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Honda Civic: Problems & Solutions



  • snarkssnarks Posts: 207
    Automatic transmisions don't warm up idling (very well) but manuals do once you let the clutch out. I find it wasteful environmentally to warm up a car(more pollution emitted during warm up and its quicker to warm up by driving). Its too bad Honda does not put seat heaters in the Civic a solution to waste. I guess you have to purchase an Accord EX/leather. People I know including myself in Golf I used to own never warm up car with those, the seats heat up nearly instantly.

    Just drive slow and easy to speed whatever it may be. I drive 2 minutes with a stone cold motor onto highway and slowly ease up to 75 MPH. I have hot heat at around 50 MPH during accelaration during merging.

    If you are happy warming up a car thats fine, it symbolizes the waste/excess in the USA. Ask a european, they never understand the excessive idling for no apparent reason here.
  • sejinrosejinro Posts: 20
    Just bought a 2004 Civic Coupe EX with manual transmission. My previous car was a 2002 Toyota Camry (4 cylinder and auto trans), but I gave the car to my parents as gift as their car was getting old. With the Camry, at 60 mph, the RPM was right below 3000 RPM, but with the Civic, the RPM is around 3500 RPM. Is there something wrong with my car? I assumed that with a 5-speed transmission, at 60 MPH, the RPM would be lower.
  • celica115celica115 Posts: 169
    I believe so. My 04 LX auto and 02 WRX manual both run 60mph at 2600 - 2700 RPM. Even my 1990 Celica GT manual runs 60mph at 2750 RPM. My friend's 00 Camry auto is around 2600 RPM at this speed. I guess your manual Civic should run 75+ mph at 3500 RPM (5th gear of course). Just guessing, other EX owners please input your info. It is interesting, thanks.
  • Hi. I own a 04 Civic EX Coupe Auto. It has around 450 miles on it. From the day I drove it out from the dealership, (not a local one, so all services and maintanence would be done at a closer shop) I noticed that it made some a high pitch whine at initial acceleration, a low pitch buzzing also during initial acceleration, and a trickling noise at random instances. All of these noises are rather faint, so only people with very healthy ears could hear them. I definitely could.

    So earlier today I sent in my car for a service appointment, and told the rep exactly what I had experienced. He noted them down and said that a technician would test-drive my car to see if he/she could verify the sounds. So hours later, I get the call and the rep. says that the technician couldn't reporduce ANY of the noises I've heard, and that it was no different than any other brand new Civic. But the guy still offered me to come along to a test drive and personally 'show' them what I hear.

    Should I go through the trouble, or just accept that maybe my ears are too sensitive and that I'm overreacting to things? I just hope that it's not the other senario where the technician is partially deaf from running those power drills inches away from his ears...
  • I don't know about Accords Greg, but I know my Civic will never reach operating temperature on a cold day with the heat/defrosters running by letting it just sit in the driveway. I know this because when my temp gauge just barely gets to the normal range, if I stop at a light with the heat running I will actually see my temp gauge drop down some. I have to agree with everyone else about the transmissions and once again I also want to comment on what the owners manual says about 5 speeds (which is what I have). It says something to the effect of, shifting will be a bit stiffer on a cold morning. This is normal and does not harm the car. To answer your questions...I would use infinite amounts of fuel to get my car to operating temperature because it will never reach operating temperature by just sitting there idling with the defroster taking away all the heat from the heat exchanger. I would rather just get in the car and drive in the cold for a few minutes getting 15-20 mpg instead of 0 mpg. 3. I have no need for defrosters since my car is garaged. :) Have a nice day all..Nick
  • gregoryc1gregoryc1 Posts: 766
    You made a good point! Since you keep your car in a garage, you have no need to "warm it up". It is out of the wind and the cold! ---- I agree with you! ---- Have a nice day. ---- Greg
  • dalawdalaw Posts: 37
    02 Camry right below 3000 rpm at 60 mph is a little high. 04 Civic at 3500 rpm is also high. Are you sure you are in the top gear? I think I read in Motortrend about the 03 Camry 4 cyl AT revs at about 2100 rpm at 60 mph, and from the same magazine, an 02 Civic LX 5-spd revs at 2500 rpm.

