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Honda Civic: Problems & Solutions



  • gee35coupegee35coupe Posts: 3,475
    4th gear and "taking it easy" at 45 mph on the freeway sound like a novice behind the wheel. It's not the speed, it's the 4th gear that puzzles. "To most people "taking it easy" would have the RPM at the lowest point possible. "Cruising" at 45 implies that they had been at this speed for a while. Why would anyone "cruise" on the freeway and not be in overdrive(5th)? If this matter goes to a trial, I'm no lawyer, but I'd have a field day with that tidbit alone. Without other Civics suddenly slamming to a halt due to the clutches disintegrating at relatively low RPM, you have a hard road ahead.

    Other tidbits that don't make sense...
    How did the clutch shatter while cruising at such a low speed? You'd think it would be pressed against the flywheel so hard that that that would keep it from coming apart. Shattered clutches nearly always happen while shifting.

    What's left of the disc? It actually would be pretty easy to see if that damage was caused be a missed shift. There should be some shear to metal in the reverse direction of drive.

    Are the tires flat spotted? A force that hard should have locked up the tires.

    Did the ECU record a RPM spike?

    Was there any other damage to the car?

    Most telling is that there are no lawyers so far that will accept the case. It doesn't sound winnable to me either. I hope you have health insurance for these bills.
  • Boy, for a mom you guys are a tough crowd. I don't care if she was in fourth, it was a brand new car and no clutch should have done that. As for the clutch, it is in evidence at our service engineers. The car is being towed on a flatbed to their condo and the transmission and associated parts are boxed with the vehicle. No miles have been put on the car since May 9th. Why the inspection authorities didn't ask the same questions you have I don't know, maybe I'll be lucky enough to find an attorney who knows that much. We have to believe since it was that simple that it was a defective clutch or installation of the clutch. Yes we're insured but that won't help my daughter much if this fracture doesn't heal properly. Back injuries are something you sometimes never recover completely from and can come back to haunt you in later years. We were advised by a friend to try sites like this to see if we could find people with similar experiences but so far it doesn't see that's going to be the case. Thanks for your honesty.
  • gee35coupegee35coupe Posts: 3,475
    A brand new clutch shouldn't have done that. That's just another fact you have to overcome to prove your case. Another reason it's proving so hard to find a lawyer. If there is any evidence to the contrary, this case has the potential to be CRAZY expensive to win. You will need expensive experts and examinations of the parts involved. You think the medical bills are high? Clutches don't normally fly apart. And honestly, even if it did "shatter" I don't see how it would have locked up the transmission firm enough to cause injury. Especially while cruising. It sounds nearly impossible. Clutch discs are rather lightweight parts only designed to be friction material.

    Good luck.
  • wftwft Posts: 7
    Does the 1994 Honda Civic EX have any sensors on or connected to the Evaporator core or is it just the expansion valve inside and the pressure switch and relay outside ?
    I evacuated the a/c and re charged with the correct amount of R134 and during the day when it is hot the a/c stops cooling but in the morning it seems to do ok.
    Any ideas, If I wasn't already losing my hair this would surely start it..

  • You are so right. I am learning so much so quickly. I am by no means sure that their diagnosis is the final outcome in this. But many of the lawyers who turned down the case were respectfully clear about the amount of money they would have to put out to fight it and that it wasn't something their firm could handle. I have one more to try tomorrow and then we will probably give up on the legal end. Me and my husband, anyway. The two car owners (my daughter and son-in-law) may try the states attorney general and the media. The very best case scenario I see now is her total recovery and somehow a reasonable ending to the car part. I don't really think it is going to end up entirely consumer fair. But, just give me a good wish in the recovery, that's what counts the most. And thanks for your input....I asked many of your questions to the service engineer who has the car. I guess this car doesn't have the electronic memory of the transmissin history. So it can't say what actions were taken at the time of the occurance. We'll be OK. Our family is very close and if this injury persists, we can transfer my husband's job to be near them in a year or two and make the best of it. Thanks again! Mom
  • alcanalcan Posts: 2,550
    Your best approach is to have your legal counsel recommend a forensic mechanic who can inspect the vehicle and make a determination of what happened. That's an area where I'm occasionally employed, and my testimony has had impact on court rulings. It has been suggested by some posters here that the vehicle's onboard computers can be accessed to extract data re the operating conditions prior to the event, but this is bunk. The only information that can be extracted from onboard computers is "freeze frame" data from the engine control computer at the instant that a check engine light was set, or, in limited applications, data from the SRS computer for a five second period prior to an airbag deployment. That information currently consists of:

    State of Warning Indicator when event occurred (ON/OFF)
    Length of time the warning lamp was illuminated
    Crash-sensing activation times or sensing criteria met
    Time from vehicle impact to deployment
    Diagnostic Trouble Codes present at the time of the event
    Ignition cycle count at event time
    Maximum ΔV for near-deployment event
    ΔV vs. time for frontal airbag deployment event
    Time from vehicle impact to time of maximum ΔV
    State of driver's seat belt switch
    Time between near-deploy and deploy event (if within 5 seconds)
    Passenger's airbag enabled or disabled state
    Engine speed (5 sec before impact)
    Vehicle speed (5 sec before impact)
    Brake status (5 sec before impact)
    Throttle position (5 sec before impact)

    These are parameters for GM vehicles, and some selected Ford models.

