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Won't always start... Service engine light.

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Won't always start... Service engine light.

  #1  
Old 07-07-2009, 06:28 AM
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Question Won't always start... Service engine light.

Hey guys... I am new to this site and was hoping that you could help me out here. I bought a used 1990 Honda Civic SI hatchback and I am having some troubles.

Typically when I start my car the Service light comes on for about 3 seconds and goes out (normal). After a short trip when I try to start the car again and turn the key to accessory power the service engine soon light will stay on for up to 5 min and my car won't start. The starter runs when I turn the key but it won't start. I am able to push the car and pop the clutch to get it to start. If I wait for a while (while staring at the light with a very intense focus *jks*) I hear a small click the the light blinks, then it sounds like a full relay click from under the dash and the light goes out. Then I can start the car.

What is going on?

I spoke with the local honda dealer and they thought it was the remaining components of an aftermarket alarm and engine immobilizer but I replace the alarm with a new one and all new components and it is still a problem. I have it booked into honda to see if is is storing a code for thursday but it is going to cost me a mint so any help would be appreciated!

Thanks!
 

Last edited by vincevs; 07-07-2009 at 06:58 AM.
  #2  
Old 07-07-2009, 06:54 AM
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you know you can take it to advance autoparts or autozone to get the codes pulled, right? For FREE!!!
 
  #3  
Old 07-07-2009, 07:20 AM
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yeah get in the zone.
 
  #4  
Old 07-07-2009, 07:44 AM
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autozone!
 
  #5  
Old 07-07-2009, 08:24 AM
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when the light comes on..... just come in.....





pepboys has everything you need for less!
 
  #6  
Old 07-07-2009, 09:55 AM
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Sounds like a plan... but I have no autozone in my town.
Isn't there a way to connect a jumper wire and count the flashes or something? I know I could do that on my 88 Chev S10.
 
  #7  
Old 07-07-2009, 10:18 AM
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Not too sure if it works on EF's, but here you go:
http://www.honda-tech.com/showthread.php?t=1901557
 
  #8  
Old 07-07-2009, 10:22 AM
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Sounds like a bad main relay, which provides power to the fuel pump.

A 1990 Civic has an OBD0 ECU, so AutoZone can't pull the CEL codes with a scan tool. But don't worry, you can easily pull the codes yourself:

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  #9  
Old 07-07-2009, 11:03 AM
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Thanks for the info on the codes! I will take a look after work...

Here is a picture of the relay that is clicking... it is located on the drivers side under the dash just behind the door hinge. Is this the main relay?
IMG_0513.jpg?t=1246993606
 

Last edited by vincevs; 07-07-2009 at 11:07 AM.
  #10  
Old 07-07-2009, 11:10 AM
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The diagram below shows the location of the main relay. Yours is located equivalently on the left side.

Retrieving code 16 would verify a main relay problem.


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