    Here is a list of cars I've driven in my family and the RPM I observed at 60 mph:

    03 Civic LX AT: 2400 rpm
    01 Accord 4-cyl LX AT: 2250 rpm
    00 Camry V6 AT: 2200 rpm
    97 Altima AT: 2050 rpm
  • Wow I am surprised noone including you responded to my previous message given that we had the same issue.. Anyhow, I have exactly the same problem with my 04 civic coupe. Took it to the dealer twice. I drove around with the technician. First he heard the faint noise, but he said he had to check it to see if it was abnormal or not. Supposedly, there was air in the coolant system and that the noise was gone after the air was taken out! It's still there though. Maybe I am hearing noises like you too. My friend said it's prolly not a biggie. So I gave up. I turn on the music and press the gas medal. It still bugs me sometimes but oh well...maybe i am too anal!
  • gregoryc1gregoryc1 Posts: 766
    When an engine is "idling" in neutral or park, the torque converter is spinning and moving the fluid in the automatic transmission, so as such, "heat" is being created in the automatic transmission due to "slippage" between the "drive" and "driven" member of the torque converter. This action, together with the heat that is being transferred from the block of the engine, will warm up the automatic transmission case and the fluid. The transmission will shift smoother when it is warm. -----Just my opinion. ----Have a nice day. ----Greg
  • sejinrosejinro Posts: 20
    Thanks for the posts so far. The last couple of days, the RPM/MPH relationship has changed now. Now I am at:

    60 MPH 3000 RPM
    75 MPH 3600 RPM

    Maybe I have the "break" the car in or something. Is there a RPM calculator on the Internet? Yes, I am in 5th gear. Maybe because the engine is VTEC and I do know that Civic LX is not VTEC. Does VTEC somehow cause the engine to run at higher RPMs?
  • It depends what transmission you have. If you have a manual transmission, the rpms naturally run higher than a automatic transmission because of the way they are geared. Manual transmissions are generally geared shorter than autos creating higher rpms. I'm not sure, but there might be a gearing difference between the LX and the EX model because the redline on the LX is 6000 and the redline on the EX is 7000.
  • theracoontheracoon Posts: 666
    According to the website, the LX and EX Coupe engines have the same displacement, but the EX is a VTEC engine with different HP and torque:

    EX - 16-Valve SOHC VTEC®
     127 HP @ 6300 RPM
     114 lb.ft. @ 4800 RPM
     9.9:1 compression ratio

    LX - 16-Valve SOHC
     117 HP @ 6100 RPM
     110 lb.ft. @ 4500 RPM
     9.5:1 compression ratio

    Both engines have the same displacement, bore, and stroke.
  • sejinrosejinro Posts: 20
    I have a manual transmission, but now I am worried about gas mileage. I am assuming if I drive at a higher RPM then my gas mileage will degrade. Does this mean that the Civic DX, HX and LX have better mpg that EX? I think it comes down to the fact that EX has the VTEC engine.
  • snarkssnarks Posts: 207

    You need to put your transmission in Drive or any gear and sit with your foot on brake to actually warm it up. Fluid does not circulate when the engine idles and doesn't warm very much of transmission.

    You need to change your warm up method if you want to actually warm the tranny, sit in car waste a few minutes and freeze while your car warm up. Or just drive off slowly...
  • ngagunngagun Posts: 3
    Hello everyone,

    I bought a 2004 Civic LX coupe auto about 3 weeks ago. It has just developed a troubling problem: when you start the car and accelerate, it accelerates for about half a second, then kind of loses power for a moment, then continues accelerating (all in 1st gear). This also happened once when I was reversing. After driving the car for a few minutes, when it warms up I guess, the problem goes away. Does anyone know what this is, or has anyone had a similar problem? I am going to take it into the dealer because it seems dangerous -- you don't get the acceleration you expect.

    thank you very much,

  • ngagunngagun Posts: 3
    This is a reply to the message above from Sejinro. I think 3000 RPM for 60 mph is still much too high. At 3000 RPM my 04 Civic LX auto would be doing about 75 mph. I think such high RPM will negatively affect the fuel economy.

