My engine wont start up?

Tiny
JHILL21
  • MEMBER
  • 1990 HONDA CIVIC
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • MANUAL
The rev limiter is disabled and the previous owner said it kept messing up the distributor coil and ism and they were just replaced and it wont start?
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Monday, May 2nd, 2011 AT 1:40 AM

48 Replies

Tiny
2CEXPT
  • MEMBER
These cars had big problems with the distributors. This sounds like a fuel pump or the distributor has gone out. When you turn the key to the on position without cranking the engine over can you hear the fuel pump run in the tank for 5 seconds?

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/car-cranks-but-wont-start

Please run down this guide and report back.
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Monday, May 2nd, 2011 AT 9:16 AM
Tiny
JHILL21
  • MEMBER
It was the distributor, I got a rebuilt one for the parts store and it fired right up! Thanks for the guide.
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Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011 AT 6:43 PM
Tiny
MHPAUTOS
  • EXPERT
Nice work, we are here to help, please use 2CarPros anytime.
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Sunday, July 31st, 2011 AT 5:08 AM
Tiny
HIM7CKY
  • MEMBER
  • 1990 HONDA CIVIC
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 240,000 MILES
My 1990 civic lx will not start. Im getting fuel, its cranking good, and I have spark. All fuses are good. I put new plugs in last year. I have an oil leak that is getting into one of the plugs but I have pulled them and cleaned them all well and last year when I replaced the plugs there was oil in the same one but it has never caused a problem. This car has never had a problem before with starting. My intake is clear and so is the exhaust. I do not have a muffler though. It rusted off a few months ago and I have not had time to get a new one installed, so I am running straight piped. Please, if you can help I would greatly appreciate it. My girlfriend and I both work full time and are full time students in college and we share the car so it is something we need to fix asap.
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Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:48 PM (Merged)
Tiny
PEAR69
  • MEMBER
If your getting fuel and spark the engine should start or at-least try to start. How do you know you have spark and fuel? Also have the ignition control module tested at autozone or a place like that. They will test this for free. This may be the problem.
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Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:48 PM (Merged)
Tiny
ANRE
  • MEMBER
  • 1990 HONDA CIVIC
1990 Honda Civic

My 1990 Honda Civic doesn't like hot weather. The yellow engine lights comes on, it cranks, but won't start. As soon as it's cooler in the evening, it starts right up. Help!
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Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:48 PM (Merged)
Tiny
SMALLEY
  • MEMBER
Mine does the exact same thing! I'm trying to replace the main relay as I've heard that could be the problem, although I don't know which part is the main relay.
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+1
Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:48 PM (Merged)
Tiny
SOLIDROQUE
  • MEMBER
  • 1990 HONDA CIVIC
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 143,000 MILES
My daughter's car randomly will not start. It never happens first thing in the morning, and only once or twice has it happened when she is running errands, stopping and starting it frequently. It mainly happens after it has been sitting for a few hours. It tries to turn over but just won't. She will try it every few minutes, and then after 15-20 minutes, it will start up no problem. It has never happened twice in the same day and never on consecutive days. Our mechanic recommended an engine flush, which we did last week. It did not start again today at lunch, but this time it only took 5 minutes for it to start. Any thoughts?
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Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:49 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BTTF11985
  • MEMBER
Hi there it sounds like your fuel injectors may be plugged you can try a fuel injector cleaner and if that doesnt work then I would see about replacing the injectors along with a new fuel filter. Hope this helps!
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Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:49 PM (Merged)
Tiny
MOOCOW
  • MEMBER
  • 1990 HONDA CIVIC
I have a 1990 honda civic si. 235,000 miles. 1.6L motor. I aquired this car from my uncle. He was driving on the highway neutral throttle and the motor just stopped abruptly. I towed the car home and checked stuff out. The motor turns over. There is spark. I can hear the fuel pump work. All fuses are in tact. Looking in the oil fill hole I can see the cam turning (exhaust). The motor sounds like it is turning over faster/easier than I think would be normal. Is it possible for one cam to turn and the other one not? Any help would be appreciated.
Luke
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Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:49 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BLACKOP555
  • EXPERT
If the cam is turning then the crank is definetly turning. I would check for fuel to engine.
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Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:49 PM (Merged)
Tiny
2CEXPT
  • MEMBER
It probably jumped timing.

