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Car not moving when accelerating

edited September 2011 in Repair and Maintenance

I have an issue with my 98 honda civic lx, with 197000 mils.
Recently I had my Check engine light on. I ignored it for a day. The next day started my car and in the middle of the road it stopped moving, meaning inspite of accelarating it doesn't move. So I stopped at the shoulder, turned off the engine. After a while I started again, the car moved but later on it stopped moving when I was accelarating. The Engine did not turn off during the stall. Can anyone narrow the problem? Couple of weeks back the car was shaking on the front side when I was driving, it felt like the car was about to stop as if it was short of fuel.
I changed the spark plug 15000 miles back. Water pump and timing belt was changed 25000 miles back.
Car has a highway mileage of 32 mpg.

Any help will be appreciated.


Comments

  • I see a transmission shop in your future.

    Is this an auto or manual transmission? If auto, have you checked the fluid (level, odor, color?) If manual, has the clutch ever been replaced?

    Did you ever have anyone check out the shaking? Anytime your car starts shaking in the front just get it to a shop asap. Otherwise its like playing Russian roulette.

    I'd be hesitant to drive the car anywhere right now as its possible that you have a minor problem that could become a major problem by driving it. (Its also possible that you just have a major problem to begin with). However, if your engine light is still on AND there is a big-box auto parts store nearby AND you could get it there without any unusual revving of the engine, then drive it there and have them read the error codes from the computer. Write down the exact codes, such as "P1234"

    Other than that, you just have to have it towed to a trustworthy local shop.
  • edited September 2011
    The car has automatic transmission. The spark plug and transmission fluid was changed 15000 miles back. I occasionally check the fluids, transmission and engine oil: both are ok/// The distributor cap, rotor and wires were changed 50000 miles (3 yrs)back.
    If it turns out to be a major transmission issue, Is it worth to overhaul the transmission on this 98 civic.. I commute 80 miles everyday//

    The shaking happened only once, when there was continuous rain...

  • If the shaky thing happened once and in the rain it was probably a misfire cause by some ignition stuff or something similar getting wet (plug wires, coil, crank sensor). If the other stuff gets sorted out then you should have someone sort that out. Its not good.

    No one can tell you whether or not the car is worth major transmission work. That all depends on the condition of the rest of the car.

    I occasionally check the fluids, transmission and engine oil: both are ok///

    If you didn't check the transmission fluid TODAY (or the oil for that matter), then you have no idea if it is ok or not. So the question isn't "do you occasionally check the fluids?" - its did you check the fluid since this happened?

    The bottom line is that if you are in gear and the engine is revving up when you step on the gas, but the car isn't going, then your transmission is slipping really badly. If you were to end up really low on fluid it could do this. If you don't cook the thing while its slipping like this (which wouldn't take long) then sometimes you can get the leak fixed, fill it up and drive on. But if its slipping and the fluid is actually fine, then chances are you just need a new transmission.
  • The symptom of not moving when in gear with the motor running is most common affect of low transmission fluid. If the fluid level is OK then it is a "deeper" transmission problem.

    Check the fluid level and add the proper fluid if needed. You had the trans fluid changed 15K miles ago. If the wrong fluid was used then it could cause the problems now 15K miles later. Honda transmissions are fluid sensitive, and I would only recommend Honda brand fluids for a Honda. Other fluid brands can mess up the Honda transmission. If topping off the fluid doesn't fix this the next step is a transmission specialty shop.

    If the body, engine, and interior of the car are good replacing, rebuilding, and/or repairing the transmission might be worthwhile. It depends on the costs to get it running properly again.
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