ADJUSTED the rocker arm assembly and now car won't run

Tiny
MASOWAI
  • MEMBER
  • 1997 HONDA CIVIC
  • 175,000 MILES
First off, I want to let you all know that the car was running with a half-dead cylinder to begin with. However, it was driving decently. Removal of the plug wire on #2 made the engine idle even rougher, so it was left plugged in.
This is my brother's car and he said that he'd been driving with the engine light on for a few months. Derp. The codes show misfires on all cylinders (P0301-P0304)and random misfires (P0300). The dead cylinder is #2 and a dry compression test showed 26 psi and the wet showed 30 psi. All other cylinders are normal.
I decided to take a look at it today so I took off the valve cover and proceeded to remove the rocker arm assembly (camshaft holder) to check if there was a rounded lobe and noticed that two of the ten bolts were so loose that I could turn them with my finger. The two loose bolts were the ones in between the dead cylinder (#2) and #1. At this point, I decided to bail on this project and proceeded to screw the rocker arm assembly back on. Neither the cam, nor the springs, nor the valves were ever touched.
I followed the bolt down procedure exactly in the Hayne's. (14 ft-lbs)
So when I got it back together, I started the car and it barely held an idle. It was MUCH worse than before. Before it was easily driveable. Not now. A few seconds after starting, I started to hear a steady knocking noise and the engine is shaking. I killed it right away. I started it again after a few minutes. Same thing. Haven't tried a third time.
I've never had this problem before.

3 Questions:
Is there a way to damage this Honda engine like this?
Should I go back and leave those two loose screws in the way they were?
Did I possibly worsen an existing problem? Arrggghhhh! XD

Thanks

1997 Honda Civic EX
D16Y8 engine
175k miles
Do you
have the same problem?
Yes
No
Saturday, June 9th, 2012 AT 4:09 AM

11 Replies

Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
I think you over adjusted the valves. Check compression to see if it is within spec.
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Saturday, June 9th, 2012 AT 4:22 AM
Tiny
MASOWAI
  • MEMBER
Like I said, I never touched the valves. I unbolted the rocker arm assembly (never actually removed it completely) and then re-torqued it to spec.
Am I damaging the engine if I continue to crank it over?
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Saturday, June 9th, 2012 AT 5:10 AM
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
Just to add ti this one. Maybe someone adjusted the valve lash with the loose rock shaft bolts. Now with the bolts tight the valve lash is too tight. Just a thought.
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Saturday, June 9th, 2012 AT 7:29 AM
Tiny
KHLOW2008
  • EXPERT
Yes, you need to recheck the valve clearance. Btw you mentioned unplugging cylinder 2 which caused it to run rougher. That is not a dead cylinder. A dead cylinder would not make the engine run worse than unplugging it.
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Saturday, June 9th, 2012 AT 2:42 PM
Tiny
MASOWAI
  • MEMBER
Thanks for the suggestions. I will check the valve clearance today.
One more thing: Is there any way that the cylinder could interfere with the valves like this?
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Saturday, June 9th, 2012 AT 3:27 PM
Tiny
MASOWAI
  • MEMBER
Typo: Is there anyway the piston could interfere in this situation and foul things up? O_0
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Saturday, June 9th, 2012 AT 3:30 PM
Tiny
KHLOW2008
  • EXPERT
Your intention was to adjust valves, why did you not do it then? When the rocker carriers are worked on, the valve clearance would be affected and you always need to check the measurements.

As to the pistons, they seldom affect thus, unless the piston rings are bad, then they can affect compression. Comparing a wet and dry compression test might show some results.

Since the rocker carrier bolts were loose, oil would get into the spark plug tubes. Oil there would cause misfirings as well.
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Saturday, June 9th, 2012 AT 8:10 PM
Tiny
MASOWAI
  • MEMBER
My intention was to adjust valves. I should have done it in the first place. I can't argue with that. Very good point.
Update: I adjusted all of the valves according to the sticker under the hood.
Intake: 0.2mm +-0.02mm
Exhaust: 0.25mm +-0.02mm
I did a leak down test and found a big leak in the exhaust valve in cylinder 2. The car runs fine. (Well, relatively fine. As well as it did before)
As far as that loud knocking I heard after the first adjustment of the rocker carrier. What could that have been? I thought it was valve slap, but who knows? I sincerely appreciate all of the help guys.
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Monday, June 11th, 2012 AT 2:40 AM
Tiny
KHLOW2008
  • EXPERT
I don't understand how exhaust valve # 2 is leaking badly and engine is running fine. If it really is leaking badly, the engine should be misfiring on cylinder # 2.

As to the noise, if it is # 2 valve that is leaking, that could mean a bent valve. While doing the valve adjustment, did you note if the adjustment screw for this particular valve has different thread length remaining on the protruded side?

Have you repeated a compresison test?
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Monday, June 11th, 2012 AT 4:33 PM
Tiny
MASOWAI
  • MEMBER
Sorry KHLow2008, I didn't mean to say that the cars runs fine. I meant that it starts and is at least *driveable* now. Yes, it runs. But, it runs like crap. It runs and idles just as crappy as it did before all of this started.

While doing the adjustment, I did not note any abnormally long thread on the tappets. Are you thinking worn lobes?

Yes, it is still misfiring on #2 because of the bad valve(s).

Yes, I repeated the compression test and it is still around 25 psi dry. 30 psi wet. And 60psi while running.

Dry cranking compression test results:
1: 100psi
2: 100
3: 25
4: 70

Let's face it, this car is on its last leg.
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Monday, June 11th, 2012 AT 7:14 PM
Tiny
KHLOW2008
  • EXPERT
The overall compression is low and since the dry test did not come up to specs, more likely the valves are the ones causing the problem.

You would at least need a head job to get the engine going.
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Monday, June 11th, 2012 AT 7:35 PM

Please login or register to post a reply.

Recommended Guides