Honda Civic: Problems & Solutions



  • katydeskatydes Member Posts: 2
    It seems pretty common to me. I've had to have more work done on this car than any other car I've had (several of which were Fords and Dodges ). I had to have both front struts replaced within the first 30 days. Since then, I've had lots of power steering problems. It's a nice car, but not worth the hassel for me. I'm already trying to trade it in or sell it and get something else :-(
  • jlim1jlim1 Member Posts: 50
    I have an 01 Civic, which needed a new gas tank lid cable (lid won't pop open when the lever from inside cabin is depressed). The replacement was done in March 2005. This week, the 17-month-old cable is not functioning. This is strange when it comes to Honda parts, which the dealership only guarantees labor and parts quality up to 12-month. It cost me $100 to fix it the first time (2/3 is labor cost).

    Has anyone out there experienced this quirky defect?

  • ellllellll Member Posts: 18
  • ellllellll Member Posts: 18
    Well, To report on mine....

    The dealership, out of a "clear blue sky" when I was in for my first oil service, informed me the rt. front strut was ordered, just this week..and they would notify me when it came in, for a date to install...

    There never was any real doubt on my part that it was that strut; I have heard many bad shock units in my life, and when you hear one, you know when you hear was a matter of getting them to agree...

    Guess my trouble "may" be over...

    Regards all, John (ellll) :)
  • scentscent Member Posts: 5
    I was driving my car to work today when I came to a stop sign and the car felt like it was going to stall but didn't. When I took off I noticed the car was not shifting out of 2nd gear and the engine light had turned on. I quickly turn back to my house where i shut off the car, waited 5 mins and restarted, the engien light was still on and when test drove it shifted but didn't feel right, like the shifting points were off. i'm taking it to the Honda dealer tonight to have thme look at, any ideas on what it could be, I think it might be something messed up on the computer. Thanks :sick:
  • user777user777 Member Posts: 3,341
    hmmm. if you have the CEL and the transmission doesn't seem right, the transmission could be in something people call "limp mode" where it provides you a means to get it to service, but doesn't use all the gearing.

    good luck.
  • scentscent Member Posts: 5
    Honda just called me. It is a throttle position sensor that went bad that is why the car was shifting crazy. ;)
  • user777user777 Member Posts: 3,341
    cool. let me know if that fixes it.
  • lsmithjalsmithja Member Posts: 1
    I have a 97 Civic DX that had the same issue. At first I thought it was the heat shield, but then asked a friend who was a Honda cert. mechanic for years - he said that it was probably the exhaust and it was.

    Apparently this is fairly common with Honda exhausts (or so he said) - there is a small part inside of the exhaust that can become dis-lodged. When this happens it does not do any damage to the ex. system, but it rattles around the inside and cannot be removed unless you dismantle the entire exhaust (not worth it!). If you have the car up on a lift, the mechanic can probably show you exactly where the noise is orinigating. So keep driving it until you can't stand the noise anymore. Hope that helps!
  • ttbttb Member Posts: 40
    Dear All:
    Is it easy to change the engine air filter of a 2004 1.7L Civic without vtech? And how, please?
  • lilhartastonelilhartastone Member Posts: 1
    I just bought my '06 Civic EX 1 month ago. 2 weeks after purchase they had to replace both the front struts. and 1 week after i got it back, i hear ticking/rattling noises from the front passenger side, and the rear passenger. Also, my car vibrates a lot when idle. A few days ago, i went to start my car, and it had trouble starting, the engine rolled a few seconds before it turned on. I also want to trade it back to get another. Did you have any luck trading/selling it kreative11, or if anyone has had any success in gettin a repacement? Let me know.
  • cangelescangeles Member Posts: 3
    i just had the same problem the other day how much did it cost you? thanks did it fix the problem
  • scentscent Member Posts: 5
    My was covered under warranty so I couldn't tell you the cost. i'm picking it up tomorrow... I'll keep you udated if it fixed it or not.
  • cangelescangeles Member Posts: 3
    thanks i appreciate it.Mine is scheduled for diagnosis tommorrow.Hope its not the transmission.
  • scentscent Member Posts: 5
    I picked up my car tonight and so far (knock on wood) it is running great, nice smooth shifitng. i noticed a quote of $57.00 on the paper work they gave me, I didn't have to pay anyhting b/c it was under warranty... must be a 5 sec change out... unplug old sensor... plug new in. Good Luck. :)
  • cangelescangeles Member Posts: 3
    good for you.Im taking mine tomorrow morning,hope its not major.Thanks and goodluck.I will let you know what happened,if youre still interested.
  • raj10raj10 Member Posts: 1
    I've been having this problem. On mornings when it appears there is a lot of moisture in the air, my 99 Civic turns over but does not start. After trying for about 30 minutes, it finally kicks in and sputters, emitting white smoke (seems to be water/moisture?). Then it drives fine (with a little hesitation but only briefly), and starts fine without a problem.

