1994 Honda Accord Electrical

I bought my 1994 Accord EX 2 years ago used. It has run very well, but has an annoying electrical problem that continues to baffle me. Before I replace any more parts on questionable advice here is what the problem is and here is what I have done so far:

In the heat of the summer, on hottest days, the car will sometimes cut out when I shift into neutral from gear (5 speed manual). It will usually start up quickly enough unless very hot when it takes a few minutes to cool. It has occasionally done this in cooler weather and it seems to only want to do this when the gas tank gets low.

So here is what I have been told and what I have replaced in the last 18 months:

- I gave it a good tune up 18 montths ago plugs, wires, rotor cap, rotor – nothing changed.

- I then put in a re-built starter ( I think that was a separate problem…with the solenoid shot in the starter… it would click sometime until it finally turned over)

- My Honda dealer then said it was definitley the distributor coil…nothing changed.

- Then I was told is defintitely the main fuel relay (PGM-FI) under the steering column and the solders separate due to heat sometimes and it has to cool. I spent a painful hour under the dash getting to and changing that…nothing changed.

The only other thing I can remotley think of is that the battery must be 3 or 4 years old as I have not changed it since I have owned it?



I wonder of the ground between the chassis and the engine is intermittent. This might explain why the engine cuts out when you shift to neutral. I know that this is a long shot, but you’e tried many other possibilities. At any rate, this would be easy to check out to see if the ground is tight and that the connections are not corroded. I think Click and Clack may have diagnosed a similar problems years ago on the radio show.

The symptom is: “The engine, sometimes, cuts off (on the hottest days) when I shift the manual transmission into neutral.” Right? What happens to the throttle when the throttle is released for the shift to neutral? The throttle goes to the idle position. When the throttle is at idle position, the throttle position sensor tells the engine computer of that. Using that data, data from the MAF (Mass Air Flow) sensor, and the other sensors, the engine computer commands the fuel injectors to spray fuel for X amount of time (milliseconds).
The throttle position sensor wears the most at idle, and just off the idle position. When it wears, its data signal to the engine computer isn’t accurate; therefore, the engine computer’s command to the fuel injectors can’t be accurate.
Measure the electrical resistance (ohms), and voltage, of the tps. Use a MAF sensor cleaner spray on the MAF. Use a throttle body cleaner on the iac valve (idle air control) and the throttle plate and throttle bore. These items, and the repair manual (which has the instructions for checking the sensors, etc.) can be gotten at most auto parts stores.
Change the fuel filter (which on the Honda is a piece of pie). I don’t see any reason to change the battery, from the trouble symptom.
If you noticed, I didn’t give you a parts list of parts to change. Sorry.

Another thing you might try is to have someone inside the car shifting it while someone out side looks at the movement of all shifting components. You may have some wireing harness that is grounding out when the engine compartment gets to a certain temputure.

The reason I suggest this is a had a Dodge mini van and the engine would die whenever I turned a certain direction. I started looking at the steering column in the engine compartment and when it was turned I could see that a wireing harness had been rubbing against it and shorting out the wires causeing it to stall. Moved harness and taped it up and problem solved.