Temperamental 2009 Honda CR-V

My 2009 CR-V is becoming a bit temperamental when I start it. AAA and my car repair people all say the battery, the starter, and the alternator are good. Of course, when I’ve left it with them, the car starts perfectly. I even bought a can of Sea Foam in case something was gunked (I think that’s the technical term) up. Alas! To no avail. I can most often get it going, but yesterday it didn’t start until the fourth try, but then it was like its normal self, if a car indeed has a self. But I digress. What the Sam Hill is going on? I’m afraid the local Honda dealer might not find out anything either, even with a diagnostic. One other thing, which probably has nothing to do with anything, is that my dashboard flashes the “check gas cap” text–even when I replaced the cap and screwed it on tightly. No one can figure that out, either. I’d next suspect Covid-19, but it started not starting before that. I really love this vehicle. Help!

You could replace the gas cap and see if the cap itself is a problem. Is the Check Engine Light on? If so, what codes are set? Since you reported the one dash light, I imagine you would have noticed the CEL as well, but it’s worth asking.

Yes,the gas cap is often the problem even if it looks good on the outside. Do not replace with aftermarket caps,only OEM.

When you turn the key to Start, and it fails to start, what happens?

  1. the engine does not turn over at all or 2) the engine turns over but does not start.

Thanks, JT,

I replaced the gas cap right before Christmas, and all seemed well for a while. Before I replaced it, the “check engine light” had come on, but stopped after I got the new cap.

What concerns me more is the difficulty I’m having starting the car. It’s happening more and more frequently, and is taking more cranks of the key to get going. Once it does start, it’s fine.

Again, thanks for your reply and information!

It responds like a defunct battery—gives a little chug and stops. If the battery is ok, can the connections be bad?

They can be bad. How old is the battery? Do you have a charger?

If you disconnect the battery to clean the terminals and cable ends, be sure you have the radio reset code or it’ll not work until you find and enter the code.

Good luck. Let us know how it’s doing.

The battery was new just before Christmas 2019. I’ll check online re cleaning the terminals and cable ends—I’m clueless re that stuff :upside_down_face: . I do know the reset code, etc., however. Thanks!

The next time the engine won’t start, turn the ignition switch off, and then turn it back on so the dash lights come on for two seconds and then turn the ignition off.

Repeat this a half dozen times and then try starting the engine.

If the engine starts, there’s a problem with the anti drain-back valve on the fuel pump.


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Will do! Thanks!