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  #1  
Old 04-28-2011, 03:51 PM
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Default ignition switch recall problem

It's been a while. I wanted to see if others civic owners that were part of the ignition switch recall back in the summer of '02 have had any issues with it again. I got mine replaced prior to any symptoms appearing. About a month ago, I started having the car shut off while driving sometimes up to 40 mph and it would just cut out.

I wanted to see if others are having the same problems.

My symptoms occur under the following 3 conditions.

1. Random and unannounced shut off (i.e. no sputtering) while driving.
2. Cut off while idling.
3. Cut off immediately after startup (happened only once).

In all cases, there were no lights on after cut off which makes me question the ignition switch. If it stalls, it should turn on all the warning lights.

Any help or input would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
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  #2  
Old 04-28-2011, 09:01 PM
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Um, whoa. This is the exact issue I joined this forum to investigate. I have a 98' Honda Civic 4 door LX that simply shuts down for no apparent reason. Then it restarts right away. I suspected an ignition issue, however, I changed my fuel filter just a couple of days ago because it needed it anyways with about 130K miles on it.

I also suspected a ground issue because I have done alot of work on the vehicle and I thought maybe I didn't reconnect a ground properly, but I checked all grounds and they seemed connected properly.

I did not know that there was an ignition problem with these Honda's. This is my wife's car and she's had since I think about 2000 or 2001, many years before we got married.

Why the recall on the ignition switch?


Quote:
Originally Posted by mundy5 View Post
It's been a while. I wanted to see if others civic owners that were part of the ignition switch recall back in the summer of '02 have had any issues with it again. I got mine replaced prior to any symptoms appearing. About a month ago, I started having the car shut off while driving sometimes up to 40 mph and it would just cut out.

I wanted to see if others are having the same problems.

My symptoms occur under the following 3 conditions.

1. Random and unannounced shut off (i.e. no sputtering) while driving.
2. Cut off while idling.
3. Cut off immediately after startup (happened only once).

In all cases, there were no lights on after cut off which makes me question the ignition switch. If it stalls, it should turn on all the warning lights.

Any help or input would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

Last edited by danielwd; 04-28-2011 at 09:06 PM.
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  #3  
Old 04-29-2011, 06:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danielwd View Post
I did not know that there was an ignition problem with these Honda's. This is my wife's car and she's had since I think about 2000 or 2001, many years before we got married.

Why the recall on the ignition switch?
First of all, if your wife got this in '00 or '01, the recall did not begin until SU '02. So chances are that your ignition switch can still be replaced by Honda free of charge since she hasn't gotten it done or has she? I would double check it with American Honda. They can look up her car via her VIN and double check to see if it has been repaired.

The following is a quote from the American Honda Owner's link which contains all the recalls for my vehicle:

Quote:
Summer 2002

Important Safety Recall: Ignition Switch

Dear Accord, Civic, CR-V, Odyssey or Prelude Owner:

This notice is sent to you in accordance with the requirements of the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act.
What is the reason for this notice?
Honda Motor Co., Ltd., has determined that a defect relating to motor vehicle safety exists in the ignition switch on certain 1997 thru 2000 Honda automobiles. Electrical contacts in the ignition switch can wear prematurely due to high electrical current passing through the switch. Worn out ignition contacts could cause the engine to stall without warning. Although the engine will restart in most cases, if your engine stalls while driving in traffic or at highway speeds, you're at risk of being involved in a crash. Difficulties starting the engine (for example, hard-to-start, stalls immediately after starting, etc.) may indicate that the ignition switch is failing.
When I called American Honda, they said that they were willing to work with me, but that the diagnosis has to come from a certified Honda tech which means going to the dealer.

I called my local dealer who said that the minimum charge is $75 and if it goes over an hr it would be $125/hr.

Of course, American Honda told me that if the tech figured out that it was the switch, they will work it out and replace it free of charge.

The catch is that if the dealer says that it is something else, I'm out minimally $75 if not more.

The switch itself only costs about $54 shipped to my house so I am not really eager to pay $75 to the dealer who will undoubtedly find something else wrong with the car with its age and all. On top of the cost, I'm going to lose my car for the day and with gas prices the way they are, this car is my primary. So I'm not willing to part it for a day.

