Aug 122019

Honda Civic

My car was bought new in 2010. We have been out of the country for a year and now we are back to US to a new state. As per the state rules we took our car for the emissions. But even after driving for 150 miles it still fails the test. My car needs to pass the emissions in order to get the new registration done. please advice.

Post the year of the vehicle and the computer codes that are causing it to fail when you get a chance and we can dig into the causes.

In the meantime hear is a cheat sheet on how to pass the emissions test.

Jul 172019

1999 Honda Passport

AC is not working at all but all fuses and relays are good. The blower motor has 12volts and when i ground out the other wire it blows. The AC clutch doesn’t engage but i don’t think it is even getting a signal from the temp controls. Can a bad blower motor resistor stop the entire system from operating?

The AC clutch will not engage if the Freon is low. You can test the clutch by jumping across the low pressure switch with a paper clip. Make sure the selector switch for AC is on. The Blower is separate.  Generally if the blower resister is bad the blower will only work on high speed.

More than likely you just need to recharge your air conditioning system. Here is a video that shows you how easy it is to do it yourself.


Jun 282019

2007 Honda Odessy

My van seems to have a longer than normal crank time before if finally starts. I’ve tried to cycle the key several times to pressure up the fuel system before engaging the starter…. same result. It starts the same whether the engine is cold or hot. Could this be a crank or cam position sensor issue? If so, how do I check it/them? The Check Engine light is not on.

Another diagnostic is to press the gas pedal a little while cranking. If that works, the cause could be the idle air control valve (blocked) or a dirty throttle body (choking off the air supply).
Other causes of a slow start are dirty fuel injectors (insufficient fuel flow) or worn spark plugs, as you already mentioned. Bad gas cannot be ruled out; fuel up at a top tier station.
Lastly, always listen for the fuel pump when you turn the key on. If you don’t hear it, the main FI relay could be flaky or the immobilizer is wrongly blocking fuel delivery.
Source: Dave
May 212019

I have 2010 Honda Accord EX L v6 4 dr sedan. Can you tell me how many and where my car has 02 sensors? Also I understand that there are 2 types of catalytic converters too, one that can be replaced by a universal and the other more costly as it is attached to the manifold/exhaust. in my car which type catalytic converter does my car have? Thanks so much

Catalytic Converter 2010 Honda Accord EX-L V6

Oxygen Sensor Location

oxygen sensor location 2010 Honda Accord

Sep 172018

1993 Honda Accord

What would make my 1993 Honda Accord spark plug smell like diesel fuel?

Contaminated fuel. This is more common than you would expect. The same delivery trucks are sometimes used to transport different grades of fuel. Under normal operating procedures the tanks are flushed after each haul. This helps prevent contamination of diesel and regular grade fuels. When this step gets over looked there can be upwards of a 100 gallons being mixed in the next load.

When your fuel is contaminated the engine may struggle and have performance issues. The engine may “PING” on heavy acceleration. Though in the short term no damage should occur but if not corrected severe internal engine damage will. Feel free to drive that tank out and fill up at a different fueling station the go around. For large fuel tanks an Octane boost may be used to prevent engine ping.

Sep 042018

1998 Honda Civic

Intermittently stalls

Initial start up car idles 1500 to 1700 open loop all good for about a minute or less. Then idle slowly drops down to 500ish, sometimes lower for a few seconds then back up to 1500.  (Usually does that idle drop just once sometimes twice). Once its been idling for ten minutes or so(temp half way up on gauge) it will not drop lower unless I turn the ignition off and restart the car. Idle goes normal 870ish. Depends on how its feeling that particular moment. Also my LTFT is averaging -10 sometimes higher or a little lower. Seen the STFT get as high as -27 while live scanning. Could the car possibly not be transferring over to closed loop?

The car intermittently stalls. Sometimes during warm up, sometimes while doing 60 mph down the road and sometimes when I arrive to my location as soon as I stop and start doing the routine of parking. I’ve replaced IAC, TPS, TB gasket, IM gasket and plugs/wires. Also bled air from coolant.  I keep throwing a P0420 cause manifold/converter has small crack in it right down the middle into the O2 sensor hole. Any response back with new suggestions would be greatly appreciated.


Hello Matt,

The crack in the converter may be causing an issue if it is the upstream O2 Sensor(A/F Sensor). The idle is adjustable, I will add the procedure below.

Idle Control System

System Description

The idle speed of the engine is controlled by the Idle Air Control (IAC)Valve.
The valve changes the amount of air bypassing into the intake manifold in response to electric current controlled by the ECM/PCM. When the IAC Valve is activated, the valve opens to maintain the proper idle speed.

1. After the engine starts, the IAC valve opens for a certain time. The amount of air is increased to raise the idle speed about 150 – 300 rpm.
2. When the coolant temperature is low, the IAC valve is opened to obtain the proper fast idle speed. The amount of bypassed air is thus controlled in relation to the engine coolant temperature.


1. When the idle speed is out of specification and the scan tool does not indicate Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) P0505 or P1508, check the following items:

  •  Adjust the idle speed
  • Starter switch signal
  • Air conditioning signal
  • ALT FR signal
  • Brake switch signal
  • PSP switch signal
  • A/T gear position signal
  • Clutch switch signal
  • Hoses and connections
  • IAC valve and its mounting O-rings

2. When the above items are normal, substitute a known-good IAC valve and readjust the idle speed
If the idle speed still cannot be adjusted to specification (and the scan tool does not indicate DTC P0505 or P1508) after IAC valve replacement, substitute a known-good ECM/PCM and recheck. If symptom goes away, replace the original ECM/PCM.

