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Old 01-07-2011, 09:11 AM   #1
2000FBPITR
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Default Car keeps turning off at idle

I have a friend who has a 1995 honda accord ex model with automatic transaxle. The car starts up perfectly and throws no codes and idles great when in park or in neutral. However, when the car is engaged into gear it has a tugging feeling and begins to sputter and turn off if the vehicle is not allowed to continue its momentum (ie drive). If the vehicle is taken out of Drive and put into Neutral the car maintains its idel no problem. All engine maintenance has been done, it doesn't have a blown headgasket, no bad Iacv, nothing relevant to the engine. I'm fairly certain that her torque converter may be the underlying issue, if not it has to be tranny related IMO. LMK if you've had any problems with this model car, any similar issues, or whatever you can comeup with so I can help her get her car fixed (she's a poor student with a child...). thx
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Old 01-07-2011, 06:14 PM   #2
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Default Re: Car keeps turning off at idle

So it boggs down when in gear at idle. Will it stay running if you give it a bit of gas and still holding the brake?

IMO-the 5gen auto tranny's are pretty dang good-364K on mine. Yes it could be that but I think there is something else going on....what is the rpm in park when warm?
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Old 01-07-2011, 06:34 PM   #3
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Default Re: Car keeps turning off at idle

Check for vacuum leaks, using some carb cleaner, etc.
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Old 01-07-2011, 09:19 PM   #4
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Default Re: Car keeps turning off at idle

This is what the Haynes Manual says about Engine Stalls:

-Idle speed incorrect
-Fuel filter cloged and/or water and impurities in the fuel system
-Distributor components damp or damaged
-Faulty emissions system components
-Faulty or incorrectly gapped spark plugs
-Faulty spark plug wires
-Vacuum leak in the fuel injection system, intake mani, or vacuum hoses
-Valve clearances incorrectly set(too tight)

I do know that a clogged cat will not keep an engine running. It'll stall out if it's completely clogged. To see if that is the culprit is to remove the o2 sensor out. It should stay running once there's an opening before the clogged cat.
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Breaking the bank, maybe. Feeling like a boss, likely.
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Old 01-09-2011, 02:36 PM   #5
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Default Re: Car keeps turning off at idle

Idle is at just under 1000, and had a tune-up done 4months ago 4k miles ago (spark plugs, wires, cap, rotor). No emission components have been removed and everything looks to be in tip top shape (vehicle has 155K miles). Cat is fine, vehicle passed emissions with ease last inspection a year ago. Car doesn't bog-out, surge idle, or anything of that nature. The only issue it has is when it's put into reverse or drive (ie a load is placed onto the tranny), it starts to sputter out and die unless u give it gas (increase RPMS) or u put it back into neutral.. I'm guessing it's torque converter related. any other ideas?
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Old 01-09-2011, 02:56 PM   #6
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Default Re: Car keeps turning off at idle

It can be but if it's a torque converter related that shouldn't turn the car off though and if it was the torque converter, the car would just sit there revving even if you're in gear. Thats what I think. We'll see what others gotta say.
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Old 01-09-2011, 05:29 PM   #7
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Default Re: Car keeps turning off at idle

Quote:
Originally Posted by poorman212 View Post
So it boggs down when in gear at idle. Will it stay running if you give it a bit of gas and still holding the brake?

IMO-the 5gen auto tranny's are pretty dang good-364K on mine. Yes it could be that but I think there is something else going on....what is the rpm in park when warm?
Yup, it starts to bogg b/c it's not going anywhere, if u take off the brake and let it coast at idle it'll go fine (ie as long as it has momentum it'll stay running). But if you have to hold the brake down and the car is not allowed to go anywhere it will eventually turn off (if U rev it, it will maintain idle, even sometimes it'll hold an idle w/o out but not for prolonged periods of time).
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Old 01-09-2011, 06:10 PM   #8
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Default Re: Car keeps turning off at idle

The problem can be any of the things listed from what nus-dogg previously listed in addition to other things not listed.

What you describe is the problem manifest itself when put into gear. Here is an excerpt from the service manual; when an automatic transmission is put into gear, the ECM controls current to the IAC Valve to maintain correct idle speed. I am not saying this may or may not be an IAC Valve problem, I am just stating there are other factors when the car is put into gear, as the ECM controls other things too. The air/fuel mixture, spark, etc may change.

A suggestion would be to check some of the other items. Some are easy and/or cheap checks. One would be spraying carb cleaner in different areas of the engine while it is running, to see if the idle changes may help identify if a vacuum leak exist, etc.
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Old 01-09-2011, 07:54 PM   #9
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Default Re: Car keeps turning off at idle

You can rule out vacuum leaks. In a car that uses a mass airflow sensor this will cause a lean burn. But hondas of that gen use a MAP, and because vacuum leaks affect the manifolds absolute pressure the air being inhaled by them is not unmetered.

But I digress. What you are describing is a textbook busted a/t gear position indicator. Tells the ECU the tranny is in gear and adjusts airflow at idle accordingly. No signal, car doesn't adjust air, engine dies when the tranny loads it.
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