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My car idles at 4000 rpms!

The 1989 Honda accord I just bought has a crazy idle problem. When cold it starts fine but idles at 3000 rpms, sometimes higher (yikes). When the car warms up it still idles at about 1200-1500. This car has a carb so I figured there might be some idle adjustment on the choke. I started it without the aircleaner so I could see what was going on (I did plug the vac. lines) and all the adj. screws were already backed off and not touching. There’s no fast idle step cam thing like on old cars. I can’t figure out what is keeping the throttle open so much. I messed around until the idle went down by itself and the egr opened.

I guess there’s something called the fast idle thermo valve which acts up on these cars. Can I unhook this valve to diagnose? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Trace the wires to the electric choke . . . clean the contacts real good. This (for me) was a choke problem related to the amount of current going into the choke. Believe it or not. How many miles on your '89? I have a bit of experience with this model and can make a suggestion or two if you plan on keeping it. Rocketman

Thanks! I will check that out tomorrow morning before work. It’s got 171,000 on it. I would appreciate any advice you see fit to bestow on to me.

First of all, why did you buy this car?

Now that you’ve done it, go somewhere, anywhere, and buy a service manual for your Accord. The manual will tell you how to diagnose and troubleshoot problems, and offer suggestions for correcting same.

Stop guessing. Get a manual, test the components you think might be causing the problem, and fix what needs to be fixed.

Try for inexpensive, used service manuals. Haynes is OK, Honda factory is better.

You’re going to need a manual.

Well, I’m wondering why I bought this thing. I was looking to save gas and also not wear out my beloved 94 4x4 Toyota pickup by driving it every day. $900 seemed like a good deal for the car. I’m trying to rub the word sucker off my forehead but it won’t come off!

An old car without problems?! Never happen. New cars have enough problems for most people. The day of “Every Man is a bit of a mechanic” are gone. They are a disappearing group.

I wouldn’t write this car off so quickly. My '89 Accord (carb’d) has over 480,000 miles on it. The carb is a problem, but you can work it out. My guess (sight unseen based upon your description) is a choke problem . . . but you’ll have to eliminate a bunch of things as you go along. The choke is the first thing which comes to mind . . . then the vacuum lines (a mess, but you can trace them around the carb). I agree with the others . . . get a manual too, if you plan on keeping it. Rocketman

Here are those vacuum diagrams and diagram of emissions controls. Scroll down to Fig. 24 & Fig. 25. They are a little complex; so, trace each circuit with a colored pencil.

Thanks for the info. I’ll trace the lines and make sure they’re hooked up right. I ordered the book. Don’t get the wrong idea; I knew this car would have problems. I’ve already replaced a ball joint and some other stuff on it. This idle thing just has me confused.