How to Adjust Idle Speed

(best viewed with Google Chrome)

Aug 232018

2002 Honda Accord

Idle rougher and rougher

My car was sitting unused in a garage for about two years. I had to replace the battery, and for some reason also the alternator was bad after that time (had no issues when it was parked).

I drove it to my friend’s repair shop to get the alternator replaced, which he did. He advised me to get new gas in it and apply injector cleaner, which I did. I also applied Heet. On the way to the gas station, there was thick black exhaust, which I attribute to bad gas, because I never saw it again. I drove it back to his shop where we discussed the exhaust; he had me press on the accelerator while he was looking at something under the hood.

That is when he noticed that the heat gauge was off the charts. He had me shut it down immediately. It turned out that no coolant had been in the car the whole time, apparently it had evaporated while sitting. He had never checked it, and I would not have known to do so.


Coolant was poured into the radiator, resulting in jets of steam. This went on for a while until it was cool enough to be filled with coolant. When it was restarted, there was a terrible problem with the idle. He detected misfires on two cylinders and thought that there was serious engine damage.

The car seemed to be a loss. But later that day, he started it again, and it was completely fine. He drove it to my house. However, there is not a happy ending yet. I have a terrible issue after I have driven it a while, switch it off, and again restart it within a short time. I get issues with a very rough idle which will either 1) ‘catch’ and then the car will be fine to drive, or 2) idle rougher and rougher, until it bucks (the entire car will jolt forward and back), and eventually stall. Once I saw white smoke coming from the hood. Again, I thought that there was permanent engine damage, but upon starting the car again a couple of days later, again it was fine.

So this is a very strange problem, which affects the start mostly when the car has been recently used and driven for a period of time (a warm start). It will idle rough, ‘catch’ and then idle and drive fine, or it will degenerate into a really bad state, as I have described.

Please help. My mechanic friend is at a loss. I do not know enough about car mechanics to hazard a guess.

Idle rougher and rougher

My Advice with this one would be to pull the spark plugs and perform a compression test on the engine. This should be performed after the engine has been warmed to operating temperature. Wait as you would before it would have an issue. This will rule out a blown head gasket and give you a chance to look at the plugs. See if any of the plugs look damp or in need of replacement.

My thinking is the head gasket is blown. It is at the beginning stages and small. This would explain why only after the engine is warmed and shut off that a small amount of coolant seeps into the effected cylinders. This is just enough to cause a misfire until it has a chance to shove it out the exhaust. Then after a quick restart, the engine is able to burn any that may seep in.


Jun 132018

Honda Pilot

My A/C blower motor stopped working

My A/C blower motor stopped working. I removed it and checked voltage at the plug, 12.4vdc. When I plug it back in, it starts momentarily, but stops. It’s a nonreturnable part based on its electrical nature, so I want to be sure this is the problem.

Use a different source of power when testing the blower motor. I use a Power Probe when doing this in the shop. It allows you to apply power at a push if a button. If you do not have one you can use jumper wires from the battery also. If you find your blower motor is functioning just fine with a separate power source, check your blower motor resistor next.

Power Probe III – Automotive Circuit Tester

Shop Automotive

Blower Motor Replacement

Blower Motor

blower motor diagram 2004 Honda Pilot

Item Part Number Description
1 W701696 Vacuum reservoir screw
2 19A566 Vacuum reservoir
3 Blower motor electrical connector (part of 14401)
4 W701696 Blower motor screw (3 required)
5 19805 Blower motor

Removal and Installation

  1. Remove the vacuum reservoir screw.
  1. Position the vacuum reservoir aside.
  1. Disconnect the blower motor electrical connector.
  1. Remove the 3 blower motor screws.
  1. Remove the blower motor.
  1. Remove the blower motor wheel from the blower motor.
    1. Remove the push clip.
    1. Remove the blower motor wheel.

blower motor wheel

  1. To install, reverse the removal procedure.
Mar 272018


Honda Accord

So I just got my first car, a 2008 Honda Accord Ex-l with 55k miles on it from an elderly couple. When I first bought it everything was fine. As I started to drive more and more I started having problems with the transmission.

First off, Its pretty hard to accelerate and when i do i feel the engine working hard to get up to around 2,500/3k rpm, then it gets smoother when it drops down to about 1,500rpm (is this normal?).

Car jerks a little forward

Another thing (my main concern) is that once I’m going anywhere from 30-60 mph and i take my foot off the gas and just let the car glide, as the rpm needle goes down and hits just below the 1k mark the needle jump up to around 1.5k and the car jerks a little forward. (when I’m going around 60-80, it might do this twice). What does this mean? Is that normal?
The last thing might be the same problem but I’m just gonna ask anyways.. Also when I’m breaking from most speeds, once the needle goes below the 1k mark the needle also jumps up (usually between the 500 and the 1k rpm mark).
Whats going on lol?
Ive already changed my break pads and rotors, changed my engine oil (not transmission), and got a fuel injector cleaner. (Not because of this problem, but they needed to be changed anyway.)
Also, whenever i turn my car on I always hear fluid dripping/gurgulling right behind the dashboard. What is causing that?
Thank you very much! Appreciate your service!


VSS? Check engine light?

Car jerking forward? Needle bouncing may all be related to what ever is going on. The needle bouncing isn’t much of a concern as long as the engine isn’t dying. The needle is moving around because the IAC (Idle Air Control) is doing its job.

The first place to start would be to have the check engine light codes scanned. Any present codes will assist in directing us toward the problem. This saves time and money. Also keeps us from trying to guess. Most any local auto parts stores will scan the codes for free. Post the codes below in the comments.