1994 Honda Accord struggles at certain speed

For 2 weeks, my car has not responded to the gas pedal, for a few minutes at the same stretch of road on way home from the office every day. I go up a very slight incline, slow down to make a right turn, and as I’m pushing the gas from 0 to 20mph or so onto the main road, it eventually slows to 5-10 mph. Car shakes slightly and is struggling. No check engine light. Full tank in all instances, the more full the tank, the worse it seems. It only happens on the way home from work, and not going into the office. Weather has been everything from pouring rain to light rain to dry and sunny. After a few minutes, something kicks in like a boost, and car rockets off and then works like normal. Why is the car only struggling after I press the gas pedal at a certain speed for a certain amount of time, and only on my way home? That is weird.

Maybe, just maybe this car is just flat worn out at 25 years old and what? 300,000 miles?? You don’t say nor do you tell us what engine and transmission it has.

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See if you can overcome this by manually downshifting the transmission. If that works, do it.

Thanks for taking an interest, but I don’t know how to describe the engine, I just know there were no extra features on it so a standard engine if that helps. 150,098 miles.

That sentence makes me think that you may have not done some of the required service that this vehicle needs. You may just have to spend some money and have a good shop look at this thing . You will pay a diagnostic fee and tell them you want to approve every thing they say it needs. Also see what is needed now and what can be done later.

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If the engine rpm speeds up but the vehicle speed (mph) slows down, that’s usually a transmission problem . But if both the rpm and mpg slow down at the same time, that’s usually an engine problem. Fuel system pressure dropping, blockage in the air intake or exhaust system, EGR valve sticking, something like that. I’m guessing either your cat’s guts have come loose and occasionally blocking the exhaust flow, or the EGR valve is sticking open sometimes. It’s supposed to open during acceleration when the engine is warm, but close up quickly when the acceleration phase has ended. Maybe it’s not doing the closing up part of the equation b/c it is sticking open. That would definitely cause this symptom. If you hear something rattling around under the car, that could be the cat’s guts have come loose.

I will try that! Thanks!

I’m not sure if the engine rpm is increasing, but there is a dial on my dashboard “x1000r/min”, and the dial does move to the right (increasing) when this is happening, so I suppose it is a transmission issue. Your description is extremely helpful!

This may or may not coincide with the transmission leak that was identified in October that my regular mechanic doesn’t recommend fixing, and I (too small to fix,
they said), but I wonder if the two are connected. Another mechanic was also hesitant to fix the transmission.

PS: I would get another car if they would make cars small again. Everything they sell now is just too big for me to see out of the rear windows/too bulky to park,
and I don’t like relying solely cameras.

Check the transmission fluid level, if the fluid is low the transmission can disengage when making turns, more so when the fluid is cold.

I concur w/you about the bulky car dimensions these days. But nobody’s listening to us, so about all we can do is keep driving our old cars … lol …

yeah , sure sounds like the transmission is slipping. you have an automatic, right? the first thing to do with that problem – presuming the fluid level is correct — is a proper transmission service. this usually means to drop the trans pan, drain the fluid, clean the bottom of the pan checking for metallic debris, and replacing the filter. Then refilling w/fresh fluid. Some of this may not be possible on your car, depending on how it is configured.

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Sure, I can ask the mechanic what kind of an engine I have, since I’ll be seeing them soon. I always approve everything as I know nothing about cars and ask them to check everything, but I feel that my three go-to mechanics are hesitant to give me “the list”
if you will. I think they’re too busy to look at everything.

The engine identification and emissions specs are usually on a sticker on the underside of the hood.

I will, thanks! I just wonder that my car is always fine in the morning when I leave for the office (5:30am), I don’t seem to have any issues with turning or speeding up except for that same moment in time when I get home from work. It’s an open parking lot,
and the car is in the sun all day. I leave at almost 5pm and I am in LA (the sun is still up at that time). Still I think it’s always good to check fluid levels!

Your car has a 2.2 liter four cylinder engine, if that matters to anyone. The V-6 engine was first offered in 1995.

Nice, I will let the mechanic that I see on Monday know that it is a high likelihood that it is the transmission. He’ll probably say that it needs to be fixed after the new year if that’s the case and if it’s possible. Thanks again!

PS: I wish I could like hatchback models, but even those are getting bigger too.

Thanks! I just need to be lucky enough to be able to unlatch the hood tomorrow (most of the time it is a struggle), and I will provide an update!

Wow, if I repeat that to my friends, I’ll sound really smart! I will still see if I can open the hood tomorrow.


Yes, cars have gotten bigger, but this doesn’t mean that smaller cars aren’t still available.
As just one example, the newer Honda Civics are about the same size as your 26 year old Accord.
And, a new Civic would be a far safer car than your old Accord.

Good Grief , a small hatchback vehicle is so handy to load and carry things that will not fit in a trunk .
As for not making small cars there are quite a few on the market .

You have the manual transmission? Or the automatic?