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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Over the past 2 months my car has devloped a personality it seems...more so than usual. It was about every other week, now its every week. Ill go out to the car after Ive run back inside for something, or I run into work to check my sechulde and then run back out to the car...
Well, it starts like normal. Barely a crank, purrr.....and then *putt putt purrffttt...* It'll die and I have to sit there like for 1-2mins, and reguardless of cranking or whatever it WONT start...

After 1-2 mins, it starts perfectly like nothing happened...?
Ive looked the last few times its done this and there are no codes, plenty of mid grade gas. It had a tune up in Febuary, NGK plugs, wires, cap, rotor...etc.

And some guy offered to buy my car so Im wondering if this was a sign lol...j/k :rolleyes1:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hmm...Doesnt matter with mine. Flat or down hill...Its normaly not on a hill anyway.
 

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Sounds like the 'ole failing main relay routine. It's apparently a thermal expansion issue, so warm weather tends to make the problem more pronounced. If you can solder fairly well, just pull the relay out of it's case and re-solder, or at least fully re-melt all the PCB connections.
 

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bobski has the most likely answer.

also, take some fine grit sand paper or a paper towel with rubbing alcohol and clean the relay contacts. re-solder the joints. some will be visually bad, but you may not see any bad ones.
 

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When my crx started doing that start-up-and-then-die routine, it was the injector o-rings. The surest way to know is to let it die once then smell around the injectors... if you smell fuel then thats most likely it.

The o-rings are just a few bucks, and you'll get a chance to change out your fuel filter and de-grit your injectors while you're at it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Hmm...It does smell like its running rich at WOT sometimes...
I think I will do the relay and the o-rings since the rinsg are cheap. Im pretty good with a soldering iron, Fixed a few cd players amps in the past and I solder alot of my comps PSU wires.

Thanks for the info guys...But where is the main relay at? Ive lost my haynes manual.
 

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The main relay is just behind that little flip down door next to the drivers left knee. You have to remove the door to get to it.
 

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its simple to tell if its the main relay or not
with the key in the second position the fuel pump should prime, you should hear a whining noise. also when the CEL turns off it makes a click
thats under normal conditions

if you dont hear that click of the main relay then dont even bother trying to start the car b/c it wont. the main relay controls the fuel pump, injectors and has a feedback to the ecu

the main relay is located under the dash almost just beside the change/ash tray draw

remove the main relay and resolder all the connections on the board
this will resolve all your starting problems

also for you boosted built motor guys, i have seen ppl run into fuel problems if the main relay is old




hope that helps
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Sweet!! That helps alot...I would dig into it now but its 12am...I had to work later than usual...
So Ill get on it tommrow or begining of this week since I have 3 days off...about damn time!

The car pulled the whole not starting routine this morning and I didnt smell any gas around the injectors. Im betting the relay as well...

Thanks alot...!
 

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BlackCRX said:
its simple to tell if its the main relay or not
with the key in the second position the fuel pump should prime, you should hear a whining noise. also when the CEL turns off it makes a click
Not knocking here just helping...

Nope, sometimes it's not "simple" to tell if it's a main relay or not. Main relays are goofy little things that can work on one cycling of the key and not on the next. A relay that's just beginning to fail is unpredictable. Also, there are actually 2 clicks when you cycle the key. Once immediately when you turn the key to the on position and another one 2 seconds later. If you don't hear/feel both clicks each time you try to start the car, it aint starting.
 

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dohcrxl said:
BlackCRX said:
its simple to tell if its the main relay or not
with the key in the second position the fuel pump should prime, you should hear a whining noise. also when the CEL turns off it makes a click
Not knocking here just helping...

Nope, sometimes it's not "simple" to tell if it's a main relay or not. Main relays are goofy little things that can work on one cycling of the key and not on the next. A relay that's just beginning to fail is unpredictable. Also, there are actually 2 clicks when you cycle the key. Once immediately when you turn the key to the on position and another one 2 seconds later. If you don't hear/feel both clicks each time you try to start the car, it aint starting.
Good point Heu. This happened to me a lot when I first got my CRX. The second day I had it, I drove to the bank, came out 5 mins later and it wouldn't start. I tried calling everyone I knew to come get me, nobody was around, and in frustration I tried starting it again... started right up. The only way to tell for sure is to take it out and look at it, or just resolder it to be sure.
 

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It certainly *sounds* like it's the main relay to me. Especially the part about how it starts fine, unless you've just cut it off to run inside for something. My '88 Civic Si did that. So did my '91 CRX DX. And my '91 Accord LX. And my '88 CRX Si. In every single case, it was the main relay! When the problem started, it was when the weather started warming up; the cars would all start great in the mornings, but if I stopped along the way to work to grab a Coke or anything, I'd come back out and it was a crapshoot as to whether they'd start or not. The '88 CRX and the '88 Civic both did the start-but-run-like-crap-for-a-minute-or-so trick; the others would generally restart after a bit of cranking. Eventually, the relay in the '88 CRX failed utterly - on the morning I was going to put it up into the driveway to replace the main relay, it just wouldn't start! I ended up pushing it into the driveway so I could change it. Could've happened in a MUCH worse place... ;)

I've never been handy with a soldering gun, so I generally just replace the things with new ones. Here's a little trick I learned that will make the job a lot easier: don't remove the entire relay! The housing (the black box that's bolted to the chassis under the dash) isn't what went bad - it's the electronics inside it. If you look at the bottom of the relay's housing, it's rectangular in shape. Using a small flat-bladed screwdriver (or a butter knife, if your wife doesn't catch you using it), pry the shorter sides of the box apart a bit, one at a time, and tug gently down on the relay's wiring connector. This way, the relay's innards will come out easily. Now just unclip the connector, plug in the guts from the new relay, and slide it on home. Bingo. Done. Takes me a few minutes this way. Removing the housing is kind of a chore - for me, at least - because it's held in place with a 10mm bolt that's just a beeeyotch to get to, and harder to get back into its hole and threaded correctly.

Hope this helps make the job easier.

Mike
 

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dohcrxl said:
BlackCRX said:
its simple to tell if its the main relay or not
with the key in the second position the fuel pump should prime, you should hear a whining noise. also when the CEL turns off it makes a click
Not knocking here just helping...

Nope, sometimes it's not "simple" to tell if it's a main relay or not. Main relays are goofy little things that can work on one cycling of the key and not on the next. A relay that's just beginning to fail is unpredictable. Also, there are actually 2 clicks when you cycle the key. Once immediately when you turn the key to the on position and another one 2 seconds later. If you don't hear/feel both clicks each time you try to start the car, it aint starting.
funny you should mention that man
before i only heard one click, and that was after the fuel pump finished priming

BUT after i resoldered the main relay i starting noticing the first click and not just the second click

not quite sure what the first click is related to tho
i have always been able to start my car before even tho i didnt get the first click, not to disagree with you or be a prick, just me observations tho
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Come to think of it, Im not hearing the first click either, just the second one...I tried this today. But then again if teh first click isnt as loud as the second one, that may be why as I have issues hearing low tones...

::EDIT:: Im not that def... I just went outside where its queit and I heard both clicks...Then again My car has been sitting for a few hrs and its cool out. I'll test this more tommrow in the forcasted 90 degree weather.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
So this is the famous main relay...



Now I know why its such a bitch to get out... :rolleyes1: :lol:
 
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