My car won't start after it rains - Honda-Tech - Honda Forum Discussion


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My car won't start after it rains

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Old 08-21-2011, 02:48 PM   #1
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Icon3 My car won't start after it rains

My car won't start after it rains i put the key in and turn, usually i can hear the fuel pump turn on the the check engine light turns off then the car starts. But after it rains or on very humid days i turn the key and the fuel pump will not turn and the check engine light stays on and the car will turn over but won't start. I have to wait any where from 5-30 mins then the fuel pump turns on and the check engine light goes off and the car starts. On hot days no problem car starts right up! I've looked everywhere can someone please help me! Thanks a lot!
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Old 08-21-2011, 04:08 PM   #2
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

most likely in the ignition system. have you had a tune up recently including distributor cap? have you inspected the ignition coil for cracks?
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Old 08-21-2011, 04:17 PM   #3
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

Check teh distributor cap for moisture?
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Old 08-21-2011, 04:29 PM   #4
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

check your main relay
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Old 08-21-2011, 06:11 PM   #5
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

Used to happen to me, crack in the distributor cap and when water got in spark went out. Take a look at the cap and maybe replace it.
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Old 08-22-2011, 04:53 AM   #6
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

I had that problem with a 93 del sol and chased it for a year. I did fuel pump, main relay, ground wires on thermostat housing, ignition switch, etc. Turned out to be the ECU. Moisture got to it. The clue was the top of the ECU was covered with moisture corrosion on the case.
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Old 08-22-2011, 09:07 AM   #7
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

It is helpful to put what your car is.

I would do cap rotor and wires.
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Old 08-22-2011, 01:14 PM   #8
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

What car?

A bad distributor would not prevent the fuel pump from priming. Start by resoldering the main relay:

http://techauto.awardspace.com/mainrelay.html

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Old 08-22-2011, 01:24 PM   #9
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

had this same problem in my 93 coupe.. it was my main relay, changed it and never had the problem again.
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Old 08-22-2011, 02:13 PM   #10
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

Could be distributor cap or water getting into a relay.
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Old 08-28-2011, 05:28 PM   #11
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

Sorry guys its 94 honda civic ex with a d16y8 swap. the car is getting spark. the only way i know how to deal with it is to put the key in and turn till everything in on then walk away then in 10-15 mins when the check engine light goes off everything is fine! i checked for codes it has none. and the ecu has no sign of water damage from the outside. i already check the dizzy and the main relay i'm want to kill it lol please anything can help
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Old 08-28-2011, 05:30 PM   #12
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

When the CEL turns on steady, leave the engine running while you jump the service connector to pull the CEL codes.
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Old 08-28-2011, 05:34 PM   #13
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

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What car?

A bad distributor would not prevent the fuel pump from priming. Start by resoldering the main relay:
I was thinking the same thing. If the fuel pump is not priming. First place I would go is the main relay.
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Old 08-28-2011, 05:41 PM   #14
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

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I was thinking the same thing. If the fuel pump is not priming. First place I would go is the main relay.
the engine dont throw now check engine codes and the main has been change twice thinking i got a bad one i take back about what i say about the ecu i never checked that yet!
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Old 08-28-2011, 05:43 PM   #15
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

and for ***** and giggles how do you go about resolding the main relay?
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Old 08-28-2011, 05:52 PM   #16
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and for ***** and giggles how do you go about resolding the main relay?
Why don't you read posts in your thread?
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Old 07-08-2013, 03:47 PM   #17
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

Hey I have this same issue , I changed my main relay twice but still it just fires up for second and then it dies . I have spark and it has a new fuel pump and the fuel pump does turn on .
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Old 01-16-2017, 04:50 AM   #18
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

I know this is an old thread, but it accurately describes what's happening with my 98 Civiv EX. Pardon my utter ignorance, but what is and where is the ECU? Also, where is the main relay? My problem is very intermittent. When I want to work on it, the problem isn't there, and when I want to go somewhere, the car doesn't start. Car turns over fine, and I hear the fuel pump run for a second or two before I start. The only common thing is damp or rainy days, - it just doesn't want to start New distributor 3 yrs ago. I'm going out to thoroughly check out the distributor cap this morning. Maybe there will be something obvious. Any thoughts? Thanks.
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Old 01-16-2017, 07:00 AM   #19
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

I have the same exact issue in my 96 civic and 96 accord. I traced it back to the ecu following the Honda factory service manual for a "no start" condition. Found a computer on ebay for $30 and bam the accord starts up everytime. For the civic i have yet to buy another computer.
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Old 01-16-2017, 07:41 AM   #20
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

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where is the ECU?
Under the carpet in the passenger side foot well near the door hinges.

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Also, where is the main relay?
Next to the glove box near the door hinges.
To get to it:
Remove the glove box (two screws holding the bottom two brackets in place underneath the glove box.)
Open the passenger door and remove the plastic covering the side of the dashboard.
I think there's another piece of trim that needs to be removed as well.
You should now have access to the bolt that holds the PGM-FI main relay in place.
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Old 01-16-2017, 07:53 AM   #21
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

Thanks for the replys. Under the carpet, huh? So I guess you probably have to take off the door frame trim to get under that carpet? That sounds like a real pain. Is ECU the abbreviation for "Engine Control Unit?" I did check out the distributor cap this morning. Looks very good, clean, and intact. Is there any definite way to determine that the ECU is toast? I looked on ebay as eg.b15 said, and there are lots of options of ECU's between $35-$300+...should I be wary of these? How do I know somebody didn't pull their "intermittent" computer out of their car like mine...uggh...I just get the ******* when I think about having to replace computer modules.
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Old 01-16-2017, 05:02 PM   #22
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

Actually if I'm not mistaken I think only on the eg's the ecu was under the carpet....on your 98 it should be next to the passenger door behind one small piece of trim, it's not terrible to gain access to. And unfortunately, you are taking a chance buying one off ebay. There really is no way of telling if the computer is any good or not until you plug it in. Hope this helps.
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Old 01-17-2017, 04:38 PM   #23
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Default Re: My car won't start after it rains

***UPDATE*** I am fairly confident I have this issue whipped. I thought when I had the distributor replaced three years ago that the mechanic replaced the spark plugs and wire set with it. I found the old receipt, and that didn't look to be the case. When I took out the plugs for inspection, it looked as if the gaps on the plugs were way out of tolerance of 1.0-1.1mm. I measured all four and found 3 of them to be 2.0mm, and one of them to be 1.9mm. Promptly replaced all 4 along with a new wire set, and the car starts right up. Haven't got to test it yet in the rain, but I am fairly certain this was the issue. Thanks to those who gave insights into my dilemma.
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