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Honda Accord (1990-1993) Maintenance and Repair



  • deatt12deatt12 Posts: 3
    Hello. I'm new here and this seems to be a place of knowledgeable people. :)

    Man I bought my first freaking car about 6 months ago: 1990 Honda Accord LX. It sucked when i first got it. It wouldn't start properly without a bit of starter fluid and eventually i did a lot to the car and got it running perfectly! No problems after i replaced the fuel pump and the main relay.

    However that was two months ago. Now my car is having a similar problem starting and's really aggravating me because everyone tells me something different and I've ended up replacing two coolant sensors, my entire distributor (which includes the igniter), and Jesus as my witness the damn thing still has trouble starting...however I've made a discovery in the past few days...

    My fuel pump has trouble receiving power...sometimes it will get power and sometimes it won' something else is strange as "S" light will start blinking and my check engine light will appear...when this happens i have observed that my fuel pump has stopped receiving power...It's like me LOL i just go when i feel like it!

    Anyway, the other thing wrong with my car is that my windows continue to receive power almost 15 mins after i turn the car off and remove the keys from the ignition...not a problem with me, but it might lead to something bad down the road...which is why i mention it.

    If anyone could help me, it would be greatly appreciated, because i start college in July and without a car i can't make the 30 minute drive out there!! :(

  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Anyway, the other thing wrong with my car is that my windows continue to receive power almost 15 mins after i turn the car off and remove the keys from the ignition...not a problem with me, but it might lead to something bad down the road...which is why i mention it.

    Actually, this isn't anything wrong, but rather a feature. For example, if you are sitting in a parking lot waiting on someone to come to your car (picking someone up) and you turn the car off, you can still roll down the windows if it gets stuffy after a few minutes. Once you open one of the doors, this will no longer work until you turn the key back to the "ON" position and back off again.

    I am no mechanic, so I'm not much help on the other issues with your car, but after my mom having a Gen IV Accord like yours (hers was a '93 EX), and me having a Gen V ('96) and Gen VII ('06) Accord that has the same feature, even allowing you to open the moonroof in my EX, I know that this isn't a problem at all, and you shouldn't fret this thing!

    Good luck with your other issues. These cars are pretty great as far as I'm concerned.

  • deatt12deatt12 Posts: 3
    Well that would be cool and all if that was a feature but i can still open the door and the windows will still but thanks for trying! :)
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Well, it may have been different on the earlier models, I just know my '96 does the same thing pretty much (minus the doors opening). It shouldn't hurt anything.

    I'm curious to know if the "door open" indicator lights work for each door on the dashboard, meaning, if all four doors are open, do all 4 lights illuminate in the pictogram?
  • deatt12deatt12 Posts: 3
    actually on mine, no....only the first door you opened works
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,741
    The link below has a wealth of information on 4th gen Accords (90-93). It includes some troubleshooting for the "S" light, as well as for the main relay/fuel pump issue. If I were you, I would keep this link for future reference. To find the information on the "S" light you have to click on the transmission link (top left). Good luck.
  • IF I read your post correctly, you have a problem with that loose crankshaft pulley. My 93 has a (one piece?) dual row belt pulley, so I'm not sure what you mean when you say the the large and small sections are rotating independently of each other.

    In any case, you should NOT be able to rotate the crankshaft pulley without turning the crankshaft also. If you are able to do so, the pulley bolt has probably loosened and the square keeper pin (key) has either slipped out of place or broken.

    Be aware that the same bolt and square pin that keeps the crankshaft pulley from spinning also holds the timing belt pulley in place. If that moves, you could end up with some serious valve train damage.

    Again, IF I read your statements correctly, you need to fix that loose pulley before you go any farther with your other problems.

    Good luck.
  • Hello All,
    I have a 1991 Accord Wagon with 200k miles. The car is not very attractive but is in pretty decent shape with the exception of an oil leak. In the morning there are two small puddles(2inX2in) under the front end kinda by each tire. When I start the car after sitting it smokes for a few minutes then seems to be fine, the smoke smells oil-ish.
    I want to keep the car on the road.. it still gets awesome gas mileage and its perfect to haul my Kayaks around on.
    I am wondering about swapping out the engine or getting the gaskets done.. I am also wondering what engines/years are compatible with this car..Its a 4cyl/5speed.. NOT a VTECK.
    Any advise,suggestions, or info would be greatly appreciated. You can probably tell that Im not very familiar with mechanics and would like to have an idea before I go to get an estimate.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 58,504
    The only repair that makes sense given the car and condition would be to fix the oil leaks. If they are leaking onto the exhaust pipes this is probably a good sign, in that the oil leak is up top, not a crankshaft seal. If you mean that the oil smoke is coming out the tail pipe, not smoking off the exhaust header, that's not so good, but is probably just normal engine wear at this high mileage.

