1993 Honda won't start

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  #1  
Old 04-19-04, 07:08 AM
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1993 Honda won't start

I own a '93 Honda Civic that I stopped driving at the end of 2001. I use this car a few times a year. I haven't started it since last fall, and when I attempt to jump start this past weekend (battery is dead) it never turned over - starter seems to be cranking just fine. I added fresh gas (about 4 gallons) and dry gas.

After a few attempts, I reluctantly pulled out the owners manual, which suggested pushing the gas pedal half way down, then if that doesn't work, hold the pedal ALL the way down to clear flooding. I tried that too, and it actually seemed like it was close to turning over, but never did. I even changed a 30A fuse that looked like it might be for the fuel pump, it was not inside the fusebox.

Ever since computers started taking over, I am pretty lost regarding auto troubleshooting. Any ideas here?? I just needed to start the car to isolate the muffler leak, so I can repair it and sell the car. The last thing I want to do is flatbed the car to a garage.

Thanks!!

Dave
 
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  #2  
Old 04-19-04, 09:35 AM
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might try removing spark plugs and putting a smalll amount of oil down each cylinder then cranking the engine over a few times before reinstalling the spark plugs replace them if they are wet, then see if it starts.
otherwise need to check for fire at sparkplugs and fuel pressure as setting that long can be hard on fuel pumps, and even a compression check on the engine.
 
  #3  
Old 04-20-04, 09:09 PM
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Make sure the battery is "fully" charged and has sufficient cranking amps for the job. If you're unsure, Wal-Mart has them cheap.

Forget about cleaning/drying plugs. Replace them. They're cheap too.

Turn the key to "on" while listening for the fuel pump under the back seat. It comes on for about 2 seconds to prime the fuel system, so you've got to be quick.

Try spraying a "small" amount of carb spray into the cold air intake (snorkel, if you will) and then try starting the car. Be careful!

Check back and let us know,

Matt
 
  #4  
Old 04-21-04, 09:44 AM
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I pulled the spark plugs last night, look pretty dirty and smell of gasoline. I will replace them and see what happens.

Regarding the battery, it is definately dead, so I had jumpers from my other car to "attempt" to start it. I will see if the battery will hold a charge, if not I will buy a new batter before selling the car - I usually buy batteries at Pep Boys or Sears, whoever has the cheapest, but I will check out Walmart too.

Thanks.
 
  #5  
Old 04-21-04, 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted by daronson
I usually buy batteries at Pep Boys or Sears, whoever has the cheapest, but I will check out Walmart too.
Thanks.
That's where your problems start. You need to buy more battery than required to avoid problems. They can look up the minimum CCA required and you'd do well to go above that. Just buying the cheapest battery will have you in this position all the time.
 
  #6  
Old 04-22-04, 05:38 AM
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Replaced spark plugs last night with Bosch Platinum (for 1.99X4 there was no need to buy non-platinum) - Car STILL won't start. Just keeps crankin' and never turns over. Any more suggestions??

I am selling the car, therefore buying the cheapest battery. I WILL make sure it is the proper size, however.
 
  #7  
Old 04-22-04, 04:42 PM
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Have you checked for fuel and spark?

Get one of those in-line spark testers (the one with the light bulb in it) and hook it between the plug wire and plug. If you see the light, you should be getting spark.

Like I said earlier, try spraying some carb spray in the cold air intake duct, crank it over and see if it starts.

Did you ever listen for the fuel pump under the back seat?
 

Last edited by smogtek; 04-22-04 at 09:17 PM.
  #8  
Old 04-23-04, 05:10 AM
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I tried to listen for the fuel pump, but didn't hear it. I did smell fuel up front while attempting to start, so I "assumed" the fuel pump was ok. '

I didn't check for spark, that's what a friend advised me to do last night - I will try that next. Is it possible I am not getting spark from ALL of the plugs? I guess this could be a distributor problem?

I will try the carb spay tonight - I assume you are referring to carb cleaner?? and what did you mean by "be careful" ?? I guess too much carb spray can cause a little fireball??

thanks.
 
  #9  
Old 04-23-04, 05:08 PM
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Rereading your previous posts I saw the wet plug reference.

If you check your plugs again and they're wet and smell gassy, you're getting fuel.

As far as Hondas go, they have an ignitor module in the distributor that does go bad. They're a bit pricey, so you just don't want to go swapping them out unless you get a cheap wrecking yard one. Most technicians should be able to determine if the module is bad in about 30 minutes, so if it comes down to that, it shouldn't cost you much for the diagnosis.

HTH

Matt
 
  #10  
Old 08-11-04, 09:12 AM
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Well, after waiting almost 4 months (figured I would let the wasps build their nests in the wheel well for the added challenge) I bought a new battery and attempted the Resurrection again. I pulled one of the new plugs and inserted the plug in the spark plug boot. Had a helper turn the ignition, it sounded weak, but I saw no spark. Am I checking for spark correctly?? I used to work on my old 79 T/A, but it was mostly replacing parts, not diagnosing problems.

Matt (Smogtek) - when you say to spray carb spray into the intake, do I take the cover off of the air cleaner and spray through there? didn't see the snorkel (well, I thought I did but I think it was the horn) you were referring to.

New question, after tightening down the battery (top posts) the positive cable was still loose. seems like the clamp will only get so tight, any suggestions??

Thanks!!

Dave
 
  #11  
Old 08-11-04, 12:39 PM
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you should make sure your battery is charged and in good shape before doing any test as a weak battery could affect your results.
when checking for spark assuming that the spark plug was grounded or laying on something metal such as valve cover, intake, etc you should have seen a spark if you were getting fire, using the sparkplug is not really a good way to check for spark as the coil output should be able to jump a 1/4 inch gap so next time just use a screw driver inserted into the plug wire and while holding the plastic handle position the shank of the screw driver about 1/4 inch from something metal or grounded and observe for spark while someone is cranking the vehicle over.
the reason for checking for spark this way is to determine if the spark is strong enough to fire the sparkplug under compression most weak coils and even a hole burnt through the ignition rotor will likely jump the small gap of a spark plug when checking it with the spark plug but will likely not under engine compression.
if the cable is long enough you can cut off the end and install a new battery terminal end.
 
  #12  
Old 12-04-06, 08:27 AM
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I'm back at it again!! got to get this car off my driveway one way or another!!

Yesteday I checked for spark - using a metal drill bit inside the spark plug wire - and got no spark. Held the drill bit on and near the valve cover and the heat shield to be sure I was checking it on something metal.

I took the distributor cap off and the little wheel inside was spinning when I cranked the engine, not sure if that tells me anything. Is my next step to replace the ignition module? How does this come off? Do I remove the screws underneath the distributor cap?


Thanks!!
Dave
 
  #13  
Old 12-04-06, 10:31 AM
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check your dash lights when you turn the key on and make sure they are working, also need to check for spark at the coil it may be inside the cap on this model or external you can use a screwdriver and a jumper wire hooked to the screwdriver and negative cable to test for spark at the coil.
 
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