1997 Honda Accord

Electrical problem
1997 Honda Accord 4 cyl Front Wheel Drive Automatic 150000 miles

My car is 97 Honda Accord LX. The odometer stopped work about three weeks ago, and the red Check Engine light is ON. Last Friday I think I saw a kind of smoke over the front hood when I turned off the car at a gas staion, although I was not quite sure. After filled the tank, I started the car and found all meters had no signal, and the Check Engine light was OFF. I drove the car home and parked it in the garage. The next day, I further found the gear shift was stuck in the Parking and not able to switch to R or D.

Now, to change the gear shift from P to R or D, I have to insert a key into the Shift Release hole after the car started. The car seems running fine on the road. However, there is no any signal from Temperature Gauge, Tachometer, Speedometer, Trip Meter, Fuel Gauge, and Power Window, Clock, and Reverse Light when I shift to R stopped work as well. AC, turn signal lights, stop lights, head lights, high lights, Radio, and Cigarate lighter still work fine. I checked the fuse, all of them are not burnt out.

Another thing, a few years ago, the Odometer stopped running for several weeks, and then kept working till recently.

What can cause the problem? What should I check?

August 8, 2010.

Hi zcui,

I would suggest checking the ignition and underdash fuse box connectors.

Seems you have a power interruption somewhere.

As to the speeedometer not working, it could be due to a faulty Vehicle Speed Sensor.

Aug 9, 2010.
I found the Meter Fuse under the dash board was burnt out. However, the new fuse was burnt out immediately when starting the car. There must be a short somewhere.

Is it possible caused by the bad VSS?


Aug 24, 2010.
The VSS is not likely to be the cause ut posible.

The fuse is for : 1. Gauge Assembly.
2. Back-up lights.
3. Clock.
4. VSS.
5. Shift Lock Solenoid
6. Keyless Door lock/security control unit.

Any of the above can cause the problem if the component is faulty.

Aug 24, 2010.
A mechanics did the repair. I was told it was the VSS with burning wires and it had a short circuit.

Feb 23, 2012.