    Those leaks sound like they are getting serious however--that's a big drip.

    If you have a massive crankshaft leak in front (behind the front pulley), that's fixable but if you have a huge rear main seal leak, that could be very expensive, and on an old engine like yours not a good sign of internal condition.

    So the advice is---locate the leaks precisely, on a lift, steaming the engine---WHATEVER, then make a decision based on this hard data. How much oil are you burning? That would also be a factor in what to do.

    I don't think it ever makes sense to do an engine swap in a beat up old car. A used engine from a wrecker makes more sense, or just go buy another old Honda.

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  • FukuyamaFukuyama Posts: 75
    yep, somehow the big pulley came off...So I replaced it...alterantor working fine!!! and AC too.

    thank you all!
  • How do I figure out what engine is actually in my car? F20a? F22b? F22A6? F22a4? its a 1991 Accord non vtec 4cyl original factory it written on the engine somewhere? Im confused :)
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,741
    No 91 Accord had Vtec. Those engines were not available until 94. Which engine your 91 has, depends on which model you have.
    1991 Accord DX/LX: 2.2L(2156cc) F22A1, MPFI, SOHC 16-valve (single exhaust manifold)
    1991 Accord EX: 2.2L(2156cc), F22A4, MPFI, SOHC 16-valve (dual exhaust manifold)
    1991 Accord SE: 2.2L(2156cc), F22A6, MPFI, SOHC 16-valve (dual intake manifold)
  • Thanks Elroy.. thats very helpful.. im a F22a4!
    There are a couple on Tigger.. Assuming that this would be a simple bolt in replacement (should I choose to do it), in general terms, about how much would it cost to have the labor done at a local shop (not a honda dealer)? Anybody have a rough idea? :blush:
  • hi my timing belt just went out on my 1990 honda accord and was left stranded on the highway, the engine was smoking when i stopped it, is there anyway i can know if the engine was a non-interference engine or an interference engine? ive been looking around on the web and got both answers, some say that hondas never made non-interference engines and then i got some that said almost all honda's are non-interference engines which is the reason they run so long, so im confused as to if i just need to go get a new car completely or if i can just have the car towed and have the timing belt fixed
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 58,504
    How do you know the timing belt broke? A smoking engine would not be a symptom of that.

    At any rate, yes it's an interference engine, at least by my charts.

    Even if it is interference fit, that doesn't mean you need a whole new engine.

    You need to calm down and get some good advice on a)what exactly happened and b) what your alternatives are. You might have overheated and not broken the belt, or if you broke it, maybe you only bent a few valves and you can get by with a rebuilt cylinder head.

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  • corkscrewcorkscrew Posts: 254
    What color was the smoke?
  • cybercoolcybercool Posts: 117
    Hi all

    I bought y 93' Accord EX about 2 yrs ago with the odometer reading 135000.
    The prior owner said it stopped working when she had it. The true odometer reading on my car has to over 165000? Can the true reading of the engine odometer ever be found? When I first bought the car it performed better and faster and now the engine and ABS light goes on and has a sluggish per- formance. I was told the Accord engines can run for a very long time. How can I bring back some life into my car? Tune up, fuel pressure gauge check, etc?

  • matador51matador51 Posts: 17
    Has anyone used the turtle Wax product called Ice ( total interior care) on the cars leather and vinyl interior.

    I have 2008 Accord V6 automatic Accord with the black leather seats and
    I assume black vinyl dash.

    Some people use the McGuires Gold product but I think that is only for leather.

    Thanks for the feedback.
  • the smoke was grey
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,741
    I would find out what codes are stored in the computer. That might give you some idea why the performance has dropped. Your car is OBDl, so the procedure for getting the codes is different from OBDll. This link describes how to get the codes on your car. Good luck
  • corkscrewcorkscrew Posts: 254
    Yes, yours is an interference engine. A good mechanic can tell fairly quickly if the belt is broken. However it will take more labor to determine the extent of the damage. Only you can decide how far you are willing to go if, in fact, the belt is broken.
    Did you have any warning such as low oil presssure or engine running hot before the incident?
    Blue smoke is burning oil and white to grey smoke is anti freeze. I may be wrong here but I'm leaning towards a blown head gasket.
  • exactlyexactly Posts: 1
    91 accord same no start problem how do i test relay
  • rcraddockrcraddock Posts: 1
    I too am having the same problem.. I'm not sure whats wrong... I'm not getting any fuel pressure, or spark, the car is turning over, I replaced the main relay, and still no luck, I even tested the throtle positioning sensor with the key on to see if the ECU was getting power and it was working.

