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Old 01-04-2010, 02:07 PM   #1
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Default 98 civic ignition spark problem?

My daughters 1998 civic 1.6, will not start. It quit on the road, and hasnít run since!
Turns over but no spark!. Replaced distributer and ECM. -- Have heard talk of ignition problems on these cars?? I really donít have any indication of this problem that I recognize?
Wonder if bad crank position sensor could cause this problem. Reads about 2 k ohms, which seems fine for a magnetic PU?
Would be nice to have a detailed schematic of the distributer and applicable wiring. Any ideas of where I might get these?.---- Chilton manuals very limited.
Civic has 140 k mi. Decided to give it a miner overhaul while in my shop. Hope I can get ignition to spark when Iím done!
Any help appreciated. Thanks
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Old 01-04-2010, 02:20 PM   #2
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Default Re: 98 civic ignition spark problem?

is the motor a d16y7 or y8? have you checked the wires and plugs for spark?

only reason i ask about the motor is because the y8's have notoriously bad reputations for oil pumps going bad over 150-160k
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Old 01-04-2010, 05:35 PM   #3
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Default Re: 98 civic ignition spark problem?

Does the fuel pump prime?

Any CEL codes?

Does the Blk/Yel wire attached to the coil and ICM get battery voltage when the key is turned to ON(II)?

The distributor sensors should have 350-700 Ohms of resistance.
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Old 01-04-2010, 07:39 PM   #4
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Default Re: 98 civic ignition spark problem?

Did not check fuel prime. Codes showed nothing.
Did not check blk/yel voltage. Will check sensor resistance and wire voltage.
Wont be able to do much right now as I in the middle of an ovehaul because of poor compression.
Thanks. Ill do those things.
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Old 01-04-2010, 07:41 PM   #5
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Default Re: 98 civic ignition spark problem?

It is a y7. will check more wires. Thanks.
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Old 01-04-2010, 07:42 PM   #6
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Default Re: 98 civic ignition spark problem?

If the fuel pump doesn't prime, the check whether the critical ground on the thermostat housing is loose or disconnected. Also check whether fuse 44, 31, or 13 is blown.
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Old 01-05-2010, 07:16 AM   #7
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Default Re: 98 civic ignition spark problem?

its your ignitions switch more than likely. I have a 98 and there are a million or so recalls for 98 civic's on our ignition switches. But mine never died like that, it would die when driving. check your main relay(also fuel relay) they are the same thing.

I bet money its one of those 2. good luck.
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Old 01-05-2010, 08:26 AM   #8
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Default Re: 98 civic ignition spark problem?

Ron:
Those fuses and many more checked. found none bad. Ground was good.
Are you saying, if fuel pump don't prime, then won't get spark, as they would be on same circuit? --- When things get back togeather will check.
Note: Don't belive lack of fuel was problen, but definatly the lack of spark.
Will check all these things when I get things back togeather again.
Thanks
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Old 01-05-2010, 08:41 AM   #9
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Default Re: 98 civic ignition spark problem?

Big cat:
I'm thinking bad ignition swith also, allthough most swith failures I've heard of were inttermitant! This doesn't seem to be that way.
That"s why I was hopping to be directed to a detailed wiring schematic.
Will recheck that relay! Thanks
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Old 01-05-2010, 09:05 AM   #10
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Default Re: 98 civic ignition spark problem?

so it spins but won't start...

most common failures to check first would be:
-the main relay; failure will cut fuel pressure (fuel pump won't run), but i think you will still get spark.
-ignition switch; like bghayd said an issue here typically causes intermittent failure. depending on which connection(s) is bad it could also keep the starter from spinning.
-coil and/or ignitor (ICM); these two components are housed within the distributor. in my experience they are prone to failure above 150k mi. you'll see compression and fuel but no spark, and it can fail while going down the road....

i can try to find a step by step diagnostic precedure for testing each of those components.
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Old 01-05-2010, 10:11 AM   #11
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Default Re: 98 civic ignition spark problem?

Borrow a distributor put it on and start the car... they sucks, happened to me before dont waist your money on a coil just get the distributor... let me know... good luck
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Old 01-05-2010, 11:10 AM   #12
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Default Re: 98 civic ignition spark problem?

Hondamark:
I did change distributer, and seperatly, installed new coil, Still no spark.
All else seemed to be working. (did not check fuel pressure).
Should have engine back togeather in a couple days.
Will check out pressure and all else you all have told me then.
Still open for ideas. (maybe websites, procedures and good schematics)
---Thanks
PS: As an old (really old), back yard mechanic that I am, I was wondering where the capacitor for this coil is? -- Is it external or within the distributer?? -- Did they somehow do away with it???
(just one of the reasons I wanted a good detailed schematic.) Thanks
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Old 01-05-2010, 11:30 AM   #13
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Default Re: 98 civic ignition spark problem?

If the dash warning lights illuminate when the key is turned to ON(II) or ON(III), then the ignition switch is likely fine.

Though you know there's no spark, you also need to listen for whether the fuel pump primes because, if it doesn't, then you need to consider the main relay circuit, which supplies power to both the fuel pump and ECU, which is needed for spark.

Did you check the three main relay fuses (44, 31, 13) using this method?

When you turn the key to ON(II), with or without the service connector jumped, does the CEL remain on steady?
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Old 01-05-2010, 03:31 PM   #14
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Default Re: 98 civic ignition spark problem?

Ron:
Great site on fuses you showed me.
I agree probe method gives more info per check. I have a probe somewhere but didn’t use it.
I will have to disagree with the very first sentence on the site however.
A fuse can fail with overloads or surges over time, not just a direct short to ground.
When I get this thing back together and battery hocked up, I’ll go back and check all again. I’ll check that relay for sure. Hopefully a little more systematic this time, with info you people have given me.
Thanks
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Old 01-10-2010, 02:28 PM   #15
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Default Re: 98 civic ignition spark problem?

the main relay is 2 sided, one side is for the pump that will prime it and the other side of the main relay is the ecu I believe. if one part of the Main relay goes bad the whole thing is bad.
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