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Older Civic Maintenance and Repair



  • pilot1226pilot1226 Posts: 165
    Thanks. I recently was reading over the owner's manual again and noticed that there's two schedules. I'd always known this, and I've been following the NORMAL operating schedule, but apparently I just turned the page and didn't notice that during SEVERE operating, you should replace it at 60k.

    When operating under the normal schedule, it's 10 years or 105,000 miles - so I'm still good to go for another 20k!

    Thanks for the thoughts, (still getting rid of the car for a Subaru, though!)
  • pav1pav1 Posts: 1
    First off, I am the new guy, so hi to everyone.

    And now for el problemo. Couple of wks ago as i am heading out for work, i go to turn on my A/C and low and behold, the fan blower is not blowing at all!! It's like it thinks it's on summer vacation.(of course this happens 2 days before my wife and i are moving) Anyways, i am melting and hope someone can point a "what's mechanically inclined" person like myself in the right diy direction.

    Thanks everyone. :confuse:
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    Well first thing to do, is to check the fuse.

    Then I'd check to see if the problem exists in both heater mode, and a/c mode.

    Then check to see if it exists in all speeds of the blower fan.

    Don't know specifically for your model vehicle, but there is usually a resistor bank in the blower plenum, right near the blower motor. That resistor bank, is what drops the voltage for the blower motor, allowing a single 12volt dc motor to run at the different high/med/low speeds. You can usually find this, by looking for the blower motor itself (in most cars it's up under the dash on the passenger side), and then look for a set of wires going into the air plenum right at the outer edge of where the squirrel cage would be. This resistor bank is put in the plenum, because the resistors get hot as they drop the voltage, and it needs the air flow from the blower motor to cool them or they'll burn out.

    But check the other things first.
  • Hey, I'm planning on buying a Honda Civic 2002. However, yesterday, my dad talked to the mechanic - Dad's good friend and very reliable - and he said that he is working on the timing belt.
    The car has 118K miles on it. While test driving it, the car didn't make a single aching sound or staggered or showed any other problem. Everyything looked, sounded, smelled good about it.

    Now my question is, should I worry about anything else before buying this car? I mean is it a good idea to buy this car?
    The mechanic is asking for US$5600. The KBB also had more or less the same price for that car.

    Any suggestions or advices?
  • jonesbb630jonesbb630 Posts: 31
    I had an 02 LX Coupe, and frankly, it was one of the most leliable cars I ver owned. Yes, don't take chances on the T Belt. Change it. Better safe than sorry. The only other thing you need to worry about is the inner and outer front and back bushings. They are not expansive. Labor will cost more than parts(approx 1.5hrs)
    They all need these after a while from the old to the newer civics. It keeps your steering and front end nice and tight like when it was new. The LX also has a rear sway bar which is similar to the SI suspension. Better for handling. If the car has been driven in salty roads, the have a tendency to let go after 100k. Again, not only the 02 but the older and newer models will need these at one point.

    Once these have been done, you are good for another five years or so depending on your driving.

    I would buy it. Great little car.
  • pilot1226pilot1226 Posts: 165
    I've noticed for some time now that there's an intermittent squeaking sound that originates under the hood, and after a year of researching, I think I might have finally put the pieces together.

    2000 Honda Civic LX Sedan, Automatic Transmission. Maintance performed regularly and on schedule, accessory belts have been replaced about a year and a half ago.

    Occasionally when the car is being driven on the harder side (RPM's between 3-5k) *and* the A/C is being run, there's a squeaking sounds that happens for about a half a second as I feel the compressor kick on for the A/C.

    It's still an intermittent problem, but it seems only to happen when the A/C is running and I'm driving my car moderately harder than normal. I've been driving easier on it when the A/C is on (2-3.5k RPM) and the problem hasn't resurfaced.

    The fan is continuing to run, and the air still continues to come out cold. I'm wondering if it's the tension of the compressor belt, but I can't find anything in the owner's manual reference the correct force to ask a mechanic to check/correct it.

    Is there a lot of labor involved into getting into the compressor belt?

  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    Most all compressor belts are very easily changed. I haven't had one of my own that has taken more than 15 minutes in years.

    If you look at all of the pulleys, one is spring mounted tensioner, which keeps the tension on the belt and prevents slippage. Usually you will find a wrench attachment, or a slot for a large screwdriver, or a 3/8(1/2") square socket drive hole. I don't know the specifics for your vehicle. You slowly pull back on the tensioner (take the pressure off the belt), slide the belt off on one of the pulleys, and slowly release the tensioner (do not allow it to snap back by itself). These springs are heavy duty, so whatever your tool, it's easier with a long handle for leverage and control.