    The EX actually has slightly better fuel economy than the other models, according to the EPA ratings.

    You can easily compare your fuel economy to what is reasonable to expect. reports fuel economy for vehicles tested over thousands of miles. Their test EX sedans averaged 30.5 mpg. I have been getting similar mileage with my LX with a combination of city and highway (75 mph) driving. So I think you should expect about 30 mpg, a bit better if you do a lot of highway driving at the speed limit.
  • gregoryc1gregoryc1 Posts: 766
    If the automatic transmission has a "Torque Converter" and a "front pump", there is "fluid circulation" in the "Torque Converter", in neutral and / or in park at idle. If the transmission fluid is water cooled, the fluid from the torque converter, will be sent to an oil cooler, and back to the transmission pan, where it will be circulated again.-----Greg
  • dudkadudka Posts: 451
    I think you worry too much over nothing. If you have a manual it will run at higher RPMs at the same speed as comparable auto. We have duscussed already how EPA numbers are acheived: At 48 mph, granny shifting. I have and Si and it is geared even shorter than regular civic. I run at 4000 rpm at 80 mph, I barely acheive 28 mph, but it is all worth it because with such short gearing I don't have to downshift from 5th to accelerate.

    If you look for the specifications you will get the exact gear ratin for each gear and the final drive. Take the outer circumfernce of the tire and divide it into a mile. This is how many revolutions of the tire it take to drive a mile. Multiply that by the speed you are inquiring, take that number and divide by the product of the particulr gear and final drive, it should give you the RPM's. I hope I didn't leave anything out, someone please confirm.
  • Hi everyone... I have a 2000 Honda Civic LX with an auto transmission, 4 cylinder, PS, PW (a pretty basic LX model).

    I recently had a problem where the car would stall while driving and while sitting at idle. The code for it finally popped up (after months of no codes) for a cracked catalytic convertor. That was replaced free of charge by Honda. The stalling seemed to have disapperaed after that.

    However I still have an occasional instance of a loss of power while driving (usually 65 mph+). The car would lose power and then kick roughly back to where my accelerator had been after flooring it for a long period of time to get some power. Sometimes the AC would be on, and sometimes it is not on. It usually begins to lose power after a long steady drive of a couple of hours and some accerleration while passing the slower traffic. Any ideas of what may be the problem? Honda doesn't seem to know what it may be.

    Thanks in advance...
  • dudkadudka Posts: 451
    seems like your car needs a full tune up
  • dan186dan186 Posts: 1
    Hi there
    When I start my 2000 (Civic ex standard) in very cold weather, there is a loud whine for about 5 mins till it warms up.
    This is my first winter with it. Anybody have this problem or ideas.
  • snarkssnarks Posts: 207
    In cold temps (10F or lower) things do whine, my car always has since new. If it continues when warmer or car warmed up I would then worry about it.
  • regataregata Posts: 8

    I own a 1995 honda civic DX. A month back my car skidded and turned 180 degrees and went out of the road. Nothing is damaged or hit by anything. Onething I notice is front bumper slightly moved it's position. My car is working fine apart from AC button not turning on. I took it to Michel's tires plus and they checked all the fuses and said everything is fine. They doubt on relay. I do not think either it is relay or fuses. I suspect some wiring connections might have got loose. I have very poor knowledge of auto engine. Anybody faced this before or suggest me where to take it to for diagnosis ???