    1) Three weeks ago when this happened the first time my mechanic suggested changing the main relay.

    2) Then the check engine light came on within a day. The mechanic claimed to 'clean' the Oxygen sensors, but within minutes of getting the car back it came on again.

    3) I then went to the dealer and the dealer found a crack in the exhaust manifold. Got that changed for an arm and a leg :(

    4) Still the check engine light came back on, so I went back to th dealer and had to get the primary Oxygen sensor changed as well.

    5) Again the light came back on within a few hours, so the dealer looked at it, and it now appears my secondary oxygen sensor is out. They have ordered the part and will change it (will not charge for labor though) in two weeks.

    6) This morning once again the engine wouldnt start - turning over, but no ignition. After 30 minutes it kicked in, white smoke, then fine. A little sputtering, some hesitation upon acceleration, but then its fine.

    Someone mentioned vapor lock, I asked my mechanic but he shrugged it off. I dont think the guy knows what to do. So I want to go back to the dealer. But before I do so, I'd like some informed suggestions from folks on this forum if possible. Thanks in advance, and sorry for the long note.

    p.s. I installed an air filter (from OReillys) about two months ago which appears dirty now. Could this cause any of the starting problems?
  • mvoytenmvoyten Member Posts: 1
    I have a 2001 honda civic ex.... I had my car broken in to last november and recently found out that I can not retrieve codes on my car. Recently I have had some problems with my car. I was driving at about 80 and my car just lost power. I had to pull of the hw and the car stalled. I replaced the battary not to long ago and my coolent is at the right level. If I let my car sit for about 5 to ten minutes it works fine again. It seems to happen if I push my car above 4000 rpm..... can I get some advice on what could be the problem..... There is no water in the oil or no smoke.... and the head gasket is not wet so I think my head gasket is ok.... please help.
  • podunk503podunk503 Member Posts: 45
    I just purchased a used 97 civic 2dr 5spd EX with just under 117k mi on it for less than $5000! Real nice car, but I have a few questions regarding my purchase. Out of everything I tested and looked at and made sure worked, I overlooked the windshield wipers. Ok, so they seem to not want to "sit". they work but i need to time it just right when i turn them off so they're not in the middle of the window. any suggestions? i haven't a clue. oh, and also i'm concerned with the timing belt. is there a way to check it or is it the kind of thing that if you're there you may as well have it replaced? if so should i get the water pump done too? don't those two kind of go hand in hand? well i'm off to drive but hey, thank you all in advance for your help.
  • ellllellll Member Posts: 18
    Most interesting about front struts/..several models inc Civic seem to have failures..Sorry to hear of two being bad on the ref. above from lilhartastone..others also have had problems..

    (The following is on my overall satisfaction...)

    I would like to report for me however, after a 6800 mile "tour" in my 2006 Civic over the last two weeks..It is much as advertised...and then some. I am MUCH more happy now..Got 47+ MPG in the high plains of 70 MPH...Averaged 43+ for the trip, at 60 to 75 MPH all on sec. roads..(Only short stretches of interstate...most roads in the west of USA are now at 70 mph..)

    Very minor road noise for the size and everything worked great, inc. stereo, air, and controls as far as I can tell...

