Car will start but won't stay running - Honda-Tech


Car will start but won't stay running

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Old 05-08-2014, 10:49 AM   #1
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Default Car will start but won't stay running

My son's Accord has developed a problem. First start was normal this morning. After a shutdown, when he tried to restart it, it would not stay running unless he kept his foot on the gas pedal. There are no warning or check engine lights on. This is the first time this has happened. Car is a 2003 Accord LX with the 2.4 V-tec engine, automatic and 180K on the clock, 72 degrees and wet at his location. It also happens to be a hundred miles away from me, so I haven't looked at it yet and I'm not near my service manual. Does anyone have any ideas where I can start looking when I get there this weekend? A forum search didn't help much. Any help would be appreciated...

Thanks!
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Old 05-08-2014, 04:30 PM   #2
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Default Re: Car will start but won't stay running

A bad fuel filter would be likely to cause a CEL, but that's really the best idea I have to offer you. Hopefully that's your problem or someone more knowledgeable than me can point you to it.
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Old 05-08-2014, 06:31 PM   #3
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Default Re: Car will start but won't stay running

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My son's Accord has developed a problem. First start was normal this morning. After a shutdown, when he tried to restart it, it would not stay running unless he kept his foot on the gas pedal. There are no warning or check engine lights on. This is the first time this has happened. Car is a 2003 Accord LX with the 2.4 V-tec engine, automatic and 180K on the clock, 72 degrees and wet at his location. It also happens to be a hundred miles away from me, so I haven't looked at it yet and I'm not near my service manual. Does anyone have any ideas where I can start looking when I get there this weekend? A forum search didn't help much. Any help would be appreciated...

Thanks!
The throttle body is dirty.Clean it out and all should be well....
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Old 05-08-2014, 08:40 PM   #4
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Default Re: Car will start but won't stay running

How does it run when you do keep the pedal down to keep it running? Is it missing or hesitating? Could also be a faulty TPS - they don't typically throw a CEL unless they go out completely, or lose power/signal/ground.
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Old 05-09-2014, 04:54 AM   #5
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Default Re: Car will start but won't stay running

It runs fine with the pedal down, no misfires or hesitations. He was able to drive it back to his dorm parking lot from where it was, just had to keep a little bit of pedal in it to keep it running. I'll check the TPS when I get to the car. I had the air filter ducting out earlier this month and cleaned out the throttle body while I was there. I'll check that also.

Update - my son called this morning. After he got the car back to his dorm, he told me it would stay running, but the idle was very low, around 500 RPM indicated on the tach. He tried again this morning - the engine would run for a few seconds at very low idle before it died. It runs fine if he keeps a little gas on it with the throttle pedal.

Last edited by jetmex; 05-09-2014 at 07:37 AM.
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Old 05-09-2014, 09:28 AM   #6
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Default Re: Car will start but won't stay running

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I had the air filter ducting out earlier this month and cleaned out the throttle body while I was there.....
How?
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Old 05-09-2014, 11:43 AM   #7
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Default Re: Car will start but won't stay running

Opened the throttle and sprayed a little (no, I didn't flood it) carb cleaner into the throttle body and on the butterfly. Then wiped the inside with a clean rag with carb cleaner sprayed on it. Then I wiped the grease and crap off the throttle cable and checked the return springs. Cycled it all through a few times to make sure it was smooth and nothing was binding. All the electrical connections were secure. Car has been running fine up until yesterday.
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Old 05-09-2014, 10:12 PM   #8
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Default Re: Car will start but won't stay running

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Opened the throttle and sprayed a little (no, I didn't flood it) carb cleaner into the throttle body and on the butterfly. Then wiped the inside with a clean rag with carb cleaner sprayed on it. Then I wiped the grease and crap off the throttle cable and checked the return springs. Cycled it all through a few times to make sure it was smooth and nothing was binding. All the electrical connections were secure. Car has been running fine up until yesterday.
You need to flood it. Spray liberal amounts of carb cleaner into the TB while the vehicle is running and work the throttle so that the vehicle does not stall (never do this on a drive by wire vehicle) Do so after the vehicle is already at operating temperature.

If this does not solve the problem,you need an IAC.
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Old 05-10-2014, 07:30 AM   #9
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Default Re: Car will start but won't stay running

Thanks for the info, DCFIVER. I'll take some carb cleaner with me when I go look at the car tomorrow. Going to try to get it home if I have to work on it.
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Old 05-11-2014, 12:56 PM   #10
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Default Re: Car will start but won't stay running

The carb cleaner sprayed while the engine was running seems to have done the trick. I sprayed it just before we drove it home, and again after we got back. The last few starts were normal, we'll see how it works in the morning.
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Old 05-16-2014, 03:39 AM   #11
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Default Re: Car will start but won't stay running

Car is still running fine. Thanks again DCFIVER, I appreciate the help!
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Old 05-21-2014, 09:44 PM   #12
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Default Re: Car will start but won't stay running

I had a similar problem on my 03 Accord EXV6 sedan the idle was real low around 550 rpm at idle which is real low. Its supposed to be 790+-50 RPM when at idle. That's what it says in the Factory Honda Service Manual. If this was a 06 Accord or V6 model you wouldn't be able to clean the throttle body. Like you said because you would have to do the Throttle Position Sensor check TPS sensor check then remove the Throttle Body and clean it. With Honda Throttle Body plate cleaner because it being a Drive By Wire system. But good thing its the standard throttle body. so no programing or any thing.But glad its running good.
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Old 05-25-2014, 11:23 AM   #13
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Default Re: Car will start but won't stay running

My friends 04 4 cylinder Accord is showing the same symptom. The car was rear ended and the trunk light stayed on so the car battery died completely. Swap with my used battery and everything was fine for couple days but started doing the same thing, which jetmex explained about his sons Accord. I have a extra Seafoam so I'll use that and see it it works ...
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Old 03-05-2017, 04:59 AM   #14
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Default Re: Car will start but won't stay running

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You need to flood it. Spray liberal amounts of carb cleaner into the TB while the vehicle is running and work the throttle so that the vehicle does not stall (never do this on a drive by wire vehicle) Do so after the vehicle is already at operating temperature.

If this does not solve the problem,you need an IAC.
what do you mean by drive my wire vehicles? I have a 95 accord and I'm having the same problems and I know nothing about Honda's yet
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Old 03-06-2017, 11:44 AM   #15
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