Emissions malfunction light, then putters sluggishly - Honda Civic Forum


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Old 07-27-2009   #1  
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Emissions malfunction light, then putters sluggishly

I'm fairly clueless about cars, so am hoping someone here could give me a idea about all the things that I could potentially be having to get repaired soon.

Last week the emissions malfunction light came on. When I looked it up in my manual, it said if ignored it could result in major damage. I did as suggested and opened the fuel cap and then replaced it (in case the cap had been put on improperly), and was happy that the light went off the second time I went for a drive.

Unfortunately, it came back on the next day and has been on ever since. Only now I've had three incidences of the vehicle feeling like it wasn't getting gas and then "putt-putt-puttering" in hesitation, until it finally feels like it catches on (or something!) and then evens out.

I read elsewhere about fuel injectors. Could they be clogged? Could an air filter that desperately needs to be replaced cause such a performance issue?

Thanks in advance for any feedback anyone could give. I'm off work today and tomorrow and will have time to take it to the Honda dealer if I need to, but just wanted a heads up on what to expect.
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Old 07-27-2009   #2  
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Re: Emissions malfunction light, then putters sluggishly

what kind of emissions malfunction? did you actually read the code? it should give you a specific code so you can look up the problem.
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Old 07-27-2009   #3  
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Update: Problem solved

I went ahead and took it to a Honda service department and they were kind enough to give me the honest (and inexpensive) repair: THEY PUT OIL IN IT!

They did run the car through the computer to check the codes, and apparently it was a lot longer than I remembered since my last oil change. The service manager said that it was nearly empty of oil, and what WAS there was black as coal. He said something along the lines of that some kind of sensor (can't remember the term, exactly) triggers the malfunction light when oil levels become dangerously low.

I was also told, as expected, that the air filter was so ancient that it was falling apart, so I did go ahead and replace the filter. The plastic box that encases the air filter had been broken by the last service technician who had opened it, so it was waaaaay past due for replacement as well.

After about an hour at the shop I drove away and the light was off and was back to driving smoothly.

I'm rrelieved that it wasn't something outrageously expensive. Thanks, Gearbox, for trying to help!

Last edited by ceedee; 07-27-2009 at 02:08 PM.
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Old 07-27-2009   #4  
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Re: Emissions malfunction light, then putters sluggishly

prolly the vtec solenoid if you have EX civic. glad to hear it worked out tho.
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Old 07-27-2009   #5  
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Re: Emissions malfunction light, then putters sluggishly

Yes, that was exactly what he mentioned, the vtec solenoid. I do have the EX.
Thanks again.
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2002, 2003, 2005, civic, crv, emission, emissions, fuel, gas, honda, light, malfunction, pic, si, timing

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