    It has very little trouble in the passes, (Wolf Creek/Monarch and others at 10,500 ft+ to around 12,000..some really hard approaches ..tho' you have to use revs...)...The control at speed in mountian curves is really good for a small sedan...(and the strut on my rt. front performed fine, tho' the noise is distracting on small bumps , STILL..!! It wll be repaired, no cost to me, in the next few weeks...waiting on the part)..

    I am pleased, overall and would buy another in a minute...and to all complainers in general..if you are not getting reasonable MPG and performance you must really drive hard...Maybe you need a sport coupe..BMW or sim...

    I get 29-35 MPG here at home, in town according to "how much the foot is on the floorboard"..Floorboard operation will cut you down a lot, you know..(I have been known to drive too agressively in town)...

    My Regards, to all, John (ellll)
  • mikefm58mikefm58 Member Posts: 2,882
    Sounds like the windshield wiper motor. If you know a reliable mechanic, have them check that out. It will probably cost a few bucks so I would just live with it.

    And also check to see if the timing belt was changed. Your owner's manual should list when it should be changed. If you don't have one, you should be able to download one from Honda's website. My guess is that it's over due. Call all the convenient Honda shops for a quote, and assuming your Civic is like my 99 CRV, have them also change the water pump and accessory belts. They usually have "timing belt replacement" special packages that include all that and a loaner car. My CRV was $600. Good luck.
  • civic4civic4 Member Posts: 33
    My owners manual says not to change the oil on my 2004 Civic sooner than the 10,000 mile interval, I, on the other hand, am concerned because I owned an Audi A4 previously which ran into problems with an"oil sludge" problem. I am not clear as to why this occurs but am also aware Toyota had the same issue with some its engines loosing oil pressure limiting thier ability to access oil while driving due to this same oil sludge problem. Anybody know if there are similar problems with Hondas and if more frequent oil changes are the answer?
  • ruking1ruking1 Member Posts: 19,826
    Certain Toyota's run clean also, but the clean engines unfortunately are interdispersed with so called sludge monsters.

    Honda's as a rule run very very clean. I ran the first 10,000 mile OCI with conventional oil (factory fill actually) on my 2004 Honda Civic. The second OCI I switched to 0w20 Mobil One (synthetic) till 20,000 miles, where I also changed the oil filter for the first time. I currently am running a 20,000 mile OCI with Mobil One 0w20 where I will change the oil and oil filter at 40,000 miles or every other oil change or 20,000 miles. The thing runs like the proverbial top. It gets a range of 37-42 mpg in a plain jane 54 mile R/T daily commute.

    I really can't answer your concerns on the Audi A4 but I run the VW Jetta TDI product with 25,000 mile OCI's with Mobil One 5w40, and IT runs like the proverbial top also.
  • jaxs1jaxs1 Member Posts: 2,697
    I doubt the manual actually says "Never change the oil more often than once every 10,000 miles."
    Sometimes they say don't change the very first factory oil for some minimum period of time if it is a special "break-in oil" that doesn't do its job if over anxious owners rush out to change it at 500 or 1,000 miles due to 1970's-era fear of "metal shavings" in the oil.
    More likely it says 10,000 miles is the recommended service interval for normal driving and more often for severe driving (such as driving mostly very short trips where the car doesn't warm up properly or daily bumper to bumper traffic commuting.) I'm sure they have an alternate interval for whatever they consider qualifies as severe driving or a maintenance minder sensor can monitor your driving conditions and set the maintenance required light to turn on at an appropriately adjusted time/mileage based on that.
  • civic4civic4 Member Posts: 33
    Thanks for both replies,

    One other question;

    I was informed if you choose to go with synthetic oil for any car, you cannot go back to using regular oil. I am considering the use of synthetic oil, but is this true?