    I tested the ignition, nothing wrong there.. but there is something going on... No fuel pump, and no spark I checked out the main relay and it is fine, I also tried another out of a running car, what do I do next...

    If anyone knows anything please help, thanks, ronn. email me lv_techs at yahoodotcom
  • rws800rws800 Posts: 4
    I too have a civil with75K & was just replacing plugs, filters etc and asked about the oxygen sensor ( I believe that's the correct term) It's located or rather two of them - when you open hood one is at the exhaust manafold & has a wire leading out of it to the computer. The other one is supposed to be after the catylic converter. They were very costly , like $150 for one and $80 or so for the other. The guy at Advanced auto asked if I was having the engine light coming on or bad engine performance. And no, so why change it and he said the maintence was 120k miles. These sensors feed the computer info on fuel burning etc and if they are onthe blink you will have wrong imput and the computer keeps trying to adjust the fuel/air mixture. Ask some people at the Honda garage. If you do have to change them out you need a torch to heat the metal where they are located to expand the metal and get them out. Try put some antiseize on the new threads.
    Hope this helps. Check a maintance type book Haynes etc.
  • aspringaspring Posts: 6
    I have a Honda Accord 1993. Recently I started to have a problem with the car. The card does not start. When jumpstart the battery, it works fine. So I told myself, it has to be from the battery.

    I went to AutoZone, and bought a new battery. Next day, the car did not that was a pain. I did jumpstart the battery, and the car starts fine. For the next two weeks, I never had a problem and the car starts without a problem.

    Recently, last two days I could not start the car. However, when I jumpstart the battery the car starts fine...what is the problem? is it the starter, the fuse,...? please advice. Thanks.
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    Did you have autozone load test your old alternator and battery before buying a new battery? Most autochains will do that for free.

    Since your car starts when jumped, that usually means your battery is discharged. 'WHY' it is discharged, is the real question. If it was discharged because the battery had a bad cell, then replacing the battery would fix the problem. However, if the reason the battery had low voltage was because the alternator is bad and isn't charging the battery back up, then you replaced the wrong part. You might also have corrosion on your battery terminals or they are loose, but I'm assuming you would have fixed any corrosion when putting a new battery in.

    I'd take it back to AutoZone, and have them do a load test on your car. They'll roll out a tester, and hook it up to your battery and alternator. They can then put a resistive load on it, and check that your alternator is putting out the right voltage and maximum current, and they will also check that your battery can hold the voltage.
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,741
    You should have had Autozone test the old battery first. Your car's electrical system could be draining the battery, or you could have a main relay problem. Read this link, and try to diagnose the cause.

    The important thing is to find the cause, and test the suspected parts. Getting into a guessing game, can become very expensive. Good luck, in your quest for truth. :)
  • In addition to the previous advise, check your battery cables.

    A faulty battery cable will often (typically in my experience) exhibit the same symptoms as a weak battery during the start cycle, sometimes even requiring a jump start, but won't necessarily have an obvious noticeable effect on the car's charging / electrical system once it is running. If your warning light is not illuminating when the car is running and you have a good battery when attempting to start, this should be at the top of the list of things to check.

    Checking for voltage drop through the cables is simple if you have a mutimeter or perhaps Autozone will do this when they check the alternator (or maybe not ,I don't know).

    For a quick check, see if a cable gets warm or hot to the touch the next time you have trouble starting it
  • aspringaspring Posts: 6
    Thanks for the advice.

    I went back to Autozone. They tested the new battery and alternator. Both are fine. They did not not know what still cause this, as the problem still exist. The battery location seems fine along with the connections (nothing loose).

    So the problem is not from the alternator, could be the Starter?
  • aspringaspring Posts: 6
    Of course, I tested the old battery before replacing it. They say it is bad. But having a new battery did not fix the problem.

    I went back to Autozone. They tested the new battery and alternator. Both are fine. They did not know what still cause this, as the problem still exist. The battery location seems fine along with the connections (nothing loose).

    So the problem is not from the alternator, could be the Starter? and what do you mean by main relay?
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