    Make note of the routing of the belt, usually there is a graphic under the hood. Take the old belt off, put the new belt on, pull back on the tensioner, slide the belt back in under the tensioner pulley, and slowly release the tensioner again.

    Belts usually run about 20-40 bucks at auto parts stores, and almost any shop will change this for you including oil change shops.

    Note: The tensioner itself is also known to go bad. When these go bad they'll either squeak, or they won't provide enough tension to the belt....thereby allowing the belt to slip. These are usually just bolt on, if you need to replace this. Sometimes it is easier to get to the bolts via the right wheel well.
  • pilot1226pilot1226 Posts: 165
    Thanks for the response. I live in a condominium so do-it-yourself is considerably limited and frowned upon by the association, but I'll see what I can do. I'm up for an oil change in the next week or two so I'll have them take a peek.

    Maybe when the shop changed the belts a year or two ago they accidentally let it "slip back" like you described and damaged the tensioner.
  • poysn1poysn1 Posts: 4
    where do i find it on an 05 civic ex?? please help...
  • pilot1226pilot1226 Posts: 165
    2000 Honda Civic LX Sedan

    Having issues with the speedometer. Turned it on yesterday to drive home from work and it pegged itself at 20mph. I turned the car off and on again and it returned to the normal 0mph setting.

    This morning on the way to work it again was pegged at 20. I turned the car off and on a few times, waiting a few minutes in between attempts, and the speedometer remained pegged at 20.

    I drove on this (no malfunction indicator lights appeared) and noticed the following:
    - Seemingly slower than 20mph, the speedometer flickers up and down from 10mph to 30mph quickly.
    - As you approach/surpass 20mph, the speedometer stays at 20 with no movement.
    - The trip counter and odometer does not roll while the speedometer is pegged.

    I stopped to get gas in the morning, and upon restart, it was still at 20. I hit the trip counter to reset the dial, and the speedometer dropped to 0. No mileage rolled over from the ~1.5 miles I drove to the nearest gas station, and the speedometer started working appropriately (along with trip & odometer).

    Three questions:
    1. What's the best way to troubleshoot this issue? Could the trip odometer be getting "stuck" on some speedometer dial?
    2. I recently had my car serviced (oil lube & filter), is it possible the mechanic could have tampered with the speedometer and associated wires?
    3. Do I need to declare anything with DMV regarding the mileage that accumulated that did not roll on the odometer?

  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666

    Apparantely nobody who knows the details of Honda Civic has answered this yet, so I'll take a crack to maybe help a little. Sorry I don't know the specifics for your vehicle.

    The engine is a single overhead cam, which means you have one cam w/sits on top of the engine. The belt or chain which drives that cam, would be enclosed by a casing (it's not the accessory belt/pulleys on the outside of the engine). That cam runs along the top of the engine, so the sensor could be anywhere along the top of the engine, but I would think most likely on one of the ends.

    In a Toyota, it's on the end by the transmission on the drivers side, furthest away from the accessory belt and pulleys This sensor is going to be reading the pulses from the camshaft as it's turning, so expect to see it in position perpendicular and 'pointing at' the center line of the camshaft. You may have other sensors in that area as well, for instance a knock sensor, or engine coolant sensor (which you would expect to see in the block where the coolant is).
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    You have a sensor, typically on the output shaft of the transmission, which counts the speed of the axle turning. That is fed to your computer, and then outputed to the display. When your display is acting up, you don't know which of the pieces is the problem.

    One way I use to troubleshoot this, is to try driving your vehicle with the cruise control. If the cruise control holds the correct speed, then in high likelihood the sensor is okay, and the computer is okay, and the problem is in your display. If the vehicle doesn't hold on cruise, then it's either the sensor or computer, and I'd suspect the sensor.

    No you don't have to report anything to DMV.

    The oil change might have bumped the wiring to the sensor.
  • pilot1226pilot1226 Posts: 165
    Thanks for the response. What can I look for under the hood to see if something's loose? Any chance you can link a picture or image? I'll take a picture of my car when I get home and upload it, maybe you can point me in the right direction.
  • pilot1226pilot1226 Posts: 165
    Here are some pictures of the Civic, please let me know where I should focus my attention on.

    Picture of entire hood:

    Upper right corner close up:

    Lower right corner close up: (the cylindrical thing in the main frame appears to be the cruise control actuator, there's a sticker on it.)

