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Civic engine stops, starts again

I’ve got a 2004 Honda Civic with the 1.7L engine. I drive for about five miles and the engine stops suddenly but only for a half-second then runs again like normal. At the same time, there is a click - click behind my glove box. Relays I’m almost sure. And the way it happens is :
click > engine stops
click > engine continues running normally
Used to happen only on hot days, now it does when it’s cool out once the engine is warmed up.
After it does this over and over about 6 times the Check Engine Light comes on and it doesn’t jerk so hard, but stumbles kinda mildly, but all the time - though usually by this time I have gotten off the road and am swearing loudly.
The Honda mechanics are running the clock RIGHT NOW and it may cost me a fortune - so please help!

ALSO, there is NO error code showing. Nothing. And I also replaced some relays, to no avail, because I read about cracked solder problems someplace…

Since no one has responded (and your particular problem can be extremely difficult to diagnose even with car in hand) I might throw out wild shot in the dark.

It could be that the relay click you hear is not the cause of the problem but is a symptom instead. Maybe the electrical part of the ignition switch is having a hiccup now and then and the relay click is noticeable due to the relay kicking off because of a momentary loss of power from the switch.

A number of Hondas are under a Recall for faulty ignition switches but a quick look shows your car is not one of them. However, just because a car is not under a Recall does not mean that it can’t suffer the same problem as one that is covered. There’s a lot of politics involved in Recalls and the end game is to make sure as few cars as possible are covered.

Replacing a switch falls under the category of wild axx guessing and I hate to recommend WAGs but sometimes it may be the only option. I would add that an intermittent switch failure will not set a code either.
Anyway, that’s something for consideration and hope it helps in some small way.

That’s far and away the best idea I’ve heard - thank you! I’ll car my mechanic right away with this. And by ignition switch, you mean the one in the streering column, right? That would explain why it mostly happens when it’s hot inside the car…

Here’s an update: mechanic says it’s the engine control module. Says they checked with the grand imperial guru at honda central and that’s what it is, for sure. BUT he also warns me when these go bad, they can drag other things down with them. I ask, “what things?” He says, “hard telling”. I’ve got the feeling I’m a unit of blood being hooked up to a slow drip…

Yes, I mean the electrical part of the switch; not the key and tumbler part.

Has the main relay been replaced? These were the ones prone to cracked solder joints and this can be exacerbated to some extent by a fuel pump that is having to work too hard.
By that I mean the current draw from the pump is abnormally high and that could be caused by a partially clogged fuel filter, aged and worn fuel pump, etc.
More current means more heat and eventually the main relay (which powers the computer, fuel pump, etc, gives up because of heat.

Kind of screwy to think of a fuel filter causing what is an apparent unrelated electrical problem, huh? That’s the way it works though and an example of something similar could be many Fords. Some suffered ignition switch failures (twice for me) and this is caused by a worn and dragging cabin blower motor for the heater/AC system.
The power for the blower is routed right through the switch and over time a dragging blower (more current, a.k.a. heat) burns the switch up. Replacing the switch is a stop gap repair unless the root cause is cured.

If the main relay has not been replaced I’d look at that first and then the ignition switch. Hope that helps.

Yeah, that’s wonderful help - and I wonder if fuel pump, filter, main relay are the “other things” my mechanic is hinting at. Those are things I could do myself, too. Maybe. And about the main relay - I looked into that and wasn’t able to find what is called a “main relay” as such. Older models had one, but mine seems to have divided its function amongst several lesser relays. But I could easily be mistaken. I replaced a couple of the ones I found (there’s 3 behind the glove box, I think, and 2 or three under the steering column) I might go ahead and do them all now… Oh, and $800 for a new ECM, btw. This, after $1200 for a timing belt, water pump, etc…

I’m afraid from my non-hands on position I’m not much help here but I wouldn’t be in favor of replacing relays en masse. Relays hold up very well, all things considered, and failures are not that common. When one does fail it’s usually because something killed it.

Spending a lot of money on an expensive ECM on a wild guess is also distasteful in my opinion. Just curious, but does the car have more than 80k miles on it and do you know when the car first entered service, either on a sale to an individual or as a dealer demo? The car is an '04 and if it entered service after the approx. current date and has less than 80k miles then an ECM (if really faulty) should be a free one to you because of the Federal emissions warranty.

Last question. Is this a dealer working on the car or an independent garage?