend) of a 1994 Accord Manual Tranny Coupe that managed 1,100,000 before being sold; still running fine. All the guy had replaced was clutches, the instrument cluster, and regular maintenance done. I saw pictures of it, as well as the odometer - it read something like 700,000 - the first one, like my 1996 LX, had died, although mine played out at 111,000 miles, not 400,000 like his.
  • merklemerkle Posts: 1
    I had a similiar problem last summer with my 95 accord. Small crack in top of radiator, driving from Florida to St. Louis - got stuck in Tennessee. What happens is the radiator crack opens up at high temps, your coolant will leak out and the car will overheat. There is a patch kit made for this, costs about $10. It got me back on the road and seemed to be work fine. I happened to meet a radiator guy at a rest stop. He suggested replacing the radiator when I got off the road, to avoid further problems. A non-honda radiator was about $130, good for my piece of mind. I think the patch would've held for a long time, didn't want to risk it though. It's basically a piece of fiberglass mesh and an epoxy paste - rough up the crack and apply.
    Don't know about the overflow bottle. I'd guess the steam is forcing the water out? Take care of that radiator, else major complications.
    Plastic radiator was a shock to me. I was looking to solder the thing.
  • I drive a 93 accord LX and it does not overheat but it get close to the red on the temp gauge, I noticed that it only happens when I drive it for about 90-100mi and thats when it starts to warm up like that, no steam coming from under the hood I had that once and I replaced the hoses and radiator, the car has 191,000mi on it, the car does not warm up in town I only drive to school and back its about a 13min trip. Could it be the thermostat? Any help will be appreciated... thanks
  • songbyrdsongbyrd Posts: 2
    thanks, and the plastic radiator shocked me as well. I wanted to sauder it as well. I had an old chevy s-10 that cracked in the same place but that was a simple solution being that it was metal. Do you think that it could the hoses running to the overflow tank that would make it run out of the top and not the bottom. If the water is not getting to the bottle it has to go somewhere right? could a hole in the hoses or them dry rotting cause the water not to get to the bottle?
  • lpaeslpaes Posts: 17
    Hello :

    I have a 1993 accord EX (140K miles) that spilt a lot of oil today and was smoking as well.

    Any idea what the problem could be ? Am hoping the fix will not be over the value of the car
  • mrbill1957mrbill1957 Posts: 815
    Where was the oil spitting out from?

    If it was out the tail pipe, my guess would be a head gasket.

    Check your oil and see if you see any coolent in it, check the radiator and see if there is any oil in it. If so, head gasket is shot.

    You can also do a compression check to see if one cylinder is leaking.

  • lpaeslpaes Posts: 17
    Thanks for the tip -
    The oil is dripping from the front of the engine and does not seem to have any coolant in it ... guess i'll have to take it to the mechanic - don't know what estimates he'll come up with :( the car is probably worth $3500 ... and don't have to spend a huge amt.
  • wfresewfrese Posts: 1
    Hello every one

    I'm new to this forum, and I'm hoping someone can help me out with a somewhat extensice question. I have a 1993 Accord EX with about 160,000 miles on it. Overall, the car is in excellent condition and has ALWAYS been maintained well.

    A couple of week ago, the I was driving the car as usual (and it was acting as usual), and while slowing down to a stoplight, the engine just suddenly cut-out, and when I tried to restart it, it would turn-over, but not start. Anyhow, the car ended-up getting towed, and the mechanic said it was the distributor. The car got a rebuilt distributor, and life went on as normal...

    I had been driving the car around for a week,and had noticed that the engine was a little 'peppier' than normal (i.e: the car didn't really want to slow down when braking--it was like I was braking while still pressing the gas), but I thought that might just be due to the new part.

    Long story short, later that week, and about 60 miles later, the car did the SAME thing. The engine suddednly cut-out, and would not restart.

    So I had the car towed a SECOND time within that same week, and this time the mechanic is not sure what is wrong with it...

