1997 honda crv won't go over 60 mph on the highway

1997 Honda crv wont go over 60 mph on the highway. I can put the accelerator all the way down, but it stays right at 60 and the RPMs won’t go over 4. Sometimes I can take my foot off the accelerator and put it back on and the car will go to RPMs 3 and the speed can go to 80 and above, but lately it is getting worse. Is this just a transmission fluid exchange fix?

Check engine light on? Codes?

Transmission fluid is wishful thinking - especially combined with the word “fix.”

At the moment one can only assume that there is a transmission issue since what you describe partly involves a transmission that isn’t shifting. Yet that doesn’t mean a) that the root problem is a transmission issue; or b) even if it is, that its the only issue.

If you want any help here, as noted, start with a scan for error codes. Many auto parts stores will do this for free. The codes look like “P1234” - and what people here would need are the exact codes (rather than what someone told you about them).

The second thing to provide is full and complete info regarding the past maintenance history of this vehicle. Oil changes, yes - but well beyond that to any & all of the kinds of maintenance specified in your owner’s manual. You should also make note of transmission service, if any, regardless of what the manual says.

No Check engine lights are on, I will try advance auto parts, I thought to scan for errors, the light had to be on. Could this be a bad catalytic convertor?

Yes. It could be a converter problem. Or about 20 other things.

Call around to the AP stores & ask if their readers can read “pending” and “history” codes, and if they will read all manufacturer specific codes (P1000 +) or only generic codes. (up though P0999). Pending, history, and sometimes even manufacturer specific codes often won’t come with the light being on.

Report back & then people can say where to go next.

Sounds an awful lot like a plugged catalytic converter to me. Definitely not a transmission issue from the description of the problem.

Air Filter? In order for the air to get out the exhaust, it has to get into the engine, too. Since it’s a '97, isn’t the timing also adjustable? Out of whack timing can make it start really, really easy, but have no power. There may be something inhibiting the throttle, not allowing it to open fully.

Just a couple thoughts.

A bad transmission won’t stop engine from revving high, sounds like either a fuel delivery or restricted exhaust problem. You tell us nothing about the cars mileage and maintenance or repair history.

The reason it sounds like a trans issue and not air filter, cat, etc. is that it is reving to 4000 rpm but only going 60 mph, then it revs to 3000 rpm and can go 80 mph. So it really doesn’t sound like an engine reving problem at all. Normally at 2500 rpm or so it should be doing 70 mph. So sounds like trans is slipping or not shifting into high gear or locking up.

The auto parts store couldn’t find where to plug the scanner in, they said I could call the dealer and find out, then return to the store. I have decided to take the car into Belle Tire today to see if they can diagnose the issue. The car has 221,500 miles on it, and I do not want to put a lot of money into it. I am hoping that it is something cheap and easy - I will update this disscussion.

Belle Tire said it is the transmission - not sure if it can be repaired or needs to be replaced…

A tire shop told you it’s the transmission?..and you just believe them.

Unless I’m understanding this all wrong, it revs high when it’s lightly loaded (and light on the throttle), but not whe more heavily loaded (and foot on the floor). Really, there isn’t much input to go on. But to make the assumption that it’s a bad transmission is probably the most expensive way to throw a part at this car. It could be many other things, and a tire shop would not be my first stop to diagnose it.

Still sounds like this may be as simple as the ignition timing having slipped. But without (seriously) a more determined diagnostic…

If this were me, I would check out the air filter since it’s cheap and easy. You should be able to see light through it when you hold it up to the sky. If the car is high mileage and has never had a fuel filter change, I would go there next. You will have to pay someone to do this, it can be dangerous due to fuel pressure. After that, you will have to go to a trusted mechanic.

I took it to a transmission shop, they drove it with a monitor on it. They said restricted exhaust. I took it to a muffler shop, they showed me the CC was melted. They want $300 to replace it. The only thing the bugs me is the check engine light isn’t on…

A clogged Cat. will not turn on the CEL .

@PvtPublic good to know - the muffler shop said 99.9% of the time the CEL is on.

Don’t just have them replace the cat. Have them first find out what fried it. If your cat got cooked it is almost certainly because of another problem (e.g. running too rich, burning a lot of oil, poor ignition…) If the root problem isn’t addressed you will fry the new cat too.

They told me that it was due to the mileage on the vehicle - that 225,000 miles on a CRV is about the life span of the CAT - I really appreciate the comments btw, I know zero about cars and always feel like i am getting ripped off due to my ignorance and blind trust.

The only code I have seen thrown that was caused by a clogged or melted down converter was a code for excessive EGR flow, which makes sense. That was on a midsize GM car.

I had the CAT replaced, the car is running great - I am taking it in for a tuneup now as it was recommended when you replcae a CAT.