    Close up of upper left corner behind air filter:

    Bottom left corner:

    Speedometer display at 20mph (car in ACC/ON, in park)
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    Did you test with the cruise control? and what is the result of that? If your cruise is working, then you know your sensor is working.

    The transmission is at the left end of the engine (looking at your picture), then has axles going out to the wheels. It's on the passenger side of the engine compartment.

    I'll scan a couple files that I have, to see if I have a picture.

    BTW, you should clean that corrosion off your positive battery terminal. Water and baking soda to neutralize the acid, then cover it with a light coating of petroleum jelly or grease.
  • pilot1226pilot1226 Posts: 165
    Oh, this big thing is my transmission?

    Interesting. I'll take it for a quick spin and check the cruise control, back in 15 minutes. Thanks for the response.
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    Here's the best I can do. It's the electrical layout from a 95 Civic. The speed sensor is C112. Hopefully you can zoom in to it to see.

    95 Civic

    No that last picture is not your transmission. I realize I said the left side of your engine, and that may be confusing. It's on the left side as looking at your picture, it's actually the passenger side of the engine.

    The engine output shaft, is bolted to the transmission, which then thru the half shaft axles drives the power out to the wheels.You'll have to get deeper down into the engine compartment.
  • honda097honda097 Posts: 1
    Hi I'm new to this forum and clueless about cars but u guys seem to know your stuff- I have a honda civic coupe- ex i think. Recently it started hesitating when I'm accelerating- my bro suggested air filter, plugs or fuel filter?? I really have to sink the accelerator to get her to move and even so feels weird- like she's holding back- no issues as yet with idling.
    Just stressed her out by driving from Austin to Colorado so i'm not sure!
    Please help!!
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    I think you're going to need to get it to a repair shop to have them diagnose your problem. The symptoms you describe could be any number of hundreds of things. Basically an engine needs a correct fuel mixture, compression of that mixture, and a spark to ignite it at the correct time.

    All of the things you mention 'could' be the source of your problem.....or they could be just fine and it could be something else. We don't know the maintenance that you've done in the past, which would help a garage determine what the problem might be. If you told me you replaced your plugs 2 years ago and have 12K on the new ones, I'd think the plugs might not be the source of the problem but I'd want to pull them and look at how they were burning to see if a clue there. If on the other hand you tell me you've never changed the plugs and have 150K on them....I'd tell you to go replace the plugs as they are long overdue.
  • pilot1226pilot1226 Posts: 165
    Yeah I figured that it wasn't the transmission,

    So, I took it for a spin today and the first time at startup, the problem didn't happen.

    The second time, it locked on startup at the usual 20 mph, then after about 1/4 mile of driving it dropped to 0 mph and then picked up after my next stop.

    Just now, it stayed at 20mph for the entire duration (about 10 minutes) of driving. I successfully used Cruise Control at a speed above the 20 mph (Honda's Cruise won't click on until you're above 25mph, too), give or take around 40 mph.

    So, we know that Cruise Control is recognizing that I'm driving faster than 25. What's the next move? I took a peek under the hood to look for the thing you linked, but when I zoomed in I wasn't able to figure out what was what.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Since the cruise works, we know it isn't the VSS...sounds like the display. What does your odometer do?
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    Correct....looking now that the display is suspect. Since the cruise control is working, you know you are getting an adequate signal from the speed sensor.

    Pilot....But.....make sure your base voltage is good. That corrosion on the battery terminals can cause some flaky problems. I'd get that cleaned and the battery checked before you start tearing into the display. You might also want to have your battery checked at any autoparts chain, to make sure it's holding the correct voltage (should have about 13.0 volts).
  • pilot1226pilot1226 Posts: 165
    Okay, what should I do - step by step - to clean the battery? (Battery Cleaning for Dummies, please).

    Should I buy some gloves? Safety goggles? (makes me think of the old Simpsons episode with Radioactive Man... "the goggles, they do nothing!")

    As for the odometer: When the speedometer is frozen at 20, the odometer and trip odometer also freeze. When the speedometer returns to normal usage, the odometer doesn't "jump" to make up for lost mileage when it was pegged at 20.

    I'm curious as to why you think this is a voltage issue because it was my understanding that my analog odometer doesn't really pull any electricity... But, I don't understand cars that well (as I'm sure you can see now) so I'm welcome to suggestions.

    I found a used display for a 2000 Civic LX Automatic Trans on eBay for 69.00, but I have not bid/purchased it yet. If you suggest this as my next step, I'd really need some detailed instructions on this or I'd have to buy it and have a local shop like Meineke do it and just charge me the labor.

