Honda Accord will fail to start

Had my 2000 Accord (70,000 miles) towed twice because it failed to start on cold days. After car warms, it starts. Car has new battery. The last time the car failed to start, it had just been driven and was sitting outside for maybe 20 minutes. Repair shop could not find a problem.

I don’t want to randomly replace parts. Additive had been added incase of water in the gas.



Is the starter not engaging? Or is it not starting after turning over? I suggest taking the car to another shop for a 2nd opinion or even a dealer if you absolutely have to.

Not trying to insult you but why didn’t you have this diagnosed after the first time the car was towed? Or if you did, what did the shop tell you then? You did have it towed to your shop correct?

Oh and just out of curiosity if it fails to start then how can it possibly warm up? Does it start after multiple attempts? Clarify, for others’ sake. Thanks

The starter seems to be engaging. The two different companies that have towed the car say they could not smell gas, even when they tried to flood the engine.

The car started for the shop when they pushed it inside the shop. I could never get it to start after it failed, no matter how often I tried it. I did stop after 5 tries. Even waiting 15-20 minutes between tries did not help.

Older Accords have a “main fuel relay” that is the cause of many failure-to-start incidences. Another possible culprit is the “igniter” in the distributor. I have had to replace both these in my 1992 Accord at different times.

I’m not sure about your generation of Accord, but it’s a good thing to ask your Honda mechanic about. Note I’m recommending that you see a Honda mechanic. Mechanics that work on all sorts of cars don’t get to become familiar with the quirks of specific cars.

Yep that’s good advice take this car to a Honda mechanic, like I said - dealership if you have to. You will pay more $$$ but it will get diagnosed and repaired correctly.

Just a thought. Cold damp weather will put an awful load on a weak ignition coil. If it’s cold dry weather, never mind.

Usually, when the moisture dries out, and it doesn’t have to be much, the coil will operate OK. So, if all else fails, check the coil. Details can be found in any of the Chilton’s/Haynes manuals, which are available at the local library for FREE.

It helps a lot in troubleshooting to know if the non-start is the result of lack of fuel into the engine, or lack of spark to the spark plugs. You could help by doing a couple of tests: Each time the fuel pump is energized (for two seconds) when the ignition key is turned to START. Listen carefully for the fuel pump’s two-second hum (in the gas tank). Pull a rubber hose off the large plastic air intake tube. Spray a two-second burst of Starter Fluid (available from an auto parts store), into the large black intake tube, and try to start the engine. If it starts, and runs for a few seconds, that shows that the problem is fuel. If it doesn’t run, the problem is probably lack of spark. Inform your mechanic of your findings.

Thanks for the suggestions. I made an appointment with the local Honda dealer for Tuesday.
Hopefully the car will keep starting until then, we are getting a “heat wave” in NH.

A 2000 Accord with 70k is not old, nor is that a lot of miles. I’d do the simple stuff first . . . fuel filter(s) . . front and rear . . . new NGK plugs (not Champion or Autolite or Bosch) . . . new wires/cap/rotor. You’ll really be happy that you did this. Check your ignition timing while you’re doing the cap & rotor. Sounds like a simple tune-up should do the trick. The fuel relay is easily checked . . as is the fuel pump. Can you hear the pump running when you turn the key before engaging the starter? Rocketman

Throw in a new air filter . . . could be dirty and restricting airflow. Rocketman