Car does not have to get wet, just be in humid air. Problem going on 2 years now, mechanics tried disconnecting a (?) ground/sensor from computer, major tune up, new fuel pump. Until recently, it just took keeping it in crank position for a long time for it to finally start. Recently, in crank position for 30 seconds does nothing and has me worried I’m doing damage. In dry weather, it starts first time every time. Thanks,
Assuming that this engine has an igntition system that includes a distributor and spark plug wires, I would recommend replacing the distributor cap and the plug wires. If your engine uses a COP system instead, then someone else will have to give a suggestion.
Usually starting problems like that can be attributed to wires or the distributor cap - sometimes a part inside the distributor called the ‘ignitor’. On Hondas that part can cause intermittent starting problems.
Do you know whether your mechanic replaced those items? One would imagine he has replaced the wires and cap since he did a tune up but just checking.
Has it acted up for your mechanic so he was able to determine what the cause of the problem was? With that I mean: ignition, air or fuel. He may not have narrowed the problem down to the bad part but it has to be one of those basic three things for a car to not start.
If it hasn’t acted up for him, he may just be guessing and that can get expensive.
I did leave the car long enough for it to rain again each time.
So he got it to fail, then? I ask because it seems like he’s guessing.
Perhaps print out this document and ask him to check your ignitor next time it happens. Those things definitely fail. Most of the time they just stop your car dead and require replacing but I’ve seen it fail intermittently in different weather. It is a relatively easy check:
Somebody remind me - isn’t there a relay of some type on the older Civics that can cause this kind of problem? Sorry I can’t remember more details, seems like this came up a while ago.
Yeah, it required replacement or re-soldering as it consists of a PC board that may have cracked or dry solder joints. It basically stops the pump from running.
I haven’t seen those things act up during bad weather, though. It tends to be fairly random when they stop working.
Edit: Here’s the info on that thing:
Usually there is a problem with the ignition wiring breaking down when this kind of thing happens. One simple trick you can do yourself in an effort to pin down the trouble is spray the ignition wiring with water using a spray bottle. Do this in a dark area or at night so you can see if there is any arcing from the wires to ground while cranking the engine. If you find there are some wires arcing you will need to replace them because the insulation will have broken down at the place of the arcing. I suggest you use either OEM replacement wires or some good quality aftermarket replacement wires. Silicone wires are good ones to use.
Mechanic says the major tune up included replacing cap and rotor. Maybe they’ll take a more careful look at all wires. Thanks.
Not the spark plug wires? That would be the next thing to replace.
I believe Hondas of this time had an issue with the ignition module. A search of this site had quite a few hits.
There are basically three very basic things you need to get a car running: Air, Spark and Fuel. If either one of the three isn’t working right, your car will not start or at least not run well.
Which of the three does he attribute it to?
The ignition module is a zebra, take care of the horse ( plug wires ) first.