    Thanks again,
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    Pull back the red plastic cover so you can get at the terminals. Get a wire brush (wood handle, metal brush), and scrape off the corrosion. Get something to pour some water on the terminal, and then pour some baking soda (standard arm & hammer grocery store orange box) on the terminal. It'll hiss and fizz as the soda neutralizes the acid. Let it sit for a while till done fizzling, pour more water to rinse off. Scrape again if you need to, put more soda on if need to, etc. You get it to the point that it's all clean.

    Let it dry

    Next day after dry, take a little dab of petroleum jelly on your finger and cover the terminal and connector with it. That will help keep the corrosion from coming back. Don't 'double dip'....don't put your finger back into the jelly after you've rubbed in on the battery terminal (don't want the grease of acid/soda in the jelly and put whereever on the body). I just have a small jar I keep out in the garage.

    You can take your vehicle to an autoparts chain, and they do free load tests on the battery to make sure the battery is good. I'd do that after I cleaned w/soda, and before the jelly application.

    Personally, I wouldn't be buying a replacement cluster until I proved the cluster was defective. I'd unplug it and replug to make sure the connections were good on the wiring, and hang a voltage test wire on it to make sure it wasn't loosing voltage at the same time that it stopped working. Something else but related could be causing the problem.

    Just don't put a wrench on the positive terminal (thereby making a really solid connection with the + terminal), and wrench it over to touch anything metal on the frame (the frame is connected to the negative terminal of the battery)....that'll create an arc welder out of your wrench.
  • pilot1226pilot1226 Posts: 165
    Thanks. Okay, tomorrow I will do as you've suggested, then after drying I will run to the Advanced Auto down the street and ask them to test the battery (should be free, right?)

    Reference your quote: Personally, I wouldn't be buying a replacement cluster until I proved the cluster was defective. I'd unplug it and replug to make sure the connections were good on the wiring, and hang a voltage test wire on it to make sure it wasn't loosing voltage at the same time that it stopped working. Something else but related could be causing the problem.

    What would you unplug and replug? Will I have to open up the dashboard in order to do this?
  • pilot1226pilot1226 Posts: 165
    Alright. Returned from Advance Auto and they told me the battery was in good condition but I can expect to replace it in about 12 months depending how hard of a winter we have this year.

    I was able to duplicate the problem and the tech at AA mentioned that it could possibly be something getting stuck with the odometer because I can "fix" the stuck speedometer by pushing and holding the trip reset lever in, counting to 3, and letting go while the car is in motion. The speedometer then seems to recover and the odometer starts moving again as well.

    He did admit he wasn't familiar with the interior of my Honda, so what do you think, is there something amiss between the odometer, tripometer, and the speedometer pointer thingie on the dash?

  • :sick: hi i just bougt a 1994 civic but it has a heating problem i noticed that the radiator fan wasnt turning on so i just connected the fan directly into the audio battery so its running when ever i flip the switch and the heating problem was still there so i replaced the thermostat it was all damaged but the problem doesnt dissapear i notticed that the water pump is working properly and i havent notticed any bursted hoses , canthe intake filter be the problem ? and one other thing i forgot to mention it doesnt show any white smoke.... i would appreciate any suggestions or help u can provide...thanks
  • marylongmarylong Posts: 10
    Ok, I may have the answer. Try replacing the radiator fan sensor switch. My 99 civic was over heating because the fan was not coming on. We determined that the motor was working by directly connecting it to the battery. Then, we replaced the fan sensor switch and the fan started working again. Problem solved. However, a warning: It took lots of torque to get it out, but, not even approaching that same number, the new part snapped off leaving the threads in place and the top half in the wrench. So, don't over tighten it or you will have a bigger problem on your hands. You can easily check if the sensor is the problem by pulling the plug from it first. Then, create a short by taking a wire and put one end in one hole and the other end of the wire in the other hole. Then switch the ignition to ACC (you don't have to actually start the car), if the fan turns on, then you need to replace the sensor.
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    If I remember correctly, there might be an air-block procedure you need to do to get trapped air out of the engine. Something like jacking up the front right (or running up on a hill), and running the engine with the cap off.

    I think it was the civic that you had to do this for, do a search in the forums.
  • poysn1poysn1 Posts: 4
    i was told i had to remove the timing belt casing in order to get to the CPS but wen i tried doing so i noticed i had to remove the head of the block, can i just take the head of and put it back on with no problem or is there a chance i might knock something out of place?
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