  • tomsr1tomsr1 Member Posts: 130
    My owners manual says to use the computer generated
    oil change system but the dealer says to change the oil every 5000 miles.The book does say if the system does
    not indicate a need for oil change after a year to change it anyway.I think I should do what Honda says not what the dealer says.
  • ruking1ruking1 Member Posts: 19,826
    No, it is not true. New cars are backward and forwards compatible. The oils are even interchangeable. So I would not worry about it in the least.
  • ruking1ruking1 Member Posts: 19,826
    For those with OLM's, this REALLY takes the guess work out of the equation. Upshot: no brainer, OLM goes on it is time to change the oil. Note the miles and really compare whether or not you are truly in the "SEVERE" category. The real problem is most folks do not BELIEVE or related it to the verbiage of the "generally acknowledged 3,000 mile" OCI, which is total overkill!!!! . In the case of the 10,000 mile OCI for the 2004 Honda Civic, most folks simply think themselves in the SEVERE category. This is oxymoronic in that the owners manual CLEARLY states that MOST folks fall within the NORMAL category. Even if they meet one standard for SEVERE most times!! Most folks feel that pushing it is 5,000 miles. So regardless of what the OLM says the FEAR factor kicks in.

    So for example I have a car with an OLM and the factory fill is Mobil One 5w30. The way I drive the vehicle triggers the oil change indicator to go on at 14,500 to 14,800 miles for a recommended 15,000 mile OCI.
  • leonsphinxleonsphinx Member Posts: 8
    Any luck with that rattling/metallic noise near the right front wheel well or right front door? have the same problem and my dealer hasn't found a fix yet
  • mills2042mills2042 Member Posts: 1
    While i was driving i picked up speed.. and about 2 seconds later i look at the speedometer.. and i was doing 100 mph. when i brought down the window.. i can tell by the wind, that i was at least doing 60 to 70 mph.. def not 100. what should i do? Has anyone encountered this kind of a problem with the digital speedometer display of the 2006 Honda Civic sedan EX?
  • hondasrtroublehondasrtrouble Member Posts: 1
    Our '95 del sol has done the same thing several times. Each time it is the temperature sensor. We have had to replace four of them. The last one has made it nearly 2 years. The sensor would seem good when I checked the car and then it would do it again. Each time I was able to catch the sensor malfunctioning. On ours it is the one toward the fire wall at the distributor end of the engine. About $15-$20, Need to drain about half the coolant first. Bought the car new, always something, now the SRS light came on on the way to work, only has 60K miles. Won't buy another Honda.
  • btrickbtrick Member Posts: 1
    My 99 Honda Civic has recently begun to overheat. The car only overheats when it is at idle... and it takes awhile. I have no problems when I drive. Also, when it starts to overheat at idle, I just rev the engine and the temperature drops back down to normal. Can anyone offer me some advice. Thanks
  • podunk503podunk503 Member Posts: 45
    Are you in Km/h instead of Mph? There is a button to the left of the steering wheel under the vent.
  • podunk503podunk503 Member Posts: 45
    Another question. Does anyone know how I can fix my gas pedal? It's very stiff and being that it's a manual trans. it makes driving a bit uneasy.
  • heart2heart2 Member Posts: 38
    1998 civic with 65K miles and looked to get tune-up. Local mechanics (have been very reliable in a well equipped garage) suggested plugs, ignition rotor, dist. cap, wire set, fuel filter, and pollution control valve. Sound reasonable?
  • kgbean00kgbean00 Member Posts: 6
    i had the same problems with my 97 saturn and my friend had that problem with her 94 corsica. in both cases, no one could find what was wrong so nothing could be done to fix it. whenever mine would start to get hot (like in heavy traffic or long lines at the bank), i would just put down the windows and turn on a heat a bit. that would usually keep things under control. you, of course, still want to get that looked at because it could just be a broken thermometer (i had that problem too and the temp was reading too low) or a bad sensor.
  • modockmodock Member Posts: 55
    Just wondering at what miles you guys changed your brakes and what you paid for them. My wife's LX sedan is at around 50K and may be needing new front brakes. Thanks in advance.
  • mikefm58mikefm58 Member Posts: 2,882
    Just check your owner's manual. And you're probably due for the big one, the timing belt since your vehicle is 8 yrs old. Again, check your owner's manual.
  • mateo150mateo150 Member Posts: 11
    This is for a navigation unit:
    I read the manual, it says that the pc card slot uses Compact Flash or PCMICA? cards. I put a CF card in there, and its obviously not meant for it. Now its stuck in there, loosely slideing around. How the heck do I get it out? Is there a way to remove the navi headunit? Should I try using coathangers? HOW THE HECK DO I USE THE PC CARD SLOT!??! Anyone have a link or picture of what equipment I need?
  • mikemeyermikemeyer Member Posts: 1
    I have same Navi EX