    Thanks for your suggestions.
  • Hey everyone. My 1996 civic LX just started knocking when the car goes less than 40 mph. At first I thought it was an issue with my brakes because I was usually braking when I noticed that the car was knocking. Since then, I have heard this knocking when the car was sitting at idle. At highway speeds and on most roads where the speed limit is 35 mph, the knocking goes away. From inside the cabin, it sounds like the knocking is coming from the front wheel on the driver's side.

    Does anyone have any ideas where this knocking could be coming from? Thanks for the suggestions.
  • snarkssnarks Posts: 207
    One guess is that your Freon escaped possibly due from impact of accident. If you have no Freon the AC will not run. Take your vehicle to an AC repair shop. The AC will not light if no pressure in system.
  • regataregata Posts: 8
    Even if Freon is gone, the ac button should turn ON. Shouldn't it ? I understand if it is the case that AC button is ON and not getting the AC. It's like you turning on the light switch and bulb is not glowing.

    Thanks for your reply.
  • mattpdxmattpdx Posts: 41

    Okay people. My new Civic is nearing 3K miles and I'm wondering about the oil. Manual says 5000. I drive my car quite a bit on the freeways (somtimes a lot faster than I should!). I'm getting antsy about the oil. Also, my gas mileage has been absolutely miserable (hovering 28mpg avg). I'm supposed to be getting 33/37. I tried for two tanks driving less agressively and didn't notice a difference. I switched from Chevron 89oct to Texaco 89oct. Again, no noticeable difference.

    My questions are:

    1)WHEN will my gas mileage improve? It HAS been very cold here lately (Richmond, VA).

    2)WHEN should I change my oil??? I would think with all the metal filings from the engine changing at 3K would be better especially since I've driven my Civic pretty heartily.

    Other than that, I'm loving my car. I HAVE noticed that parallel parking in this car is more difficult than any other car I've had even though it isn't much larger. I think it has to do with the high trunk lid. Has anybody else noticed this??? :-/

    *sigh* Can't beat it though...I love my car.

  • snarkssnarks Posts: 207
    A few things on MPG, the highway mileage is figured at 50 MPH not higher speeds. This lowers your fuel mileage. Also don't use a higher octane fuel, use 87, anything else is a waste of money and can get less mileage.

    Also mileage will be lower since car is not broken in yet. Lastly, when its cold mileage is lower beacause of fuel formulations changed for winter for less pollution and especially if you warm your car up (0 mpg idling).

    More freeway mileage even at higher speeds is better than city driving with regards to oil. 5000 miles is fine, however if you are uncomfortable then just change it. The idea of shavings is so old school from I don't know where. If you change it yourself, its pretty doubtful you'll see any. I would then worry... good luck
  • dudkadudka Posts: 451
    Regata, Snarks is correct, the A/c will not turn on if there is no pressure. Freon is mixed in with the lubricating oil and the system is designed to prevent self destruction. There is a pressure switch that will diasble the a/c compressor clutch from engaging when the freon is low. I don't know if the '95 were R-12 or R-134, if it is R-134, you can do a quick check for $10. Go to wall mart, find the discount section, last time i looked they had 16 oz bottles of freon R-134 and oil on sale there for $10. Charge up the system the a/c should work for a minute or so, before eveything has escaped. You may actually see where the gas is escaping. My guess would be that you need a new a/c radiator, I think it is called evaporator core, or condenser. Although I am pretty sure the condenser is on the cold side.
  • alcanalcan Posts: 2,550
    The refrigerant in Hondas since 1994 is R-134A, not R-12 (Freon). The service ports are different, so R-12 can't be introduced anyway, and trying to mix both will damage the car's AC system and any refrigerant recovery equipment used to service the system.

    R-134 molecules are about 1/6 the size of R-12, and it's leakage rate is greater. On a car that old, it's likely that the system has lost it's charge.

    If refrigerant pressure is less than 33 psi due to leakage or higher than 340 psi due to cooling blockage, the dual pressure switch on the condenser line opens the circuit to the AC control unit and stops the air conditioner to protect the compressor.

    Time to take it in to a qualified shop and have the system checked.
This discussion has been closed.