    Here's what I do know: The 10 Amp ECU fuse located in the fuse box under the cars hood (passanger side) is reportdly the culprit; it keeps blowing, and when it is replaced the car starts. The mechanic reportedly tested all the electronics and the car's computer, and said that everything is reportedly working fine--hence he can not find the problem causing the short. He said that he could try replacing the ECU, but he was not sure if that would fix the problem since his tests siad it was reportedly working, and realizing I had just spent $$$ for a distribitor, he did not want to make mne [ay for possibly needless repairs.

    Instead of a 10 Amp fuse, he put a 25 Amp fuse in the ECU slot (yes, I know this is a bad thing...), and the car will RELUNCTANTLY work. I.E: everytime I am driving and press the break to slow down the engine's RPMs will go down, and the car will sputter/choke like it is going to die, and then when the brake is firmly press the car seems to self recover...

    I have done a series of 'experiments' and anything less than a 25 amp fuse will blow. Furthermore, this only occurs when the car is in drive, and the brake is then applied. I can drive it in reverse (or have it sit in neutral) and press the brake and nothing happens. Furthermore, the car can idle forever, I can slam on the gas or 'coast' to stop and nothing will happen.

    So any thoughts?
    1)Is there a ground thats bad?
    2)Is the ECU really bad, despite the check reportedly being OK?
    3)What is an ECU anyway, and how much will it cost? Given the recen distributor, I can't afford much more right now.
    4)Is it possible this rebuilt distributor is causing this (I asked my meachanic this aand hes says definitely not--although I'm having trouble beliving him since this is when the trouble began...)
    5) Is there any way I can at least quich-fix this problem to drive it to another garage? The car won't make it beyond the driveway without blowing a fuse, and I really, really do not want to drive it with the 25 amp fuse since I know that may potentially be shorting out other electrical circuits.

    Pleas Help!!
  • mbkaisermbkaiser Posts: 2
    I just recently bought 1990 accord 140K miles. Ran great all week, but had to rewire the radio. Got it home, and went to start, and the clutch was on the floor. I could get the car to start, but the clutch has no tension. I never blew a clutch before, thought it might be a fuse or relay. Is that how blown clutches act? What is a typical cost for repair. :confuse:
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,637
    Probably the hydraulic clutch slave cylinder. Check the clutch fluid reservoir and I bet you'll find it quite empty.

    Not a big deal. If you need a new clutch slave installed, maybe...I dunno....$150? If the clutch MASTER cylinder is bad, then you probaly want to also replace the slave cylinder, maybe $300-$350 for all that.

    Your clutch is probably fine, it's just the one or two pumps that help your foot move it.
  • amazonamazon Posts: 293
    Hi everybody!!!

    I've got a '93 Accord LX with a new AC compressor I put in last August. The system was evacuated and charged with R134, and worked fine afterwards- until now...

    In fact, nothing happens when I try to turn the A/C on. Not even the evaporator fan works... I'm thinking it's something electrical.

    Are there any simple things I can check before taking it to the mechanic?
  • mrbill1957mrbill1957 Posts: 815
    My guess is you lost your charge.

    I'm assuming you ment the fan by the condensor, not evaporator. The Condensor is by the radiator, the evaporator is inside the car in the ductwork.

  • amazonamazon Posts: 293
    Condensor fan- that's what I meant. Even if the charge is lost, shouldn't the clutch on the compressor at least engage?
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    Clutch slave, master cylinder (I knew it was a bad sign when the only think in the reservoir was a few broken bits of rubber o-ring) on a 93 EX. Was timed really poorly (couldn't fix it myself) and ended up being ~$450 from the Honda dealer (oh and that included 2 new radiator hoses). The car only had about 75k on it at the time though.
  • mrbill1957mrbill1957 Posts: 815
    I'm not an expert at A/C systems in cars, but for what I've run into, most (maybe all) A/C systems in cars have a pressure switch that keeps the compressor from running when the system is out of refrigerant. If the system was empty, and the leak was on the low pressure side, running the compressor could draw outside air (and moisture) into the system. That can cause alot of damage.

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