Do this remove no.1 sparkplug put your thumb over the hole, crank engine over in short burst till you feel pressure on your thumb-stop, now manually turn crankshaft till it lines up on TDC/0 now open up the distributor is the rotor pointing directly under the no.1 sparkplug wire tower? If not it jumped timing.
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Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:49 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BRUCE HUNT
  • EXPERT
If after all is said and done it still won't start you might consider the crankshaft position sensor. It can be bad but still allow the spark to be provided to the engine, however, the timing of the spark can be off so badly that the car will not start. Seen this happen before.
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Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:49 PM (Merged)
Tiny
HOGAN2K3
  • MEMBER
  • 1990 HONDA CIVIC
Well I recently changed the head gasket, oil pan gasket, intake manifold gasket, exhaust manifold gasket and put on a different cylinder head. The #1 piston is at TOP DEAD CENTER and all 4 sparkplugs are producing spark and getting fuel. The distributor is installed correctly and The damn thing should be cranking over and firing at the #1 but is not. I get in the car and try to turn it over and I get a whinding noise in the vacinity of the distributor maybe the starter. The engine tries to crank but it seems as the starter is engaging but not enough to crank the crankshaft. I have the timing set to were it needs to be. I do not know what else do to ANY THOUGHTS! NEED HELP!
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Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:49 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BRUCE HUNT
  • EXPERT
I would seriously look at the timing and see if the engine can be turned over by hand. You can put a socket on the flywheel bolt and turn the engine over a few times. If the engine will not move I suspect the head and the crank are not aligned.
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Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:49 PM (Merged)
Tiny
HOGAN2K3
  • MEMBER
Bruce,

I am able to turn the engine over. I have lined up the crankshaft drivebelt pulley to its timing mark and then lined up the crankshaft sprocket with its timing mark as shown in the Haynes manual I have. I turn the car over and I get back pressure from the exhaust like it wants to fire but just wants to backfire. I think my timing is off by one tooth. I am going to try it again and then check the ignitor coil in the distributor. I check everything else. I just really think the timing is not dead on. Thanks for the reply BRUCE!
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Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:49 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BRUCE HUNT
  • EXPERT
One cog off either way will not really get it backfiring, but a few off will. Put a long screw driver in the #1 spark plug hole with the plug out of course and turn the engine until the screw driver is exactly at its highest point. That is TDC for the piston. Now line up the marks for the camshaft ensuring that you aren't 180 degrees off.
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Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:49 PM (Merged)
Tiny
HOGAN2K3
  • MEMBER
:( Well I have tried everything I have read in both the haynes manual and chiltons manual. NO luck! Do you think it could be something with the distributor. Like the ignition coil or igniton module. I looked at each manual and the haynes manual says to line up the white mark on thr crankshaft pulley to the mark on the lower timing belt cover. And the chiltons manual says to line up the red mark whic id the center mark of the 3 marks that are together to the same mark on the lower timing belt cover. Which one do I use to set the timing up to turn the car over?
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Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:49 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BRUCE HUNT
  • EXPERT
If the timing is close, on either side of the correct timing it should start.

Is there a code on the computer?
Look at the spark real close, very close, and answer this question. Is the color blue or orange?

One of the faults could be the distributor but I doubt that since you are getting spark. Another one that you were very close to in your work is the crankshaft sensor. There are actually two sensors on this wiring harness. They allow the car to spark and want to start but they throw the timing off so far that the car can't start. If you are sure that the timing is right, take a look for the codes. That should show up.
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Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:49 PM (Merged)
Tiny
HOGAN2K3
  • MEMBER
Well, When you talk about codes. You mean on the ECU correct? If so there are no codes. I turn the ignition to start an I get 1 blink meaning the ECU is working. I have no other codes besides the 1. I still need to look at the color spark. Last I checked the spark was BLUE. When I first put everything back togehter and could not get the car to start. I read out the the cranshaft sensor and TDC sensor which are the 2 connectors on the distributor. 1 is a 7 point connector and the other one is a 2 point connector. I read the resistance out and they were within the limits of the Haynes manual specs. I have no clue no more. I am very mechanically inclined just not that electrical savey. I will check everything over gain. I know this is probably a simple fix and I will feel stupid when I finally figure this out. If you have more info I would appreciate it. THANKS!
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Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 AT 12:49 PM (Merged)

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