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Older Civic Maintenance and Repair


I am looking for any kind of help or suggestions that I can get. My 98 has recently been giving me problems. It looks as if the battery is going. But we have checked that and it seems to be fine. I will be driving and the whole thing will shut down [no sputtering just shuts down]. I will try to start it back up and I get nothing. It wont even turn over. The radio and the clock have reset [which is what led me to believe that it was the battery]. Once I jump start the car it works just fine. This has happened about 3 times now, and seems to happen when I am low on gas. I am not out of gas.. just on the low side. Which makes no sense. And I dont see how the two can be related, unless it is just some sort of freak accident.

Also, and I have no clue if this is part of the same problem.. I will drive my car for quite a while [ about an hour drive seems to be where this happens].. and then stop somewhere. If I get back in my car to start it up with in 15 min.. it will not start. But if I let it sit there for about 30 min or longer it will start up just fine.

Someone suggested starter for the second problem, but I have nothing on the first. I will take any suggestions that I can get [besides just taking it to the junk yard, as many have suggested already].



  • I am new to this forum and really need help. I have a Honda Civic 99 model car. recently for the past 2 weeks or so while I am driving suddenly my engine shuts off, and I have to pull to shoulder and when I start again it is fine. Also I noticed my music system was playing when this happens and nothing else works not even my blinkers. It is scary. No
    other engine fail indication or any warning. My friends says this is something to do with alternator. I didn't change my fuel filter for a while. Any help will be appreciated before I take to some mechnaic. I tried
    to post this question to the forum but unable to do so - so reaching you guys. This is similar to one posted by cnu_gurl any suggestion will be appreciated PLEASE HELP !!!
  • I could use someones help. I just purchased a 1999 Honda Civic but now that I have driven it a little while I have noticed that when I put the car in reverse it makes a whining sound. The car is an automatic so I don't know where the noise could be coming from. Anybodies help would be greatly appreciated.
  • nikky7nikky7 Posts: 4
    I have had my 2003 civic since it was new. In the past few months, when the heater is on, there is a hot chemical odor. Also at times it smells like paint thinner. Does anyone have any idea what this smell is and where it is coming from?
  • Hi everyone again. I'm sure you're sick of hearing about my 2003 Honda Civic EX coupe 5spd. Its basically on every maintinence forum on here at some point because of all the problems I've been having. Well I've got a new one for everyone.

    I was driving home from school last night and the ABS light came on. Within 2 minutes, the gauges stayed lit but they all went dead (tach to 0, speed to 0, fuel and temp to low). Then my lights went dim and started losing all kinds of power. Other system lights came on such as the airbag light, cruise control light, check engine light (cause by this point the engine started misfiring due to low electrical). I pull over to the side of the road and the car misfires to a stall. Could not get the car restarted right away. So I end up pushing it into a parking lot and let it sit for like 45 minutes while I wait for my dad. He gets there, we go outside, and the battery recovered itself enough to get the car started. We are running the car, and the battery voltage across it only reads 11.5 Volts. We turn on the lights and the ABS light turns on again and the whole sequence starts over.

    Here's what we checked:

    Grounding connections

    All checked out OK.

    Now we thought maybe the alternator, however the battery light on the dash was the ONLY light NEVER to come on during this whole sequencing of powering down. When we got it started the battery light flickered a couple of times but went away.

    Would anyone agree with me that maybe a wire to the alternator was damaged or came loose from the head gasket replacement I had done last week?

    Any other suggestions as to what it could be or similar experiences?

    I appreciate any help or suggestions I can get.

    If it turns out to be another major problem I promise everyone this will be one of my last posts on the Honda forum at least about my own car. I will still offer suggestions to others with the knowledge I acccumulated from Hondas I owned but I will be getting rid of this car and going with another brand and NEVER step foot in another Honda dealership again.
  • jody42jody42 Posts: 1
    i have a 1979 honda civic with 47,000 original miles, as i was driving the other day it just stopped, and after a few minutes it started up again only to die after a few minutes. this contuned a few times,any one have any ideas where to start looking for problems? thanks
  • jd10013jd10013 Posts: 779
    it most deffinitly sounds like your altenator is dead, or rather, dying. your car runs off the battery, but the altenator recharges the battery. If the battery is not being sufficently recharged, then the problems you describe will occur. take the car to a mechanic. They can check to see how much power the altenator is producing. In short, whats happening is, the longer you drive the car, the more power your drawing from the batter. But, the atlenator is not recharging the battery. Even the best batteries will eventulay run out of power if not recharged.
  • Thank you for the reply. My dad looked at it and it turned out that my mechanic that fixed the head gasket did not tighten the alternator power cable to the lug properly, causing the wire to overheat, and eventually short out after arcing. It's been about a week now and everything looks good so far. Again, thanks for the reply!
  • 92civic92civic Posts: 1
    I have a 1992 honda civic that the speedometer stoped working does this car have a speedometer cable or it a computer that this runs off of.

