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TOV Forums > Repair and Maintenance > > Re: No start after sitting for a few weeks

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TitaniumCoder477
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No start after sitting for a few weeks    (Score: 1, Normal) 08-06-2018 21:53
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1998 Honda Civic EX coupe
About 3-4 weeks ago, my A/C clutch went out, blowing burn smell into the cabin, and causing a noise like the bearing had also gone. I put the vehicle on a jack stand and pulled the tire off for easy access. I dropped the compressor and removed the pulley and clutch. The bearing was sticking a bit and had burn marks on it. The clutch was burnt out. I was going to replace just those parts, but in the end I decided to do without for the foreseeable future. So today (3-4 weeks later), I screwed down the compressor again and tied up the belt (using zip ties) so it would be impossible to catch or snag on anything, just in case I wanted to replace the compressor in a few weeks. So just to be clear on this point, I do NOT have the bad clutch on. It is completely removed and in my tool shed. The pulley is NOT on either. I believe I can do this without a problem because the A/C belt only drives the A/C, nothing else. The compressor is disconnected from the electric lead, so effectively the compressor is just sitting in place to keep the A/C system closed. My goal now is to just get the Honda on the road again, even without A/C.

Well, it won't start. Starter turns over fine. Just had the battery tested too just in case it wasn't producing enough charge for a spark. Spark plugs have gas on them, indicating fuel is not a problem. I cleaned up the cap and rotor which were replaced a year or two ago. Brand new spark plug wires. I measured the ohms on the spark plugs and they are between 0.43 and 0.4 when cold. Car makes like it wants to start. I step on the gas pedal a bit, and it makes like it wants to start even more. But just won't catch and roar to life. I tested for spark, and have spark on all four plugs. I'm at a loss and open to suggestions.

Grace141
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Re: No start after sitting for a few weeks    (Score: 1, Normal) 08-06-2018 23:40
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You've checked the obvious things such as the battery cable connections look solid. With gasoline on the spark plugs, could the engine just be flooded due to the injectors leaking fuel into the cylinders over the past few weeks? The flooded engine start practice is to crank the engine with the accelerator pedal pressed to the floor.

From there, it seems odd but perhaps a part such as the coil has failed or a wire has been damaged somehow. Maybe a harness connector not plugged back together?

Nick GravesX
Profile for Nick GravesX
Re: No start after sitting for a few weeks    (Score: 1, Normal) 08-08-2018 09:11
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Does the exhaust smell of fuel after you've been cranking it? Can you hear the fuel pump start up?

If not, maybe your PGM-FI main relay has upped & died.

It effects many Hondas and may be easily fixed by re-melting the soldered joints with an iron.

Otherwise, you might have disconnected something important whilst dismantling and not realised.


TitaniumCoder477
Profile for TitaniumCoder477
Re: No start after sitting for a few weeks    (Score: 1, Normal) 08-10-2018 21:09
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"With gasoline on the spark plugs, could the engine just be flooded due to the injectors leaking fuel into the cylinders over the past few weeks? The flooded engine start practice is to crank the engine with the accelerator pedal pressed to the floor." - This was it!!

This evening I got home and attempted a quick start. No luck. I then pushed the petal all the way to the floor. No luck. I then checked all my fuses and hooked up the bad clutch to make sure the broken relay wasn't an issue. Same thing. Finally, I pulled out the spark plugs and found them soaked! I then let them dry for about 30 minutes and let the cylinders air out. Then I hooked up my battery jumper (since I could tell the battery was weakening with all the starting attempts of late) and pressed the pedal to the floor and just hung in there as it tried to start. It turned over and over and finally roared to life! I kept it around 4-5k RPM until I was willing to chance it. Oddly, revs dropped and then the ECU corrected, then dropped, then corrected. This happened over and over and over. I packed up my things and jumped in the car. The moment I put it into gear, the ups and downs stopped and it idled. I drove a few miles up the highway and back at 60Mbps. By the time I got home, the car had returned to normal.

Thank you so much for the help!

Grace141
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Re: No start after sitting for a few weeks    (Score: 1, Normal) 08-11-2018 00:24
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That's great news. The best repairs are always the free ones.

Nick and several other folks here will know about this than I but I'm thinking the late '90s Civics had the full loop fuel system with the return lines to the tank. Maybe the complete system didn't return to normal until you took the car on the road. If you can drive the car regularly for a couple of weeks, maybe see how it does. It might just be the fuel system showing its age a bit and if you drive it every few days it's fine.


 
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