    Currently, automotive technicians are unable to access this information, but the manufacturer can for the purpose of airbag system evaluation, and only through Vetronics Diagnostics. This information is not generally released to anyone. However, under certain circumstances, the police may access this information with the aid of the manufacturer or special computer programs.

    The resulting data may find its way into a courtroom during a civil or criminal action. Such information has been used in court to prosecute an at-fault driver in a fatal collision.

    To my knowledge, Honda does not yet have this capability.

    For more information, check:
  • gee35coupegee35coupe Posts: 3,475
    We were discussiing whether we would want that "capability" in our cars. There was a case where that information was used to convict a teenager of wrecklessly killing a mother and daughter. I decided since I do spend a lot of time at an illegal speed that I didn't want that on my car.
  • Hi, I'm still working in checking all the electrical connections related to the SRS system (Seat belts switches, air bag sensors, fuses etc). I think I solved the problem because I found a loose connection in the sensor of the airbag in the steering wheel. Yet, the repair manual of the 99 Civic says that even after the repair has been done, SRS light willl be on until the memory of the computer will be erase and reset.

  • I have a 1998 LX; it's doing the same thing but of course won't do it while at the dealer. Have you found any answers since your posted this.
  • bwadbwad Posts: 7
    Is the condenser fan running?
  • maryhartmaryhart Posts: 3
    Thanks! This has been really helpful.
  • hoffman24hoffman24 Posts: 1
    92 Honda Civic Del Sol w/ 125000 miles. Start car and there are some electrical problems: No Gauges on Dash (Tach, Speed, Temp, Odo., & Fuel), no turn signals, no power windows, and no cruise. While running if I open the door, the car beep's as if I have left the key in the ignition while not running. Headlights, hazards, AC blower, radio, and brake lights all still work.

    Checked wiring harnesses and they are all connected. I believe it is in the ignition, something not telling the car it is on or running therefore not switching on signals, gauges, etc.

    Just looking for feedback before replacing parts.
  • jeepluverjeepluver Posts: 4
    Check with your local dealership, they will need to get the VIN number from you and probably some proof you own it. Careful with the code, it gives you three chances and then locks you out for an hour. If you have the manual check it. It will explain. Just had my after market Pioneer stolen out of my 95 and found info in manual.
  • johnl9johnl9 Posts: 2
    have a 1997 honda civic in which the child lock was selected to lock, well the door now will not open from inside or out. even bigger problem now, in trying to figure out first problem now have both back doors locked and neither will open. any help on this please!?
  • wftwft Posts: 7
    Yes the condensor fan runs and the engine idles up seems that it is all doing what it should except the compressor clutch does not engage most of the time.
    I checked the compressor when it should be engaged and it was not.
    There was battery voltage to the clutch coil with a good ground it is just that
    the clutch will not engage and it has a new clutch coil.
    It does work for a while when it is cool outside but in the heat of the day forget it.
    I am wondering if the compressor clutch is bad because it has power it just doesn't engage.
  • lkzbratlkzbrat Posts: 1
    my civic is idling real bad and i have only had my car for 6 months and everything was fine until about 2 weeks ago and then it started idling and my car acts like it is going to die. i noticed the rpm gauge is going almost to 0 then all the way up to 2! even when im driving and it seems like a jerky drive instead of smooth! can anyone help? :(
  • gee35coupegee35coupe Posts: 3,475
    Check the connection in the distributor. I had that same problem on one of my Civic. No parts were involved. Just connections.
  • I was coming home from work the other day and after pulling away from a stop sign, I noticed that the spedo. jumped to 120mph and then to 0. I slowed my acceleration at that point and put the car in Neutral. Reved the car to 4,000 RPM and saw the speedo jump to 80 eratically. Then I put it back into D4 and noticed the car was jumping like crazy and shifting erratically. I got home, found the spedo and disconnected it. The car drove fine then, but the torque converter wouldn't lock down. Because the speedo. wasn't hooked up. While at Auto Zone getting the codes checked I found the price of a new speedometer sensor to be approx. $125 US Dollars. OOOUUUCHH!! :mad: Ok...Problem solved....NOPE! Lights are still flickering, Mind you I haven't installed new speedo yet. search of an answer I go looking for information. I stumble across this websight right here and....Behold... :D some sort of answer. I read on this wb sight that there is a problem in the wiring harness whereas it can rub against a bracket that is tucked back under the intake manifold. So I pull the wires back away from the bracket, Start flickering....turn the lights down the road with the lights on...High beams on......still no flicking. There ya go...problem solved. So in short....Wiring harness shorts out on bracket...sends juice through the motor block....and shorts out any weak sensor in its path. Or makes the sensors trip and produces all Kindsof trouble codes.
    Such things like:
    P0135- O2 Sensor Heater Circut Malfunction Bank 1 Sensor 1
    P0141- O2 Sensor Heater Circut Malfunction Bank 1 Sensor 2
    P1298- Honda manufacturer code of some sort...If any one knows about that one please tell me
  • i need to find the fuel shutoff inertia switch or whatever its called so i can turn the fuel pump on and start my car. Any help would be greatly appreciated...
  • Hey everyone. Just came across this site and am amazed at all the infomation available in the forums. I just bought a 1997 Civic LX with 117,000 miles, automatic transmission. I have a few questions that hopefully someone can answer. Thanks in advance!

