1997 Honda Accord RPM gauge jumps/dips, engine lurches (sli

Tiny
OMBASS
  • MEMBER
  • 1997 HONDA ACCORD
  • 6 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 170,000 MILES
Hi,
I have been having this intermittent problem for several months, and have not been able to get to the bottom of it:

The RPM gauge will dip and jump around, sometimes almost like a seismograph would during an earthquake. Sometimes it will completely go to zero, like its dead. Then a few seconds later it will jump up alive again.

If I am driving, this RPM fluctuation can coincide with very slight lurching in the engine, much like an automatic transmission shifting. The problem can be either non existent, or sometimes severe to where I feel like the engine might die.

Sometimes the check engine light can come on, and I just took it in and my mechanic says now its the ignition coil (or so the computer tells him, he's not a very good mechanic). Could this be the problem?

Any idea what this could be? :-)

Thanks!

-Jason
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Monday, December 15th, 2008 AT 9:51 PM

6 Replies

Tiny
JASONRAY
  • MEMBER
Start by getting a second oppinion on the code left by the check engine light. Try someone you trust to know more than you and your mechanic. Find out exactly what the code is. It could be the coil, for sure but it could be other things, as well. Let's start by getting the actual code #/description. I'll be glad to proceed then. Repost
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Saturday, December 20th, 2008 AT 2:31 PM
Tiny
OMBASS
  • MEMBER
I dont know what the code was. The mechanic checked it and said it was saying ignition coil. He's not a very knowledgeable mechanic though, and pretty much relies on the code / computer diagnostics.

But the problem happens on/off quite a bit, and the check engine light is rarely thrown on. Its been going on for many months, and this is the first time I have seen the light come on since the last time I tried to have the problem "fixed." That time mechanic said it was the cam shaft position sensor. Which it of course was not.

What could make the RPM gauge dip like that? And make the engine lurch slightly? Could the ignition coil produce these problems? What sort of other problem could produce these symptoms?

These are the questions I was looking to get answered by posting here.

Thanks!
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Monday, December 22nd, 2008 AT 1:29 PM
Tiny
JASONRAY
  • MEMBER
The Ignition Control Module is what controls the Tachometer(RPM's). It ALSO controls the ignition system and possibly the fuel injectors. If there's a glitch in the module, it could cause the RPM's on the dash to dip, stop, or jump. It could also be causing the COIL to intermittently stop firing for a split second. This could cause the engine to lurch or surge or simply act like it's going to die. I've replaced LOTS of distributors on HONDA's for various problems. The Iginition Module is located inside the distributor according to the wiring diagram I'm looking at right now. A new distributor could solve ALL of your problems. At least with your car. Keep in mind, if the COIL is having problems, it could create similar symptoms. If it's 'leaking' secondary voltage occasionally, it could cause the engine to surge or jump and, in turn, cause the RPM's to fluctuate. Again, I'd like to know the code so I would have something to actually research so I could be of a little more help.
I hope I've answered your questions. If not, I'll keep trying. Good luck and let me know if there's anything else I can help with.
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Monday, December 22nd, 2008 AT 6:47 PM
Tiny
DARNELLB26
  • MEMBER
I have the same problem with a 1995 fordwinstar 3.8 liter. The code I have is P0340. I have replaced the sensor, but still having the same problem, and still get the same code P0340 camshaft position sensor circuit A. Any help would be appreciated.
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Friday, February 18th, 2011 AT 4:28 PM
Tiny
OMBASS
  • MEMBER
Thanks for the help here guys. I kinda forgot about this, as its been a while. But it did end up being the distributor, as Jasonray points out. PROBLEM SOLVED! Thank you! :-) Your response was very detailed -- I appreciate your help!
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Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011 AT 6:02 AM
Tiny
2CARPROS MIKE
  • ADMIN
We appreciate your follow up, it is great to hear that the problem was resolved and we were able to help.
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Wednesday, March 16th, 2011 AT 8:35 PM

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