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Fuel, Oil, Cleaners & Other Maintenance Extending the life of your Civic requires the proper fuel, oil, and cleaners, along with other regularly scheduled maintenance.

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Old 02-18-2009   #1
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Transmission Problem

I've been having some recent trouble with my 1997 Honda Civic (auto transmission) and was hoping someone could tell me what's going on.

This past week, my car was making a strange noise Ė like a loud buzzing Ė when in park and neutral only. It sounds great when in 2nd, 3rd, D, or reverse. The sound happened twice, once about a week ago and once again yesterday. Itís almost as if when in park or neutral, something is slipping in the transmission (at least that would be my guess). Iíve contemplated going in and changing the ATF, but wanted to get some input before I start the spending spree.

Also, just this morning, my check engine light came on. When Iím in drive and my rpmís are right around 1500 or so, the engine sputters and skips. If I give it some more gas and get the car up above about 1750 rpm, then there is no problem. It also idles fine. I was initially thinking it had to do with the fuel delivery to my engine, but it doesnít make sense that it only happens at a specific rpm. Any ideas here? Could these problems be related?
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Old 02-18-2009   #2
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Re: Transmission Problem

you got 2 different problems there it sounds like. the buzzing noise, all i can think of is bad motor mounts.. nothing should really be causing a buzzing noise from the transmission.. changing the fluid out is not a bad investment, do it yourself your tranny will feel a lot nicer.

the engine: either a bad tank of gas, bad plugs.. basically fuel delivery or ignition.. it sounds like you just have some misfires. try putting in some injector cleaner and new plugs and the problem will probably go away.
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Old 02-18-2009   #3
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Re: Transmission Problem

I was initially thinking that the transmission was slipping, because of the buzzing/slight rattling and because itís not happening all the time. It only has this problem occasionally when it feels like it.

Regarding the engine, if its fuel delivery, then why does it only happen at one specific rpm (right around 1500 rpm)? It seems that if it was any of the things youíve mentioned (bad gas, bad plugs, etc.) then wouldnít the engine misfire always and not at one specific point like its currently doing?
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Old 02-19-2009   #4
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Re: Transmission Problem

you gotta check the engine check light. if it says random misfire in all cylinders its something with the fuel. more than likely if it points to 1 cylinder it will be ignition related. i have no clue how an auto tranny works but motor mounts would be my guess.
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Old 02-19-2009   #5
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Re: Transmission Problem

^^^^^^once again showing us that you know absolutely nothing about cars.. the trans buzzing could be a bad trans. check the check engine light it might give you a code p0700 or p0740 p0730 thats trans related if it gives you a code p0300 p0301 p0302 p0303 p0304 thats missfire codes. is your car a civic hx with the cvt trans in it because thats what it sounds like to me.. if so your best bet is to drain and fill the trans then take it out for a drive then bring it back and drain and fill it again take for another drive working it manually through the gears... then bring it back in the last time drain it and re fill it.. i have done this many times on the cvt transmissions and it has helped a lot with problems. but let me know if its cvt before you do all of that.
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Old 02-19-2009   #6
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Re: Transmission Problem

^^lol? i already said i know nothing about auto trans. lol

but lil midget is correct with the codes. go to your local autozone, they can check your engine check lights for free.
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Last edited by civicsrcool; 02-19-2009 at 11:16 AM.
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Old 02-19-2009   #7
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Re: Transmission Problem

let us know what the codes are if you find out. i have access to honda online maybe i could help point ya in a direction.
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Old 02-20-2009   #8
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Re: Transmission Problem

the idle would be messed up like that if there was a vaccum leak and it could trigger the CEL too. its worth checkin it out i was scan the comp and see what code it spits out that will atleast put u in the right direction
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Old 02-26-2009   #9
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Re: Transmission Problem

Since my last post, no problems with the buzzing noise in park/neutral that I thought was the transmission. I'm thinking I might have dirty transmission fluid and that's it...probably going to do a flush regardless of this is the problem or not though.

Regarding the engine, I did a manual paper-clip check to get my error code and it gave me a 1, which is an oxygen sensor, I believe. I talked to one of my buddies who is a Honda mechanic and he said that 97-00 civics are famous for their oxygen sensors going bad.
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Old 03-12-2009   #10
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Re: Transmission Problem

Ok, so how awesome is it that I found YOUR post here! I have the same issue going on with my 97 Civic HX - and it IS INDEED THE CVT transmission. There is an actual bulletin that Honda put out regarding this same issue. It is the Honda Bulletin # 02-003 and it states that it needs the starter clutch fixed/modified or whatever... Bottom line is its gonna cost about $500 just for the parts.
My question is: Can I really do as you've suggested here and fix the problem????
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Old 09-01-2009   #11
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Re: Transmission Problem

HI, I have a 1998 Honda Civic LX with automatic transmission. I have about 115K mileage so far. I am experience slippage in gears when accelerating. The check engine light translates to P0730 "Incorrect Gear Ratio". I have done extensive research on the web and cannot find a solution or find out where the root cause of the problems is. The only thing I found was that, Sonnax has developed a replacement spring 88894 that has a wire diameter larger than the oem design. This supposedly reduces the stress on the spring, preventing future breakage. I don't know if this works or not. Transmission fluid is fine. Honda says to replace linear solenoid, but from all the reviews that does not work. So currently, it looks like the only solution is to get a retrofitted transmission from Honda and pay someone to install it. This is estimated to be about $2,500 with labor ($500). Another caveat to this problem is that when the engine is cold, the transmission works fine. So this is in the morning when you start up the car. You can't even tell there is a problem shifting gears. After about 10-15 minutes when the car warms up, the harsh shifting occurs, and the transmission looses almost all the grip. You have to manually shift the gears to get the vehicle to move. Example, when you're at a stop sign on a hill in D4, the car will roll back. So this tells me this problem is highly sensitive to temperature. So as a temporary solution, you have to manually shift the gears from D2 to D3 to D4 when accelerating. I've been doing this for over 4 months now, and it is working for now. I'm now starting to notice that once in a while when I am driving, I smell oil burning and sometimes the smell of a skunk (probably grease and oil), which is a sign that the clutches may be burning or some other part sizzling.

Any advice or suggestions on this?
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Old 12-13-2009   #12
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Re: Transmission Problem

my car is doing the same thing, I have been told it is the filter located inside the transmission. If I let the car sit for a minute the fluid will slowly go down and the transmission will run again. You have to pull the transmission as this is a non-servicable filter
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Old 12-13-2009   #13
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Re: Transmission Problem

if it slips, then it is a mechanical failure and the damage cannot be reversed by filter and fluid changes. trans must be rebuilt (needs new clutches).
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Old 12-13-2009
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97 , check engine , civic , honda , neutral , noise , park , po700 , po740 , problems , put , rpm , skipping , starter , transmission

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