    1.The SRS light was on when I bought it. I'm fairly confident that this car had not deployed its airbags, but I can't be certain. I have heard that this light can come on for a variety of reasons. What should I do? From what I have read, sounds like I should take it to dealership and have them check it and reset if its nothing serious. But I hear that can be $65-100. Any other routes I could take besides this one?

    2.One thing that concerned me but currently is not a problem is the check engine light came on. I bought the car, drove it 2 hours on interstate, then ran it through an automatic carwash and a couple of things happened. First, even though the car was in park, the green light for drive on the guage cluster started flashing a few times, then after a sequence of flashes and no flashes it stopped(about1-2 minutes elapsed, this happened while I was in the bay getting washed). Next when I pulled out, the check engine light came on, then after a few minutes of driving, the speedometer dial started bouncing around erratically. I have read a few posts where this may be attributed to a harness around the manifold rubbing. Is that the case here or not? Now the second part of this. The next day I drove and picked up a new air filter, installed it and took the car to have new tires, oil change and have corrosion taken off the battery posts. When I got back in the car, check engine light was off and speedometer now works. So I wonder if disconnecting battery cleared it or if something else caused it to go away? After 20 minutes of driving, stopping and another car wash(first one did a crappy job!) drove on home still with no light on and speedometer working. I'm hoping it doesn't come back. And back to the transmission issue, it hasn't happened again in the 1 day that has elapsed since. Transmission seems to shift ok, the only thing that felt different to me while I have had the car is that it seems to be geared low or possibly taking to long to shift out into OD. It doesn't happen all the time, but sometimes I notice after letting off the gas from mild accelaration, it takes a second or two for it to shift out. My transmission mechanic friend via phone told me if the lockup wasn't working properly the check engine light would be one. But of course, that light came on under different circumstances and now has went back off. Any ideas?

    3.The maintenance required slot or whatever it is on the guages cluster is red. What does this mean and how can it be reset. I assumed this probably come on after 100,000 miles or something. Anything to be worried about?

    4.I know I need a new timing belt because it has not been changed yet. What will this cost me on average? I hear anywhere from $300 to 500. Are there any other maintenance items I should be doing at 117,000 miles? I have bought this car for commuting so I hope to get another 100,000 miles out of it at least. I hope with diligent maintenance and care this can be accomplished. I have always wanted to own a Civic and I'm excited to have one now. In just two days, I love it even with the issues I have mentioned. I hope none are too serious. Thanks for any feedback guys!

    One other thing, I guess if the sticker for the car(yep it was still in the glove box!)says it didn't come with keyless entry then I probably can't add a remote and program it right? I would need to install a system? Just wishful thinking I guess!...
  • theracoontheracoon Posts: 666
    1. The SRS light can come on if one of the sensors is bad. Unfortunately, by disconnecting the battery any code that was stored indicating why the light was on was lost.

    2.a. Hopefully you got a copy of the owners manual. There should be a section in it on all of the indicator lights, and what they mean, including why the D indicator would flash. Any code that was stored was lost when the battery was disconnected.

    2.b. Honda has "grade logic" in the automatic transmissions, which controls shifting behavior. Disconnecting the battery returned the settings to the default.

    3. The maintenance required light is mileage based and is supposed to remind you that a service is due. There should be a slot on the display near the light that you can insert a key in to that will reset that light until the next service interval.

    4. Have it changed now, today. The price range you mentioned is reasonable.

    If you don't have an Owners Manual for the car please get one and read it cover to cover. Your local Honda dealer should be able to order one for you, or you can order one from

    non-car smiley
  • I have a 1995 Honda Cicvic EX - Car has been a great car but the AC went this year. I have had 4 Compressors replaced in the car - bad lot of compressors I have been told. Well got on that kinda works now but....

