2000 Civic - 2nd distributor stoped working



I’m looking for some help since this is the 2nd time my distributor broke.

I have a 2000 Honda Civic EX and was on the road about 1 1/2 years ago when the car wouldn?t accelerate any more. Once I turned the engine off and tried restarting, the starter cranked but I couldn?t start the car. A shop replaced the distributor and the car worked for about 1 day and then the check engine light went on. The shop replaced the spark plugs & ignition wire. Two days later the check engine light came on again. The shop said that the catalytic converter & 2 oxygen sensors needed to be replaced. I had it replaced and the car worked fine for the past 1 1/2 years. Yesterday I started the car and made it about a block before the car wouldn’t accelerate. Once I turned the car off, and tried to restart, it would crank but wouldn?t start again. The shop says that I need to replace the distributor to get it to start.


1. Do I have to have the distributor replaced to get it to start or are there other (less expensive) things that the shop should try first?

2. What would cause 2 distributors to stop working? If I have to replace it again, I want to make sure that something else is not causing them to fail.

3. How long are distributors usually under warranty? I can’t go to the same shop that installed the last distributor since they are in another state but was wondering if the manufacturer would cover the cost to replace?

Thanks for your help!


Unfortunately, you’re not likely to get any help warranty-wise. If the part used was a lifetime guaranteed one then you could get another free if you had the receipt on the part. I assume you do not.

Personally, I think the problem was not the distributor to begin with. Distributor failures do occur, but they’re rare.

I assume the reason for the dist. replacement is that the engine would crank over, but no spark is provided to the spark plugs.
What I would check for is power to the ignition coil and igniter. It’s possible that the electrical part of the ignition switch could be faulty, and this is not an uncommon thing to happen.

This could be verified with a test light at the positive terminals of those items. The light should illuminate in both the RUN and START positions.

Hope that helps anyway.


The Honda distributor has more “stuff” in it than distributors used to have. To get an understanding of the start and stall problems on any car, but, especially Hondas, go to www.tegger.com/hondafaq/startproblems.html. It’s good reading — even for mechanics.


The first step is verifying if 12 volts is being provided to the ignition coil. Total time less than 2 minutes, and that includes opening the hood.


Since my original suggestion was the ignition switch, you might consider contacting a Honda dealer and getting this done for free.