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1998 honda civic won't turn over, help?

My 1998 Honda Civic has been dormant in my drive way for about a month and a half with very little gas. I went out to try to start it the other day and it struggled for a bit and never turned over. It isn't the batter considering the headlights and radio work just fine, thus I sought out the nearby gas station and attempted to solve the problem by putting gas in it, yet when I returned and emptied out my gas can into the tank it was the same ol' story. Any suggestions on what it could be?
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  • The headlights and the radio take a lot less power than the starter, so the radio can operate and the lights work but the starter won't turn the engine over. Putting gasoline in the tank when the battery is dead won't have any effect. You may be able to jump the battery from another car. Just be certain that you know the procedure--positive of the car with the good battery to the positive terminal in your Civic, then connect the negative terminal of the good battery to some place on the engine block away from the battery. If the car starts, disconnect in the reverse order of above.
  • In the past we've had verious perceptions of what the words "turn over" mean. I think Triedaq and I are perceiving it differently in this case. I'm interpreting it to mean that the crankshaft turns normally but no ignition happens. I think Triedaq ia interpreting it as meaning that the crankshaft isn;t turning normally. Can you clarify?

    My mind is envisioning a situation wherein the "very little gas" that sat in the tank for a month and a half evaporated enought to leave the pickup screen high & dry. If that's true, than the line may have drained and the pump may need enough "head pressure" to prime itself.
    How much gas did you put in it?
    2 gallons?
    5 gallons?
    10 gallons?
  • I've had a similar problem with my Civic, and it seemed to be related to the gas within the lines as well as in the tank. Pumping the gas peddle a couple times to get more fuel in the system before trying to start it did the trick for me. Good luck!
  • Pumping the "gas" pedal without the car running in a fuel injected car isn't going to do anything. Its really an "air" pedal. So I have to assume the effect you got was some sort of placebo effect.
  • I assume the starter is working ok and the engine is turning over ok. It is just the ignition isn't firing the engine up. I suggest you try spraying a small amount of starter fluid into the intake air line and see if that helps. If the engine still refuses to run then there may be an ignition system problem or some serious engine trouble. The ignition system should be checked first.
  • edited February 2012
    Lets make sure you know what the term "turn over" means.....

    When you turn the key to the start position....Do you hear the engine "TURNING OVER"......or are you misusing the term "turn over" FOR START AND OR RUN?

    Methinks its the latter.....which is why you would have thought about fuel.......cause if she doesnt turn over.....its electrical....or starter motor related.......IF SHE DOESNT START...........It could be fueling.

    So which is it? It DOES turn over doesnt it.....she just wont start and run right?

    In that case I would be looking at my main relay....and make sure I hear the fuel pump turn on when I turn the key all the way.......Got all your dash lights lit? Many X the main relay will prevent all the normal lights from illuminating and the Fuel pump from running when its on the fritz.....

    Smack that main relay....its behind your change holder on the drivers side...up under the dash....usually big brown or black relay looking box.....unplug it .....plug back in.....and HIT IT HARD when you turn the key......bet it starts..... :)


    I even wrote an article called "Terms of Endearment" to handle these misconceptions of "Turning over" and etc......it was ignored as usual.......It NEEDED to become a "Sticky"......but alas...

    Blackbird
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