    Cold air blows in the morning - blows the afternoon but runs for about 5 minutes in the evening then the unit shuts off. If you check the harness it appears the compressor is getting no power at all. Mechanic has told me the cars computer may be acting up and need to have it analyzed.

    I live in Florida - where no AC means pure hell.
  • bcumminsbcummins Posts: 16
    I've noticed recently that my 2001 Civic EX makes a strange squeak/squeal when all of the following are true:
    1)The A/C is running
    2)The Brake is depressed
    3)The car moves from a low idle to a higher idle (I'm guessing to support the A/C?)

    When turned off the A/C the squeak stops. It also does not happen if I don't have my foot on the break. I mainly notice it when I'm at a stop sign or waiting in line at a drive thru.

    The closest thing I can liken the sound to is stepping on a dogs chew toy.

    Anybody have an idea of what might be causing this and/or how I can remedy it?
  • bcumminsbcummins Posts: 16
    My 2001 Civic EX has 36K miles. I bought it in the Fall of 2004 with 28K miles. When I last got my oil changed at a Valvoline place last week they suggested I change my Automatic Transmission Fluid. They were pushing a $90 flush.

    My buddy told me to make sure I go somewhere that knows Hondas since they use a special ATF. I called the dealer and the service rep surprisingly suggested that I really only needed to have my ATF replaced rather than flushed. I asked her if I needed to worry about all the fluid left in the torque converter and she told me I probably wouldn't need a total flush until 90 or 100K miles. Any thoughts? Am I safe getting a drain/replace at a Lube Joint as long as they use Honda's ATF Z1?
  • purchased 3 weeks ago.
    700 miles on it.
    PROBLEM: starting from the first day of driving.
    whenever I remove my foot from the acceleration pedal (now matter gently or harsh), the car seems to slow down very quickly. it was slowing down by 10miles/hour in 8 seconds on the flat road. even if the car is going downhill, it still keep on slowing down but at a moderate rate. I felt that the engine was restrainging the car to roll ahead, which doesn't happen to any of the cars that I have ever driven. is this a problem? or this is something related to the engine-to-be-broken-in issue? Since this is the first brand new car I have, I really don't have any idea.
    I filled the gas tank twice so far. did a little caculation, around 30mpg, far from the EPA rating 31/38. is this related to the engine preventing the car from rolling ahead? Please help me solve this puzzle. Thank you very much.
  • blaneblane Posts: 2,017

    Why would you not be telling your Honda dealer to immediately resolve the problem under your new car warranty, instead of asking here on this forum? Surely, the factory-trained staff there can quickly provide you with a satisfactory resolution to your concerns.
  • I have a 98 civic lx and the door latch does not appear to be working. I can't open the door from the inside or the outside. The rods are still connected to the latch, but it doesn't seem to be moving the latch. I have the door panel partially removed, though it's kind of hard to do without the door open. I'd like to be able to get the door open so I can figure out what is wrong with it. Any ideas on how I can force the latch to open?
  • As I am driving I find that the car rattles starting at 80 and then gets progressively worse moving towards the 90s, It is worse when not accelorationg. I'm wondering if its the stock wheels, which im replacing with 17 inch rims, or the suspension. If anyone has any tips on making the car smooth at these speeds it would be appreciated.
  • rowaxerowaxe Posts: 12
    I have an '85 honda CRX Si and i'm trying to find a replacement sensor for the engine. it's a 1600 DOHC. I'm stuck in New Zealand right now so I don't have my usual base of resources. I'm having an idle speed problem I need to isolate. The engine is idling erratically when it's warming up. once I run if for a couple of hours it's fine. when I start it cold it's fine. I pulled the honda shop manual off a UK website and it said to check the TA Sensor. i asked around here and the mechanics said they'd never heard of a TA Sensor and it was probably the fast idle sensor.

    Question 1) Is a TA and fast idle sensor the same thing? (if not, which one would be the most likely culprit?)

    Question 2) What other cars have the same motor so I can pull the part off a salvage-it-yourself type yard?
  • garyshgarysh Posts: 1
    Hi I would like to ask you about the honda "grade logic" in automatic transmittions.

    I own a 96 civic VTi and I changed my battery about 6 months ago, these last few months my auto tranny has been playing up and last week it wont even shift to 4th gear from 3rd (70kph is like the highest i can go). My mechanic friend told me to take it into honda car service which i already booked, but then he also mentioned that it might have been that i changed the battery and that i need to reconfigure the computer inside the car? Would that sound right?

    Also if it is the transmittion problem, i am looking at a worse case scenario of replacing it, however i know it would cost a whooping amount of money so i can anyone tell me if i replace the transmittion, how much guarantee can i get that it wont play up again??? Any reply would be great help thanks!
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