    Here is what you should do:
    1. Buy a CF Adapter from Amazon for about $7
    Here is its name: SanDisk SDDR-64-768 Compact Flash
    to PC Card Adapter
    2. Carefuly using a twizer and flashlight; open the slot
    of Navi PC card slot and get that CF module out of it
    3. Put the CF module in the Adapter carefuly in correct
    5. Put the CF&Adapter in your Laptop and load it up with
    good Music
    6. Take out CF&Adapter from Laptop and then put in EX Navi
    PC Card Slot
    7. Enjoy the music
  • magoosh1magoosh1 Member Posts: 13
    Just today I got the "Chceck Fuel Cap" prompt in my 06 LX Civic. The shop at the dealer said to do 8-10 start ups to 180degrees. The cap is fine. I checked. What do you all think? :confuse:
  • jaxs1jaxs1 Member Posts: 2,697
    You need to make sure the cap really is on properly. Not just look at the cap and assume it must be fine.

    At least the warning says "Check fuel cap." Instead of the vague and multipurpose "check engine" warning most cars give when you drive while the fuel cap is not screwed on correctly.
  • dewaltdakotadewaltdakota Member Posts: 364
    The cars are all picky now about gas cap tightness, due to EPA emission regulations. Turn it until it clicks, then give it a few more clicks, just to make sure it's good and tight. It will take several drives for the message to clear, as your dealer shop stated.
  • roundtriproundtrip Member Posts: 105
    Mine had done the same. The first time I opened and closed it again. The warning appeared 4-5 more times, I reset it each time, and it finally went off.

    Two weeks later it did it again. Now the thing comes on every time I start the car. I've checked and checked the cap and door. Each time it appears to be fine. I take my car in for an oil change in a couple of weeks and am going to have them document it.

    I think after driving for twenty years, I can close the gas cap properly.
  • supersonic45supersonic45 Member Posts: 8
    I just replaced the clutch master cylinder on my 94 Civic. I am now not able to eliminate all the free play in the clutch pedal, I can't even get it into or out of gear. I forced some of the brake fluid from the resovoir into the new master cylinder with an air compressor and it worked for a little while, all the free play in the clutch pedal was elliminated. The next morning the problem occured again, no clutch action (all free play). What do I have to do to get and keep fluid into the new master cylinder?
  • danielacostadanielacosta Member Posts: 132
    Any luck with that rattling/metallic noise near the right front wheel well or right front door? have the same problem and my dealer hasn't found a fix yet

    Tell your dealer to look in "Service News." It says the fix for this problem is the right side engine mount.

    However, I just had this engine mount replaced and the noise still remains.
  • jakexdangerjakexdanger Member Posts: 1
    i have a 97 civic lx and it makes a rumbling noise in the engine when i accelerate. if i accelerate really slowly it doesn't do it. any idea what it could be?
  • makoamailemakoamaile Member Posts: 3
    I have a 92 civic hatchback doing the same thing. Just spoke with mechanic says that engine is seized no compression not worth fixing. I've devistated. Any advice?
  • 88hatch88hatch Member Posts: 4
    I have an 88 honda hatch thats missing when accelerated but not when idling. Ecu says crank angle sensor, replaced still doing the same thing. Dont know what else to do with it.
  • 88hatch88hatch Member Posts: 4
    I have the honda hatch with a ZC swap in it. The problem is when I am driving its missing but not when idleing. The ECU says Crank Angle Sensor, I replaced it, didnt help. What can be the problem?
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