Hope this clarifies it for you.
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For civic service manuals: http://hondatech.info/downloads/Auto/Manuals/Civic/
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  #4  
Old 05-01-2011, 07:56 PM
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Interesting. Well I am going to call a local Honda dealer tomorrow. But I am confused. Why would your local Honda dealership say that they would give it a look over for $75? If there was a recall, then it seems like that part should be fixed no questions asked. There should be no question of what the problem is because the fact is, there was a recall on that particular part. They should just replace the part covered by the recall and give your car back to you - no questions asked.

I am going to demand that they fix the ignition, no questions asked. I am not willing to pay 1 cent for anyone to look at my car for "problems". Since there is a recall on the ignition, I don't understand why this dealership would try and charge you money to just look at it and diagnose it.

I would tell them to fix it or else and not pay a penny for it.
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  #5  
Old 05-02-2011, 04:11 AM
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Yes if your car is covered by recall the dealer will just do the recall repair no questions asked. You don't even have to say you've had trouble with it; by definition all the switches are bad and need to be replaced by recall. But that's only once during the life of the car. The OP has a different situation since he already had the recall done.
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  #6  
Old 05-02-2011, 06:53 AM
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Thanks, mk for the reply.

Daniel, I encourage you to find out if your wife's car was repaired already as it affects the way the dealer treats you. If you wife ever brought in the car to the dealer to get it serviced for any reason at all, they will automatically replace the ignition switch as they did mine.

So I would double check with the service department and give them your VIN. They will know right away if the recall had been serviced for your car. If it has been serviced already, then you are in the same boat as me.
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  #7  
Old 05-03-2011, 05:27 AM
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Sorry - I didn't take notice of the OP's situation. I did not know you already had it replaced.

My Civic was not repaired prior to my wife buying it. It only had 12000 miles in 2000 when she bought it and had no history of repairs, only a couple of oil changes.

I would think though that since there is a recall on the part, even if it goes bad again, it seems as though Honda should step up to the plate and fix it again. Although, this scares me because if they had originally fixed the ignition via recall and it went bad again, then what good is the recall?

My advice to the OP would be to check for codes, which if it is indeed the ignition again - it will not provide a code. Then tell Honda to fix it again, and cuss them out in the process.

If Honda does not fix it, then do it yourself. It looks to be quite an easy fix.

It terms of my situation - I have called Honda and given them the VIN and they said they would fix it. They have to wait a day or two to get the part in.
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  #8  
Old 05-03-2011, 07:25 AM
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good to hear about your wife's car.

About my situation, I called both American Honda and also lodged a complaint with the NHTSA. Both of them replied that the manufacturer of the car is required to complete the recall only once and after that it is at their discretion.

I think all Honda did was replace it with a "defective" i.e. the same type of ignition switch not an upgraded or redesigned model. So it is only a matter of time for the high current to do its thing again, thus leading to the new failure. Since my car was repaired back in '02 and it's now '11, it makes sense that it is starting to fail.

One thing I did do is to reduce the number of keys in my keychain. I had a bunch of stuff on it and now it only has 2 car keys and 3 remotes. It's much lighter and it hasn't cut out since.

Keeping my fingers crossed...
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  #9  
Old 05-03-2011, 08:24 PM
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Interesting take on removing as many keys as possible. That may be a good idea, although from my understanding, what is happening is that there is a little white box within the ignition system within the steering column, that contains copper plates and fingers. There is supposed to be a "union" (meeting point) between the two and over time that "union" gets worn down to where the plates and fingers will not stay together. This causes the plates or fingers (not sure which) to turn back in the "off" position spontaneously without discretion.

From what I have heard from on friend, that white box can actually be pulled from a junkyard and replaced. My friend said it was inexpensive and an easy fix, but provided no specific details.

This is all speculation though as I have never tore apart the steering wheel and dissected the matter myself.
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  #10  
Old 05-07-2011, 01:37 PM
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As an update, I installed the new ignition switch I got for $34. It's an oem honda part. It took me about 30 mins to do the job. Works fine. Only time will tell. I used the following instructions:

first page

Click the image to open in full size.

second page
Click the image to open in full size.
hope the above instructions helps others who might need to do the repair. I just didn't think taking it to the dealer and basically lose the car for a day was worth the $34 it cost me to replace mine.
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1998 Civic 4DR LX
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Old 05-07-2011, 01:37 PM
 
 
 
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Tags
1998, 2003, car, change, civic, driving, ford, honda, ignition, ignition switch, recall, shutoff, shuts, start, switch, windstar, wont

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