    Is it hard to repair or replace?
  • evandlevandl Posts: 2
    91 Honda Civic distrubtor 1.5. At an idle in gear, neutral, does not matter but there seems to be a bit a rough idle intermittently. It seems as though it has a bit a of a miss, or about to stall but it does not. IF the idle is increased a bit the problem vanishes. The cap had cracks and burn marks but with over a 100k miles, so it was replaced. Wires and plugs are good with no carbon tracking and gaped fine. I have also noticed this problem in friends cars around the same year and mileage. This all happened after the head gasket was replaced. Timing is also on the mark. The only problem I could think of is the throttle body may need cleaning, but have not been able to get around to it. I was wondering if any one else has encounter this problem?
  • evandlevandl Posts: 2
    The 1.6, 1.5 vtec, and 1.5 16valve have an electronic speedometer and takes about an hour to replace and is not hard.
  • Hi,I'v got a 99 Honda civic coupe with D16Y engin. My car overheats whenever I go over 140k/h about 70m/h or if I accelerate fast, I have changed the rediator,new 2 fans, new thermostat,and I use the right % of antifreez water. The car over heats wither the AC is on or not,water jupms out the rediator which indicates that the water pump is working. I dont know what the deal is, one more thing, whenever I check the bottle next to the rediator after each trip, its always full with water,even though its was filled beteen the min and max lines before the trip, plz help..
  • kenlwkenlw Posts: 190
    the bottle is full because the fluid has expanded due to the heat. That part is normal.

    Does the fluid look dark or have brown streaks in it?
  • hi
    99 honda civic, D16Y engine(not VTEC), when I step on it, it takes long time to give the full power, for ex. from rpm 2-rpm 4 , it takes long time then when it passes rpm 4.5 it gives crazy power as if it was a VTEC , I dont have anything added on the engine, I have used all the full cleaners a man kind made,am using a 40Am battery, air filter is cleaned regularly and the del co is balanced,
  • It used to have brown streaks in it, something like a thick brown mud, the x owner used drinking water in the radiator,however it had disappeared ever since I changed the radiator. I dont know if this is useful to know, the gasket between the exhaust and the maniful is broken. one more thing, when i installed the new radiator and fans, i drove the car for straight hour and half on 160k/h about 100 m/h and the tempretur was stable the whole trip, it was slightly above half which is the normal Honda tempreture but the it started to over heat again after 3 days,there is no leak, and the radiator led doesn't leak
  • wsustudentwsustudent Posts: 35
    Looks like you exhausted all possiblities except for the head gasket which is what I suspect. You are describing the same symptoms my car was experiencing especially with that overflow bottle completely filled up. I would get that in as soon as possible for that, if you keep let it overheating you may warp the aluminum head and it will cost more to have that milled/remachined to straighten it out. The sooner the better and the better chance you have of making it a cheaper repair.

    Most people would say the head gasket is only blown if you start seeing white smoke coming out of the exhaust, but this was not true with my vehicle because it was not "burning" enough coolant to see an effect in the exhaust yet. I caught it in the early stages of the gasket deterioration and leaking so it was just enough to create air pockets in the cooling system and cause the overheating and the overfilled bottle. Also in the winter time I was not getting good heat output in the cabin because of all the air trapped in the system.
  • I will try that for sure and let you know , thanks alot for the advice as i also thought that the gasket is broken only if there is white smoke coming out, your theory makes sense
  • :confuse: We've got a 1990 Honda civic that's run like a charm until, suddenly the radio/cassette deck stopped working, just dead, then a couple of days later the car started stalling in the middle of drives. We've had it towed three times into varying repair shops: two had no idea what was wrong, one claimed a loose screw ... but many $$ later, no radio, still stalling.

    Surely there must be some connection between the radio and the stalling problem. What could we check!!??


    Many thanks!!
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    Suspect basic electrical problem (corrosion or bad main fuse link/cable, ignition key switch going bad, battery, etc)
  • wsustudentwsustudent Posts: 35
    I agree with kiawah, especially if you are able to get the car restarted it sounds like the alternator is still kicking out and keeping your battery charged, otherwise you would not be restarting the car. Another thing to check other than what was mentioned would be to check your main ground running from your battery to the frame. If that loosens it can cause this problem.
  • Hey , I did what you suggested, i replaced the head gasket,manful gasket and the idol water fuel valve plus i cleaned the block and tuned the engine,and i checked all the sensors because the check engine yellow light is still on, nothing is wrong, nothing is missing, my car is still overheating whenever i exceed 140km/h 80m/h...I need help plz
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